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The Seaport is a pretty unique performance space, especially for a free show that'll draw in swarms of people. Does the venue and crowd size play a big role in your programming choices, and do certain types of bands and performers tend to work better than others? Does this change significantly based on the crowd (i.e. the people who show up to, say, River Rocks, as opposed to 4Knots)?
- Photo via Bryan Bruchman
- People really like live music, you know.
The Seaport is a very unique venue, there’s no denying that, and one of my favorite things is to transform that pier into a great place to do an outdoor show every time we have one. With the ships and the buildings and the water and thousands of people it makes for a very special place to see a show. After having booked Suicide to perform there back in 2007, I have come to believe any band will work on the pier. Again, whether it’s the Seaport or RiverRocks it’s all about bands we like and are psyched about. On that note, in a decade of putting on shows at the Seaport have you noticed any big changes over time, whether in the area itself or the nature of the crowds? Do you have a favorite vantage point worked out for seeing the shows?
It’s been an amazing ten years or so of doing shows at the Seaport and watching the surrounding area and community come alive. The growing residential community and the businesses that have come downtown has made it a really exciting place to be a part of. It’s also why the hurricane last October was so terrible and devastating, but watching it all come back and being able to have 4Knots this year is a definite triumph.
I’ve watched little kids in the neighborhood come to see Wire or Deerhunter and Ted Leo years ago, and now they’re older and still coming and I see them at 4Knots, it’s an amazing thing. I like to watch bands from the side of the stage with the Peking in the background, it’s the classic Seaport concert shot.
This year's lineup is pretty incredible. Any acts you're particularly excited for, or haven't seen live yet? Any that you're already eyeing to get on the lineup for next year (you know, because there's no rest for the weary)?
Without trying to sound like I’m avoiding the question I am looking forward to each and every band and I seriously mean that. Usually the stages start out at a certain level and build up to the headliner but this year it’s on full speed right out of the gate. Get there early is all I’m going to say.
I’m always thinking about next year and what band or bands would be great to have. The really great thing is there are always great new bands to inspire what we do. OK, there is one band we’ve all been dreaming of having at the festival since the beginning…but I can’t tell you who they are.
Follow Virginia K. Smith on Twitter @vksmith.