2005 came around and the first thing that should be said is that after the terrible weather of 04, we had the finest weather the festival had ever enjoyed across all three days. Maybe as a result of the 04 rains, people brought more elaborate camping set-ups, more furniture, more tarps, and more cars. Everyone turned up earlier than ever before, and stayed later on the Sunday. So it was a busy Meredith. Many thought it was the best Meredith ever, but it did feel awfully…easy…after the emotion of the previous year.
Not that anything went wrong, in fact everything went right. The mirror-ball cow that got rustled up the year before spent the weekend swingin’ in the breeze. Skipper, James, Rob and The Lighting Dept out-did themselves. Out of ten, Aunty Meredith gave them 1.5 million. They had turned the site into a wonderland. A Royal Tennis Court was built near the vicarage and the vast field of canola were harvested and made into fine canoli. 2005 was the first year without our General Manager of several years, Stoopin’ Benny Sideways, our resident canoli-eatin’ champeen. Coooommme baaaaaaaaaaaaaaack Ben, coooome baaaaack.
Meredith FM was installed; on a certain FM frequency within several miles of the site patrons could tune into a broadcast of the acts on stage. So you could listen whilst in your car on the way, or at your campsite. I’m sure it’s illegal. Very handy for traffic updates though, via our Eye in The Sky Kristie.
Musical highlights included Blackalicious, who could only play on the Sunday due to their touring schedule, King Marong, Matt Walker and Ash Davies (in fact it was my fave Sunday ever), Stephen Malkmus and The Jicks, Sons and Daughters, Wolfmother, Airbourne, Cut Copy, Peeping Tom, The Grates, and perhaps best on ground at the mystical 2am Friday timeslot: You Am I, in form. Again, the highlights were too many to mention. The Mystery Act was tried in 05, Mr Bob Log III flew all the way from Tucson Arizona to be that guy. He fell victim to the expectations…by the time the event came round, folks were expecting The Beatles to reform and play at 10pm Saturday night. He put in the most committed, action-packed rock and roll performance you could wish to see and won many new hearts. Thankyou Bob.
True Live were one of the best things on site; animal, vegetable or mineral.
A giant circus tent was installed by a troupe of Brazilian clowns (true story), which provided shade, shelter, warmth and massages. It was called Heaven. A 24-hour convenience store was set up inside called Heaven Eleven. Dry cleaning was available on the third floor.
City of Ballarat Municipal Brass Band played for the first time.
Everything went extremely smoothly. Notes to self for the following year included update the recycling system, reducing the crowd size by about a thousand, and can’t remember the other one.
Sunday night of Meredith saw the first of two-only Car Park Festival (was there two, or one?) happen in yes, a car park in Melbourne CBD.
The MMF2005 Website can be found here.
Below is some of What Was Said about the festival:
Faster Louder – The Magic of Meredith Music Festival – by Gallo
Faster Louder – Meredith Music Festival – by Banana
Ballarat Courier – Huge crowd rocking on
Ballarat Courier – Fifteenth event still a huge success
Ballarat Courier – Chris Nolan: a life in limbo – by Jason Shields
Triple J – Picking herself up, dusting off… – by Zan Rowe
Triple J – Photo Gallery – by Chris Scadden and Anthony Allardyce
Beat – The Dirty Three – by Adam Camilleri
Beat – Meredith Music Festival page 1 – by Jaymz Clements
Beat – Meredith Music Festival page 2 – by Jaymz Clements
Herald Sun – Happy 15th, Meredith – by Geraldine Mitchell
Herald Sun – Meredith Sellout
The Age – Fifteen Years On, Meredith Magnet Still Draws A Crowd – by Dewi Cooke
The Age – Big, Loud, Shakin’, Heartbreakin’ Rock’n'Roll – by Dewi Cooke
The Age EG – Epiphanies at Meredith – by Darren Levin
The Age EG – Sticky Carpet: Meredith Post-Mortem – by Patrick Donovan
The Avalanches DJ show
Stephen Malkmus and The Jicks
City City City
Sons and Daughters
You Am I
Eddy Current Suppression Ring
Architecture in Helsinki
Billy Childish and The Buff Medways
Matt Walker and Ashley Davies
The Mess Hall
King Marong and Safara
Clare Bowditch and The Feeding Set
Legends of Motorsport
Bob Log III
City of Ballarat Municipal Brass Band
Special Guest MC: Greg Fleet
Gift Mistresses: The Town Bikes