Desert Daze organisers respond to angry fans after Tame Impala’s set cancelled due to storm

The band say they're 'devastated'

Organisers of Californian festival Desert Daze have issued a statement after Tame Impala‘s set was cancelled three songs in due to adverse weather conditions.

A staff member appeared onstage three songs into the Australian band’s set on Friday night (October 12) to announce that the gig was being cut short due to a thunderstorm, urging fans to seek shelter. Until two hours earlier, organisers had reportedly insisted they would still play.

The decision unsurprisingly caused outrage among festival-goers on social media. Many claimed that it wasn’t the only problem with the event, with Desert Daze subsequently posting an apology for poor traffic conditions.

One fan called the festival “a disaster from the start”, while another described it as “a trainwreck of logistical nightmares.”

 

In the statement, organisers said: “We’ve been planning our move to Lake Perris for many months and are working side-by-side with Park Rangers to make this a special and safe event. Last night, due to extreme lightning storms rolling in a few songs after the start of Tame Impala’s set, we unfortunately had to ask all guests to exit the Desert Daze grounds, return to their cars and seek shelter to remain safe.

“We worked closely with CalFire, Park Rangers and meteorologists to  make the difficult decision to halt the show and immediately implement our event’s contingency plan. We decided to end the remainder of the evening’s programming once it was clear the weather was going to continue to be a safety issue. The safety of our guests is our top priority.”

They also acknowledged issues attendees had getting into the festival “in a timely fashion”, saying they had been “proactive in trying to resolve this”. “We redirected all vehicles to Transition Road and Via Del Lago, changed the location of the Main Box Office, and shifted all campers to be processed directly via the camping entry, alleviating some of the congestion.

The statement continued to say that although Tame Impala could not perform later in the weekend “due to scheduling”, the organisers were working with the rest of the performers on Friday evening “to reschedule as many of them as possible”.

“The Desert Daze staff spent the rest of the night and morning remaining available to any patrons in need of assistance and preparing the grounds for a safe and enjoyable second day on site at Moreno Beach, Lake Perris State Recreation Area,” organisers said. “The Desert Daze grounds are open today and we look forward to welcoming fans back for the rest of the weekend.”

Tame Impala posted a message of their own on Instagram, with the caption: “Devastated. Sorry Desert Daze. Hope everyone’s safe.”

View this post on Instagram

Devastated. Sorry Desert Daze. Hope everyone’s safe

A post shared by Tame Impala (@tame__impala) on

The festival had previously announced that it would take place despite advance warnings of adverse weather, but advised attendees against sleeping in their tents.

“We’ve been advised by the meterologist that the current lightning-containing storm cells will last throughout the night,” they said the night before Tame Impala’s set. “Chances are this storm will be passing by morning. Therefore, we strongly advise AGAINST sleeping in your tent due to threat of lightning.”

Desert Daze continue to insist that the rest of the festival will continue to take place over the next two days, with King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard and My Bloody Valentine due to headline, and sets from Slowdive, Chelsea Wolfe, Death Grips and Julia Holter also to come.
As an apology, Desert Daze have offered free parking for all for the rest of the weekend, refunds for those who have already paid parking, and have said that Friday tickets will be valid today.
They tweeted: “We are working extremely hard and will have the grounds open and ready for you to enjoy today.”