Liverpool festival cancelled

Concert promoter Paul Davie wanted to stage his second annual "All You Need Is Liverpool" rock festival in or near the village of Liverpool, but it just was not to be.

Last year, he presented Liverpool, England's Gerry & The Pacemakers and a host of local bands specializing in the sounds of the Sixties at Baldwinsville's Paper Mill Island, where he was able to charge admission.

This year's "All You Need Is Liverpool" fest was to be headlined by Billy J. Kramer on Aug. 2 at Onondaga Lake Park adjacent to the Griffin Recreation Complex. About a week before the event, Davie announced its cancellation due to sponsorship problems.

"There were a lot of restrictions on what I could or could not do at Onondaga Lake Park," Davie said, including that the festival had to be free at that location. A free-admission festival must be paid for entirely via corporate sponsorships and grants, and with the U.S. economy at its lowest ebb in years those money streams are quickly evaporating.

While one concert is canceled, another is in the works.

Davie has booked original Beatles drummer Pete Best's band at 8 p.m. Sept. 18, at Meghan MacMurphy's on Route 57. Advance-sale tickets cost $10, available at MacMurphy's and at the Liverpool Chamber of Commerce at the Gleason Mansion.

Over the past two years, Davie has promoted several Best performances. Fans can also purchase pre-sale vouchers for Best's soon-to-be-released compact disc for $15.

Davie, who is president of the WOW Factory events company, bandleader of the Fab Five and a member of the Liverpool Is The Place Committee, continues to brainstorm a Beatles-revival festival here for 2009. He's negotiating with the Syracuse Convention and Visitors Bureau to make it happen.

"It would mean quite a bit of tourism next summer," he said. "I guarantee that Beatles fans from England, Germany and Greece will come to Syracuse for a festival of this magnitude."

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