LOS ANGELES (CelebrityAccess) Gary Richards – aka Destructo – has announced the first lineup to his Friendship Cruise (as in a friend Ship) and it’s been a long time coming. Richards was more than happy to discuss what the lineup means with CelebrityAccess, but also to tell us a little about his background: Richards’ story goes way back – to when he created the term Insomniac, which created a longtime unfriendliness with Pasquale Rotella, followed by the successful creation of the HARD festival in Los Angeles. That was eventually bought out by Live Nation which, until now, Richards didn’t say a lot about.
(Full disclosure: this reporter and Richards, and his manager, had a casual dinner in Fresno where Richards, even after a couple of great Mexican beers, was reticent to speak ill of Live Nation. He was more than happy with their input into his festival.)
Yet, Richards left his company, and HARD festival, and his cruise, to become the head of festivals at LiveStyle, the former name of SFX Entertainment, and he was more than happy to talk to CelebrityAccess about where he is, and where he once was.
OK, so let’s be straight. I’m a 50-year-old dude who doesn’t know all the names out there. What does it mean that I don’t know all the names on the lineup?
I think the most important thing is that we want to go into a different area. I wanted to kind of set a tone. It’s a little bit more European.
I think it’s important for people to know that Giorgio Moroder, to be able to have him on the boat, we’re going to have to do some really fun stuff with him. I just think it’s an honor that he decided to come the whole time and to have somebody of his caliber – an Academy Award winner, somebody who scored Scarface and Slashdance and Midnight Express. Just to show him what we do. Just for him to be there is special.
I think Rufus Du Sol, their new album, is coming out their year is going to make them the biggest electronic artist of the year and to have them live is going to be incredible. And of course 2 Many DJs are the best in the world, period. I’m just super excited about this lineup.
All this stuff is cool but you hear people like Marshmello and …
.. and yeah, he’s cool but this is way deeper than that. This is, like, some people are like Doc Martin. When I started doing stuff like when I was 18 years old, he was the guy. To give him a shine alongside of guys like Dixon and Jackmaster, I’m just trying to differentiate between things I’ve done in the past.
I think when people see this lineup they will understand the lineup I’ve gone up. People who are aficionados with this kind of music
So … are these friends?
Everybody on here is a good friend. There are a couple that I haven’t met yet but for the most part these are my real-deal, true homies.
So why did you leave Live Nation and become LiveStyle?
I think for me I felt I had a lot more than I could contribute than I could be doing. I don’t want to say anything negative about my past experience but to be put in experience in my division I had four employees in my division over there and now I have 160, in my division. I had one club show and a couple of cruise shows now I have dozens of festivals and thousands of shows I’m overseeing so it’s a much more expandable role. It’s kind of sad bad because I really love a lot of people at live nation. (Michael) Rapino was great. But the direction they wanted to go in with EDM was different than me. My contract was up and as sad as it was to leave my babies behind I’m creating new babies and I’m definitely much happier and in a solid place. It’s starting to do something new and that’s what I’m best at.
It’s very tasty. My plan is to go to a global appeal than just an US appeal.
The cruise launches from Miami to the Bahamas December 11-15. It’s already sold out but here is the lineup, as of 10 a.m. pst …