DANNY WIMMER TALKS BUILDING FESTIVALS AND MORE WITH METAL INSIDER
Rock and metal is having a moment, and music festival production company Danny Wimmer Presents is at the forefront of it. Wimmer, a former record executive at Flawless/Geffen, Epic and Atlantic, left the label biz in 2011 after having successfully helped launch Rock on the Range, Carolina Rebellion and Epicenter. Since then, Danny Wimmer Presents has continued to add festivals in Sacramento (Aftershock), the Philadelphia area (Rock Allegiance), Wisconsin (Northern Invasion) and more. What’s more, they’ve attracted bands like Rammstein and Tool to play one-off performances at some of the fests. The mainstream media is taking notice as well, with articles from Billboard and Stereogum using Wimmer’s fests as a jumping off point about how healthy the rock scene is. With Tool, Korn, Primus and Meshuggah among the bands announced last week for the Aftershock Festival in October, we asked Wimmer about how he goes about booking bands, plans for the company’s growth, and who his dream booking would be.
This past week you announced that Tool would be headlining the Aftershock Festival. Rammstein is headlining Chicago Open Air. Those are rare festival appearances for both bands. Other than a backing up an armored truck full of money to them, what does it take to get bands like those to commit to playing fests?
As festivals continue to grow, they play an increasingly important role for bands. Many artists use festivals as anchor dates in their tour plans and record releases. So we spend a lot of time coordinating with their agents and managers. At many of our festivals, we have upwards of 50-90 radio stations on site. This has created an incredible platform for bands to get their messages out.
What’s the longest you’ve worked on getting a band to play a fest?
There is one band we’ve been targeting for the past 10 years to play a festival of ours. We are having conversations with them still today. You can do the math.