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Listen Live Entertainment

A view of the area where LouFest's main stage would have been, days after the festival's promoter tweeted that it was "100% on track" to stage the event. 9/13/18
Jeremy D. Goodwin | St. Louis Public Radio

A former LouFest vendor, accused of sabotaging the 2018 festival in a since-abandoned lawsuit, has sued festival promoters, claiming the accusation damaged his professional reputation. 

In a lawsuit filed in St. Louis Circuit Court, Valley Park-based Logic Systems, a sound and lighting company led by Howard “Chip” Self, accused LouFest promoter Listen Live Entertainment and its principal, Mike Van Hee, of defamation, malicious prosecution and abuse of process. 

Festival goers relax in between sets at LouFest 2015
Jess Luther | St. Louis Public Radio

The LouFest Music Festival became a St. Louis tradition for the weekend after Labor Day. In the wake of the event’s abrupt cancellation last September, the city’s cultural calendar now has a hole in it. 

With no similar event rising to take its place, fans, musicians and other participants in the St. Louis music scene are left without a signature festival.

LouFest fans didn't get the chance to convene for the 2018 event, when it was cancelled days before it was set to begin. [5/23/19]
File photo | Eli Chen | St. Louis Public Radio

Listen Live Entertainment, the producer of the LouFest music festival, has withdrawn a lawsuit charging that vendor Logic Systems, Inc. deliberately sabotaged the 2018 event.

Listen Live canceled the August festival only days before it was set to begin, after major technical vendors — including sound-and-light specialist Logic Systems — pulled out, citing missing or chronically late payments.

The concert promoter had alleged that Logic Systems’ president, Chip Self, exaggerated the festival’s financial troubles in comments to the media, including St. Louis Public Radio, to sabotage the event and launch his own competing festival. Self denies the accusations.

Fans at LouFest 2017 basked in tunes and perfect weather. Sept. 2017
Eli Chen | St. Louis Public Radio

Logic Systems Sound and Lighting, the Valley Park-based company that had been hired to work the 2018 festival, is suing LouFest’s promoter for breach of contract.

In a suit filed last month in St. Louis County Circuit Court, Logic Systems detailed over $70,000 it claims Listen Live Entertainment owes it for work on the canceled festival, plus three other events held earlier in the year.

Logic Systems owner Chip Self said he considered it a “long shot” that the suit will yield a payday. He sued, he said, in part to stand up for other vendors who haven’t been paid for their services.

The Avett Brothers at LouFest 2015
File photo | Jess Luther | St. Louis Public Radio

When the organizers of LouFest canceled the event, the news came as a shock to many, though signs of the festival’s distress had been apparent. The festival’s promoter, Listen Live Entertainment, insisted that everything was fine until the moment it pulled the plug.

The announcement identified several causes including the loss of key sponsors, debt and expected rain. Organizers insisted the festival had been on target “until a bit of unfortunately timed media coverage caused many of our vendors and artists to demand up-front payment.”

Festivalgoers explore LouFest 2017.
Eli Chen | St. Louis Public Radio

Local businesses are stepping up to lend a hand to LouFest vendors after the event was canceled unexpectedly this week.

Festival organizers called off the event early Wednesday morning, citing “financial hurdles” and a rainy weekend forecast. Vendors and musicians, many of whom had paid hefty registration fees, were left wondering if they would be able to recoup their costs.

The guitarist for St. Paul Minnesota band Hippo Campus bends to his Fender Telecaster and rocks out. The band brought their particular brand of dance rock to the main stage.
Eli Chen | St. Louis Public Radio

LouFest isn’t happening. This is a huge blow to the thousands of fans who look forward to the music festival in Forest Park every year.

With the cancellation coming just a few days before the event, fans now have a gaping hole in their weekend plans. Here, in no particular order, are some other arts and entertainment doings that may help ease the pain of a lost LouFest.

Update: We're updating this list with new shows as we're scheduled. Check back for the latest bookings. 

In 2015, LouFest brought a record 50,000 people to Forest Park. 2018 will be a different story.
Jess Luther | St. Louis Public Radio

Updated Sept. 5 at 5:30 p.m. — Music fans, vendors and service providers startled by the cancellation of this weekend’s LouFest in Forest Park are shifting from disappointment to worry as they try to figure out how to recoup the cost of tickets, fees and other expenses.

Festival organizers early Wednesday called off the ninth annual event, three days before it was set to begin. Last year the two-day festival was at full capacity, drawing 32,000 fans each day.

Brit Daniels of Spoon played at LouFest. Sept. 9, 2017
File Photo | Eli Chen | St. Louis Public Radio

Update: Sept. 5, 3 a.m. — LouFest 2018 is canceled. Organizers officially canceled the festival early Wednesday morning in a letter citing money troubles and a rainy forecast. Listen Live Entertainment says the ticketing company Front Gate Tickets will be responsible for refunds “while we work to repay our debts.” Visit our website for more coverage as we continue to cover this breaking story.  

Original Story - A week before the annual LouFest music festival in Forest Park, some contractors who were booked to provide essential services have begun pulling out.

Some local firms scheduled to handle stage lighting, sound and additional musical instruments have informed the event’s producer, Listen Live Entertainment, that they will not participate. The firm scheduled to remove trash said it will not be available if it does not receive an overdue deposit. Some cite persistently delayed payments from the promoter.