Thousands of music fans went to the beach in Xuejiadao (Qingdao) from September 3-5 for the 2010 Golden Beach Music Festival. Heavy rain throughout the week leading up to the fest let up just in time for folks to camp out on massive Jinshatan (金沙滩), drink a lot of Tsingtao Beer from kegs and bags, and listen to some music from rock to punk to noise. Here’s a recap of the weekend and some photos from the 3rd year of this annual festival.
Day 1 – September 3, 2010 – Experimental Music Day
Experimental music day started a bit late as the organizers waited for the rain to finally pass after days of typhoon inspired weather. The bands started arriving and some were on the beach to check out the avant garde sounds of performers such as Li Zenghui, Feng Hao, Ma Fei San, and Wang Fan + Wu Quan. Campers set up tents on the beach and vendors started setting up shop on the perimeter. There was Tsingtao Beer on tap, beach festival t-shirts, BBQ and more.
Day 2 – September 4, 2010 – Rock & Roll Day
The Rock and Roll day featured great sets by Maze, The Dama Llamas, Perdel, Slap, and SUBS. Long time local eccentric band Pipedream Princess pushed the envelope with a sound that would have fit right in on Day 1. Weather held out and even a bit of sun peeked through the clouds in the late afternoon. The large stage, colorful lights, a massive video screen with footage of psychedelic and dadaesque images, and close-ups on the performers on stage as backdrop made every band look like rock stars at Wembley Stadium.
Day 3 – September 5, 2010 – 90’s Day
The final day of the fest was called Homage to the 90’s day and showcased a mix of bands, though many were not from the 90’s, like Proximity Butterfly from Chengdu, Qingdao duo Carrchy and Korean band The Strikers. One of China’s most well known punk bands Demerit delivered a highlight, getting a huge welcome as returning hometown boys made good. Demerit also supplied the festival’s anthem “Rock n’ Roll on the Golden Beach” – if you were there, you definitely heard it throughout the festival. The mosh pit in front of the stage was alive with blurs of motion and bright red flares and flags. Everyone made sure to stick around to the end when China’s first and most famous heavy rock band Tang Dynasty (with Qingdao native Zhao Nian on drums) capped off the festival.