It’s September and signs of the LA County fair are unavoidable. Luckily, the advertising madness reaps rewards. The Fair’s End of the Summer Concert Series still has two weekends of concerts that will cost fair-goers no more than the price of admission.
Dale Coleman, Vice President of sales, marketing and creative programming, said it’s one of the Fair’s biggest marketing advantages every year.
“I would said by a country-mile that it’s the number one question I get asked,” Coleman said. “Who’s playing at the fair this year?”
Coleman and his committee work hard to provide Fair audiences with a stellar line-up at a low cost.
“Most people don’t realize how much negotiating has to take place to bring artists to the fair,” “Coleman said. “We start working on the series during the previous fair.”
Coleman said a large part of the planning is economical.
“We have to keep routing in mind.” Coleman said. “We wouldn’t want to bring in an artist who is touring in New York because it would cost a lot more to fly them in than someone who happens to be in this area.”
Diversity is also a goal in the selection process. The line-up seeks to give something to everyone, even though that task is nearly unattainable, Coleman said.
“Music is definitely dominant among the series, but our Monster Truck show and FMX show is also extremely popular,” Coleman said. “We sell out that Monster Truck show every time.”
Smashing cars in the Demolition Derby may sound like an odd form of entertainment, but for some, it’s just enough to grab their curiosity.
“I’ve never seen a demolition derby, but it might be interesting,” said Steven Andrews, senior computer science and music major. “But with my dislike for wasteful commercialism, I’d probably be sickened by it.”
New artists to the Fair this year include Lifehouse; Crosby, Stills and Nash; Hall and Oats; ZZ Top and Trisha Yearwood.
Although the series always tries to include numerous first-timers, the season traditionally opens with WAR because it’s guaranteed to be a great concert, Coleman said. A stable crowd-seller is important to the fair.
Other crowd pleaser include the 70s funk band Tower of Power.
“I saw them last year and they were jamming,” said Steven Biondo, ULV Music Department Coordinator. “This year, they are coming back with their original drummer and bass player. I’m really going to try and see it.”
Darryl Hall and John Oates will come together tonight as a soulful duo from the 70s featuring hits such as “Kiss is on my list” and “Sara smile.”
Tower of Power returns to the fair on Sept. 24, and ZZ Top, rock and roll hall of fame inductees from Texas, makes its fair debut on Sept. 25.
The End of The Summer Concert Series will wrap up its run with the one and only Demolition Derby on Sept. 29, pop’s Hoobastank on Sept. 30, the LG Action Sports Championships of Freestyle Motorcross on Oct. 1 and country star Trisha Yearwood on Oct. 2.
All concerts begin at 8 p.m. Fair-goers are granted free stadium seats with paid admission. Additional reserved seating ranges from $15 to $100 based on seat preference.
Stephanie Duarte can be reached at Duartes@ulv.edu.
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