Police Blame Sound for Roskilde Deaths

Report cites poor sound as the major cause of Roskilde tragedy

December 22, 2000 12:00 AM ET

Danish Police have completed their investigation into the nine trampling deaths that occurred at the Roskilde Festival on June 30. The report concludes that poor sound was the "the most important reason for the accident," which took place during Pearl Jam's set.

In an initial investigation police had called Pearl Jam "morally responsible" for the tragedy, alleging that the band did not stop their performance immediately. The band repeatedly told police they were unaware of what was happening in the crowd and eyewitnesses later confirmed their account. Officials exonerated the group as the investigation went on.

The final report, issued on Dec. 21, was the culmination of over 900 interviews of concert organizers, concertgoers, performers and emergency workers. The report also concluded that the festival planners were late in stopping the concert due to indecision over who had the authority to do so. No criminal charges will be filed against any of the parties involved, essentially calling the tragedy at Roskilde an accident.

The Pet Shop Boys and Oasis, who were both scheduled to perform the day of the accident, subsequently canceled their performances. In a statement released on Dec. 18 on the Roskilde Web site (www.roskilde-festival.dk/2000/english/ the bands agreed to donate their performance fees to "measures to improve safety at future festivals" as well as to several international charities.

The statement concluded that "all parties hope that lessons learned from the festival will lead to improved safety for all future festival audiences throughout the world."

Meanwhile festival promoters are already looking ahead to "Roskilde 2001 -- 30 Years of Happiness and an Accident." The festival's Web site details plans for a memorial grove to those who were killed at least year's festival, as well a Roskilde 2000 Tragedy Fund and a lengthy posting on the Festival's overall policy and procedure for 2001.

To read the new issue of Rolling Stone online, plus the entire RS archive: Click Here

Music Main Next
Around the Web
Powered By ZergNet
Daily Newsletter

Get the latest RS news in your inbox.

Sign up to receive the Rolling Stone newsletter and special offers from RS and its
marketing partners.


We may use your e-mail address to send you the newsletter and offers that may interest you, on behalf of Rolling Stone and its partners. For more information please read our Privacy Policy.

Song Stories

“Whoomp! (There It Is)”

Tag Team | 1993

Cecil Glenn — a.k.a., "D.C." — was a cook at Magic City, a nude dance club in Atlanta, when he first heard women shout "Whoomp — there it is!" Inspired by the party chant, he and partner Steve "Roll'n" Gibson wrote a song around it. Undaunted by label rejections, they borrowed $2,500 from Glenn's parents and pressed 800 singles, which quickly sold out in the Atlanta area. A record deal came soon after. Glenn said the song was meant for positive partying. "If you're going to say 'Whoomp there it is,' and you're doing something negative, we'd rather it not have come out of your mouth."

More Song Stories entries »