For the past couple of months now I've been interviewing bands who will be appearing at this year's Borderland Fuzz Fiesta. I'll be featuring a couple of more bands in the future. This time I'm interviewing one of the masterminds behind this awesome festival. The one and only Wayne Rudell.
Apart from arranging kick-ass festivals with killer line-ups, Wayne is also part of two fantastic Stoner Rock Bands – Fuzz Evil and Powered Wig Machine.
Wayne has kindly agreed to talk to me about the festival, future plans for the festival and for both bands. So lets get started with the FUZZ.......
Hi Wayne. Thanks for doing this interview. How are things with you today?
Hey Steve cheers man we are doing great!
• So we are here to talk about your awesome music festival happening soon. Borderland Fuzz Fiesta.
How did the idea came about for this festival. The idea came from my good friend David Rodgers who runs the Southwest Terrorfest, and Battleground Records. He said that maybe I should think about starting up a festival that mainly caters to stoner rock and psych fans, so we can pick up where SWTF leaves off. I planned it to offset SWTF, so now Tucson can look forward to two yearly festivals.
• This will be the second year the festival will be happening. How did last year’s festival go?
Being a first year fest I think it went exceptionally well. We had a great lineup that brought Fireball Ministry with Scott Reeder, Wofat, Mos Generator and many more stoner bands from across the region. The turnout was on target and overall we had great fan response.
• Did you learn any important lessons from the previous festival?
Man you are always learning. You are going to make mistakes. They say repetition is the mother of skill. The longer we do this the better we are going to get, and hopefully that translates into growth for BFF and Tucson. You have to admire festivals like Roadburn, and Hellfest and just be in awe of what they have accomplished. It really is something to aspire too.
• How were the responses from the Psych/Stoner Rock Community in regards to the festival?
I think the overall response has been great. I have had bands from all across the world reach out to play on BFF. Joey and I’s whole vision for BFF is for it to be the biggest stoner rock and psych party in the US. We have had a lot of support from labels like Ripple Music, and blogs like yours to hopefully make this vision a reality. Onward and Upward!
• I have to congratulate you both on the great line-up. What can people expect from the festival?
This year we are very proud of the lineup. Both nights will be packed with riffs and heavy grooves. Fri ,Feb 26 will have more of a psych feel. I am very excited to see one of my all-time favorite bands Dead Meadow with Yawning Man. Seeing those two together is going be a real high point of the fest for me personally. Sat, Feb 27th will be a bit more of a heavy groove night with Elder headling. Their record Lore was just unreal and we lucked out bringing them all the way from Boston.
• How did you choose this line-up? And is this line-up close to your original plans.
When we plan the lineups we mostly go for a certain vibe. I like to make things flow naturally with the band selection, where the music complements each other. The final lineup is very close to the original lineup with the exception of the Saturday headliner, which just wasn’t in the cards for this year.
• It seems you guys have gone bigger and better for the second festival with some truly great artists on the bill. Was that part of your plan to try to do something better that came before it?
We are always gonna keep pushing ourselves to make things better. These first two year will more than likely be the most difficult times to succeed just because the popularity of the fest is still growing. The fest doesn’t have a built in fan base yet so Joey and I are always on the streets handing out flyers talking to people spreading the love of BFF. I imagine by years 4 and 5 things will be much easier when it is more of a mainstay fest, but until then we are gonna be putting a lot of boots on the ground.
• Was it easier or harder arranging the festival this time around? Man it was much easier arranging the fest this time around.
It takes time to learn the ropes and workout the details with agents. Like I said before repetition is the mother of skill.
• Which bands/artists are you looking forward to the most performing at the festival?
I am looking forward to all of them! It is a killer hand picked lineup by myself and I can’t wait to see both nights.
• Do you have an extended team helping you run the festival on the day? As you guys will be extremely busy on both days.
Joey and I mostly plan everything. We do have help with flyer distro and Pr. The day of the fest we will have to just delegate a lot of things. As much as I would love to just watch the show, we are going to be extremely busy making sure everything runs smooth and everyone has a good time.
• Will you start planning Borderland Fuzz Fiesta 2017 or is that way too early to tell.
We will probably start planning in March or April a month or two after the fest and start locking down our headliners. We typically start planning almost a year ahead. I feel you have a better insight right after the fest to improve your weak areas and make the overall experience better for everyone when things are fresh.
• Enough festival talk. We have to talk about Powered Wig Machine and Fuzz Evil. What’s happening with both bands? Are you guys performing gigs regular? Releasing any new material soon.
Hahah Joey and I never rest . We have taken a small break with both bands to plan BFF, but 2016 will be a very busy year musically for us. We will finally release the Fuzz Evil debut in the spring. Fuzz Evil will be doing a split with Switchblade Jesus in the fall, and Powered Wig Machine will be doing a 4 way split in the winter of late 2016/2017 that I can’t really give any more details just yet :0 PWM will also be doing a west coast tour in fall 2016. Fuzz Evil will be playing a few festivals in the us this summer then heading off to Europe the first few weeks in Oct with Switchblade Jesus. Hahaha At some point we are gonna eat and sleep but when you do what you love its easy.
• Before we go, do you want to provide any advice, warm welcome to the people who will be attending the festival?
We are looking forward to meeting a lot of the attendees and see just how far people traveled to come see the fest. Last year we had people drive 12 hours to come see BFF. If you see Joey and I come say hi.
• Thanks for doing this Wayne. And thanks for letting me interview a range of great artists on the blog. Much appreciated.
Thank you Steve Cheers!
Words by Steve Howe and Wayne Rudell
Thanks to Wayne for taking the time out to talk to me.
Powered Wig Machine Links:
Fuzz Evil Links: