"some music was meant to stay underground..."

Critics Say Free Ozzfest Will "Screw Artists"

Photo of Ozzy Osbourne

Band Photo: Ozzy Osbourne (?)

Critics have leveled some heavy charges against Ozzfest after the announcement of a free Ozzfest this summer. The problems began when founder Ozzy Osbourne described the festivals previous financial problems as due to "artists demanding more and more money for summer tours" and the ensuing rumour that the event actually charged new acts in the vicinity of $75,000 for a slot on the tour in previous years (this has actually been confirmed by a number of bands to be 75-80k and only applies to non-headlining second stage acts -ed).

Established music publication CMJ argues that the event will force artists to depend entirely on already venue-taxed merch sales to cover their costs:

In fact, whereas Ozzfest allegedly required an investment from these up-and-coming acts, they now simply require that the bands agree to play for merch money.

Furthermore, while the festival now allows band's to perform in the same city even the same day as the festival, the article describes this as a "crafty manipulation" arguing that no one will pay for a show after a free performance takes place the same day.

Catalyst News Network goes even further, accusing the organizers of "sucking the lifeblood from young artists" and concludes that "Art is truly being used to promote corporate profits -- while the artists, once again get screwed. "

It should be noted that very few details on the financial arrangements of the festival have been announced, but these allegations, if true, could pose very real problems for artists aiming for a position in summer's festival tours.

Source: PunkNews.org

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46 Comments on "Critics Say Free Ozzfest Will 'Screw Artists'"

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Anonymous Reader
1. Bat Fest writes:

Even though I am not a fan of the Ozzfest thing, I think it is a great idea to have a free show. It's about time something like this happened really. It is also a shame , but also simply current human attitudes, that not everyone can be happy about this desicion. Many will praise the "free" aspect, and many will completely insult it. Just like everything, it has it's good points and it's bad, but look at how many poor metal heads can finally see some of their favorite bands. I also know for a fact that this will seperate the money hungry bands, from the ones who truely appreciate their fans.

# Feb 9, 2007 @ 11:37 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
2. dmasa writes:

yea but u shouldnt screw over the bands

# Feb 9, 2007 @ 11:44 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
3. Bat Fest writes:

It isnt like they are looking for bands, trapping the bands into thinking they will pay them, then when the tour is over they say "surprise its a free show!". The bands that will be involved will know exactly what they are getting into. Thats why I mentioned it will seperate the money hungry bands from the ones who truely appreciate their fans without regard for money. The reason these bands "payed" before to get on the bill, is because Ozzfest is an extremely good market to target your exact demographic. It creates sales not only in cd's, but merchandise, videos, etc...

# Feb 10, 2007 @ 12:30 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
4. BrianSD writes:

The bands don't have to play Ozzfest. The bands who want to do this will, and will get more exposure than any other tour, which will turn into more fans at their own shows.

# Feb 10, 2007 @ 1:26 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
bassmaster!'s avatar

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5. bassmaster! writes:

I think the reson they are doing this free thing is because KORN's family values tour did better than ozzfest last year and they are just tryig to keep up!

# Feb 10, 2007 @ 1:42 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
6. cjones05 writes:

just a bunch of a$$holes who don't think its a good idea down the the man !!!!!!!!!!!!!!

# Feb 10, 2007 @ 2:03 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
7. Diamond Oz writes:

Meh. The bands don't have to play. Personally if Ozzy rang me up asking my band to do the free Ozzfest I'd just go "What place? What time?" As is said, they'll make a fair bit from merch.

# Feb 10, 2007 @ 3:42 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
8. deadhorse writes:

Frankly I'd rather pay to see a band I want to see, then to go to one of the these multi-stage corporate "fests".

# Feb 10, 2007 @ 9:00 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
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9. StabbingTheDrama writes:

See when you say that you'd rather pay to see a band rather than a free shows makes you retarded as hell. You're telling me that you wouldn't want to see bands for free!? That's just stupid, and that's why they're doing this. What happens if your favorite band plays this? You're going to turn it down because it's a "corporate fest." That's just ridiculous.

And the Family Values Tour didn't come to A LOT of places this last year. I know it didn't come to IL at all. But it is a slight possibility that they got the free thing from that because some people were paying $5-10 for lawn seats and instead of doing the same thing they'd just take it to the next level.

And yes a free show, if the band is going, will get a lot more exposure and gain more fans to be at their shows when they come around again and they will sell more CD's making the artist and the record company happy.

# Feb 10, 2007 @ 9:19 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
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10. Rollmonkey writes:

I think that some of you guys sound like you're forgetting that a band has to pay EIGHTY THOUSAND DOLLARS just for a TWENTY MINUTE SLOT at last year's Ozzfest. Now picture them having to do the exact same thing this year, except that instead of getting a cut of the profit from ticket sales, they have to rely 100% on t-shirt sales.

Off-fest gigs generally are a pretty good pull, but a band isn't going to be able to pull it off at every city, and it's going to be damn hard for a band to at least break even, much less make a profit. You don't have to be a big giant corporate douchebag sellout band to see that eighty thousand dollars is a lot of money, and I can see if a lot of bands are apprehensive about doing a show like this.

I guess I don't really care if it would be free or not. Last year I liked the bill and ponying up the thirty dollars for lawn tickets really didn't make me feel all that bad. I dunno how I feel about having to sign up for sponsors offers either, I don't want free credit cards and all sorts of things like that.

I guess we'll just have to wait and see how this all turns out, really.

# Feb 10, 2007 @ 11:30 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
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11. metalmayhem writes:

deadhorse, i beg to differ, and i cant stand ozzfest. converge, one of the most "underground" and purposefully underexposed bands, played last years sounds of the underground along w/ behemoth, cannibal corpse, etc. these fests are what drives metal. they expose fans to new bands and new fans to this brand of music. i am impressed by this announcement by sharon and her cronies and if there is a "winner" here i dare say that it is metal in general. of course id rather see my favorite band in a club w/ 40 other people who appreciate it for what it is, but being a metal fan in general i also wish the states had summer festivals in the same way that those crazy european countries do.

# Feb 10, 2007 @ 11:44 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
12. MonkWren writes:

Someone got $30 lawn tickets to Ozzfest? In Minnesota, the lawn tickets were $50, and pit tickets were $75! They cancelled the show 'cause no-one paid for their over-priced tickets. Maybe if they used a reasonable pricing scheme, people will show up. I mean, free is nice and all, but it costs the bands a whole pile of money (assuming they're still paying to play, which I think is stupid in the first place). They could copy other festivals (like the afore-mentioned FVT) and offer cheap $5 or $10 lawn tickets and $20-$25 pit tickets - they might lose some money, but not as much as with free tickets.

# Feb 10, 2007 @ 12:15 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
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13. StabbingTheDrama writes:

I think it's retarded that SOAD demanded that they get paid $325,000 for every show on Ozzfest last year and decided to go on break afterwards right in the middle of the tour. They're not worth that much at all.

# Feb 10, 2007 @ 1:22 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
14. edge-of-forever writes:

"the article describes this as a "crafty manipulation" arguing that no one will pay for a show after a free performance takes place the same day"

this is definitely not entirely true, if you consider the likelyhood of ozzfest actually having a decent lineup. for example, if a half-assed ozzfest lineup came to my town (for free) the same day as lets say strapping young lad, i would without consideration pay the $15-ish dollars to see SYL.

ozzfest being free really doesnt make me wanna go any more or less. if i had a choice to see a better show (even if it costs money!), then i would.

# Feb 10, 2007 @ 1:53 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
15. Strictly4DK writes:

As to Bat Fest's comments about separating the money hungry bands from those that truly appreciate their fans, you forget one very important factor. Being in a capitalist democracy every person requires one thing to live despite their artistic values or beliefs, MONEY.

# Feb 10, 2007 @ 1:54 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
16. graveland writes:

bottom line is nobody is getting screwed. if a band is playing on OzzFest it's because they CHOOSE to do so. they are not forced. if they make the choice to play for merch money, then they live with that decision and are not screwed. the alternative is to tour on their own. bands are not dependant upon the Osbournes to provide their salary. so STFU.

# Feb 10, 2007 @ 4:07 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
17. caquita writes:

Personally, I think ozzfest is a great thing, but if it costs bands alotta money, and then they go aroung complaining because the amount of publicity they got that day didn't pay off, then they shouldn't go 4 it.... gravelang is right, they don't have to if they don't want 2..... sure its great that ozzfest could b free, but c'mon, if its negative effects screw over the band, which then eventually gets 2 the fans, then they should just 4get it and let them tour on their own so every1 ends up happy as can be...

# Feb 10, 2007 @ 10:28 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
18. BodomBastard writes:

i don't want to know what bands will be there if it's going to be free to get it...

# Feb 10, 2007 @ 11:52 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
19. deadhorse writes:

metalmayhem : I should have been more specific. By "fests", I mean the multi-stage style concerts. Just jamming all those bands togther playing at the same time is a waste. Yeah, I like the SOTU tours; I went to the last two. I prefer the bands on that tour anyhow. Yes, I love Converge!

StabbingTheDrama : The difference between you and me is this : I CAN afford to pay for tickets for whatever band I want to see. I don't have any financial disability that makes me angry about paying for tickets, unlike some people. My support for the scene and bands is by PAYING the small ticket fee to support them. I also buy two, three shirts per show as well. So based on your immediate slander based on my opinion that I rather pay to see a good show, proves a lot. Just means I won't have to share the same space with a$$holes like you. That in itself is worth the price of any ticket.

# Feb 11, 2007 @ 12:26 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
20. GTO writes:

It's gonna be a clusterF%*K.That's what deadhorse is getting at.(there are no shortcuts,pay your fee and go on).

# Feb 11, 2007 @ 5:41 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Azazel_Begotten's avatar

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21. Azazel_Begotten writes:

I'll be honest, I'd play a free show for Ozzfest.

# Feb 11, 2007 @ 8:49 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
22. ArchEnemy84 writes:

You know, it's Ozzfest. Okay...Ozzfest has a decorated history of hosting numerous bands...It should be treated as an honor to play at Ozzfest - regardless of whether or not the band is accruing payment. Even so, the bands that are invited to play on Ozzfest 2007 will earn money from merch sales, but those bands can also decide to headline a few other concerts in neighboring cities or return to headline their own tour to promote the band or their new album. Okay, f*** the critics. Let's face it. Most people ages 17 - 26 cannot afford to pay $50 - $100 ticket these days given the expense of gasoline and the other outrageous prices of food and beverages. Please. I think this is a great idea and it should be celebrated. The bands that perform on Ozzfest (regardless of 1st or 2nd stage) will perform because THEY WANT TO PERFORM and they want to perform FOR THEIR FANS!!! US!!! We're the ones who are out everyday browsing new music, searching for some great metal tunes, and you know what, these tours would not exist if it was for fans worldwide as well as the continuing determination of these band members to work together to create such great music and truly share in this moment for everyone. It is 2007. Why not have a free concert for all of those who appreciate metal to enjoy a hot summer day outside and just have fun! Forget the water slides. Forget the sprinklers. For one f***ing day, I'd rather go see 10 - 12 metal bands play in front of thousands of people. That is the definition of tours. And that is the definition of Ozzfest. Let's go.

# Feb 12, 2007 @ 12:57 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
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23. bassmaster! writes:

I know one thing it's going to be a mad house at ozzfest this year!

# Feb 12, 2007 @ 2:10 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
24. Alex.... writes:

I dont know why some of these bands are complaining about pay? Arnt they rich enough allready?
I might regret saying this but i dont care :)
Not all but some of the bands that are complaining lots are probly whining for the money, they should just have fun and give the fans what they deserve, cuz concert tickets these days are sometimes a god damn rip off, Aerosmiths last tour, tickets were over 100 dollars, i dont wanna start sh*t but thats pathetic =\ So Ozzfest should be free :)

# Feb 12, 2007 @ 1:56 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
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25. Azazel_Begotten writes:

I can see points of naysayers as well as everyone else confident about this fest.

I'll just get the tickets and see what I think.

# Feb 14, 2007 @ 9:11 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
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26. StabbingTheDrama writes:

Hey deadhorse, don't judge me because I said I'd go to a free f***ing show. I have f***ing 21 concert tickets to all different concerts sitting right in front of me. I never EVER EVER said that I wouldn't pay for a concert ticket. I'm saying that if your favorite band is playing Ozzfest for free why wouldn't you go? It's different if some other band that you like is playing somewhere and you want to see them more. But if one of my favorite bands is going to do Ozzfest for free I'm there! I honestly would rather be in an indoor venue, but like I said if I can see my favorite band(s) for free then hell yeah, I'd go. I'm not going to turn down a free concert when I spend thousands on tickets a year. You have no f***ing idea who I am or what I do, I don't have a financial disability. And it's unbelievable that you think that because of what I said on the INTERNET. And if I had to pay for Ozzfest then I would have no problem paying for it if I wanted to go. I've gone the last two years and I went to SOTU last year too. I'm kicking myself for not going to the first SOTU because that was f***ing badass.

And Alex, most bands aren't rich and have a bunch of money. In order for them to start getting paid from record sales they have to recoup all the costs of the album. For a lot of metal band it's no problem, for pop artists and sh** like that it's easy because it's mainstream. But like you said Aerosmith, they are definitely living well and making lots of money from album sales from the past still to this day. There was some kind of statistic that Gene Simmons makes like $12,500 a week or month or something. I saw that on tv like a year ago. It all depends on how popular the bands are and how many CD's they're selling. Touring helps them out and can make them more money to live off of. And people have argued that record companies get a lot of the money from touring and they barely make anything if anything at all. They just hope that people buy the records at the shows, because that's what they're their to do.

# Feb 14, 2007 @ 11:25 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
27. deadhorse writes:

This is what I said "Frankly I'd rather pay to see a band I want to see, then to go to one of the these multi-stage corporate "fests"." . Nothing else. This is what you said in response : "you say that you'd rather pay to see a band rather than a free shows makes you retarded as hell" Who's judging who, a$$hole???? You need to learn and comprehend the English language before you attempt to venture some ignorant response based on your anger and p***s envy. "You have no f***ing idea who I am or what I do" yeah, no sh** sherlock; so who spouted off at the mouth first??? you, a$$hole; that's who. you need to learn to think before you open your big f***in mouth. Be seen and not heard when the adults are talking, a$$hole.

# Feb 15, 2007 @ 3:41 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
StabbingTheDrama's avatar

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28. StabbingTheDrama writes:

Boy, you like the word a$$hole don't you?

# Feb 16, 2007 @ 12:48 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
29. Terminator writes:

id go to ozzfest for free, hell id go to any concert for free. how much id pay to see a concert depends on whose playing.

# Feb 16, 2007 @ 1:19 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
30. the antihippy writes:

i'd rather pay to watch in flames, SOAD, opeth, primus, and a hell lot of other bands that i probably would never get to see.

all i gotta say is be happy with what you have.

# Feb 16, 2007 @ 2:10 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
31. CrawfordTexasJingoJango writes:

"Free Ozzfest Screws Artists?" I think that "Paid Ozzfest Screws Artists." Critics are upset because THEIR bands never got out of their grandma's basement. I think what Ozzfest is doing could save the industry. The bands that jump on board for this tour are going to be applauded and will surely attract more fans, and with FREE tickets, there sure won't be a shortage of them. I think it's genius, albeit quite daring, and the bands will surely be tested, but that will only guarantee top-notch entertainment, and I think after paying $50 to $80 a ticket for, let's face it, sometimes SUB-PAR music, I think this could actually prove to be a series of filters to weed out the REAL bands from the ones that are FAKING IT. SOAD, I'm lookin' at YOU! These bands will actually have to IMPRESS the attendees into buying their merchandise. And if that's not revolutionary, then what is? It used to be that the people already paid their money and the bands are already paid, and they just want to get their set over so they can go get super-tanked at the Jaegermeister booth and have crazy rockstar sex on their air-conditioned buses. Now, if the bands can't hack it, and don't impress everyone, that means they don't sell a shirt, or a CD and they go home broke, unless they're fingerin' the starfish of their sponsor. This way, Disturbed can go onstage, play their sh**ty music, impress no one, and get back on the bus so they can jack each other off, and bands that actually PLAY LIKE PROFESSIONALS, like, oh, Arch Enemy, or Hatebreed, get paid their worth, rather than being tossed aside so the fags that won tickets on the radio just so they can watch SOAD, that are getting to the show around 6 or 7 p.m. just so they can see it, and are just drinking beer and starting fistfights like a$$holes, and maybe giving a sh**ty band $4000 a night instead of SOAD getting $325,000 a night. SOAD making that much money a night and then going on hiatus should be pissing a lot more people off. They took the money and RAN, but that's another post...

# Feb 16, 2007 @ 10:10 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
32. cleareyez writes:

Eat sh** F u c k e r s

# Feb 16, 2007 @ 11:55 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Scorpion69's avatar

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33. Scorpion69 writes:

My band would play just for shaking Ozzy's hand

# Feb 16, 2007 @ 12:16 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Azazel_Begotten's avatar

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34. Azazel_Begotten writes:

StabbingTheDrama (Funny thing, if I abbreviate your name it would be 'STD' lol), You went to SOTU? I'm jealous. I wanted to go, but only for Behemoth (yeh, fvck you guys, I can already see one of you saying something about me being some kinda fanboy)...I do see your point...

Honestly, I can totally see myself going to Metal shows frequently. It would be like smoking for me, except my money wouldn't be wasted.

# Feb 17, 2007 @ 9:36 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
35. theman093 writes:

Let me point something out to you people who are loving the idea of a free Ozzfest...NONE of the bands you like will be playing it this year. NONE of the bands from previous years, be they second stage, main stage, headliners, or whatever else will be playing for free if they're linked up to labels, booking companies, etc. The band's "handlers" also have a stake in the money made when a band tours...so there's no way in hell big bands will be on this playing for free. So basically, you're going to have a big free show of nobodies and then a 60 year old cripple. Enjoy.

# Feb 17, 2007 @ 11:56 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
StabbingTheDrama's avatar

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36. StabbingTheDrama writes:

Yeah A_B, concerts are like my addiction. I know of a lot of people that are stuck on drugs and having drinking problems and this and DVD's is what I spend my money on lol Can't wait to get my ticket to Dimmu Borgir, Unearth, DevilDriver, and Kataklysm show.

And theman093, we'll see what happens.

# Feb 18, 2007 @ 8:22 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
37. CrawfordTexasJingoJango writes:

To theman093. You're gonna feel crunchy as hell when Ozzfest '07 blows all other summer tours out of the water. It can't be any worse than ANY Warped Tour or the SECOND SOTU. Unless Ozzfest 2007 is going to be headlined by 36 Crazyfists, I think it'll be alright.

# Feb 19, 2007 @ 5:49 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
RememberMetal?'s avatar

Writer/Reviewer

38. RememberMetal? writes:

The first sotu was a helluva show.

# Feb 19, 2007 @ 9:38 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
StabbingTheDrama's avatar

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39. StabbingTheDrama writes:

Yeah, I think that the first SOTU was probably ONE of the best tours in years. And I would've went if it were of on a weekend. I mean having all these artists that I like on one tour is f***ing amazing: Lamb of God, Clutch, Opeth, Unearth, Chimaira, Throwdown, GWAR, Strapping Young Lad, All That Remains, DevilDriver, A Life Once Lost! Of course there were some sh**ty bands (in my opinion) like Norma Jean, From Autumn to Ashes, and Everytime I Die. I missed out :(

# Feb 19, 2007 @ 10:01 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
40. Xile writes:

I heard that the bands are not gonna have to play everything is based off sales. Which means that although there not gonna payed for ticket sales people will have more money for merchendise. I usually dont buy cds or shirts at concerts becuase prices are high but this will make it possible for alot of people like me to start buying other stuff at ozzfest. I agree that some major bands may not be there but at the same time people may try to go to more then one of the ozzfests if differnt bands headline in differnt states.

# Feb 19, 2007 @ 11:22 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
41. Xile writes:

sorry for double post but i ment pay not play in the first sentance

# Feb 19, 2007 @ 11:24 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
42. ZT writes:

75 bucks for the PIT TICKETS???!!! Get on a plane and get the f*** outta here. 75 bucks.....jeez, why don't they take the fillings out of your f***ing teeth while their at it, eh?

# Feb 19, 2007 @ 11:52 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
43. MuDvAyNe fan writes:

does anyone know if KoRn will bring back the family values tour this summer? i know their new album comes out in June.
lats years family values tour was sick and i liked it better than ozzfest 06...stone sour,deftones,10 years,KoRn playing for 2 hours..plus events like 3 on 3 paintball was awesome!

# Feb 20, 2007 @ 9:27 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
44. Your Mom writes:

I agree with Stabbing, the first SOTU was one of the best shows I have ever seen, hands down. I got drunk, passed out, got sunburned, and threw up. All the bases covered. Nice!

# Feb 20, 2007 @ 1:07 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
45. Alex.... writes:

I know that but still some are to high priced..

# Feb 20, 2007 @ 2:11 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
StabbingTheDrama's avatar

Supporter

46. StabbingTheDrama writes:

But depending on what it is, it may or not be worth the price. Ozzfest 2005 I feel like I got my moneys worth 100%

# Feb 20, 2007 @ 5:23 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address

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