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Creamfields Boss Cashes In

Reported by Joshua [Trackitdown] on May 10, 2012

Superclub/ dance music festival pioneer James Barton has sold Creamfields to Live Nation as part of the US event conglomerate’s plans to expand into hosting EDM events.

The sale, which Business Week said also includes Cream club events, will see Barton becoming Live Nation’s new ‘president of electronic music’, and will involve Creamfields launching new events in ‘key markets in North America, Europe and Southeast Asia.’ (Business Week: )

Details of the sale emerged just one day after Radio 1/ IMS/ William Morris executive Pete Tong warned about the dangers of ‘investment funds running around buying up (EDM) assets’ in an interview with Billlboard magazine.

“I think people have got to be very smart about how they go about dealing with all the opportunities that are before them. We all want to protect the scene,” the multi-millionaire entrepreneur urged.

‘”It's not just about grabbing the dollar, selling out as quickly as possible and everyone getting rich. (Though) that’s an option,” he conceded. ( )

Chatting to Skrufff several years ago about his business philosophy though, James Barton retained the same no nonsense approach to promotion that saw him build a business empire from throwing acid house raves in Liverpool in the early 90s.

“In plain English, dancing in a field with your best mates listening to damn good music is the best feeling in the world,” said James.

He also adopted a similarly pragmatic approach to the commercial threat posed by the massive increase in new festivals which saw 450 events in the UK alone in 2007.

“It is a concern and in a way it does remind me slightly of the boom time of dance music when everyone was jumping on the bandwagon then,” he admitted.

“For me it’s simple,” he added.

“If there are good artist around then the punters will support them. But that support will only stay if we as promoters and the artists continue to deliver shows and music that excite and inspire at affordable prices. It’s really important that we don’t fall into the same trap we did at the end of 90’s by not listening to the audience.” 

Jonty Skrufff: