triple j mag ‘We Salute You!’ party-starter profiles: Jaddan Comerford, James Wright, Zoe Barrett, June 2011
A couple of short profiles of young Australian party-starters for triple j mag, as part of their party-themed issue (#50, May 2011).
Click the images below for a closer look, or just read the accompanying text.
Who: Jaddan Comerford
Although it wasn’t a party in the traditional sense, 2010′s No Sleep Til festival put thousands of music fans in a celebratory mood. According to promoter Jaddan Comerford, the mission statement was simply “to put on a punk rock event”. Headlined by Megadeth, NOFX and Dropkick Murphys, No Sleep took in five Australian capitals, as well as Auckland.
“There was a bit of stress involved,” 27 year-old Jaddan admits. The Brisbane event was most memorable, as it rained all day.
Jaddan says he love “organisation and making sure the ‘product’ is good”. That means ensuring people are enjoying themselves at the festival, and that there’s enough food, drinks, and toilets.
Though No Sleep Til 2011 is unconfirmed, Jaddan is busy as the owner of UNFD, a ‘music services’ company he founded. Part label, part manangement/marketing/booking agency, UNFD recently announced a deal with Warner Music.
Festival models Jaddan digs: “I love Laneway. It’s small, it books new acts and actually breaks them in the market. I also love the way they use venues not everyone else uses.”
For 22-year old James Wright, becoming booking and event manager of Brisbane’s most popular club night was a result of performing at similar events. As drummer in indie punk band Stature::Statue , James played a show put on by the Fans Group in 2008 and was intrigued to see its inner workings. “Fans is a party-throwing company started by four guys who wanted to do cool things with their love of music, girls and alcohol,” James says. “Their sole purpose on this earth is to effect that end.”
After asking Fans’ directors if he could learn more, James now sees Lambda Lambda Lambda – held each Thursday at Fortitude Valley’s Alhambra Lounge – closer than anyone: he books bands and DJs, coordinates worksheets, organises fees and makes sure that the night runs smoothly.
A recent highlight of James’ career was when most of the bands playing Laneway Festival crashed the party. Warpaint and Les Savy Fav were booked to DJ, but Yeasayer, Ariel Pink’s Haunted Graffiti and !!! turned up, too.
Qualities a good event manager should have: “Patience; ability to listen and comprehend carefully; be organised and open to ideas, even from unlikely sources. You also need to have a professional attitude and a penchant for late nights and drunken conversation.”
Who: Zoe Barrett
According to Zoe Barrett, four ingredients comprise a great party: being organised, creating the right atmosphere, social networking ads, and bubble machines. As Events and Marketing Manager at the Newport Hotel in Fremantle, Zoe loves the fact that she gets to see “loads of great live music for free”. With her help, the Newport has a growing reputation for putting on quality original bands each week; recent headliners include the John Steel Singers, Illy and Philadelphia Grand Jury.
Zoe recently launched a new club night, Bass Culture, which is “all about heavy, heavy bass music. It’s nerve-racking starting a brand new night,” Zoe says, “but when the place fills up and the new idea takes shape and kicks ass, it’s an awesome feeling.” If Zoe could’ve attended one legendary event, she’d pick the club party in London after The Beatles finished recording Magical Mystery Tour. “I would love to go back in time for that,” she says. “That’d be genius!”
Zoe’s CV: “I just moved to Freo and I was working at the bar [at the Newport] but I have a degree in Creative Industries majoring in Advertising, so when the Newport marketing manager left, I applied for that job.”