By Scott T. Sterling
Classic rocker Tom Petty caused quite a stir when he aggressively disparaged dance music culture during a recent interview, making a point to single out the annual Electric Daisy Carnival in Las Vegas.
“Watch people play records? That’s stupid. You couldn’t pay me to go,” Petty ranted. “I’m not oversimplifying it. That’s what’s going on. I don’t think it would be any fun without the drugs. It’s a drug party.”
Pasquale Rotella, CEO of Insomniac Productions, the team behind Electric Daisy Carnival, has responded to Petty’s critiques with a measured and thoughtful post on the Insomniac website. Rotella even went so far as to invite Petty to a future show:
Everyone is entitled to their own opinion about records, DJs and dance music, including Tom Petty. We’re living in a very electronic era with constantly evolving forms of entertainment, which may be a daunting thing for a classic rocker in search of contemporary social relevancy as he starts promoting new music. But I would think that someone who played shows with Dylan and the Dead—someone who lived through and actively contributed to the counterculture era of the ’60s and ’70s—wouldn’t be so quick to drink the overhyped media Kool-Aid about our festival experience. If he wants to come to EDC Vegas next year and see what it’s really about, we’ve got a ticket with his name on it. If he doesn’t want to wait that long, Nocturnal Wonderland is right around the corner. My Mama Irene would be stoked to meet him! Who knows? He might just have a “Change of Heart.”
As Rotella mentioned, Insomniac’s 18th annual Nocturnal Wonderland event is coming up fast, set for September 5-6 at the San Manuel Amphitheater & Grounds in San Bernadino, CA. The lineup for this year’s party will be announced later on today (July 29), per the show’s Facebook page.