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July 28, 2017

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2012 Rainbow Bay goes rock 'n' roll

"If I quit rock 'n' roll, would you still love me?"

That's the theme for the second annual Rainbow Bay Festival (大彩虹音樂節), a two-day outdoor mega-concert that hits Kaohsiung this October.

"It is very hard to keep a rock band going — I discovered this from experience. There's turnover one day, income issues the next. So we really want to encourage rock bands to stick it through to the end and do that thing they want to do," said festival coordinator Lee Ming-chih (李明智) of Da Da Arts Promotion (大大娛樂).

The first Rainbow Bay debuted last year to a crowd of over 37,000. This time around, the fest aims to turn that kind of crowd into good energy for rock 'n' roll, a genre struggling to make it in Taiwan's entertainment market.

On its "Moonbeam" stage, Rainbow Bay is hosting 18 garage bands, some of Taiwan's best indie rock up-and-comers.

It's also offering national-level rock bands like "Scratch Bandits Crew" and the four-piece "MATZKA," which won Ho-Hai-Yan Rock Festival's (貢寮國際海洋音樂祭) battle of the bands in 2009 with its indigenous brand of reggae-rock.

If rock 'n' roll isn't your style, there's still plenty else to do. Much like its predecessor in 2011, this Rainbow Bay is a chance to scope out today's top headliners.

Marquee names at Rainbow Bay include folk-pop artist Crowd Lu (盧廣仲), Golden Melody award-winning Sandee Chan (陳珊妮) and rapper MC Hotdog (姚中仁) of "I Love Tai-mei" ("我愛台妹") fame.

There's also 25-year-old pop artist A-FÜ (阿福), who launched her career with YouTube covers and went on this year to win a Golden Melody nomination for Best New Artist. Last Thursday the singer promised some new sounds leaning toward electronic rock, plus a concert experience set to be indelible.

"The stages are right up against the audience, so there's going to be a whole lot of interaction," she said.

The 2012 Rainbow Bay Festival takes place in Kaohsiung on the last weekend of October. A preview and banquet dinner are set for Sept. 22 in Taipei. ■

'Rainbow Bay Festival' (大彩虹音樂節) ► 2 p.m.-10 p.m. Oct. 27-28 (Sat.-Sun.) / Love Pier (真愛碼頭) and Pier-2 Art Center (駁二特區) / No.11, Gongyuan 2nd Rd., Yancheng Dist., Kaohsiung (高雄市鹽埕區公園二路11號) / Concert: NT$800 – NT$1200 (gate ticket), Banquet: NT$1780 /

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