After drug-related deaths, Hard organizers block media from covering event

The Hard Summer Music Festival in Pomona.

The Hard Summer Music Festival in Pomona.

(Luis Sinco / Los Angeles Times)

After two young fans died of drug-related causes at this year’s Hard Summer festival in Pomona, Hard’s organizers Live Nation took a number of steps to change course for the fall festival.

One unexpected new change: a total blackout on media credentials for the next event.

Representatives for the festival confirmed that, unlike every previous recent Hard event, there will be no media credentials given to any outlet hoping to cover this year’s festival, including the Los Angeles Times.

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Representatives did not immediately return further requests for comment on the reasons for the sudden change.


Hard Day of the Dead will feature various electronic and dance music headliners including Skrillex and Deadmau5. After the deaths of two teenage girls at the summer festival, organizers shrank its capacity to 40,000 from a planned 65,000, and limited the event to fans 21 and over.

A September dance music event at the same property had already been canceled, and County Supervisor Hilda Solis said the board would establish a new task force researching “enforceable health and safety measures and procedures, that would be required for all electronic music festivals on county-owned property,” with the option of banning raves on county property still available.

The festival is under intense scrutiny from local government, which is still questioning the approrpiateness and safety of holding large dance-music events on county property such as the Pomona Fairplex. Whatever changes Hard’s organizers have made, they hope they will now go unseen by any media.

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