Aural Pleasure Abound At Love You Down Fest 2019 Blurred Culture Spoke To Swimm's Adam Winn About What It Took To Make This Year's Fest A Success
LOS ANGELES, CA- This was the third year I’ve attended Love You Down Fest, and I can easily say that the fellas of SWIMM easily impressed me with not only the spectacular line-up they curated, but also the magnitude of the event itself. From its beginnings at the 300 capacity Hi Hat in Highland Park, to its sophomore effort at The Echo, Love You Down bust out of its britches and became a 2 day event, utilizing both The Echo and Echoplex. With a great venue came great responsibility, and, with the help of their friend, JennyLee (who co-presented this year’s installment) they were able to snag Warpaint to headline evenings on the Echoplex stage. Talk about a booking coup.
Blurred Culture was able to catch up with one of the band’s founder, Adam Winn, and talked a little about what to took to make the magic happen for this years musical extravaganza.
First of all, congrats. That was a pretty awesome two-day experience!
Yeah, man. We were super pleased with how it all worked out. A lot of fun.
A lot of blood, sweat and tears, I’m sure.
Oh yeah … it was a looooot of work, but it definitely all paid off.
This being Love You Down’s third year, I’m amazed at how quickly you’ve been able to grow this event into what is is today. I know that the ultimate purpose of Love You Down is to celebrate the local music community, but I couldn’t help but notice that you’ve pulled in handful of artists from out of town as well. A new band I discovered, Rose of The West, is from Minneapolis, right?
I worked really close with Warpaint’s team on this festival, and through that, I worked really close with Cedric, their manager. He pitched having Rose of the West on the bill, which was awesome because they were great. They had just released a fantastic single which was getting traction on KCRW, so having them on felt like a natural fit.
How did the conversation with Warpaint start, and how were you able to get them involved with this year’s festivities?
The first two years of Love You Down, Jenny of Warpaint deejayed for us. She was actually supposed to play the second Love You Down, but her band wasn’t all available. After Love You Down II had wrapped, that night she kept telling me that she wanted to be a part of the next Love You Down we put together. More-so. Actually help out and curate it. We kept that conversation going and the next six months or so, we finally made a decision to go forward with that. It was Chris, myself and her heading is all up. I guess, we really started going at it five months ahead of time, and it just went from there.
Sounds like it all just kind of organically came together.
Absolutely. There was nothing planned at all, but we were stoked on the idea of having her on. I know that she has a lot of friendships that we didn’t necessarily have. Even when we first brought her on, we weren’t even thinking about having Warpaint on the bill. Originally, it was just going to be Jenny Lee and SWIMM co-headline the event. Then someone threw the idea of celebrating Warpaint’s 15 year anniversary out there. I think it may have been Cedric, but I can’t really remember. But we though the idea was rad, and we started scouting locations for a month or two, and we decided to do the Echo/Echoplex for two days.
That’s pretty badass. Especially getting a band as big as Warpaint to headline two nights.
Yeah. They’re one of the coolest bands to come out of L.A.
Were there any bands that you were particularly stoked to have in your line-up?
Jake & Abe. Abe is my friend. He’s one of my favorite drummers that I’ve ever met. He plays with a lot of other bigger bands, but this is his first band. This is his band and this was their very first show, so I was very excited to see them and they really did blow me away […] Them and Instestinehead, who opened the music on Friday. That’s Sego’s side project, and that was their first show too. They killed it.
How many of the bands in the line-up are your friends from the local music community?
Pretty much all of them. The only one I wasn’t too familiar with were Oozelles. That’s Warpaint’s very first drummer’s band. He played with [Warpaint] 15 years ago. Them, and Rose of the West. Other than that, everybody was pretty much homies with me, Chris or Jenny. It was like a big friend party. The music community in L.A. is wild, man. I’ve been here for 6 years, and I’m constantly pushed to just do bigger and better … work harder …I can’t not be pushing myself living in this community.
The local music community inspires you do be better.
Yeah. And it’s not just music either. I lived at this warehouse … the SWIMM warehouse … until about a year ago, and there’s painters, photographers, fashion designers and musicians all under one roof. It’s not just musicians. And it’s not just music. Everybody is doing something creative.
What kind of risk were involved in this year with you guys upscaling the festival on a pretty massive scale?
There was a lot of risk involved. [It was on us to make good on paying the artists and the venue but at the end of the day, it afforded us the opportunity], to be able to do basically whatever we wanted. It was a learning experience. We learned a lot, and it’ll help us when we want to put this together next year…. Well, maybe not because we’ll probably want to go bigger next year.
It’s gonna be tough topping two nights of your friends Warpaint.
Yeah. That’s the thing. Taking a risk with people who aren’t necessarily close friends. I’ve been thinking about each year, pitching it to a band that we look up to and say, “Hey, do you want to co-curate this,” cause I feel like that’s a cooler way to get a band in. We’re going to book you, and you’re going to have a say in what food trucks you want there, and what bands you want playing in the line-up. Different stuff like that. Maybe that could perk their interest a little.
That kinda goes back to the idea of there being a community in music. It’s always a look more fun to be a part of something if your friends are there too.
Now that Love You Down is over, What does SWIMM have planned for the rest of the year?
I think we’re going to work on a music video for our latest single “Windows Up”. Then we have a Florida tour and a tour with Bright Light Social Hour that will take us all through California. Then we have The Moroccan Lounge on May 25th. Other than that, we’re just going to try and finish up our next EP. We played two of the new songs at Love You Down. We have to record those and then write two or three more. We’re going to try something a little different. Get into the funky dance world space. Other than that, just planning Love You Down IV.
There you go.