Hell yeah! Pizza, beer and rock and roll, it’s time for the ultimate pizza party – Pizzafest!
The lineup for this year is rad with 50thirdand3rd favs: ¡Vamanos!, Daddies, The Mad Doctors, Jacques Le Coque to name just a few. In fact, you can see 21 bands for under $30 if you purchase tix in advance, where else are you going to find a value like that? Oh, and all proceeds from pizza sales go to a good cause.
Over the next week, we will be featuring a few bands from the lineup to get the oven preheated but in the meantime, we hooked up with Greg Hanson, the Big Cheese at KP to get some background and details on the Fest.
How many years has Pizzafest been around? How did the idea for a multi-day fest start?
GH: This is our sixth PIZZAFEST, the first one was 2014 and we kick off every summer with one! When we started King Pizza, I was booking a lot of shows (and still do) – the idea came to us because we wanted to make a splash. Give our bands and friends something really big to sink their teeth into! The first PIZZAFEST was a triple tape release weekend and we wanted to give folks something they couldn’t ignore. And every year, we try and do the same thing. We were looking at things like Gonerfest and Burger Boogaloo – labels that throw a big gala hang out and party for bands and buds – and we thought, “Hey! We can do that! That sounds like a shitload of fun!”
A couple of memorable performances from over the years.
GH: Haha, this is like asking to pick a favorite child! And of course, I am partial because I play every year at PIZZAFEST (in The Mad Doctors, Lumps, etc.) but – there are always a ton of wild sets every year. Everyone always tries to go above and beyond and make it special. It’s always amazing to bring in bands that haven’t played for our crowds and see people lose their mind so comparing sets is impossible. But I will say one that I’ll likely never forget was OTTO MANN from Year 1 always put on a completely absurd show where they played in horrible Aloha shirts and had a dude dressed as Homer Simpson come out and spray silly string and dance. Hard to forget something like that.
What does it take to execute an event like Pizzafest?
GH: PIZZAFEST is a lot of work, coordination, and love. I start hitting up touring bands probably six months or so in advance so we can get a handful of absolute killers. I always like to bring out a bunch of out-of-towners because it’s a guaranteed great, receptive crowd and it keeps the lineups between years diverse and interesting. It’s always awesome to reconnect with friends from the road and to bring em out here and show them our little slice of heaven. We always try to have at least 20 bands so there’s a lot of schedule problem-solving. Coordination of food, gear, venues, custom artwork, and custom merch not to mention people to man all these stations, plus DJs, a host, beer sponsors, bands, ticketing! It can become a lot! But it’s great because every year we’re more prepared and we have more and more systems already in place to make it easier. And the three days of having an absolute blast is definitely worth it!
What does it mean to the band to be a part of Pizzafest?
GH: It means you’re going to have a damn good time! PIZZAFEST is a bit like a holiday for me and folks really go all in for it – people dress up, hang out all weekend, eat tons of pizza, and rock out. I always bring in bands that are going to play their faces off and get the audience dancing. Every year, people find new favorite bands. And that’s amazing. It means you’re apart of the family – and that goes for the audience as well as the bands. It means having a moment of kid-like awe as your friends slay in front of a packed room and you’re about to do the same. And it means being apart of an active, thriving scene of artists just absolutely giving it their everything and, in my opinion, knocking it outta the dang park!
What’s up for the rest of 2019?
GH: We have a jam-packed 2019 schedule. We have a triple taste of rollicking riffiness between Teen Mortgage’s new tape ‘Life/Death’, Zip-Tie Handcuff’s new tape ‘Warm Shadows’ AND The Mad Doctors’ ‘RIP’ all lined up in the month and change after PIZZAFEST so it’s going to be a heavy summer. We are in the throes of planning our end-of-summer shindig Psychic Luau 4 which will be at City Reliquary in the backyard on Sept. 14th and that’s a killer day-long grill-out banger with Aloha shirts, leis, and tons of great bands. Otherwise, we have some other stuff bubbling and fermenting that I’m excited to share once it’s all ready…
Thursday @ The Gutter – $10 – 7pm
Friday @ The Gutter – $10 – 7pm
The Mad Doctors
Francie Moon (NJ)
Werewolf Jones (MI)
Saturday @ Our Wicked Lady – $12 – 3pm
Fire Heads (WI)
The Whiffs (KCMO)
Thee Creeps (NJ)
Jacques Le Coque (CT)
Sun Voyager (OCNY)
The Night Screams