Frank Turner was roundly mocked on Twitter yesterday for his part in an event known as ‘Campfire Punkrock’, set to take place next summer July 30 – Aug 3 2018.
The idea is attendees fork out up to $1,999 each for the privilege of joining Turner around the campfire for a jam session in upstate New York. Over the course of several days the ‘Thatcher Fucked The Kids’ songwriter and his band The Sleeping Souls will host instrumental masterclasses and facilitate a songwriting workshop. On the last night, during a full-band concert, the song written alongside attendees will be performed in all its doubtless glory.
Previous artists to host the series have included Richard Thompson, Jorma Kaukonen, Melissa Auf der Maur, Todd Rundgren, Adrian Belew, and Peter Buck.
The event description for Frank Turner’s looks like this:
Arrival Day: Meet and greet, including open bar and served hors d’oeuvres, followed by gourmet dinner, camp orientation and an opening night Solo Performance by Frank Turner
Daily Activities: You and your fellow PUNKROCKERS will help Frank Turner write a new song which will be performed by Frank Turner and The Sleeping Souls at the Closing Night Concert!
Other activities include Master classes, Open rehearsals, Ensemble workshops and Specific Instrument Lessons.
Evening Programming: Performances, Participant Jam sessions attended by band members, Open Mics and social gatherings including acoustic jam sessions around the campfire!
Closing Night: Farewell dinner and Finale Concert with Frank Turner and The Sleeping Souls
I regret to inform you that Frank Turner is at it again pic.twitter.com/DF0AOaT7EL— Tom White (@whiteywitters) September 20, 2017
The price tag, and especially the ‘hors d’oevres’ bit, predictably got Twitter riled up…
inspired by my hero frank turner i'm hosting a punk rock retreat where for just £4000 you can watch me drink cans of tyskie outside a venue— an absolute legend (@bnmrsl) September 21, 2017
Many also saw an opportunity to put the boot into Turner for his Etonian background and long-suspected Tory tendencies (fiercely denied by the singer, it should be noted)
Early preview of Frank Turner's campire singalong pic.twitter.com/0DpHJ63Mvc— Aidan JR (@mcandidate) September 21, 2017
Striking back at critics (specifically the NME) Turner yesterday issued the following statement:
‘Like Peter Buck, Melissa Auf der Maur, Todd Rungren, Richard Thompson and many others before me, I’m doing a Music Masters camp next summer in upstate New York, in amongst the rest of my regular touring schedule.
‘It’s an all-inclusive package, four nights full bed and board in a resort, so it might not be for everyone, but it’s just one small event among everything else I’ll be doing next year – releasing a new record, with the usual run of tours, festivals and benefit shows that comes with that.
‘I work hard to make sure that what I do is accessible to everyone. If I don’t see people at the camp, there will be plenty of other shows where we can hang out.’
That ought to chill everyone out. No?
Frank Turner will four nights at London’s Roundhouse next year, May 11- 14.