Burger Boogaloo severing ties with Burger Records, changing name
UPDATE: Burger Records shut down entirely.
Burger Records announced "major structural changes" on Monday following allegations of sexual misconduct by artists and employees associated with the label. In addition to being a label and a record store, Burger has also been a part of a number of festivals over the last 10 or so years, one of the biggest being Oakland's annual Burger Boogaloo which usually happens in July and for the last few years has been hosted by John Waters.
Total Trash Productions, who produce Burger Boogaloo, have issued a statement saying they have severed ties with Burger Records and will be changing the name of the festival. "The label’s involvement was always fairly superficial, and Burger Records never profited from ticket sales; They simply lent their name to the festival, boosted the festival via social media, and were given a merch booth on the premises," they write. "Total Trash Productions is horrified to learn of all the allegations."
In their lengthy statement, Total Trash Productions also wrote that they plan on implementing new safety measures for future festivals, including "working on ways to make it easier for people to report abuse they experience or witness at our events so that we can act more swiftly in removing offenders and reporting them to the proper authorities, creating a stricter vetting process for bands and individuals on bands’ guestlists, further restricting backstage access and employing more security, continuing to diversify our line-ups with more acts that include women, LGBTQ and BIPOC, and working with local groups in our area to learn about actions we can take to help victims of sexual assault."
Read the full statement from Total Trash Productions below.
Alice Bag, who was supposed to play the 2020 Burger Boogaloo (which was rescheduled for 2021), dropped off the bill today, saying in part, "We commend the bravery of the survivors who have shared their stories and hope that their voices will be a catalyst for change." Bleached, who were another of the upcoming fest's headliners announced on Monday "we can no longer affiliate ourselves with Burger Records."
Other bands scheduled to play the 2021 festival, whatever it will be called, include Bikini Kill, Circle Jerks, Plastic Bertrand, Flipper, Shannon Shaw, Pansy Division, and more.
FULL STATEMENT FROM TOTAL TRASH PRODUCTIONS ON BURGER RECORDS/BURGER BOOGALOO
In light of the recent allegations against Burger Records and several of the bands on their label, Total Trash Productions has made the decision to end our long-standing partnership with Burger Records. We want to express our heartfelt support for the brave women who have come forward to share their stories. We also want to sincerely apologize to anyone who has ever been victimized or harassed at any of our events. As the organizers of Burger Boogaloo, we accept responsibility for what happens at the event, and while we have always worked to take swift actions in removing individuals from the event or our line-up who have acted violent or inappropriate, we know that we can always do better. We owe that to our fans and our community. As many of you know, Total Trash Productions has been organizing shows and music fests here in the Bay Area for well over a decade. We are made up of a small group of staff and volunteers who live and work in Oakland and the Bay Area, and we have always strived to create a positive, fun and safe experience for our community through our shared love of music. Total Trash first became acquainted with Burger Records booking tours for their bands, and that led to the festival. The festival at Mosswood has always been produced by our Northern California production company, and we’ve hired Burger to do the promotion. While we personally had an overall positive experience in working with Burger Records, and had no knowledge of the allegations that came out this week, we understand that there are many young women and others who have suffered traumatic experiences at the hands of certain bands and individuals associated with Burger Records. We are disturbed and disgusted by the allegations that have come out, and we stand with the survivors.
Last night we severed our ties with Burger Records. Our production company was founded 10 years ago by a couple who have both been victims of sexual assault, and it would never be our aim to put people at harm at our event. Moving forward without Burger, our event will now continue solely as a Total Trash Production. At Total Trash Productions, we recognize that we too, are not perfect. Organizing a music festival is not an easy task and we have definitely made plenty of mistakes along the way. Even after all these years, we are still growing and learning how we can do things better. But we want you all to know, that we see you, we hear you, and we’re listening to you. We are currently working to implement additional safeguards for our events to help ensure the safety of all of our attendees. This includes working on ways to make it easier for people to report abuse they experience or witness at our events so that we can act more swiftly in removing offenders and reporting them to the proper authorities, creating a stricter vetting process for bands and individuals on bands’ guestlists, further restricting backstage access and employing more security, continuing to diversify our line-ups with more acts that include women, LGBTQ and BIPOC, and working with local groups in our area to learn about actions we can take to help victims of sexual assault. These are just a few of the ideas we are currently discussing. We will keep you all updated on our progress as we continue to flesh out our plan of action. Of course, we are always open to any other ideas or suggestions you may have of further actions we can take. We will be updating our website and social media in the coming days and appreciate your patience and support as we make this transition.
And to our male allies, please let’s all do our part to help keep the music scene safer for our female, LGBTQ and POC friends. If you see something, say something. Report it to the proper authorities. Do not let this shit go unchecked. We at Total Trash will do our part to be better, but we need the men in our rock ‘n roll scene to do better as well. Please take care of each other, we love you all.
Everyone at Total Trash Productions
UPDATE: Burger Records shut down entirely.