The sold-out Bassnectar show scheduled for Thursday, May 3 at the Santa Cruz Civic Auditorium has been cancelled over a disagreement between the artist and city over noise monitoring.
The Civic posted a notice on its website and on the door at about noon today, May 2, notifying the 1,600 ticketholders of the 11th-hour cancellation. Goldenvoice, the show's promoter, confirmed that the May 3 show will be split into two shows at the Catalyst May 6 and May 7. (Tickets must be exchanged at the Civic box office; see below for Goldenvoice's statement.)
Bassnectar’s Facebook page announced the news of the cancellation Wednesday afternoon.
Civic Auditorium manager Andy Botsford says Bassnectar, who attended UCSC under his given name Lorin Ashton, “didn’t want to be monitored in any way with this show.”
Botsford says that if there are noise complaints from neighbors and the police come, artists are asked to turn down the volume. This year, she says, Bassnectar stated that he didn’t want to be monitored. She adds that in February 2011, when Bassnectar last played the Civic, whether or not he was going to be monitored wasn’t an issue. “It didn’t come up.”
This year, though, “He was very firm that he didn’t want to compromise on his artistic integrity,” says Botsford.
Bassnectar’s Facebook message said this: “…(H)aving this happen so last minute is basically putting us in a very difficult situation. Now they have told us we will be shut down if we play at our normal volume (the same volume we played at last time, and the same volume we play at in cities all across the country), forcing the show to be cancelled. We offered to start way earlier than normal, and to have music end by 10pm, and they had zero interest in finding a solution.”
Bassnectar’s management is reportedly working on scheduling two shows at the Catalyst in coming weeks to make it up to ticketholders. The Catalyst couldn’t confirm whether anything had been scheduled.
It’s not yet clear why the agreement wasn’t hammered out ahead of time between the Civic, Goldenvoice and Bassnectar’s management. Botsford says she got word Monday that the show was cancelled and that talks continued on Tuesday.
Goldenvoice sent Santa Cruz Weekly this official statement on Wednesday afternoon:
"The upcoming Bassnectar show on Thursday May 3rd has been cancelled. It has been decided that due to the high volume and intense bass of the Bassnectar experience, it would be impossible for the show to comply with local sound ordinances while being held at the Civc Auditorium.
"Starting Thursday May 3rd at 3pm and open until 9pm, all ticket holders may come to the Civic Auditorium box office to exchange for one of two shows to be put on at the Catalyst, Sunday May 6th and Monday May 7th. All ticket holders may also choose to be reimbursed.
" Anyone who does not pick up a new ticket on Thursday will be automatically reimbursed. All tickets must be exchanged, no civic auditorium tickets will be honored at either Catalyst show."
The May 5 San Jose show is still on.