You might not have thought that combining punk music and bowling would be a successful formula for an annual international music festival. The organizers of the Punk Rock & Bowling Music Festival would say—that shows what you know.
Now in its 17th year, organizers have recently announced the headliners for the 2015 festival: Rancid, the Bay Area band that helped transform punk music from niche genre to global phenomenon; the Boston-Irish bards of Celtic Punk, The Dropkick Murphys; and the kings of Scandinavian Punk, Refused, back in the US for the first time since 2012.
This year’s festival will take place May 23rd – 25th in Las Vegas. While additional lineup announcements are expected soon, other bands confirmed for the festival include:
• Seattle’s hard-rocking garage icons, Murder City Devils,
• Veteran UK punk/hardcore outfit, Discharge,
• The Business, best known for their English football anthem “England 5 – Germany 1,”
• ‘90s LA Punk trio, The Muffs,
• Bad Manners, London’s ska masters, and
• Multi-genre influenced punks, Swingin’ Utters.
“We are excited to bring Punk Rock Bowling back to downtown Las Vegas which has been our new home for the past 5 years”, says festival founder Mark Stern. In addition to his work with the festival, Stern is well known as co-founder of punk label BYO Records and as a member of such bands as West Coast punk’s influential Youth Brigade and the swing-revivalists Royal Crown Revue.
“What better place is there than Vegas for 20,000 punk rockers to travel from all over the world for a weekend of mayhem, bowling, poker, pool parties, late night club shows and of course the best punk rock outdoor festival in North America,” Stern describes, adding with a hint of rabble-rousing glee “Punk Rock music is a way of life, it’s the unwanted step child, it’s a community unlike any other and this event is a celebration of its existence as one of the most influential forms of music in the past 30 years.”
The Punk Rock Bowling & Music Festival began in 1999 as a way to bring the independent music community together for an annual party as well as to give punk and related genres their own major annual international festival, akin to New Orleans Jazz Fest. Seventeen years on, there is no doubt that this dream has been achieved. It is a now a multi-day festival featuring four days of club shows, three days of outdoor performances and a two day bowling tournament. The event’s musical activities are supplemented by hotel pool parties, comedy shows and a punk rock poker tournament.
Tickets for the 2015 Punk Rock & Bowling Music Festival go on sale in January.
For more information, visit the festival website.
And, because we couldn’t think of anything else as a multimedia tie-in for both punk rock and bowling, here are alt/punk rockers, Camper Van Beethoven, with their 1985 hit, “Take the Skinheads Bowling.”