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February 22, 2024 124 mins

Bottlerock is America's most upscale major festival. Based in Napa, the food is not the usual institutional fare, but served by restaurants from the area, never mind the wine... I talk with the three principals about the cost and perks of the various levels of ticketing, and then we dive deep into the history and finances of the festival.

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Speaker 1 (00:08):
Welcome, Welcome, Welcome back to the Bob Left Sets Podcast.
My guests today are the brain trust and owners of
Bottle Rock. This is audio only. There's three guys here.
Maybe a little confusing, but why don't you introduce yourselves
briefly one by one maybe people can get the voice
associated with the name.

Speaker 2 (00:29):
My name is Dave Graham and that is my voice. Jason,
your next.

Speaker 3 (00:34):
Okay, Hey Bob, this is Jason Scoggins.

Speaker 4 (00:38):
Well I'm justin Drigo. So nice to meet everybody.

Speaker 1 (00:43):
Okay, guys, you know, toss up for twenty as they
used to say on gi College Bull. What makes Bottle
Rock different from every other festival? Well, where do.

Speaker 2 (00:53):
We want to start? Justin, Jason, I guess we can
start at kind of. We always call it our fourth partner. Well,
we're partners with Live Nations, so it's actually our fifth partner,
and our fifth partner is probably the most powerful partner
we have, and that's the Napa Valley. And I think
what differentiates us is that we're at that intersection of

(01:14):
food and wine and music, and so everything we do
as it relates to the customer experience is in line
with trying to deliver on that kind of brand expectation
of the Napa Valley, what people think about the Napa
Valley before they come, what they think about, what they
wanted in terms of what they want to do when
they're in the Napa Valley. We try to bring that

(01:35):
to the festival and then add music. Justin is really
in responsible in large part just Casey two for the experience,
and so I kind of jumped in and spoke about
a lot of the work that the two of them
do to create that experience, which is pretty pretty hard actually.

Speaker 1 (01:52):
Okay, justin conventionally it's about the lineup at festivals, except
for very elite festivals like Colla, not everybody is nap
affluent or is that wrong? Is Napa a draw into
itself so that you can sell tickets?

Speaker 4 (02:11):
Yeah?

Speaker 5 (02:12):
I think it's more of what Dave was referencing about
the standard of quality that we're looking for. It doesn't
necessarily have to be someone that associates with the Napa
Valley brand itself. But when people think in Napa Valley,
generally they're thinking about things that are done well and
done the right way. And and then let's say it
was a restaurant or let's say it was this food

(02:32):
and wine, or it was a spa, or it was
you know, you have it. There's a level of quality
expectations that whatever the subject is.

Speaker 6 (02:40):
If you're going to do it NAPA, you're going to
do it right.

Speaker 5 (02:43):
And so that's really the mindset that that Dave reference
to that we've we've been after. So even if you
don't reference or like have an affiliation for Napa Vallee
and you don't drink wine, but.

Speaker 6 (02:53):
You don't even have to, you know, you know, you
don't have to resonate.

Speaker 5 (02:57):
With the brand itself, but when you get there, you really, hey,
this place is different, this festival is a little different.
Like what does that mean to some people? Means Hey
there's more shade. Hey it's really clean, and hey it
feels real safe, and you know it's really comfortable and
it's there's no dust and so those aren't necessarily NAPA
Valley brand attributes, but it's really more that you call
it that quality standard that we try to hold ourselves to,

(03:19):
and it doesn't necessarily tie the NAPA, it ties to
the quality.

Speaker 1 (03:24):
So who comes to Bottle Rock, Jason, do you want
to hit that?

Speaker 4 (03:29):
Sure?

Speaker 7 (03:29):
Hey, Bob, Well, I mean Yeah, Justin was about to
say people of all ages.

Speaker 3 (03:34):
I think that's a fair statement.

Speaker 7 (03:36):
I mean, in terms of the demographic or regional demographics,
it's you know, eighty percent Northern California attended festival. You know,
so from Silicon Valley and San Francisco to Sacramento people
are coming to Bottle Rock. And then in terms of
the you know, the age profile, you know, we're looking

(03:57):
at probably a bit of a unique festival relative to
some of the what I would call write a passage festivals,
which are you know, a much more younger demo. Bottle
Rock is is a little bit more of a something
for everybody type of festival insofar as you know, the lineup,
all the food quality that Justin and Dave talked about earlier,

(04:19):
in the wine quality, So you're going to attract people
from you know, fifty percent of our audience is going
to be from eighteen to thirty four and the other
fifty percent is going to be thirty five to fifty four.

Speaker 3 (04:29):
Is kind of what our demo spread is.

Speaker 1 (04:33):
We kind of look at.

Speaker 2 (04:34):
It as a as a bell shaped curve, and so
like if you if you're looking at a bell shaped curve,
probably the mean or the fat part of the curve
would be in that kind of thirty two thirty five
year old range, and then there are long tails and
so what We'll have a lot of young people that
will come, and we'll have a lot of people I'm
fifty two that'll be my age and older. But the

(04:55):
real fat part of the curve would be around that
thirty two thirty thirty f five range.

Speaker 1 (05:01):
And to what degree is the repeat business.

Speaker 2 (05:05):
It's it's it's massive, it's it's it's it's really hard
to quantify because a lot of the everything's purchased with
with credit card tickets with credit cards, of course, and
what that means is that one year I might just
buy four tickets for myself and my family, and the
next year my wife might buy, you know, the tickets
for us. But generally we know that the customer is

(05:27):
a repeat customer because prior to the announcement of our
lineup each year, we sell out of of of all
levels of our our VAP tickets and our suites through
our loyalty loyalty.

Speaker 5 (05:43):
Sales, and roughly maybe half of the GA tickets are
also sold without anyone knowing the lineup yet, you know,
it's like one of those is the lineup important or not?
The lineup is massively important still, I know you were
referencing that there's other things, but it's because people expect

(06:05):
a big lineup from.

Speaker 4 (06:06):
What we're doing.

Speaker 5 (06:07):
They know that we're going to invest the money and
the right type of artists, and so all these tickets
sell ahead of time. It's like, oh, the artists, you
are not that big a part of it. It's like
the artists are massively a part of it, and you know,
kind of we're held to that same quality level and
all these pre sale tickets and even though they're buying
a ticket before they know the light up, but they're

(06:27):
counting on us to deliver a top line up every year.

Speaker 1 (06:31):
So if the higher tier tickets sell out through the
loyalty program, to what degree do you feel pressure to
deliver a different experience from what you've delivered previously.

Speaker 6 (06:44):
I guess I could comment on that whether whether we've ever.

Speaker 5 (06:48):
Got this expectation from a fan or not, or whether
we just started this ourselves, which which is what we did.
Was it was really a plan, and we've done this
every year to change the VIP experiences significantly enough each
year that if you said, oh, I've already gone plat
at ball Rock Guard, you know what that is. I've
already done the VIP experience. I know what that is.

(07:10):
I don't need to go next year. But if every
time you've gone it's been different, then you realize if
you skip a year, you're going to miss out on
something right, and you're going to see it in the
photos from your friends. So so we you know we uh,
I wouldn't say we like invest a totally different amount
of money every year. We just take the same amount
of and invest it in a different way each year.

(07:30):
So we take a lot of time to come through
that good question.

Speaker 1 (07:33):
Can you give me a couple of examples.

Speaker 5 (07:36):
Yeah, So it's there's a there's a theme to it
in these lounges and like you'll see the Platinum Lounge
and the Platum Lounge might go from everyone walks into
a Platum lounge, that's a that's one of the higher
the highest ticket ticket type that we have, and they
see it and it's like a New York speakeasy from
the nineteen twenties or you or say something like that. Right,

(07:59):
it's got to stir and feel to it. Like you
could be you know, in you know, Lower Manhattan, etcetera.
And the next year you walk in and you could
be on the beach in Cabo Saint Lucas, Right, it
could be like a Baja beach team. And it's the
same ticket in the same place, but you create a
different energy around it, and then we octivate different fan
experiences based on kind of what that theme is for

(08:20):
the year. So it's still in the same place, it's
still generally has the same attributes in terms of the
seating and and we do the food and such.

Speaker 6 (08:27):
But they're walking into an entirely new.

Speaker 4 (08:29):
Design every year.

Speaker 5 (08:30):
And we do the same thing with our via well
color vip fhillas as well.

Speaker 1 (08:35):
Okay, so if it's Cabo or New York, what experiences
might be attached to that to make it unique on
the theme?

Speaker 5 (08:43):
Yeah, so I mean, for example, and I think we
might have even chatted about this with you another time, Bob,
Let's say, with that New York experience and that you know,
kind of that speakeasy vibe and you focus some tastings
on like you know, rare bourbons, you know, or it
could have been more food that was more tied inspired
from a New York chef. And then the next year

(09:05):
I mentioned it's the same place, it's the same ticket,
it's the same you know, overall feeling a luxury.

Speaker 6 (09:10):
But if I had that more like Baja name, we're going.

Speaker 5 (09:13):
To compare like a bunch of highest end tequila right in.
What it really is the difference between you know, Don
Julio in nineteen forty two and pass Azul and five
others like and let's have you sit down and taste
and pick them apart and see which one you like.
It's it's not that someone needs to go to a
music festival.

Speaker 4 (09:30):
It tastes tequila, but.

Speaker 5 (09:32):
It's kind of an unexpected thing and you know, and
certainly an unexpected lower equality we're trying to bring to
just you know, get people to say that's different.

Speaker 1 (09:42):
Okay, let's go back to the very beginning of the
fan experience. Let's assume the festival is mature, which it is. Now,
do you have to do any advertising? What do you
do to make people aware of the coming year?

Speaker 2 (09:58):
Well, you got your typical, well kind of marketing strategy
that I would say is very similar to what other
festivals would do.

Speaker 1 (10:07):
But then.

Speaker 2 (10:09):
Throughout the year, as you're leading up to the festival,
you've got announcements that you make with partners that you
bring on that are at the restaurant level, that are
at the food level, sorry, at the wine level, at
the call it culinary stage level that everyone waits for

(10:31):
and everyone anticipates. And so these are kind of, let's
put it this way, like if we're talking about the
culinary stage, everyone is waiting to see who is going
to be on the culinary stage. And I can unpack
with the culinary stages for those that don't know.

Speaker 1 (10:47):
What it is.

Speaker 2 (10:48):
But we release that that announcement in the form of
an ad maat, and in that ad mat we you
will see celebrities. You will see the very artists, many
of them, many of the very artists that are playing
the festival that year, and then you'll see rockstar chefs.

Speaker 1 (11:08):
All all build in a way.

Speaker 2 (11:10):
That is very similar to how a festival would build
build its musical lineup. And so we make these large announcements,
and then of course we do social media around it
and creative kind of call it products to kind of
promote that even though in many of those announcements we're
not doing those and making those announcements to sell tickets,

(11:32):
but instead just to deliver on what people are expecting.
But again to Justin's point, it's going to be different
every single year. The food lineup, the wine lineup, the
culinary stage lineup.

Speaker 1 (11:45):
Okay, festival plays at the end of May. When will
the first tickets be on sale for the subsequent year
November of the of the of the prior year. And
why November is opposed to July or February.

Speaker 2 (12:00):
Right, Well, we want to give people and our loyal
customers the ability to actually not have to have to
wait in the queue and to worry and distress as
to whether or not they're going to actually get the
tickets that they want. So we make it a very
pleasurable experience and do multiple levels of loyalty sales for

(12:22):
different categories of our customers, so that no one that
is planning and coming to Bottle Rock that has come before,
that wants to come has to be in a queue,
but instead they buy the ticket within a given timeframe.

Speaker 1 (12:38):
Okay, so let's assume I've come before. Am I going
to have constant contact with you, email, whatever, or all
of a sudden I'm going to get noticed that the
tickets run sale in November.

Speaker 2 (12:50):
You're going to be notified in a couple of ways.
You'll be notified via text assuming you signed up for SMS,
and you'll be notified via email, and also social media
will will make you aware that these loyalty sales are
in the hopper.

Speaker 1 (13:09):
Okay, so I've signed up to be reached, but is
there any follow up between the end of May and November?
Do I get you an email with pictures or is
it relatively quiet? And to what degree are you worried
about overloading the customer.

Speaker 2 (13:25):
So, at the risk of being the guy that's the
only guy that's talking, I'll let justin give an example. Justin,
if you can give them an example of how the
customer experience starts with the way in which they purchased
the ticket, all the way through almost what we will
call the advance of that customer, and then to the
actual on site arrival and then egress and perhaps maybe

(13:46):
use the Platinum customer experience as an example.

Speaker 4 (13:52):
Yeah, I can give an example of that. I guess,
Bob start.

Speaker 5 (13:54):
I guess they answer one of your questions first, in
terms of do we go darker? Do we content? And Hey,
the festival ended in call it the end of May
or early June. Are we reaching at to them in
July and stuff? So other than the what you'd expect,
which is kind of a pretty deep survey process to
try to understand feedback, that's what happens right after the festival.
So we take that really seriously, and in fact, a

(14:16):
lot of guests are surprised to end up saying, hey,
wait a minute, I commented in on some random survey
and you.

Speaker 4 (14:22):
Guys actually did it.

Speaker 5 (14:24):
So we get a lot of that, which is which
is fun to hear, right, It's like we're listening to you,
so we, you know, take the time to fill this
thing out.

Speaker 4 (14:31):
So we do that right after the festival.

Speaker 5 (14:33):
And then you did make a comment about some what
do you could you touch a customer too much? It
is what we are really sensitive on that, right, So
we don't send out a bunch, We don't really hit
social very hard, We don't hit emails very hard in
that fall time frame because we don't want people to
unsubscribe frankly, right, and to get tuned.

Speaker 4 (14:52):
Out of it.

Speaker 6 (14:52):
And then then we ramp up, like David.

Speaker 5 (14:55):
Just mentioning in that early fall time frame, to make
sure before the holidays people have a chance to re
engage with the brand and re engage with the ticket
sale process. And then yeah, I will go into the
whole the whole thing that Da've cheed up right there.
But like you know, we spent a lot of time
on what is that, what is that ticket purchase feeling like?

(15:16):
If we were a customer, what would we want right?
How fast would we want it to be? Can we
actually reach somebody through customer service?

Speaker 6 (15:22):
What is that when you get it in the mail?

Speaker 5 (15:24):
What does that packaging look like? And in regards to
the higher end ticket sales, there's a very hands on
approach to it. There's a concierge, you know, that's kind
of take care you need to you know, help people travel,
you know, make sure that you get you know, from
the hotel in the way that you want to get
from the hotel. And then you know, we're greeting you
on site and there's you know, you're greeted with the

(15:46):
glass of champagne and you're you know, showing your way
through the backstage area. And it's really a handheld type
process that isn't that different than some other luxury experience.
You might have in the world, but it's really different
what we found in the festival space. So that's why,
you know, we didn't necessarily try to say we're going
to have the most hands on, high service festival.

Speaker 4 (16:08):
That wasn't one of the goals we had.

Speaker 5 (16:10):
Again, they teed it up by saying, we're really just
trying to try to put ourselves in the customer shoes,
like what would we want here, right, what would you
want if you bought a ticket at this price?

Speaker 4 (16:20):
Right?

Speaker 5 (16:20):
And we just listed it out as we were a customer.
You know, in the end, it's it's it's kind of
simple if you just jump in the customer shoes and
try to design it that way.

Speaker 1 (16:29):
So forgetting when these tickets go on sale in loyalty,
how many different kinds of tickets are there?

Speaker 2 (16:40):
Well, there's there's three day GA, there's single day GA,
there's single day VIP, there's three day VIP, there's three
day skydapp, there's three day a platinum, and then there
is well, I don't know if we want to talk
about that other ticket, but.

Speaker 8 (16:56):
There's another merit.

Speaker 2 (16:58):
And then and then of course suites, and within the
suites you can and Jason can really impact that. But
there are two different types of levels, the VIP and
the platinum.

Speaker 1 (17:08):
Oh wait, wait, wait, wait wait, let's go very simple
by price. First, GA, everyone understands that you pay a
price like a regular festival. You stand, you watch the acts,
and you can buy food. The next level up is
it's VIP. So what do I get? How much more expensive?

(17:28):
So this year GA for let's call it the whole weekend?
How much was GA for the whole weekend?

Speaker 2 (17:35):
So GA, roughly, if you're talking three day, is about
four hundred dollars.

Speaker 1 (17:41):
Okay. So the next step up from there.

Speaker 2 (17:44):
Well, then there's a single day GA, which is two hundred,
and then the three day VIP is the next step up,
and that would be about twelve hundred dollars, and then
the single day VIP would be just under five hundred.

Speaker 1 (17:56):
Okay, I pay my twelve hundred dollars. What am I
getting for twelve hundred dollars? If the GA people are.

Speaker 2 (18:04):
Not getting I'm going to let our VIP guy describe that.

Speaker 5 (18:07):
Justin I will, and then we're gonna By the way above,
you'll you'll find this out. It didn't matter what question
you answer, any three of us could I answer any
question that comes up. So I feel like that Jason
answers one of these. I'll see this one up just
because it's VIP and I'll give the answer to that.

Speaker 4 (18:24):
But then, Jason, I'm going to make you talk after this.
So yeah, so in general, the GA and we.

Speaker 5 (18:29):
Can you Actually this comes as a surprise because of
the focus on or I guess the tension that gets
paid to the VIP experiences. But you know, we put
a majority of our investment the last couple of few
years into the GA experience. So we have a goal
to say someone shouldn't feel like, oh I got a
GA ticket right and then to it. But it's going

(18:50):
to be just as clean. It's going to be the
same sidelines, it's going to be all the shade and
all the things you might expect. But to answer your
question on the VIP things that we do, so we
build this thing called the VIP Village, which essentially is
just like a broader lounge area. And what does that
really mean. It means you're gonna have seating, and you're
gonna have shade and kind of the the I guess

(19:12):
just you know, basic comforts.

Speaker 6 (19:14):
Of of you know, being an.

Speaker 5 (19:16):
Outdoor event all day in that in that VIP tent though,
is something they've touched on just a little bit where
we have private performances so in the artists, and the
artists are obviously compensated, uh for this, but is an
extra play. So if someone's on the main stage, say
at four o'clock, they might do an extra performance just

(19:38):
for the VIP guests and it's kind of an acoustics
strip down. They might play three songs, might pay four,
might pay five, a little bit, whatever they want to do,
but they engage in a really close intimate proximity to
the guests that are in VIP. So that's definitely a
key part of the VIP ticket. The VIP guests, you know,
get upfront viewing. You know, you're kind of a right

(19:59):
up right up near the front of the stage. There's
these elevated decks on both of the main stages, so
there's like elevator.

Speaker 4 (20:08):
So it's essentially it's elevated viewing.

Speaker 5 (20:09):
It's better bathroom, it's the VIP lounge, it's the VIP performances,
it's up close viewing.

Speaker 4 (20:16):
It's preferred parking that you know, et cetera.

Speaker 1 (20:20):
Okay, just to go back a step. What's capacity? How
many are GA you know, how many are.

Speaker 3 (20:26):
VIP Dave, You're probably looking at that, so go ahead.

Speaker 2 (20:31):
Well, yeah, sure. I mean the capacity in general is
is roughly around forty four thousand a day paid, and
we do a mix of VIP and and GAS, you know,
but we really lean towards like single day tickets. So

(20:52):
the total number of tickets that will sell this year
will be roughly seventy seven thousand tickets, and you'll roughly
have call it, ten thousand VIPs at different levels per
day within that, and then the rest would be ga.

Speaker 1 (21:09):
Okay, why would people buy a single day as opposed
to a three day Well, I think there are a
lot of reasons.

Speaker 2 (21:17):
One would be that maybe they're coming to the Napa
Valley and they want to experience the Napa Valley in
addition to Bottle Rock. So they come to Bottle Rock
for one day and then they decide to do wine
tasting the next day. Number two is, you know, Napa
is kind of off the beaten track. Depending upon the

(21:41):
time you leave let's say San Francisco, it can take
you an hour, it can take you two and a
half hours. And so if you leave at the right time,
it can be quick, and it can be a fun
experience just for the day. The third would be perhaps
you're coming in as a ga and you know the
hotels situation can be difficult and nap up and can

(22:03):
be pricey, and so maybe that's not within your budget
staying the night at a hotel and going to the festival.

Speaker 1 (22:10):
And so for those reasons, a.

Speaker 2 (22:12):
Lot of people will will opt for the single day
and we've kind of embraced that and turned kind of
some of those difficulties that that customers have coming to
Napa Valley because it is off the beaten path and
hotel rooms can be hard to get to and expensive
into a strength and and and and so if you're

(22:33):
going to sell out and you have a fixed capacity, financially,
it makes more sense for us to sell more single
day than three day because you'll have a higher growth
on the box office overall over the three days. And
if you look at what the average pers spend would
be for customer on a single day basis, it's much

(22:56):
higher on average than what it is a person coming
for three days would spend each day on average.

Speaker 1 (23:08):
Okay, let's go back to the VI I P experience
you talked about like these acoustic performances. Would the VIP
customers be notified of that or would they just have to
be near where the performance takes place when.

Speaker 2 (23:22):
It occurs, justin you want to hit that.

Speaker 5 (23:25):
Sure, Yeah, there's a yeah, so they customers know that's
part of the ticket type. Again, there's a lot of
there's no one thing that sells the ticket and gets
all the loyalties, so you'll hear a lot of it,
whether it's changing the design or incorporate the artists experience.

Speaker 4 (23:39):
So and so I just know that we're not hanging
our head on any one of these things.

Speaker 5 (23:44):
It's the combination that really, at least we feel will
drive the long term loyalty to it.

Speaker 4 (23:51):
But they're they're aware that this is.

Speaker 6 (23:52):
Going to happen.

Speaker 5 (23:53):
So does someone know what what artists are going to
perform when they buy the ticket? No, but they know
there's going to be these intimate performances and then they'll
find out through the app and through email correspondence as
we get really close to the festival. Sometimes the hardist
we don't know exactly who's playing what timeslot because these
are only short, very short sets like we mentioned twenty

(24:14):
minutes or so thirty minute.

Speaker 4 (24:16):
Sets, and so we release it up and it's.

Speaker 5 (24:19):
Kind of a it's like a little bit of like
a holiday present for someone to unwrap. Like they know
they got a ticket and they know what's coming next week,
All right, when are they going to when are they
going to tell us who the private performances are, you know,
and it's something and we're not selling any extra tickets
because of the tickets have already been sold a long
time beforehand, so people get excited about that. And then also,

(24:40):
like David mentioning on the culinary stage, it kind of
works the same way, where all the tickets have long
been sold out by the time we announced who's on
the culinary stage, and so it doesn't mean that that's
not something that the fans.

Speaker 4 (24:53):
Are excited for.

Speaker 5 (24:54):
They already bought the ticket, but they just they can't
wait to, you know, figure out what's also part of
their experience the when the headline up is revealed.

Speaker 1 (25:02):
Okay, if I have a g A ticket, I have
access to the culinary stage absolutely, Okay, v I P.
What's the next level up from V I P.

Speaker 5 (25:14):
I'm laughing because it suggins you want to you want
to answer that or you won't be sure.

Speaker 4 (25:21):
I'm gonna make Jason answer a question.

Speaker 7 (25:22):
Yeah, he's forcing me. This is this is Justin's world, Bob.
But but to this point we all kind of overlap here.
So the next level above the vi P is uh
what we call the sky Deck program, and it's it's
literally and figuratively above the vi P that Justin mentioned
the decks that we we build uh for the festival

(25:46):
for viewing and shade while we build a double decker
on both stages, uh, and on that upstairs level is
the Skydeck program where there's a hosted bar, full bar,
grete wine selection, shade, seating, and just fewer people have
access to that next level called the skydeck. So it

(26:08):
makes for a much more comfortable experience outside of what
we would call the larger VIP experience, and you have
views on both the main stage and the second stage
or the counter headliner stage.

Speaker 1 (26:26):
Okay, so how many Skydeck tickets are there?

Speaker 7 (26:29):
We sell a little over a thousand, and based on
the programming that we do. Dave's responsible for the artist programming,
based on the program we would do, you know, any
one stage and the.

Speaker 3 (26:42):
Sky Deck would have.

Speaker 7 (26:43):
You know, half the viable audience could be anywhere at
any one time, So we try to keep the audiences
split up so that it always does feel roomy on
each stage. So there's a great content happening on the
main stage that attracts a X number of people, and
the second stage would have another artist going at the
same time, and that would attract a different population of Skydeck.

Speaker 1 (27:06):
Okay, how much does Skydeck ticket cost?

Speaker 7 (27:09):
I think we're at the two right, around two thousand
dollars all in, Dave, correct me if I'm wrong.

Speaker 2 (27:13):
You're looking at this particular at the price sheet, You're
about right.

Speaker 7 (27:19):
And for that mattered, we didn't really touch on this.
We're doing the all in pricing now, Bob, for whatever
it's worth. So when we say these prices, we're talking
about fees and so forth.

Speaker 1 (27:29):
Okay, if I paid two thousand and I'm in the
sky Deck, do I get any wine or any food
or just I have as part of that? Or am
I just an exclusive location?

Speaker 3 (27:41):
You are in an exclusive location.

Speaker 7 (27:43):
You get a full hosted bar that includes a very
well curated Napa Valley wine list of whites and reds,
of all kinds of varietals, so cabs and pinots and
Chardonnays and sat blancs, and that's all, you know, included
with the ticket.

Speaker 4 (28:01):
Uh.

Speaker 7 (28:01):
And then we have you know, our our premium bar
you know, well drinks you know from from Don Julia
Tequila to Kettle One vodka uh, and a full suction
of beers you know, from pacific O or you know,
Cores or Loganitas. So this is all included in that ticket,
unlike the VIP ticket which is no host if you will.

Speaker 1 (28:25):
And is there any food involved for two thousand.

Speaker 3 (28:28):
Not on the sky deck or the vip.

Speaker 1 (28:31):
Okay skydeck for two thousand. What's the next level above that?

Speaker 3 (28:36):
Justin take it away?

Speaker 5 (28:38):
Yeah, I'm sure the platum, the plant program. We referenced
it earlier with the lounge. So that's a six thousand
dollars ticket, and so that seems like a lot.

Speaker 4 (28:50):
And then people go to it and they did, all
of a sudden they feel like.

Speaker 5 (28:53):
Hey, that's pretty that's a pretty good deal compared to
when I paid it. The master's comptter, why I paid
at the one race, So it is all relative, and
so what do you get for six thousand bucks a ticket?

Speaker 4 (29:05):
So there's a lot, but I guess.

Speaker 5 (29:07):
To start with like where you where you arrive or
where you park. You know, a lot of people get
dropped with a car service with that ticket type.

Speaker 6 (29:13):
Or you park your car. Either way, you're doing.

Speaker 5 (29:15):
It backstage, and so you're literally arriving essentially like adjacent
to the Hardest Village and you go on a golf car,
you get your glass of champagne and welcome, and you
get dropped off, you know, kind of you know, escorted
through the back of the house and you get dropped
up right in the back of the main stage at
what we call the Platinum Mound. So in the Platinum

(29:36):
Ound is what we referenced before. It's a it's a
super large kind of air conditioned area that changes the
look every year, and it also changes the food or
the food changes every year as well. So it's it's
food from the second that you walk into the second
you leave, you know, comfort food and dessert on your
way out and everywhere in between. And so there's it

(29:56):
started out. I guess our partner there was mission was
the Michelin three star restaurant Meadowood, which was in that
but unfortunately burnt in the fires. Of twenty twenty twenty
until we have twenty seventeen fires or as far as
in twenty twenty and twenty seventeen. Yeah, Meadowood burned in
the twenty seventeen fires. So we ended up changing our

(30:17):
food program a little bit in terms of where the
chefs came from. But we but we set a standard
with them to say, hey, what do you expect when
you go to Michelin three star wars or what would
you eat? You know, what would you think of a
concert there? And it really set the bar high for
us and we couldn't go back from there. So we
have basically had no choice but to invest all in

(30:38):
on the food and beverage program. So it's if you
name it, then we've probably served it at the Platinum Oupse.
And that could be something as savory, is it's you know,
the best like grilled chicken sandwich you've ever had because
it's you know, made in the style that Thomas Keller
does at ad Hoc in Yonville. Or it can be

(31:00):
is you know, back to what you might expect in
you know, a fancy place like it's Caviat and it's
you know, there's a full oyster bar. And there's you know,
every wine you can imagine. So we're serving like multiple, multiple,
multiple hundred point wines, all served by master som Alier's
and masters of wine. So we have like true, true
wine experts that are there curating everything and then also

(31:23):
providing the service. We end up doing those those so
called specialty taste things. I was mentioning on the bourbon one.
You you commented on this when we chatted, you know,
a couple of months ago, but we would do that,
like do you really know the difference between Papy van
Weigel and some of the other premium bourbons out there?

(31:43):
You know, let's sit down and find out, right, So
people sign up for that experience, and next thing you know,
they're drinking all of these multi hundred dollars bottles of
bourbon and they're trying them.

Speaker 4 (31:53):
Right.

Speaker 5 (31:53):
We're not trying to get people drunk. We're just trying
to actually walk them through a process and how they're
each made. And we do the same thing with one.
We'll have lines that these same people buying a six
thousand dollars ticket, they actually can't get on the list
to buy themselves, but they can come to Battle Rock
and try it. So that's kind of been a fun thing.
And again we're just going off of what feedback that

(32:15):
customers are telling us in those surveys, and so we
do really special experiences there. Other than that, it's beautiful
lounge that's literally right next door to the main stage,
and from that lounge, when you go out to see
a show, you walk across the little bridge that gets
onto the on stage viewing that elevated kind of poser
deck viewing.

Speaker 4 (32:34):
Or you can go down to the chute and be like.

Speaker 5 (32:36):
Literally in the front row, so it's kind of a
guaranteed front row seat when you have that ticket type.

Speaker 4 (32:42):
We also offer a similar viewing at the sound mix.

Speaker 5 (32:46):
Obviously, we all know that the sound is likely the
best right at the sound mix, so we do a
cocktail service and a bar for this guest at the
sound mix itself, so they have multiple places to view from,
they have a concierge to help them with their.

Speaker 6 (33:02):
Stay and their air travel and.

Speaker 5 (33:03):
And et cetera, et cetera. But in general, that's a
rough overview of the Platinum program.

Speaker 2 (33:09):
One thing I would add is, you know, we we
kind of really took for granted just how much our
customers enjoy being whisked through on a golf cart the
back of house. I mean, Bob, you're you're He've been
in the music industry for so long and being back
of house anywhere is just kind of the norm. But

(33:31):
for someone that isn't from the music industry, the idea
of passing through back of house and seeing artists tense
and driving past this artist or that artist is really
a big deal and it's just enjoyable, I think for
the three of us to see the reactions on people's

(33:51):
faces as they come through the artist compound, and then
when they when they're dropped when they when they were
dropped off, which is right behind this Platinum lounge that
Justin was describing.

Speaker 1 (34:02):
It is at that.

Speaker 2 (34:03):
Place where they are greeted, they meet with the concierge,
They're able to store their purses or whatever they want
to store in their own personal locker, and then become
aware of COO, perhaps of the artists they can set
up a meet and greet for, and with what other
kind of programs tasting tastings, et cetera they can sign

(34:26):
up for all right then and there, it's kind of
the central hub where throughout the day, if they need
to get back to to to their locker, or if
they need to ask questions of anyone to let's say,
have a chauffeur take them home back to the hotel
to get something or whatever. It's it's where they go
to be just assisted at a very very kind of

(34:52):
I want to put it high touch point level.

Speaker 1 (34:56):
And how many of these tickets do you sell a day?
It's a complicated question.

Speaker 5 (35:03):
Yeah, well, because there's there's some there's some platinum suites
as well, and we'll make Jason take you through what
the suites mean for us.

Speaker 1 (35:11):
Okay, wait, wait, let me just stop for a second.
Platinum and Platinum suites are the only other tickets available.
There's nothing beyond those two.

Speaker 3 (35:18):
Right, there's one more.

Speaker 1 (35:22):
And what is that called.

Speaker 7 (35:23):
It's a Marriott Bombboy American Express suite ticket type that
we actually created a branded ticket type for a sponsor.
And we sell about four hundred and fifty of those
a day, so about you know, thirteen fifty over the
weekend of total people.

Speaker 1 (35:39):
Oh okay, let's let's let's go back. I spend my
six thousand. Am I ever going to have to open
my wallet again?

Speaker 4 (35:49):
Now? Yeah?

Speaker 5 (35:51):
If you so we'll give you a special hat you
know that's just bought, and we'll give you a lot
or not.

Speaker 4 (36:00):
But if you want if you want some if you
want some merch that's.

Speaker 5 (36:03):
Not part of what we're giving you for free, then
that's probably the only thing there is to spend money on.

Speaker 7 (36:10):
Yeah, if you're in Ga, Bob, if you if you've
left the platinum environments that Justin and Dave have been articulating,
you're now just you'r a general admission guest, right, and
if you want a beer at that GA bar.

Speaker 3 (36:22):
Over there, you got to pay for that beer, believe
it or not.

Speaker 1 (36:25):
Okay, So tell me about the sweets, Jason, you're up.

Speaker 7 (36:28):
Yeah, I'll jump in on that one. So the suites
program has has become a really meaningful and robust hospitality
experience for a lot of different clientele.

Speaker 3 (36:45):
It's it's grown.

Speaker 7 (36:46):
Over the years to the extent of we now have
thirty two individual suites each day on site. And we've
created this again another double decker that we referred to earlier.
This would be stage right of the main stage. So
you have a double deck or structure, sixteen suites on

(37:06):
the bottom, sixteen suites on the top. We have a
whole Suites team, conciers team and suite hosts that helped
manage this program. And the program essentially is a minimum
package of forty tickets for one day suite and you

(37:27):
can either be a VIP guest within that suite or
a Platinum guest within a suite.

Speaker 3 (37:33):
And what that means is it doesn't really mean.

Speaker 7 (37:37):
A whole lot on the suite itself, other than platinum
suites are prioritized closest to the stage, but when you
leave the suite, you are either now a VIP guest
to the festival or a Platinum guest to the festival.
We only sell so many platinum suites, and that's kind
of why Dave was saying that question is complicated because

(37:57):
we do sell a handful of platinum suites that are
part of the overall platinum body if you will, that
have access to all the Platinum experiences that Dave and
Justin been talking about.

Speaker 3 (38:08):
But I digress.

Speaker 7 (38:10):
That's kind of to tie that up with the sweets,
you basically have an in sweet bar. You have a
very curated sweet menu from local restaurants such as world
Famous Mustards, a Note Tree. These are all Napa Restaurants.
By the way, so many many restaurants are participating to

(38:33):
help feed our sweets guests. The sweet host and our
team work together months prior to the festival to curate
the food menu. You can upgrade your bar to you know,
some premium tequilas and bourbons and champagnes and wines. We
have a whole reserve wine list that's part of the
Suites program if you want to upgrade the wine that

(38:56):
we are providing.

Speaker 3 (38:58):
Let's see here. The customer for the suites.

Speaker 7 (39:01):
Has kind of evolved into a mixture of both sponsors
wanting that group hospitality experience in addition to their branded
experience that they're providing for the festival guests out in
Ga somewhere. And or we get a lot of winery

(39:22):
partners who you know, are finding this to be one
of the best experiences for like hosting their distributors, their
sales teams.

Speaker 3 (39:31):
That are spread around the country.

Speaker 7 (39:32):
They bring them back to Napa Valley and throw this
huge party forum at Bottle Rock and it's been a
home run for our wine partners in that regard.

Speaker 1 (39:40):
And then you.

Speaker 7 (39:41):
Get you know, the fifty year old birthday party We've
even had a wedding party in our suites. But believe
it or not, these suites sell out prior to even
the lineup going out, which is which is kudos to
the team for creating that experience that people just basically
always pick up their option to take that suite than

(40:02):
the following year, well before the lineup. So it's been
a home run of a program. I wish we had
more where we joke around, should we build a triple
decker so that we can accommodate more suite guests, But
right now we're at the double decker level.

Speaker 1 (40:17):
So and tell me about the MX Experience.

Speaker 3 (40:20):
Yeah, that's that's a sponsored program.

Speaker 7 (40:23):
We've been working with AMX and Marriott bomb Bay excuse me,
which is the you know, a member card for the
Marriotte you know hotel program and they have been a partner,
I think since twenty fifteen, where again this program has
grown as well. It's in my opinion, it might be

(40:45):
the best feat in the house. It's literally right off
of stage rights downstage edge, and it's it's basically a
double decker suite with lots of room for about four
hundred and fifty people all in the same you know
that are carrying the same wristband, and they're getting hosted bar. Uh,

(41:06):
they're getting Michelin star food from a local chef, Ken Frank,
the owner and operator of Lataku. They're getting this great view,
they're getting a merch item, they're getting lockers, they're getting
face painting and some fun little festival flare things that
happen on this deck.

Speaker 3 (41:25):
But you know, I think for for.

Speaker 7 (41:28):
My money and some of the people that have that
have bought this ticket year over year, they say, it's
the best seat in the house, and.

Speaker 3 (41:33):
And uh, it's a it's a great experience overall.

Speaker 1 (41:37):
Okay, do you need like an American Express card to
purchase ticket?

Speaker 7 (41:41):
You need a Marriott Bonvoy card that's American.

Speaker 3 (41:45):
That's an American Express Uh.

Speaker 4 (41:48):
Okay.

Speaker 1 (41:48):
And assuming you have that card, what is the fee
for that?

Speaker 7 (41:51):
Dick that that ticket is actually on par with our
skydeck ticket that we were talking about earlier, which is
around two thousand dollars. Uh, So there's this baked in
premium as part of the sponsorship benefits to having that ticket.

Speaker 1 (42:14):
Okay, tell us a little bit about the venue itself.

Speaker 4 (42:17):
It's really small.

Speaker 7 (42:20):
Since I'm on a roll yeah, it's uh, it's uh
kind of when we first started this, I would have
I would have let everybody know we're in downtown Napa Valley, Napa,
the City of Napa. So Napa is one of five
or six cities in the County of Napa, and and
it's kind of the nerve center of the Napa Valley
at this point in time. It used to not be

(42:42):
way back when Justin, Dave and I were all elementary
and high school kids here.

Speaker 3 (42:46):
We all grew up here. So it's in it's in
downtown Napa.

Speaker 7 (42:50):
It's very close to a lot of the major restaurants
and hotels. Super easy to get to when you're in
downtown Napa, meaning you can walk from your hotel all
you can walk from the restaurant that you just had
lunch at and across the street and you're in the venue.
It's at the Napa Valley Expo, which when it's not
bought a rock, that's the Town and Country Fair, Kingtonias

(43:13):
and crab feeds for fundraisers and things of that nature,
which is which is kind of funny.

Speaker 3 (43:17):
It's got a long history here in the city of Napa.
The Expo does.

Speaker 7 (43:21):
It's very like Justin was just saying, it's a very
small footprint, which is part of the reason why we
started building these double deckers to create more real estate
for hospitality and VIP type programs. It's one of the
reasons that we spend all year thinking about you know,
entry or ingress and thinking about how guests flow from

(43:43):
one area of.

Speaker 3 (43:44):
The venue to the other area of the venue.

Speaker 7 (43:46):
It's it's why we spend all year think about where
we put sponsors and how food lines Q or bar
lines Q. You know, these guys can jump in anytime now,
but it's it's something that you know, we wish we
had more real estate. But at the same time, the
venue being in downtown NAPA and being more intimate than

(44:08):
a sprawling, you know, one hundred and twenty thousand person
festival where we're forty forty four thousand cap it makes
it for a more I guess, approachable venue.

Speaker 3 (44:20):
So I'll stop and let Justin or Dave take a
shot at that.

Speaker 1 (44:23):
Okay, do the expensive tickets sell out first or the
GA tickets expensive?

Speaker 7 (44:29):
The expensive tickets sold out before the lineup even went out.
This year, we sold them all before we even announced
the lineup. The VIP plus tickets, every level we spoke about.

Speaker 1 (44:41):
Yeah, okay, let's talk about the economics if you sell out?
What's the gross.

Speaker 5 (44:52):
Enough we were if we were I don't know, if
we wanted to talk about it.

Speaker 1 (44:56):
Well, you're gonna I'm gonna see it at poll Star anyway,
the gross last year. I could probably look it up.

Speaker 5 (45:04):
Yeah, yeah, if people tell the truth and when they
report it, yeah, I don't know. I guess we're we're
just because we weren't expecting that question will dance around
a little bit.

Speaker 4 (45:15):
But let's say it's it's it's.

Speaker 3 (45:16):
Good, and then where were you going to go with that?

Speaker 4 (45:19):
Let's say we said that number.

Speaker 1 (45:21):
Well, okay, and I'm just breaking a festival economics are
different from traditional arena economics. In a festival, traditionally, you
pay a flat fee for the talent, and if you
sell out, it could be very profitable for the promoter,
so there's a huge outlay of cash. Okay, So the

(45:43):
question would be, we'll start from the beginning, what percentage
of the revenue goes to talent?

Speaker 5 (45:50):
Yeah, well, actually one day, I guess, and trust me,
we're not really dancing around this. But what we can
say is Uh, and we can go go into depth
on this. Yeah, So if we sell every ticket, all
these premium tickets, included every one of the seventy seven
thousand that Dave was mentioning, we're still roughly twelve million

(46:18):
dollar loss in terms of that, And it's like, how
could that be possible? Well, it's like, that's the amount
of money we put into this show. Is it costs
so much to do what we're doing. So our model
is based on yes, selling in and making sure the
whole events sell that we have with these premium ticket prices,
which gets us to a box office which for forty

(46:41):
four thousand cap per day show, he is a higher
box office than other festivals typically run. But given how
much money we invest into all the experiences we just
talked about, if it wasn't for where we go with
food and beverage, and it wasn't for our sponsors, this
thing would still be upside down. So so in terms
of what percentage goes to artists, I go, Dave, do

(47:03):
you want to talk about artists? But I mean, yeah,
I feel like we've fit at the top of the market.
But everyone, everyone, everyone feels like that.

Speaker 2 (47:09):
Yeah, it's a difficult market to be in because you know,
you've got you're dealing with with agencies that are really
using comps based on you know, arena plays and stadium plays,
and they're ignoring the fact that we're forty four thousand
cap versus eighty thousand or one twenty and you know,
without getting the specific match, we're probably looking at somewhere

(47:32):
around twenty percent of h if you look at the
total top line revenue, twenty percent of that would be
what it is we spend on.

Speaker 7 (47:43):
Artists and Dave, you can also fill in the gaps
on that we're basically sandwich between Golden One and Sacramento,
SAP in San Jose, and Chase in San Francisco, notwithstanding
Outside Lands and Fox and all the Greek and all
the things. So your competitive market, like if people don't
know where NAPA is, we're kind of right in the

(48:05):
middle of, you know, a really major music market.

Speaker 1 (48:10):
Okay, so we got a twelve million dollars shortfull tell
me about sponsorship.

Speaker 3 (48:18):
Oh that's where I come in, Bob.

Speaker 7 (48:20):
Well, I mean, there's a lot of different directions we
could take this conversation, but to Justin's point, we are
we are very dependent upon sponsorship revenue, and at.

Speaker 3 (48:32):
The same time, we're very.

Speaker 7 (48:35):
Cautious and careful and discipline about the type of sponsors
that we would bring into the festival. Because of this
whole brand promise, this whole brand identity that we talked about,
we feel like it's very important that we curate sponsors
as much as we curate the.

Speaker 3 (48:53):
Food lineup and the wine lineup.

Speaker 7 (48:56):
And that means sometimes we actually have to say no
to very lucrative sponsorship deals because it's just not the
right fit. And it's something you know, if you got
to know us, we fight tooth and nail about I'm
usually fighting for the sponsors, and Justin and Da were
fighting against them, and uh and and we always end
up in the middle somewhere in a good place. But

(49:17):
you know, we we definitely need our sponsors. We love
our sponsors. They actually add a ton of value to
the overall festival experience. We let them do certain things
that they may not get to do with other festivals.
But as long as there's guardrails and and and consistency
with what the overall experience for the festival is, you know,
the sponsor integrations are are something that's critical to the

(49:40):
experience overall.

Speaker 1 (49:42):
Okay, if we got the twelve million dollars shortfall, how
much does sponsorship make up. Let's just stay close to that, close.

Speaker 3 (49:54):
To that, Yeah, we kind of make it kind of.

Speaker 1 (49:57):
Okay with sponsorship, you break even talking about the sponsors.
How many are local sponsors as opposed to national or
international sponsors.

Speaker 7 (50:09):
Well, local, being Napa Valley, we have probably you know,
fifteen to twenty wineries that are all activating on site,
pouring their wines, providing you know, tastings and great local
Napa Valley experiences.

Speaker 3 (50:26):
You know many I'll digress for a second.

Speaker 7 (50:28):
Many of our wineries are in GA and they're in
these twenty x twenty tents that you've seen at every festival,
and they curate these beautiful lounges and these kind of
tasting rooms at Bottle Rock. That makes GA guests feel
like they're in a VIP experience that you wouldn't find
at any other festival in the world. I could I
could say that with confidence in terms of Bay Area sponsors.

(50:52):
That's something that's also been important to us, you know,
having Salesforce sponsor our Platinum lounge and our Platinum experience
and having Cisco Systems provide why fan facing Wi Fi
and and having you know, I'm a PayPal providing r
f I D risk band payments all Bay Area companies

(51:14):
has been has been something we've really tried to curate
UH and it's also been something that helped with our
suites program. I mentioned that earlier where these these regional
you know, Bay Area companies are are not only sponsoring
the festival, but they are also because they're so close
to NAPA, they're in Silicon Valley, Sacramento, San Francisco, they're

(51:35):
now bringing groups of people to part partake in the
UH in the suites program as well. So that's a
that's been that's been a hit for for us and
and them. And then you know, we have all the
beverage sponsors that you can imagine, from Mulsen Corp's brands
to Diagio brands such as you know, Kettle one and
and Don Julio, to Constellation brands such as Pacifico and

(51:56):
and and Modello. Log need Is is a great local
brewery that's national world They were acquired by Heineken, so
you know, worldwide distribution now. So UH we're you know,
we do a very good job. If I don't say
so myself, I'm I'm the head of that department of
bringing in sponsors and doing it the right way, if

(52:18):
you will.

Speaker 1 (52:19):
Let's assume my tech company in Silicon Valley who has
not made a deal with you previously, what is your
pitch going to be to me? I have an unlimited budget.
It's just a matter whether I want to spend it. Well,
I mean, oh, go ahead, no, go ahead, day No.

Speaker 2 (52:33):
I was just going to say, like I was just
thinking back to the pitch, like like Cooley Godward Right,
which is a sponsor of one of our suites and
actually has two suites every year at the festival, And
really what they were looking for is they wanted to
be able to engage with some of their best clients
and prospective future clients. And so instead of let's say,

(52:53):
going golfing with each client four times a year, which
you know can be a long time and maybe not
all that productive if you're a bad golfer, why not
bring those particular you know fewpo CEOs to the festival,
have them in your suite, interact with them for ten, fifteen,

(53:16):
twenty minutes, but in the best way where you know
they're able to see Dave Grohl sing at the same time.
Hey maybe talk a little shop, maybe not. But what
we found is that not only do the lawyers that
work within that practice all fight to see who gets

(53:36):
gets to go, but more importantly, they want to get
in so that they can bring their own clientele to
the event. So it's kind of it's win win for
us because we love having them. They bring a great
client talent, and so win for them because they're able
to really entertain their important clients in a very unique way.

Speaker 1 (53:54):
Okay. Traditionally, in sponsorship in traditional venues, and there's been
a long history, it's going up down. People want signage
and access to what de we are those elements of
sponsorship at Bottle Rock.

Speaker 3 (54:12):
Well, let's see here.

Speaker 7 (54:13):
Signage is something that we are very I guess we
try to keep at a minimum. You know, there's lots
of other sporting events or events that takes sponsorship that
that let signage kind of go hey wire, if that's
the right term. Bottle Rock we definitely, you know, work

(54:36):
with our sponsors to make sure that they fit within
the brand guidelines of the overall festival.

Speaker 4 (54:42):
Uh.

Speaker 3 (54:43):
And it's not just a logo slap everywhere.

Speaker 7 (54:47):
In fact, that's kind of a trend that's going you
know away, like the logo slaps. No sponsors really looking
for that anymore. They're really looking for through integration, how
they can add value to the overall festival experience.

Speaker 3 (55:00):
It's in the fan experience.

Speaker 6 (55:02):
You know.

Speaker 7 (55:03):
We do things, we build things ourselves that that we
allow sponsors to sponsor, such as like a silent disco,
really fun activation. People are wearing headphones, uh and they're
listening to a DJ, but nobody from the outside can
hear what those those guests are listening to and they're
all dancing and having a great time.

Speaker 3 (55:19):
So you know, that would be an example.

Speaker 7 (55:21):
We we do a club, an actual club, indoor club
where we have DJs playing live sets, and you know,
we'll put a sponsor integrated into the club and for
drinks with that sponsor's you know, alcohol for example, and
and it's kind of like the club takeover by a
vodka company. We actually have a spa that we would

(55:43):
allow a sponsor to you know, be the title sponsor
of the spa, and usually that's ah, you know, some
sort of makeup or uh spa related type sponsor that
would take that opportunity down. But what they're not looking
for is just to have their logos everywhere.

Speaker 3 (56:01):
They want to like be the.

Speaker 7 (56:03):
Name and title of an experience, and that's that's really
what we've gotten good at selling. The second question is
the access we You know, it depends on the fees.
It depends on how many tickets they are looking for
relative to the overall the overall sponsorship fee as well.
Our VIP tickets sell out and every sponsor wants as

(56:25):
many as they can get, and.

Speaker 3 (56:26):
We have to kind of play that tug war.

Speaker 1 (56:29):
Well, let me be more specific. Okay, Stevie Nicks is
a headliner this year. If I'm a sponsor, can I
meet Stevie Nicks?

Speaker 3 (56:39):
Unlikely? But there are some spots.

Speaker 7 (56:41):
There are some bands, and this is where Dave's world
in mind collide. There are some bands artists that are
willing to participate and do meet and greets, sometimes for
an appearance fee, sometimes not. But you know, the higher
up you go in the food chain of artists, as
you probably know, it's harder to get there, get their attention.

Speaker 1 (57:01):
Well, what I.

Speaker 2 (57:01):
Would say is relative to access, one thing that we're
really sticklers on and strict with is back of house access.
So one thing that you'll notice when you come, Bob,
is that the people that are back to the house
for the most part of the people that should be
back of house. And so whether you know you are
a million dollar sponsor or a twenty thousand dollars sponsor,

(57:23):
you're not going back to house. That that is for artists,
that is for industry, and that is for staff.

Speaker 1 (57:30):
That the appropriate staff.

Speaker 2 (57:33):
As it relates to the meeting greets, really that is
negotiated in the offer for the artists and they're basically
four pieces that we negotiate relative to customer experiences with
the artists as part of the offer process. And that
that consists of the meet and greet. That consists of

(57:54):
the v P performance. That that consists of the the
GA jam Pad acoustic set, and then finally the culinary
stage appearance. And so we start off with four with
every artist, and sometimes we get all four and sometimes
we get one, and sometimes we're in between. But that
is part of the offer process. Okay, back to sponsorship.

(58:18):
You say you turned people down. Why would someone be
turned down?

Speaker 7 (58:24):
Well, you know, one example would be we had a
sponsor a few years ago that was willing to spend
a quarter of a million dollars with us, but they
served there it was a drink sponsor. They were serving
their their beverages in a plastic, single use container. We have,
you know, kind of graduated or evolved our sustainability program

(58:48):
to the extent that we have eliminated all single use
plastic for example. So that would be diametrically opposed to
what we were, what we would hold as a value
into terms of our sustainability program, and we had to
say sorry, no, thank you if you can't put that
in an aluminum camp. At the same time, you have

(59:09):
sponsors that you know, might be a consumer package goods
company or a you know, a Hamburger chain or something
like that, that would just be completely opposite of jokingly
self deprecatingly like bougie Napa cuisine, right, we we would
never have a Hamburger chain as a as a food

(59:32):
vendor at Bottle Rock because we have a vision and
discipline as to what this thing is and what it's
not and and for for I think, for better we
we would have to say no to something like that.

Speaker 3 (59:46):
Okay, on that.

Speaker 4 (59:47):
I guess, just on that note, just think of where
we we.

Speaker 5 (59:50):
Have all these debates all the time, especially when it
comes to turning away really big checks and just thinking
of some of the biggest dollerments we've turned around. It's
where you have a sponsor and they're used to a
certain activation at another festival, like here's what we do
at so and so, and we want to bring that
activation to Battle Rock, and then we say that's not

(01:00:12):
going to work, right because let's say it was we
wanted to do a VIP takeover and we're going to
make this the blah blah blah brand VIP experience, and
then we say no, I said, well, what if we
made it a huge check that you couldn't turn down
For the long term brand and the image of what
we're trying to do in the experience, we shouldn't take

(01:00:34):
that seven figure check right now. We should actually stick
to what the cost going back, like what does the
customer really want here?

Speaker 8 (01:00:42):
Right?

Speaker 5 (01:00:42):
So there's been a lot of battles and just mentioned
that over time, and it's tough to turn down.

Speaker 4 (01:00:47):
Huge dollar amounts, but it's always.

Speaker 5 (01:00:49):
With the long term view to think of like, how
is this thing going to be special ten years from now?

Speaker 4 (01:00:55):
How do we not screw it up.

Speaker 3 (01:00:57):
And at the same time, Justin the sponsor, beget other sponsors.
This is something you always say, right like, if you have.

Speaker 7 (01:01:05):
Rolex as a sponsor and you're trying to get other
brands like Rolex, you better you better stay true to
that because if you if you go to a different
lower level watch brand, Uh, Rolex might go away real
quick because they see, oh, that's not who I want
to be associated with.

Speaker 3 (01:01:22):
And that's you know, you say it better than I do.

Speaker 7 (01:01:25):
But that's that's definitely been another thought as to how
we think about these sponsors.

Speaker 2 (01:01:32):
I remember when we win when we turned down a
half million dollars because we wouldn't put a car in
the middle of our VIP food court or adjacent to it.
And after this a little bit of a debate because
it was a great car brand, so one could argue
that that brand was in line with the customer it
was going to be in in the VIP area, but

(01:01:52):
still it was a car in that area and we
turned it down.

Speaker 1 (01:02:00):
Yeah, Okay, sponsorship brings you to even what are the
other revenue streams?

Speaker 3 (01:02:08):
Justin's our CFO.

Speaker 4 (01:02:09):
Go ahead, We're gonna all touch on food. Yeah, yeah, no,
it's like touch on the food. I mean, the food in.

Speaker 5 (01:02:16):
One world is big in Northern California and the Bay Area,
so we we try to go all in on that,
like we've all mentioned. So that's a that's an important
part of the economics as well, which I know is
the question you're asking.

Speaker 4 (01:02:31):
So we do have a very high per cap on.

Speaker 5 (01:02:34):
Our food and beverage spend as measured against you know,
pretty much everybody we can pace ourselves against, and which
includes you know, we try to look at events outside
of the music business as well, golf tournaments and you know,
the US Open Masters, you know, it's at a Kentucky Derby.

Speaker 4 (01:02:50):
You know, we're trying to understand.

Speaker 5 (01:02:52):
Per caps at all events and what people do to uh,
you know, essentially give that high end customer what they're
looking for. So it's a big food and beverage program.
It's really complicated.

Speaker 4 (01:03:03):
We do.

Speaker 5 (01:03:05):
I believe it's like ninety five different wines by the
glass throughout the festiv which just sounds stupid if you
run a restaurant.

Speaker 6 (01:03:14):
Here, like you guys are crazy, what are they thinking?

Speaker 5 (01:03:17):
Because it's it's complicated to run it that way, But
it goes back to like, hey, if you're a customer,
what would you what would you want? You know, you'd
want more variety, more choices everywhere you went. So our
concessionaire at times that we've partnered with, we've partnered with
a couple of them over the years, but they all
think we're crazy and it's really inefficient.

Speaker 4 (01:03:35):
What do you guys think?

Speaker 5 (01:03:36):
And you know, offering that many different food options and
why are you making this so complicated?

Speaker 4 (01:03:40):
But it's resulted in, like I.

Speaker 5 (01:03:42):
Said, what we hear are the highest you know, food
and beverage per caps of anyone in the country. And
so it still goes back to like we're trying to
just give a customer what a customer wants, and a
lot of times that's really good quality and a lot
of variety.

Speaker 1 (01:03:58):
So other than food and bevery any other revenue.

Speaker 4 (01:04:00):
Streams merch merch.

Speaker 1 (01:04:05):
How about parking?

Speaker 5 (01:04:07):
Parking is a loss and all the day talk on
merch if you have any merch questions on it, But
parking is But we don't own any parking lots, right,
So you're at a you know, stadium or arena and
it's got a big paid parking lot and you can
monetize that.

Speaker 4 (01:04:20):
And in our case, we don't have any party.

Speaker 5 (01:04:21):
So we're out privately renting lots to try to put
on sale and then try to staff that, and had
lighting in our bathrooms and you know, the highway signs
and all the things that takes to run a parking operation.
So parking is a is a loss a loss leader.
It's something to provide to make sure customers can get close,
but it's definitely not a money maker for us.

Speaker 1 (01:04:45):
Okay, Dave, you're going to talk about merch.

Speaker 2 (01:04:48):
Oh, all that I would say about merch is that
we do very well, and we we do not the
merch design, the merch look, the merch cut is is custom.
Every single year, the product costs us a lot more

(01:05:08):
than what we would like to spend, but every year
we choose to go down the path of going for
these these custom cuts. The kind of the opposite of
what you would consider to be like a barrel cut shirt,
more of a We always liken it to kind of
if you go to Barbados and you look at the
way in which the seams are are are sewed and

(01:05:28):
the fit actually exists, and how long this shirt is
relative to your waistline. We take all of that into
consideration that was standing the you know, the quality of
the product itself. And then we go through extensive designed
duration and and go out and with surveys to figure

(01:05:50):
out what what concepts and creative concepts are actually resonating
each year before we even go into print. And and
so we blow out a merch every year, and every
year we increase it five ten percent terms of inventory numbers,
and it just it just keeps going and go. So

(01:06:11):
it is a it is a meaningful number for us.

Speaker 1 (01:06:14):
And is there any other income that we haven't covered?

Speaker 5 (01:06:19):
Lockers and hilarious, Yeah there is small stuff, yeah, super
small stuff.

Speaker 3 (01:06:25):
Lockers and yeah.

Speaker 1 (01:06:28):
Oh okay, okay, let's go back to the beginning. You
guys were not in this business. You grew up together.
I want to hear what you guys did before you
entered this business. So let's start off with you, Jason,
what were you doing before you were involved in bottling?

Speaker 7 (01:06:46):
Well, let's see, I was involved early on. My first
career was as Dave's lackey. He hired me out of
college as his sales manager or dot com startup in
the in the automotive internet advertising space, and you know,

(01:07:07):
kind of did that for a few years. Dave and
I went our separate ways, and I ended up kind
of parlaying my experience in that space and created my
own online ad sales rep firm within the automotive vertical,
so selling ads to you know, Forard in GM in
Detroit and LA and Honda in La or Toya and

(01:07:29):
Honda in La. Long story short, had this firm for
nine ten years and was lucky enough to have an exit.
Sold sold the company to the publishers of Car and
Driver and roadent Track magazine who didn't have much in
the way of a rep firm in the in the
digital advertising space, so they needed something like what me

(01:07:52):
and my business partner created and fortunately was able to
exit that and believe it or not, moved to that
back to Napa from San Francisco, got married and was
taking a little time off working on my handicap with.

Speaker 3 (01:08:07):
Golf not so well.

Speaker 7 (01:08:09):
And while I was back in Napa is when Bottle
Rock one point zero happened. And we'll get into that
in a second, But so I heard about bottle Rock
one point Oh, I knew the guys that started it,
and I threw my hat in the ring and said, hey,
that sounds really interesting.

Speaker 3 (01:08:24):
I'm not working right now. Let me see if I
can help you guys.

Speaker 7 (01:08:27):
So I'll leave a cliffhanger and we'll get back to
that and let Dave and Justin answer the question.

Speaker 1 (01:08:33):
Okay, since you work with Dave. Dave, what were you
doing before Bottle?

Speaker 2 (01:08:38):
I had a software development company with a little venture
capital arm to it.

Speaker 1 (01:08:46):
We focused on.

Speaker 2 (01:08:50):
Startups, building kind of high end back end technology for them.
Jason's Company, interestingly enough, was one of our first clients
and our company, that company, which I sold thirteen years later,
I think is still working for Jason's company. Building At
the time, I think we were focused on configuration technology

(01:09:12):
so they you know, if you ever go to research.

Speaker 1 (01:09:14):
A car online and to drop down make model trim.

Speaker 2 (01:09:17):
We would make that kind of disparate data that was
out there into a configurator and allow people to easily
build and research cars. We built that for Jason and
his company, and we did that for many other companies.
And yeah, and if we saw a company doing well,
we would do some work for equity or maybe throw
the twenty five too hundred grand at a good valuation

(01:09:39):
and roll the Dice, and I was selling that company
at the time that Bottle Rock one point zero was happening.
My wife and I attended and will as Jason said,
leave that cliffhanger there for another part of the conversation, Okay.

Speaker 4 (01:09:59):
Justin.

Speaker 2 (01:10:01):
Sure.

Speaker 8 (01:10:01):
Yeah, I.

Speaker 5 (01:10:03):
Ended up uh out of a business school. I ended
up going to work for IBM. You know, it was
at the time. It was an interesting time in the
IBM world, and you know, kind of early was now
called AI but there and the computer learning and what
they called the Watson, the Watson Project. And so I

(01:10:23):
left there and ended up in Orange County and then
in Portland, Oregon. And then I left IBM and the
sort of like a business job at IBM. I wasn't
on the technical side. I was on the on the
business consulting side of it, and uh and left for
a startup in San Francisco. And so I moved to
San Francisco and and did that world.

Speaker 6 (01:10:45):
For a while.

Speaker 5 (01:10:45):
It was a company called Breakaway Solutions actually based out
of Boston, but we were in a technology development at
the time in the dot com boom era. Stayed in
San Francisco, got married, ended up moving back with idea
I moved to Dallas and then New York City.

Speaker 4 (01:11:03):
And from New York I I.

Speaker 5 (01:11:06):
Traveled all around the world and had a big team
in India and do a lot of work in Europe
and such. And I focused a lot on the retail segment,
which at the time was like, you know, deep into
retail and kind of retail strategies and a lot about
like what what what Why would I Why would a
retail store in the same place that it was yesterday?

(01:11:28):
But if you redesigned the look and feel of it,
why did why did the sales go out?

Speaker 4 (01:11:33):
You know, it's like it's the same product at the
same price in the same location, but you change the experience.
So I didn't have any real formal experience into what
translated into Bottle Rock later. But when I look.

Speaker 6 (01:11:43):
Back on it, it was like, hey, a lot of.

Speaker 5 (01:11:44):
That stuff that that I did for years out of
New York really resonated with a future later.

Speaker 4 (01:11:50):
So right now, to get back to Napa.

Speaker 5 (01:11:53):
As you heard from the other two guys who all
grew up in Napa, and the other two guys ended.

Speaker 6 (01:11:57):
Up back in Napa.

Speaker 5 (01:11:59):
I ended up having a chance to partner with a
family who had started a luxury wine brand in Napa.
I had amazing vineyard land, just.

Speaker 6 (01:12:09):
Got done building a winery, had put a.

Speaker 5 (01:12:11):
Lot of years of work into getting that thing rolling,
and they were looking for a president to come, you know,
partner with them on where the future would would go.
And as random as it seemed, would me be in
the kind of the New York and kind of global,
you know business scene. To jump off that track and
move to run a winery in Napa took a lot

(01:12:32):
of people by surprise, but it was something I had
a huge passion for. On the on the personal side,
my family had a very small winery growing up, so
I understood that business enough to want it to dive
into it like a new entrepreneurial ventures, at least from
my perspective.

Speaker 4 (01:12:49):
That's that's what it was a chance to do something really.

Speaker 5 (01:12:52):
Cool, be back home, be back in Napa, raise my
kids back in Napa Valley. So that happened, and then
three years later that wine brand went from where it
was at the time, and I told you it was
set up for success, but it ended up being a
sold out wine brand and not have to say there
was nothing to do there anymore.

Speaker 4 (01:13:13):
But I found it like a little low to stay.

Speaker 6 (01:13:15):
Wait a minute here, we.

Speaker 5 (01:13:16):
Either got to buy more than new Land, we got
to release new wines. And then at that point, this
little rock thing came along and Jason and Dave were
sniffing around at it, and I kind of leave the
same cliffhanger lated.

Speaker 4 (01:13:29):
And so in terms of how we transitioned from our
old career to what we're doing now.

Speaker 1 (01:13:35):
Okay, Jason, tell us about a bottle rock one point
zero and how you guys ultimately get involved.

Speaker 3 (01:13:42):
Well, let's see. Yeah, like I said, it kind of
came out of the blue for everybody, even in the industry.

Speaker 7 (01:13:48):
If I recall, you know, these kind of guy upstarts
and NAPAs started. It cobbled a team together use the
Expo and Downtown Apple we've already referred to. And you
know I got involved literally as an unpaid volunteer.

Speaker 3 (01:14:06):
I just said, let me help you guys. This sounds great.
I just want a bigger seat at the table next year.

Speaker 7 (01:14:11):
And you know, these guys ended up getting in some
serious financial trouble, weren't able to pay some of their
some of their debts to artists and union and the
city and so forth, and That's when I got a
little bit more involved, thinking, Wow, this thing was such
a front end consumer success.

Speaker 1 (01:14:31):
Right.

Speaker 7 (01:14:31):
Like Dave said, he went justin when everyone left the festival,
going wow, that was an amazing experience that first of
It's kind of downtown Napa, and they had a great
lineup and so forth and so on.

Speaker 3 (01:14:42):
So I'm thinking this is a home run.

Speaker 7 (01:14:43):
I just I need to help bridge these guys to
get him to the next festival. And you know, it
was probably the best worst investment I ever made, Let's
put it that way. I gave him some money and
got myself married with these guys, and there was no
saving it from from their perspective. And and that's when
Dave and Justin and I kind of jumped in and said.

Speaker 3 (01:15:05):
Hey, we're all entrepreneurs. We all live in Napa.

Speaker 7 (01:15:08):
We love the we love what Bottle Rocks stood for,
the food, the wine, the weather, the culture of Napa Valley.
We all kind of are in a place in our
lives where we could take a take another shot at something.

Speaker 3 (01:15:20):
Even though we didn't know anything.

Speaker 7 (01:15:22):
About the music business or throwing a festival or a
large event whatsoever. You know, we all kind of were
confident and naive enough to do it. And and so yeah,
next thing, you know, Dave, Justin and I are are
the Uh we bought bought the assets. You know, they
were about to go into bankruptcy. Dave, Justin and I

(01:15:43):
navigated a whole pre bankruptcy scenario. UH got our got
our MBAs on bankruptcy and how that whole process works,
which we won't go into. But uh, you know learned
a lot. The first year almost killed us. If I
don't if I don't say so myself, and uh, and
I'll leave it there, said Dave and Justin Chryman.

Speaker 1 (01:16:03):
Okay, we've spoken previously, and you made good on the
debts of Bottle Rock one point zero and you lost
a ton of money the first year you had it yourself.
How much money are we talking about? How much money
to pay the debts? And how much money did you
guys lose?

Speaker 2 (01:16:22):
Well, there was there was roughly a ten million dollars
loss that the company experienced the original company, and there
was about eight million or so that was kind of
really owed to creditors.

Speaker 1 (01:16:42):
And so we though.

Speaker 2 (01:16:45):
We bought the assets, and we did an asset purchase
which would say to you legally, we don't have the
obligation of responsibility to pay down any debt. It's hard
to describe to a creditor if you bought let's say,
the bottle Rock brand, and they're owed money by what

(01:17:06):
they considered to be bottle Rock, it's hard to say
to them, well, we didn't create the debt, We don't
know you any money. We did say that a lot
of the time, but it really went in one ear
and out the other. Understandably, we were able to, through
you know, cash infusion, conversion of debt to equity, et cetera,

(01:17:31):
eliminate most of that debt and for the common creditors
one hundred percent of them were basically taken care of
for the most part, all the way. Then getting as
we were doing that, we roughly closed the transaction in

(01:17:53):
I believe January of twenty fourteen, we had a festival
in May to put on, and so not knowing anything
or less than anything about the music space and how
to put on a festival, we had to do that

(01:18:14):
as well, and whether that be booking the lineup, whether
that be putting together the production teams to build the
festival itself and put together the food and beverage programs
and all the sponsorship stuff that we talked about. We
had no experience in any of that and in very
little time to learn, and no one really in the

(01:18:38):
music space and other and otherwise wanting to really work
with us at that point. So it was difficult, and
we got through it, as Jason mentioned, and we ended up,
as I think we told you, Bob, losing I think
five and a half million dollars that first year.

Speaker 5 (01:18:54):
That was on top of all the money we spent
with paying off all the debt. So yeah, I go,
everything was fine, Like we took money that was supposed
to be to pay for the festival and paid off
the creditors and the deck with that same money, and
then and then then we lost.

Speaker 1 (01:19:11):
Yeah, yeah, Okay, your three guys, did you three personally
take the hit or were there other investors? It was
a mix of both.

Speaker 2 (01:19:24):
We personally took big hits, but we did have some
some outside investment as well.

Speaker 1 (01:19:33):
And what was your pitch to the outside investors. Well,
when you.

Speaker 2 (01:19:39):
Looked at Bottle Rock from a customer facing perspective, you
could see that there was demand, right, So one of
the challenges and we were looking at this as a startup.
One of the challenges, the biggest challenge when you have
a startup is to figure out if, in fact your
theory will generate sales, right, and we the one thing

(01:20:01):
that we did have going for us was that we
could see that people were willing to buy what it
is that was being sold. Granted, what was being sold
at Bottle Rock was not what Justin and Jason talked about.
From an experience standpoint, it did not exist non existing.
That said, you did see a lot of people coming
to NAPA buying tickets to see a music festival at

(01:20:23):
the fairgrounds, and that for us was a proof of concept,
kind of product market fit if you're talking, you know,
kind of Silicon Valley jargon.

Speaker 1 (01:20:34):
So, okay, you have this demand. How much money did
you raise?

Speaker 2 (01:20:39):
Wow, I won't get into that, but it was in
the millions, and I think you kind of understand this
festival space. You don't just get in with a few bucks.
Notwithstanding the fact that when we started to book bands
are subjects where our assumption was, oh, yeah, it'll be

(01:20:59):
ten percent thirty days out right on the artist guarantee. Wrong,
it was one hundred percent down at confirmation because no
one trusted us and rightly so, and so then you
have a whole cash flow issue and timing of cash
flow that it further exacerbated the problem, especially once you
went on sale and had a bad on sale.

Speaker 9 (01:21:20):
Yeah, the concept with the first year that we tried
this was I'm not sure that.

Speaker 4 (01:21:26):
The goal really changed.

Speaker 5 (01:21:27):
It like if you were an outside investor and we
put a lot of our own money into it. It
was that we had a plan and we knew we
had to differentiate this experience, and if we differentiate this experience,
people will pay for that.

Speaker 4 (01:21:39):
And we almost never got a chance to ask you
because we took that same money, you know, investors in
our own and used it to pay off all the
debt instead of actually funding the experience.

Speaker 5 (01:21:49):
So you get into year two, we're like, well, then
what do you tell investors you know? Or what do
we tell our to our wives is probably a better
that's probably a better example. What do we tell our
wife is like, we just needed a chance to run
our own play, and we didn't have a chance to
do that the first year because we were scrambling. Again
it was you know, arguments with every vendor and the
union and everyone else about you know, money we didn't own,

(01:22:12):
but we had to pay them, and that just sucked
up way too much time to where, you know, our
real goal was never we never got a chance to
focus on that, so that there for the second year,
and the reason it turned around so fast is we
really need that chance in twenty fifteen to actually execute
our regional you know plan, and we did, and I'd

(01:22:34):
say it worked, and then it was kind of a
happily every aftertect thing for the investors after that.

Speaker 2 (01:22:41):
Yeah, And I think the happily ever after really started
in twenty sixteen. Right, we did, We did well in fifteen,
but in fifteen it was how would I put it,
It was probably thirty forty percent of our plan as
it related to the customer experience. In sixteen was when
we really were able to lean in, trust our guts

(01:23:05):
and deliver on what we thought people would really want.
And we got that right, and we got it right
in a very in a much bigger way than we
had anticipated in our model back in twenty thirteen and fourteen.

Speaker 1 (01:23:20):
Okay, so if you lost the money in fourteen, in fifteen,
were you in the red or the black? Fifteen we
made seven figures Okay, so let's go back to fourteen fourteenth,
the first year that you guys were in control. What
did you learn after fourteen?

Speaker 5 (01:23:39):
Well didn't we? I mean talking about the artist side
first day. Gosh, yeah, that's a learning on its own
that was brutal.

Speaker 2 (01:23:51):
You know, like the protocols that exist within the music space,
in particular as it relates to artists and confirmations and advance,
et cetera. You know, there's no amount of business background
or business schooling that you can go through that's going

(01:24:14):
to teach you how all that works. And we got
our asses handed to us in twenty fourteen in that regard.
You know, the assumption that, oh, if you have money
to spend, you'll be able to get an artist because
that's what they cost, was an assumption that we had right, like, yeah,

(01:24:40):
just throw money at it.

Speaker 1 (01:24:41):
Wrong. The notion of.

Speaker 2 (01:24:44):
History and how that plays into your ability or inability
to work with an artist, The confirmation process and the
word confirmation and confirmed, and the power that comes behind that,
like things along those lines.

Speaker 1 (01:25:03):
We had no clue about.

Speaker 2 (01:25:04):
And the butting of heads that we had with agents
was super tough, and we were on our heels of course,
because we had no credibility in the space, we had
no experience in the space, we had no history or
relationships in the space, and we bought a shitty brand,
and as far as the agents were concerned, if we

(01:25:25):
bought it, we owned it. And so until they knew
that we had taken care of the debt, they didn't
want to work with us either. So we can go
on and on about that piece. But the learnings, just
as it relates to the artist component, were massive.

Speaker 1 (01:25:39):
Massive. Okay, that's twenty fourteen. Has it been a continuing
learning experience or do you get to a certain point
and say I got this.

Speaker 2 (01:25:48):
Never, It's always a continued learning experience. And we are.

Speaker 1 (01:25:56):
Man.

Speaker 2 (01:25:57):
The more we can understand about pouring, the more that
we can understand about production, the more that we can
understand about macro influences in the music space, the better
off we are. And you know, we're just beginning to
learn as far as we're concerned how it all works.

(01:26:19):
We're avoiding the pitfalls very quickly, much more quickly, i
should say it, than we historically have. But it's still
a lot of work, it's still a lot of commitment,
it's still a lot of relationship building, and it's still
a lot of just shut up and listen, and that's
kind of one of our policies in house is to
shut up and listen. And so we continue to build
great relationships within the music industry and we're learning still.

Speaker 1 (01:26:50):
How did you make a deal with Live Nation? When
did that happen? What does Live Nation deliver for you?

Speaker 10 (01:26:57):
Is the end of twenty sixteen, and we'd met some
people from Live Nation, we met some people from the
other you know, several other big players in the music
business who I think I thought maybe ball Rock was
a joke, knew it, lost time, money, then saw us
struggle our first.

Speaker 6 (01:27:17):
Year, and then when we had a different level.

Speaker 5 (01:27:20):
Of success in twenty fifteen, again we didn't have a
huge success, but at least it proved viable. And then
with twenty sixteen in the spring, like they said, we
made some you know, somewhat.

Speaker 6 (01:27:32):
Monumental changes that kind of.

Speaker 4 (01:27:33):
Proved this to the real thing to her to day.

Speaker 5 (01:27:36):
So we had a lot of indown interest in partnering
with us, and some of it was not very interesting
to us, frankly, and then when the Live Nation folks
approached us, it definitely peaked our years.

Speaker 4 (01:27:50):
Up really at the time nothing to do with that.
Live Nation was.

Speaker 6 (01:27:53):
Really big, and you know they have a lot of
money or whatever.

Speaker 5 (01:27:57):
It was more around the area, and I think, well,
it loves for us. They completely stuck this ever since
that first conversation, which is that they know the music
business really well.

Speaker 6 (01:28:08):
They know touring, and they know.

Speaker 4 (01:28:10):
Arenas, and they know pretty much every aspect you could mention.
But their approach to festivals wasn't.

Speaker 6 (01:28:17):
About we know everything, We're.

Speaker 4 (01:28:20):
Here to go take it over.

Speaker 5 (01:28:21):
It was actually very much the opposite that they had said, Hey,
we've tried some.

Speaker 6 (01:28:24):
Of our own things about what we found.

Speaker 5 (01:28:27):
With festivals is that we're looking for, you know, really
good people who understand how to create a differentiated festival experience.

Speaker 4 (01:28:36):
And so when we.

Speaker 5 (01:28:37):
Find out, we want to keep those folks because that's
really the core and we're not going to try to
change it and take it over. We So, would you
guys want to talk because our plan would be to
have you essocially partner with you to make you more successful.
It wouldn't be to come in and run bottle Rock.

Speaker 6 (01:28:56):
We want you.

Speaker 4 (01:28:57):
Guys to run Bottle Rock.

Speaker 5 (01:28:59):
And started the conversation again with others.

Speaker 6 (01:29:02):
That were that were poking around that we didn't have.

Speaker 4 (01:29:05):
An interest in.

Speaker 5 (01:29:05):
That was probably a thing that really brought us all
to the table initially. David Jason comment more.

Speaker 2 (01:29:13):
Yeah, No, I think Justin you nailed it. And what's
really so special about the relationship as you look back at,
you know, the end of twenty sixteen, we were really
working with Jordan Zachary a bit, feeling it out, seeing
how it could work, et cetera.

Speaker 1 (01:29:33):
And then we met with with Michael Rappino. And when you.

Speaker 2 (01:29:38):
Look back at that meeting, every commitment that he said
or made as to how it would work and how
he would let us do our thing and just be
there as support when and if we needed them or him,
they he delivered on Like how often are you able

(01:30:01):
to say that about anything or any relationship, right, whether
it's with your spouse, your best friends, your business relationships, whatever,
like you never can And we can honestly say that
every single thing that they said that they would do,
they did more importantly, And I think Justin brought this

(01:30:22):
up and asked been everything they said.

Speaker 1 (01:30:25):
They wouldn't do they didn't do.

Speaker 2 (01:30:29):
And that was just just it's been fantastic so it's
been a great relationship.

Speaker 1 (01:30:34):
Okay, as far as a business transaction, they paid cash
for a certain ownership percentage in the enterprise. Correct. Okay.
In terms of booking talent, does Live Nation help you
with that?

Speaker 2 (01:30:49):
Only if we need it, and that exists at all levels.
So we do our thing, and you know, if we
need to perhaps see if it's possible for us to
jump on the tail end of a tour that Live
Nation has, we can call up anyone in Live Nation

(01:31:11):
touring and say, hey, any chance that we can be
a part of this or you know who's really the
decision maker, et cetera.

Speaker 1 (01:31:21):
We can you know, work, but do that with the
agent as well.

Speaker 2 (01:31:24):
And the agents are they understand that we're part of
Live Nation and we work together and everything's in full transparency.

Speaker 1 (01:31:32):
We have.

Speaker 2 (01:31:36):
You know, for the most part, we kind of just
do our own thing, but we also share information, talk,
learn and work with the other Live Nation festivals. C
three's been great to uh, to to work with too,
to bounce questions off of.

Speaker 4 (01:31:55):
Uh.

Speaker 2 (01:31:56):
You know, Charlie and Charles have been around forever and
and they're always available to us when we have questions.
When you know, we started this new festival, the Latino
festival called Launda. We were we were able to go
to to Live Nation touring to help have them help

(01:32:19):
us make introductions, to really help us understand the the
kind of artists market as it relates to northern California
and how things work. So when we need them, they're there.
But unless we need them, they we just we do
our own thing.

Speaker 1 (01:32:35):
Now, you guys all have experience in business. Is one
of you the financial expert in terms of budgeting? How
does that ultimately work?

Speaker 2 (01:32:45):
Yes, and so the way our partnership works, and it's
a true partnership, So let me let me let me
emphasize that. And number two is that if any one
of us had not been a part of the creation
of this this company, we wouldn't be here today. So
like I, you know, I sincerely mean that if Jason

(01:33:06):
wasn't here, we wouldn't do you know, Justin and I
wouldn't be able to do it.

Speaker 1 (01:33:09):
What what what we've all been able to do.

Speaker 2 (01:33:12):
For example, we run a partnership in the way we
call it one two three. That means that that we're
someone is in charge of a given area, a given
part of the company. But it that each of us
are also involved in that area. We just don't own

(01:33:33):
it and we don't have let's say, the final call
in that that in that area. So let's use you
said finance. So in finance, Justin would be one. I
might be two, just Jason would be three. In sponsorship,
Jason would be one, Justin would be two. I would
be three. An artist, I would be one, and they

(01:33:54):
would be two and two. Because we fight over headliners
stuff all the time, but it's a true partnership and
we made big decisions together all the time.

Speaker 1 (01:34:06):
Okay, you're set for me, When do you start working
on twenty twenty five? Already have so when did you start?

Speaker 2 (01:34:16):
We put our first offer in for twenty twenty five
a week and a half ago.

Speaker 1 (01:34:21):
Okay, so do you have it all penciled out? Let's
just make the numbers even. We're talking one hundred million dollars.
We have thirty million for talent, we have thirty million
for food. We got sponsorship. Do you have actual numbers
locked in into someone creating those numbers and looking over

(01:34:42):
those numbers? Absolutely? Absolutely?

Speaker 2 (01:34:46):
And who is that the three of us? But Justin
runs point and we have kind of a director of
finance that works in house, that is always running the models,
and then on a weekly basis, we're looking at expenses
and revenues and projections to make sure that we're on
point and the plan.

Speaker 1 (01:35:07):
Okay, so let's assume you're buying talent, you're buying a
lot of acts, and you have budgeted let's just say
thirty million, and then all of a sudden you say, no, really,
if I could spend thirty five, it's really going to
be great. We will everybody say, they say, well, the
budget was thirty screw you, No, no it.

Speaker 2 (01:35:25):
It really comes back down to to opportunity cost in
that given year, and if more money needs to be spent,
we'll do it on the basis of opportunity costs. Because
you look at what your next alternative is, and if
that alternative is going to screw up what that forecasting
model is for box office, you really don't have a choice.

(01:35:46):
The question is really are you make What is your
judgment relative to that opportunity cost being big? And so
that's where we'll debate. That's where we'll go over the numbers.
That's what we'll go over touring, that's what'll go over
that's when we'll go over kind of not only boring numbers,
but we'll go over album cycles, will go over a
demos for that for that particular artist, and we'll really

(01:36:07):
crunch the numbers to make before we'll actually, you know,
decide not only to spend that that seven figures on
a headliner, but to maybe spend a little bit more
than we initially budgeted.

Speaker 4 (01:36:19):
Yeah, and it's it's it's really the U.

Speaker 5 (01:36:22):
I guess something we haven't touched on a lot is
the the business model or approach is it's always at
least one or maybe two festivals out.

Speaker 4 (01:36:33):
So I guess what I mean by that.

Speaker 5 (01:36:34):
It's like like and we get this a lot, like, hey,
let's let's say like, hey, all the VIP tickets sold out,
there's seven VIP levels, they all sold out. And then
so then what do you do? They're already sold out.
So why would you spend a bunch of money on
vi P and dreaming up all these new things for
a VP. The ticket's already sold, money's in the pay
it's for the next year, right, And so to your

(01:36:54):
question on the artists, it's like you argue about tay
does it do you pay an extra x nunt of
moion dollars this year and talent. You know, we get
in that debate like we could sell out the festival
with this level of artists and this, but should we
really pay more to get that next artist. A lot
of the tipping point there and it always kind of

(01:37:15):
leans towards the future is to say, I know, we
could sell the tickets out this year, but if we
don't get the right lineup book, we might have.

Speaker 4 (01:37:22):
Trouble still on it the next year.

Speaker 6 (01:37:24):
Yeah, And so we're kind of leaning into that, and again.

Speaker 5 (01:37:26):
We're always kind of leveling up to say it's going
to be worth it in the long run to spend
more money.

Speaker 6 (01:37:31):
Now, even though it comes right off the bottom line
for that one year.

Speaker 5 (01:37:35):
And if that's all you're doing is running one show
for one year, that's what you do. You maximize profits.
But we've never thought of it that way. We've always
thought of it as a long horizon, like how is
this thing going to be relevant, how's this thing going
to be special ten years from now?

Speaker 4 (01:37:48):
And let's not screw it up, Bob.

Speaker 7 (01:37:50):
What they're not telling you, Bob, is that they look
to me and go, what can we do in sponsorship
to make the offset.

Speaker 4 (01:37:59):
That's right, the real answer.

Speaker 1 (01:38:01):
Okay, and then you know some of these things are
more controllable than other like food and experience. Do you
have hard numbers and you say this is what we
can spend or how does that work?

Speaker 4 (01:38:14):
Yeah, those those numbers don't really change much. Meaning like
there's I mean, there's an artist.

Speaker 5 (01:38:19):
The price that we just talked about, like, hey, you
know so and so were gonna have to pay.

Speaker 6 (01:38:23):
Them to do a one off and you know.

Speaker 5 (01:38:25):
Fly day from Europe to make this show, and it's
going to be a huge premium. We don't typically have that,
Like I said, even if we change the Platinum experience
and VIP and we invest heavy in the GA with
all new turf and new shades, it's a pretty finite
planning process. It's one of the things they've touched on
to say, you know, we do a few shows right
here in NAPA, we do other events, and now we're

(01:38:47):
doing these two festivals.

Speaker 4 (01:38:48):
You know, other companies do twenty festivals, right.

Speaker 5 (01:38:51):
But the advantage to to what we're doing is really
being able to get into.

Speaker 4 (01:38:56):
The details of every little every little thing. So we
we'd like.

Speaker 5 (01:38:59):
To think that adds to a more special experience, but
it also leads.

Speaker 6 (01:39:03):
To no surprises.

Speaker 4 (01:39:05):
Right.

Speaker 6 (01:39:05):
We know exactly what everything's going.

Speaker 4 (01:39:07):
To cost, pretty much.

Speaker 6 (01:39:08):
Down to the penny.

Speaker 5 (01:39:09):
You don't know what food and beverage spend will be.
But we've got enough years under our belt that you know,
we don't end up forecasting some crazy record food and
beverage seals every year and then get surprised by it.

Speaker 4 (01:39:19):
Right. We pretty much hit our numbers every year the
last seven years.

Speaker 1 (01:39:25):
Okay, just to amplify what exactly is the culinary stage.

Speaker 2 (01:39:31):
The culinary stage is an added experience for all customers.
It's nothing you have to pay for and it comes
after you know, we we we've sold our tickets. The
line the lineup does where we actually pair celebrity chefs
with many of the very artists that we have in

(01:39:53):
the lineup and uh celebrities and athletes in and on
a stage where they are doing cooking demos, but in
a very irreverent way. So I think you know, we
would have Snoop Dog on the culinary stage to set

(01:40:20):
the Guinness Book of World record for the largest gin
and juice, right, we would have Jose and Race on
the stage cooking. Let's say a favorite meal of an
artist that would be on stage.

Speaker 1 (01:40:34):
And let's say we would get.

Speaker 2 (01:40:36):
The bassist or Metallica, the basis for Green Day and
the basis for Dave Matthews Band, all on the same
stage with Jose Andres. We would make them actual functioning
bass guitars out of pizza paddles while Jose and Race
makes pizza and some other kind of favorite meal of theirs.
So really entertaining, really like avant garde fun programming, and

(01:41:02):
we get the biggest artists that play our festival to
actually beyond it, believe it or not. And then of
course the big celebs, and it's a thing. We do
five sets, five shows a day over the three days,
so fifteen different shows at the culinary stage over three days.

Speaker 1 (01:41:23):
Okay, if I have a GA ticket, am I going
to be buying any generic food? Or is all food specialized, localized,
unique to this festival?

Speaker 7 (01:41:33):
Okay, yeah, it's all basically locally grown and or curated,
I should probably say. In other words, we don't have
a general food program. Every single food item that's sold
is brought to you by a specific restaurant that we

(01:41:54):
hand touched and brought in and set up, helped set up.
So there's you know, seventy different food vendors throughout the
venue and they're all operating as independent, small pop up restaurants.
At Bottle Rock Spread, you know, throughout we have a
restaurant garden, we have food vendors on different stages and

(01:42:15):
so forth. And so you are going to be eating
food from Morimoto Iron chef Morimoto's Restaurant, or Mustards or.

Speaker 3 (01:42:25):
I mentioned a not tree earlier. So we don't you.

Speaker 7 (01:42:29):
Had actually a question about expenses. We don't spend any
money on buying the food for this festival. The restaurants
come in and take on that risk and we share
a percentage repshare split with those restaurants after the fact.
So the restaurants kind of do the heavy lifting. And
Justin said it a while ago. We're giving our guests,

(01:42:51):
the fans of the festival, this really wide variety of options,
and you.

Speaker 3 (01:42:57):
Know, it's kind of what people come to Napa Valley
for in a sense.

Speaker 7 (01:43:01):
Right, you come to Napa Valley for a long weekend,
You're going to go to three or four wineries. You're
going to go to uh maybe one or two day spas,
you're going to go to, you know, three or four
dinners out at different restaurants, And so people come to
Napa uh with that in mind. They come to Bottle
Rock with the same mentality where they really want to
try a lot of different things, plan out their whole

(01:43:22):
weekend of what restaurants, So I'm going to hit Friday,
Saturday at Sunday, what wineries am I going to hit?
What what specialty cocktails am I going to try? Et cetera,
et cetera. And it's kind of thrown some of the
the the tried and true, you know, festival people or
industry people on on their head a little bit. You
have too many menu items or you you know, you're

(01:43:42):
trying to do too much on each on each menu
or different bars. And we've actually found that that's totally
uh not the case at Bottle Rock. And maybe that's
the case for a different festival, but for Bottle Rock,
every year we've seen we've been able to add a
few more little things, and our food and beverage per
ca apps continue to go up.

Speaker 1 (01:44:02):
Okay, uh, there was a comment earlier that you guys
were involved in other events then Bottle Rock and your
Latino Festival. What are those events?

Speaker 2 (01:44:13):
Well, we do middle buying for for organizations, companies, etc.
That want to have private events. We do buying for
a PGA event that takes place in Napa every single year.
We do some hard ticket shows locally here in Napa

(01:44:37):
and then co pro's you know, during the festival throughout
the Bay area. So that's kind of what someone might
have been referring to.

Speaker 9 (01:44:47):
Yeah, and we've done small festivals at wineries and Sinoma
and and you know, well, as things pop up that
that meat, you know, out alignment with what we're trying
to do, call it brown wise, called quality wise, then
we'll dive into it. But we'd rather do fewer things
than do it really well versus just trying to add

(01:45:07):
more and more things.

Speaker 1 (01:45:08):
To the point, Okay, to what degree is Bottle Rock
localized to Napa? Where could it be replicable replicated elsewhere?
You know, there are certain Lollapalooza acl those are city festivals.
Coachella is a destination festival. East Coast festivals. You always

(01:45:29):
have issues of weather, but I'm not aware of anybody
doing a festival at this scale that is upscale both
in food and experience have you guys thought about expanding
to another area thought about it?

Speaker 9 (01:45:50):
We've been approached on it a ton of times. Yeah,
and all three of us could answer this one. Maybe
I'll chime in. But there's certain things that we do
that are transferable. Like we said, if we just focused
on on like a quality standard to everything that it
goes from, Like is there dust in the air naut
and do you pay double for trash service to make

(01:46:11):
sure there's nothing on the ground. I mean you could
do that anywhere. Well, you can't translate to everywhere. Is
the local creation like if if in Napa, it's that
relationship with all the wineries and the restaurants and all
the people that have the ability to come and make
this a special experience in this geography, you go do
the same exact thing in the Hamptons.

Speaker 8 (01:46:33):
And we were doing it. A couple of things.

Speaker 9 (01:46:35):
One is, do we have all those contacts, we can
go run a festival there. You can everybody can roll
out of stage and book artists and there'd be a
viable venue and do the operation side of it. But
to make it differentiated in our opinion, needed to go
really deep and really really detailed, because we're into every
every square inch and make it making it special.

Speaker 8 (01:46:57):
And then the other thing is a lot of high
end areas.

Speaker 9 (01:47:01):
Right if you said pay Sun Valley's nice, and so
is Aspen and so as I can mentioned the Hampton's
and all those there's there's not hotels for forty thousand
people in those areas, right, It's it becomes an issue
with how to get people too in and out of
some of those events. So we've been we've approach with
ideas all the time, but either there's a logistic issue

(01:47:23):
to say we can do that, but do you know
you're going to max at eighteen thousand people, and at
eighteen thousand people you're going to lose a bunch of money,
So we're not interested, you know.

Speaker 8 (01:47:32):
Or it's we don't think we personally.

Speaker 9 (01:47:35):
Have the contacts and the team in that geography to
make it really detailed and really special.

Speaker 1 (01:47:42):
What about like Coachello where they went to two weekends.
Is that something you guys are thinking about, Well, we.

Speaker 2 (01:47:48):
Just went to two weekends, but that's with by adding
an additional festival the weekend night or so similar to
lat Yeah sorry, Jason, yes, similar to kind of Coachella
adding stagecoach Bottle Rock is added launda okay.

Speaker 1 (01:48:07):
But is there enough demand you only have forty four
thousand tickets that you could do it another weekend, Well
we have.

Speaker 11 (01:48:13):
Seventy seven thousand tickets. But it's it's it's questionable, and
it it really is.

Speaker 2 (01:48:25):
A lot of work on the wineries themselves and the
restaurants themselves. They are there, they have limited resources and
limited staff, and they're bringing all of that for much
of that staff to Bottle Rock for that weekend. And
it's not just that weekend that they show up, as

(01:48:47):
you know, it's it's it's all of the planning and
all of the resource allocation. And so there is an
opportunity cost for those businesses as well, because many of
those businesses shut down during that that that time period
and others try to stay stay stay up with both.
So it's really a constraint for for the local businesses

(01:49:08):
that we work with. And it's Jason has mentioned that
is the majority of that consistent majority of the companies
that we work with. We call it napotism, and we
have a bias towards businesses and in NAPA and working
with those businesses, and so our finger on the pulse
is that you know, one weekends enough for them. With

(01:49:30):
with Lunda, there will be a couple of crossover kind
of restaurant partners, et cetera that will do both.

Speaker 1 (01:49:37):
But for the most part, we will have a.

Speaker 2 (01:49:40):
Whole different crew of restaurants all Latino at at Luanda,
and the food and beverage, the beverage program will be
very different than what we we we have at Otto Rock.

Speaker 1 (01:49:53):
Just to go into that a little bit, that's two
days instead of three, and how a're ticket sales?

Speaker 2 (01:49:59):
Yes, two days instead of three and ticket sales went
really well. We anticipate being at a sellout either by
May or end of May. So we didn't know what
it was going to go, and we should be sold
out this year in our first year.

Speaker 1 (01:50:18):
We're all three guys knowing what you know now, if
we went back to the beginning, would you do this?

Speaker 2 (01:50:27):
We say that all the time, and everyone that said
we were crazy was right. So let's just put that
out there and all of the reasons they said that
we were crazy, they were right. That said, knowing what
I know now, I would do it again. It's been

(01:50:48):
a remarkable experience personally, professionally, we built a really fantastic team.
It is a close knit team, with the exception of
the first year when we didn't know what we needed
to do and therefore we hired the wrong people. After
that year, when we figured out what we needed, we

(01:51:08):
hired the right people and they have all stuck with
us and we've we've we've spent you know, almost eleven
years now together, you know, same people working on this.
We've been able to do this while being in NAPA,
the three of us with our families, raise our families here.
It's taken our friendship, the friendship that Jason and Justin

(01:51:32):
and I have through a level that I don't know
exists out there in many friendships. Maybe it does, but
I'll put our friendship up up there with the best
of them because we've we've we've seen each other at
our worst moments so many times, and we've seen each
other at our best moment so many times. And to

(01:51:52):
go through that together and to have known each other
that for such a long period and to be able
to do that, it's it's something special.

Speaker 1 (01:52:00):
So I would do it all over again.

Speaker 2 (01:52:01):
Absolutely.

Speaker 1 (01:52:03):
How about the other two here?

Speaker 9 (01:52:04):
Yeah, I feel like in the hindsight given what Dave
just mentioned, which I agree with all of it, it
would be hard to say you wouldn't do it again, right,
because it's been such a special part of our lives.

Speaker 8 (01:52:17):
It didn't start that way at all.

Speaker 9 (01:52:18):
It started as one of the most stressful things, including
you know, wives asking what and the hell were you
guys thinking?

Speaker 8 (01:52:24):
What is going on here?

Speaker 9 (01:52:26):
But it obviously turned out the way it did, so
we could say, hey, this is all amazing, everybody should
do this, But it's just the opposite.

Speaker 1 (01:52:33):
Right.

Speaker 8 (01:52:33):
What Dave described is.

Speaker 9 (01:52:36):
Accurate because it's really really unique and it's special, and
like I said, our the fact that our employees like
no one ever leaves. Everyone's like with us to stay
as soon as they become part of the team. That's
pretty great. And then the next person comes along and
this happens all the time. Oh hey, I was thinking
about doing my own festival in this What do you
guys think? And where I I don't know about that.

(01:53:00):
I don't because we're quick to say, you know, there's
reasons why we don't take this.

Speaker 8 (01:53:05):
And do it again all over the place.

Speaker 1 (01:53:07):
Right.

Speaker 9 (01:53:08):
It takes a special combination of everything that you just
heard and the festival business is really hard, right, It's
really hard to get all of those pieces and parts
to work in sync and have everything lined up. So
it's it's not like, hey, this is a home run,
everybody should do it. It's it's kind of the opposite
of that, you know. It's like we've learned enough to

(01:53:30):
know how to not, you know, lean over our skis
in some irresponsible way, or even guide other people who
are thinking about being in the festival business and kind
of lead them astray because there's a lot of a
lot of a lot of tombstones out there.

Speaker 1 (01:53:45):
Jason, okay, Jason.

Speaker 7 (01:53:47):
Yeah, these, I mean these I always the order of
the way we talk Bob is, Dave goes first, Justin
goes second, and I always go third, and I usually
speak the least because they take all the good all
the good fruit off the tree.

Speaker 3 (01:54:00):
But yeah, I couldn't disagree with I couldn't agree with
them more. Although we do disagree.

Speaker 7 (01:54:05):
Plenty, I couldn't agree with them more. It's been an
extraordinary life experience, you know, Dave said. Personally and professionally,
there's there's you know, we've all been in other careers. Yeah,
I'm fifty two and so I've been around the block
a couple of times. There's nothing that I've ever experienced
or know anybody that's not in the festival business that

(01:54:27):
that that goes through the experiences that the highs, the lows,
the gut punches, the exhilaration of putting on a festival.
When you know when you hear the first founds come
through the PA and the sites almost there, it's like,
you know, this this chilling experience in a very positive

(01:54:48):
way that you know you're you're not going to find
at a desk job. And and this is a terrible analogy,
but you know, when this team all comes together and
we bring in and people, contractors that that work have
worked for us for years, and we're all out there
building the site, and the level of detail and pride

(01:55:08):
that people put forth, it's it's kind of like what
I would assume, you know, being in the military and
you know some some sense of that, or a sports team.

Speaker 3 (01:55:19):
At the end of the festival, when it's over.

Speaker 7 (01:55:21):
Monday morning, you wake up and you're just so thankful
it's it's all over, but also just so proud and
excited that you guys pulled it off again, and you know,
there's nothing else that I know of like that out there.

Speaker 3 (01:55:34):
So I always I'm the first guy. They always threatened
that I'm out of here. You know, I'm going to
be the first to quit this thing.

Speaker 7 (01:55:42):
Jokingly, but but you know, it's like in my veins,
it's in my blood.

Speaker 3 (01:55:45):
I don't I don't think that's really the truth. And yeah,
I guess I would.

Speaker 7 (01:55:51):
I would do it over again myself, even though, like
I said, it almost killed us the first couple of years.

Speaker 1 (01:55:58):
Okay, I'm sure there's an exhamtiety in presenting the actual
festivals over the weekends that occur. But you also talked
about investing this year for dividends next year, for expectations
next year. To what degree are you have an ongoing
anxiety that this thing could fall apart or if you
don't pay attention twenty four to seven, something go wrong.

(01:56:21):
Is that in your heads where you say, oh, this
is a smooth sailing ship. We've got it.

Speaker 2 (01:56:25):
Always it's always the anxiety is always in our in
our on front very nice so to speak, I mean it, gosh,
you know what, you know, what I'm thinking about right
now is when we do our annual tabletop exercises for
law enforcement and with law enforcement, and when you're sitting

(01:56:46):
there with with FBI and Homeland Security and local police
and fire and sheriffs, et cetera, and then you're going
through scenarios of what you would do in this situation
versus that situation. Jason just and night, every single year
walk out of that meeting and go, what the fuck
are we doing? And then you know, we breathe for

(01:57:09):
about an hour or two and then we realized that, well,
we're doing every single thing we possibly can to mitigate
those risks.

Speaker 1 (01:57:17):
But man, it it it.

Speaker 2 (01:57:20):
It definitely it stays with us, and it stays with
us year round because it's a big responsibility and it's
within our community and you just want things to go well.
And we're not even talking about the finances here right now.
We're talking about the you know, the safety and the
customer experience component first and foremost, and and then there's
the anxiety of the of the finances. Right, So so yeah,

(01:57:42):
it's it's a lot.

Speaker 8 (01:57:44):
Yeah, and it's a it's a fragile thing.

Speaker 9 (01:57:46):
Like I obviously all three of us agree with what
Dave said in that terms of that guest experience and
the and just the safety aspect is what could what
could ruin it faster than anything else. So we've got
a huge emphasis on that. But then on the way
that anxiety carries over to everything. I mean, Jason knows
this from what he was joking around about where I

(01:58:06):
was fighting over sponsors, and I'll be the first to
over exaggerate something to say, if we take that sponsor,
it's the wrong brand and the wrong spot. That's the
beginning of the end around here. Everything, everything's going to
feed off that everyone's going to think that this is
a different festival, and then the whole thing's going to dwindle,
you know. Or we did actually just today we were
talking about food and beverage pricing and there's this pressure,

(01:58:29):
you know, from whether it's sponsors or concessionaire to raise prices.

Speaker 8 (01:58:32):
And then we went to the same thing.

Speaker 9 (01:58:34):
If we raise prices, that's what everyone else is doing,
and everyone hates it. Well, as soon as we start,
do you know, making this thing too expensive, that's the
beginning of the end, you know. And so it's like
this constant anxiety around not overpricing it, getting the security right,
you know, making sure the experience is right again, investing
in bands, even if the you know, in the culinary

(01:58:56):
stage and things, even when the tickets are sold out.
You know, it's really about you know, look into the
future and making sure we don't screw things up, because
festivals are pretty fragile, you know, once they start going
the wrong direction, you know, people lose faith in a brand,
and the brand is everything.

Speaker 1 (01:59:15):
Okay, to wrap it up, let's start with Jason. A
peak experience from the actual festival. Since you guys have
been doing it.

Speaker 7 (01:59:24):
Peak experience from the actual festival, well, I mean there's
just so many I just touched on to me of
one of the best experiences I have every year is
like I said, you know, hundreds of people all coming
together to kind of the production and the crew, if
you will, coming together to build build what I hope

(01:59:47):
you'll get to see this year, Bob, is in my opinion,
one of the one of the most premium quality experiences.

Speaker 3 (01:59:54):
Of a festival that that that's out there.

Speaker 7 (01:59:58):
I try to say that as humbly as I can,
but but I'm I'm pretty proud of what we do,
you know, I mean, there's just so many the ability
to you know, do this with Dave and justin every
year we kind of have a group hug at the
at the end on Sunday night, we have our first
drink in maybe two three months because we all kind

(02:00:18):
of abstained through the festival. Those will always be some
of my favorite memories. Uh And and you.

Speaker 3 (02:00:25):
Know my family.

Speaker 7 (02:00:26):
I have a young now, a twelve year old and
a ten year old, and you know, for them to
now start to really get what's going on here and
want to come and and be able to spend a
little time in the sound mix with them is like
for them that'll be an extraordinary experience that they'll never
forget that. I'm glad I can be a part of
so family and friends, I guess.

Speaker 9 (02:00:47):
Justin yeah, I mean there's there's there's a ton of
things I can think of, And there's a lot on
the artist side too, like what was special memory and
all that. There's almost there's too many of those. So
I was thinking, I'm not going to I'm not going
to name a name an artist experience, but outside of that,
something that resonates with me. And this doesn't necessarily happen

(02:01:09):
only at the festival, but you know there's otherwise no
one would know if they met me if I'm a
part of this, you know you're a ball Rock founder
or not, right, you wouldn't know.

Speaker 8 (02:01:19):
I'm just a guy.

Speaker 9 (02:01:20):
And then when people start talking to you about the
festival and they say, you know, this is my favorite
thing of the entire year, Like this is when my
friends and I get together and it happens around town
and NAPO, they don't.

Speaker 8 (02:01:31):
Know who you are.

Speaker 9 (02:01:31):
There's like, oh my god, I can't wait for Battle Rock.
It's literally what I live for all year round, you know.
And then I still don't introduce myself. I don't say anything.
I just kind of just like inside your kind of smiling,
like you know what that's worth it?

Speaker 8 (02:01:44):
Like all this kind of stress.

Speaker 9 (02:01:46):
That we go through all the year and all the
on site build and how we're into every last detail
and everyone's snipping at each other. It's like when you're
making that many people you know, happy and creating memories
for it. I know that sounds kind of corny, but
it's it's the truth. It's uh, it makes it worth it.

Speaker 5 (02:02:03):
Dave.

Speaker 2 (02:02:07):
The two things I would say, one is what Jason said,
which is the Justin and Jason and I at the
end of the festival, after egress has been declared.

Speaker 1 (02:02:19):
You know, successful for.

Speaker 2 (02:02:20):
The third night, and we hug it out like that's
a that's a moment I always look forward to, Like
we just don't hear anyone around us, you know, it's
just the three of us going, fuck, we did it,
our team did it.

Speaker 1 (02:02:34):
That's really rewarding.

Speaker 2 (02:02:36):
I think one of the best experiences was just actually
last year when the Peppers were playing and the let's
say the shoot was locked down.

Speaker 1 (02:02:47):
They weren't letting anyone go through.

Speaker 2 (02:02:50):
And Jose Andrace, who loves the Peppers, is like asking
me to help him get out, and I'm like, why
do you want to go And He's just like, I
got to get out, let me.

Speaker 1 (02:02:59):
Just help me. And I'm like all right, So, you know,
I talked.

Speaker 2 (02:03:02):
To security and they let Jose leave like halfway through
the set, and then Justin and I and Jason, Jason
and Justin come back into our little compound area aig
risk goes well, so we hug it out and Jose
Andres is walking in with this massive pie and he

(02:03:23):
had left, you know, a show that he really wanted
to be at, just so he could make Justin and
Jason and myself his favorite Paiea, because that's who he is,
and it was just, it was just it was so meaningful.
And notwithstanding the fact that I'm a pious snob, like
I love and so I was so excited about that,

(02:03:43):
but just like, what a good guy, and what a
cool moment to be able to spend with Jason and
Justin and jose just you know, having a good little
bite and kind of celebrating the whole weekend. So that's
probably one of the moments that I always remember.

Speaker 1 (02:03:57):
Okay, gentlemen, I think we've come to the end of
the feeling we've known. I wanted to do this because
you know, festivals are a dime a dozen. But when
you guys talked when I heard you previously, I said, fuck,
I want to go to that, which is almost never
the case. You guys have certainly created something special. So
once again, I want to thank you for taking time

(02:04:19):
to speak with my audience. Until next time. This is
Bob left Stets
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