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July 20, 2010

2010 Virgin Mobile FreeFest lineup announced: M.I.A., Pavement, LCD Soundsystem, Ludacris, T.I.

rapper T.I. is one of the headliners at this  year's Virgin Mobile  FreeFestExperimental hip-hop artist M.I.A., electro-rockers LCD Soundsystem, reunited alt-rock band Pavement and rappers Ludacris and T.I. (pictured) will headline this year's Virgin Mobile FreeFest, organizers announced today.

The free festival, which returns to Merriweather Post Pavilion Sept. 25, will feature another 12 acts, including Joan Jett, Thievery Corporation, Chromeo and Jimmy Eat World, on two stages and a dance area.

Tickets will be up for grabs 10 a.m. Saturday at Ticketfly. Virgin Mobile customers and concertgoers who attended previous festivals will receive texts and e-mail invitations to apply for advance tickets on Friday ...

In all, more than 30,000 tickets will be given away, and a limited number of pavilion seats will be sold for $125.

Instead of booking one or two big-name acts and a dozen smaller groups, festival producer Seth Hurwitz opted for "important" groups which he thinks will appeal to music lovers.

"This year, more than ever, we've taken a curator approach -- one might even call it a velvet rope approach," Hurwitz said. "No, there's not the People Magazine-type celebrity band, but that's the point. You come to this show, and you will leave knowing a lot more about some great music than before you came."

virgin mobile freefestHurwitz is looking forward to seeing Joan Jett, who is one of his guilty pleasures, he said.

"She’s played here and there, but she’s never played around here in such a cool setting and really been appreciated," he said. "She tends to play stuff more geared toward the old audience, but I can’t wait until kids see how great she is."

The $125 tickets will guarantee patrons a seat in the pavilion, and a portion of the proceeds will benefit charity. The rest will help fund the festival, Hurwitz said.

"Putting this many bands on for free is not exactly steeped in reality, but we're trying to make it work," he said.

Fans snapped up the nearly 35,000 tickets for last year's festival, which featured headliners Blink-182 and Weezer, in less than a half hour. And charity initiatives raised more than $80,000 and 30,000 volunteer hours to help battle youth homelessness and other local programs.

(Top photo of T.I. by Getty Images. Bottom photo of last year's Virgin Mobile FreeFest by Christopher T. Assaf/Baltimore Sun)

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Posted by Sam Sessa at 11:14 AM | | Comments (44)
Categories: News


Sounds like its rap heavy this year

This year's lineup......meah. Great that they are having a free show, but I think I'll be passing.

Good you all can stay home. More tickets for me.

Here's the link for more information:

Of the 9 acts mentioned in this article, 3 are I'm not sure why that person thinks it's rap-heavy. Of the 17 acts listed on the website, 4 are rappers.

Because of the 5 listed "headliners" in the 1st paragraph, 3 are rappers


Ok...I got it out of my system. I'm done now.

best lineup yet.

Get the cops ready for this one! Wonder how many "urban youths" will turn this into an all you can shoot show?

The full line up looks awesome! (Yeasayer, Holy F***, Sleigh Bells, Modeselektor).

Oh! And Trombone Shorty doing a Second Line?!?!?! I'll show up just for that

Also, I'm pumped to see LCD back on the bill. I've been to every Virgin Fest so far, and they put on my favorite set of any Virgin Fest back in '07. Face = melted. TV on the Radio tried to follow it but just couldn't. No one could, that day.

M.I.A. is a rapper? *shrug i guess the chick from Tom's Diner is as well. I don't think Ludacris would mind but T.I. might take a swing at you for calling him a rapper. Well at least the old T.I. would.

Those comments are really not cool. I seem to remember many Hip-hop (Lil Wayne, Wale, Public Enemy, etc) acts that have done the Vfest in the past and there has never been a problem. Crowds for the Vest have always been very cool. Much better than the old HFStival scene.

Great line-up. If you go in with an open mind and open ears, you're going to enjoy some really good new music.

Thank you Sturmy for calling out Anonymous. I was appalled at the comment! Sir Richard does his best to appeal to everyone's music tastes, and I think it makes for such a better show! And all for a great cause!

Pretty bad line up IMO, i'll be passing as well.

Chromeo. Get ready for a funk-fest.

W00T! Now I dont have to worry about procuring tickets!!!

that is possibly the worst line up of ALL TIME !!!!!

REMEMBER you get what you pay for !!

Why so many rap headliners? Most rap and pop sound horrible live. What happened to the good rock bands the festival used to have?

It's gonna be a awsome RIOT!!!!!!!!


I am so excited. Gave my tickets to my brother last year as a thank you for (barely) helping me move, but it looks like as the one who ordered the tickets I'll get an advance scoop on Friday. Woohoo.

Love me some TI and Luda. Also excited for Joan Jett and Jimmy Eat World. Don't know many of the other acts, but excited to check them out.

debating with an anonymous message board poster is like trying to talk religion with the bible-less, shirt-less, shower-less prophet found on a street corner in any given city USA. Or tryning to get BP to take blame and responsibility.

blugh....nothing interesting

Ditto to Sam about LCD Soundsystem. They tore it up at the 2007 VirginFest.

other cities get Pearl Jam, Metallica, JAY-Z, Bruce, McCartney for festivals and we get MIA and Joan Jett...

@NELSON -- Yeah, but are those other festivals free?

@ Geoff: Quiet your bigotry. Do you need to display your racial hatred in this forum for any reason?

Great line-up. If you go in with an open mind and open ears, you're going to enjoy some really good new music.

Posted by: Andy

----- wear your flak jacket

Decent lineup. Pavement and LCd Soundsystem are great. Sleigh Bells is a banging pop/rock band and will tear it up the way Girl Talk did last year. Matt and Kim are good, Jimmy Eat World aren't bad, Thievery Corp, MIA, all decent bands. This is a better lineup than the HFStival this year which seems to have attempted to bring back the 90's bands but only got the also-rans instead of any of the memorable ones.

Hopefully the handful of "colored" acts keeps the forum bigots at home. This is a surprisingly decent mix for a free show.

Blah. All our local Festvals are horrid. Can no one put together a good lineup anymore? I though TI was in prison?

Id rather Pay to see a good show, than go to a free show that is awful.

Bring it back to Pimlico. Charge whatever. Bring bands people actually want to see. The first Virgin Fest (with The Who, Gnarls Barkley, Chili Peppers and The New Pornographers) was one of the most awesome concerts I've ever been to, and the best $90 I ever spent.

I don't get all the negative comments. It's a free concert. The tickets last year were snatched up in .2 seconds. Who cares what you think?

should be a fun concert........get to see alot of bands i normally wouldn't its free

nothing will beat the chili peppers and the who back to back....that was unreal

These comments just don't know any indie bands. That's why they're all b...... Go to the Nickelback show if you don't listen to anything outside top 40.

SAM - you have to admit this line up is SUPER LAME !!! There is not 1 head liner act. You know why its free? Because no one would pay to see this show!!!!!

I went back in 2008 before Vfest was free, when it was two days held at Pimlico, featured acts included Paramore, Taking Back Sunday, Lil' Wanye, Bob Dylan, and Kanye. Despite having to pay over $100 for one day, it was an awesome concert, definitely worth it. One of my most memorable moments was seeing Kanye close the show, it was an amazing performance, an almost two-hour long set. This was pre- his VMA stunt last year. Another highlight was seeing Bob Dylan, who drew both an older crowd, those from my parent's generation, but also younger fans as well.
Though, I much prefer it now that it's free. And this year's line-up features similar, if not the same type of musical acts, from a variety of genres rock, pop, alternative, and hip-hop, I mean I do miss the old HFstivals where the majority of the acts were alt. rock, but even in it's later years HFStivals featured rapper(s) Eminem and Jay-Z, creating a more crossover appeal. But I think that's what makes VFest and other festivals like it, so successful and appealing, the fact that it attracts a diverse and multi-generational crowd. I wasn't able to get tickets last year since they went so fast, so obviously they are appealing to people - a hot commodity if you will. this year though you can be damn sure, I'm gonna get them in time, before they run out. definitely looking forward to it especially excited for Jimmy Eat World, Ludacris, and Joan Jett. And as far as the ignorant comment made by annonymous, I can't recall witnessing any brawls,fights, or riots breaking-out during Vfest back in '08. The venue was pretty safe and secure with security guards all around, ensuring such things didn't occur. Besides I've seen and heard worse from people who've attended HFstivals,getting in fights and injured in crowd-surfing and the mosh pit. At Vfest there weren't as many people moshing maybe b/c of security, idk.

I know its not your place to call him out on it ... but please tell me you aren't buying Seth's line about bringing in "important" bands. Baloney. If he could have landed a solid headliner, he would have in a heartbeat. This lineup is diverse, but so was last year's FreeFest and the VFest before that.

I think they could have Michael Jackson on the bill and pay concert goers $50 to attend and some of you would still complain. Hate to see yall in your sixties if youn complain so much about free [stuff] now.

I think they could have Michael Jackson on the bill and pay concert goers $50 to attend and some of you would still complain.
I'm not sure about the $50, but I think having Michael Jackson on the bill would spur a few valid concerns.

I forget, what's the opposite of a live show?

Glad i missed the ticket sale on this one...only one i wanna see LCD and thats about it. i dont think you could pay me to go see the rest of the line up. what happened to v fest? maybe its just cause i still remeber how sick the foo fighters were a couple years back. much rather head to merriweather a month before this and see MGMT

As far as the free tickets go, are they lawn seating only? Do you have to buy VIP tickets in order to get into the pavilion and have seats semi close to the stage?

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About Erik Maza
Erik Maza is a features reporter at the Baltimore Sun. He writes for several sections of the Sun paper and contributes weekly columns on music and nightlife. He also writes and edits the Midnight Sun blog. He often covers entertainment, business, and the business of entertainment. Occasionally, he writes about Four Loko, The Block, the liquor board, and those who practice "simulated sex with a potted palm tree." Before The Sun, he was a reporter at the Miami New Times. He's also written for Miami magazine, the Orlando Sentinel, the Sarasota Herald Tribune and the Gainesville Sun. Got tips? Gripes? Pitches? He's reachable at Click here to keep up with the dumb music he's listening to.

Midnight Sun covers Baltimore music, live entertainment, and nightlife news. On the blog, you'll find, among other things, concert announcements, breaking news, bars closings and openings, up-to-date coverage of crime in nightlife, new music, round-the-clock coverage of Virgin Mobile FreeFest, handy guides on bars staying open past 2 a.m. on New Year's Eve and those that carry Natty Boh on draft. Recurring features include seven-day nightlife guides, Concert News, guest reviews of bars and concerts, Wednesday Corkboard, and photo galleries, as well as reader-submitted photos. Thanks for reading.

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