GEELONG, NSW (CelebrityAccess) — The Red Hot Chili Peppers joined the fray over strict new regulations facing festival producers in New South Wales.
The Peppers’ bassist Michael ‘Flea’ Balzary took the opportunity of the band’s recent performance in Geelong to call out the government for the new licensing rules which went into effect last week.
“Did they figure out that stupid shit in NSW yet? Trying to pass a law so that it’s impossible to put on a concert? Make it hard for people to go and see live music?” Flea, 56, yelled to the crowd, according to a video of the rant.
“That is the stupidest fucking thing I have ever heard in my life! What could make a community stronger and better than everyone going out to see live music? Who the fuck came up with that idea?”
Chili Peppers frontman Anthony Kiedis also weighed in on the issue, describing the new rules as “bullshit.”
The festival industry in New South Wales is facing strict new licensing rules in the wake of a series of high profile drug deaths at music festivals in the province.
Last month, images of slides detailing the new rules, outlined by NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian, were leaked after meeting between regulators and industry stakeholders.
The rules include establishing a ‘safety matrix’ for each promoter which imposes differing levels of mandatory fees for services such as police and medical services.
The new licensing scheme, which went into effect on March 1st, could cost festival organizers hundreds of thousands of dollars.