Photo by Sterling Andrews

Photo by André Janssen

Last weekend, something special happened again amidst corn-fields and cowsheds: the HALDERN POP FESTIVAL celebrated its 30th birthday. The village of Haldern, the festival organisation, the music-fans attending and, last but not least, the artists – they all contribute to what makes the HALDERN POP an outstanding experience year after year. On this occassion, there might have been the chance to just celebrate yourself. But this is not what HALDERN is about. It’s the festival’s confident but deliberate approach that was celebrated – the sincerity! Consequently, be true not bettrer was the well-meant but misspelled claim of this year. Yet it’s these little failures that make the HALDERN POP the charming experience that it is. It’s not perfect; it’s passionate and hopeful and the long list of great bands and artists visiting this small village every year proves them to be right. Therefore, and in honour of last weekend’s spirit, read our 15 little facts about the 30th birthday of HALDERN POP FESTIVAL right here. Purely subjective, extremely selective, but in no way arbitrary.

01. There is little chance to spent a weekend at HALDERN POP without spotting a cow.

02. If you didn’t know what corn looks like – after Haldern you will.

03. Be true not bettrer – this is the claim that was written on some of the visitor’s wristbands. If the misspelling wasn’t accidential, then it’s brilliant.

04. Handbrot tastes like Handbrot tastes like Handbrot (tastes good – try it!).

JULIA HOLTER: Haldern Pop for me? It’s new, it’s exciting, there are a lot of flies.

05. Poptaler will still exist when the Euro’s long gone.

06. Even a small festival might appear crowded while waiting to get inside the Spiegelzelt.

07. The ominous backstage campfire does exist – and so does the vodka-bar.

08. If only there would be a bar like the Haldern Pop Bar in every small village, the world would be a nicer place.


VILLAGERS: HALDERN POP is one of the best festivals we’ve ever been to.

10. JOHN GRANT is declared the most wonderful person in the world in respect for his music and for adressing the scandalous anti-gay-law in Russia (and for being the Greatest Motherfucker).

11. On the other hand: BRITTANY HOWARDS is the most joyful person to watch on a stage.

Photo by André Janssen

Photo by André Janssen

12. An old, german-speaking Dutch announcing the bands that are playing on the mainstage basically IS a great idea. Music’s ageless anyway, right?

13. At Haldern, even the old fashioned “getting-fans-on-stage-to-sing-along” works out great. Why? Because they actually CAN sing. Bonus fact: GLEN HANSARD can’t stop smiling.

14. No matter how relaxed the festival – time-schedules are ruthless. Ask JA, PANIK.

15. Surprises are good. Especially when you came for funeral pop and what you get is a beautiful little feast of noise and drama. Thanks, ANNA VON HAUSSWOLFF!

Happy Birthday, dear HALDERN POP. And see you again soon. Meanwhile: don’t forget to contribute to the Startnext-campaign for the official Haldern-documentary You’re The Swallow, We’re The Summer.