We catch up with John, the driving force behind Into The Wild Festival - a fantastically intimate and truly unique music festival. He tells us why the festival's so different to any other this summer and what you need to pack in your music festival survival kit.
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FFY We’ve been working with you for a couple of years now and the event seems to go from strength to strength, getting bigger and better every year! What is it that drives you each and every day?
ITW The thing that drives me and all of the amazing team that work on ITW is creating something special, unique and ever evolving that we can be proud of. There is a tremendous amount of time and effort that goes into running a music festival and this is very much a personal statement from all involved.
FFY The music festival choice in England at the moment is huge, and this number is growing every year - being able to differentiate is the key. How is Into The Wild Festival different to any other and what can we expect for this year?
ITW The most important thing is the personal touch. We want everybody who comes to Into The Wild to really be a part of the festival. Yes the music festival scene in the UK is huge and one of the reasons we started ITW was that so much of it has become too corporate and impersonal, not to mention really expensive. We strive every year to keep our ticket prices as low as we possibly can, we don't charge extra to camp, we have free hot showers and we make sure the bar on site is serving pints for less than your local pub let alone 'festival bar prices'. The whole point is to create good feeling from everyone attending. We want you to leave with change in your pocket and at least 20 new friends you never knew you had.
FFY With this in mind, does it get more difficult every year to attract the attendance?
ITW It is a huge task to promote a festival that doesn't have corporate sponsorship or big backers but we have an amazing team that work tirelessly to spread the word a little further each year. On top of that indepenant sites such as Festival For You are really helping to promote the small independant scene (so thank you!). Our greatest accolade however is the amount of people who come back to join us each and every year bringing new friends with them each time. There is nothing more powerful than word of mouth.
FFY This year you’ve got some fantastic headliners in Molotov Jukebox and Hackney Colliery Band, how do you go about compiling the line up?
ITW As musicians and music lovers we care a great deal about who plays at ITW - it is a question of pride to make sure the line up is nothing short of perfect. We try to bring in a diverse selection of music so there are a few different people programming different stages but for me there is a very simple criteria, do I love it? and will people come to the festival to see it? With our headline acts there is one more thing, we promise people a 'weekend long party' so we want them jumping up and down in the main tent by the end of the night.
FFY You’ve been around the music festival scene for a while, so you know what makes a good festival. What would you say are the three essential aspects to a successful one?
ITW Great music, great surroundings but most importantly great people.
FFY Lastly, what would be in your music festival survival kit for the weekend?
ITW Toothbrush, wet wipes, water, sun cream and a red top hat.