Fuji Rock, the music festival known for being Japan’s premier showcase for overseas acts, is going completely local this year.

Festival organizers announced via its website Friday that the 2021 lineup will consist entirely of Japan-based artists. The roster is set to be announced next month.

The announcement said the event will be a “special Fuji Rock under special circumstances,” which means there will also be a reduced number of people allowed onto the festival grounds at Naeba Ski Resort, Niigata Prefecture, to avoid any congestion. It added that further limits and restrictions may be necessary.

Those who bought tickets for last year’s festival — which was postponed amid the spread of COVID-19 and set to be headlined by The Strokes, Tame Impala and Major Lazer — can use their tickets at this year’s edition, which will take place Aug. 20 through 22. New tickets will go on sale in April, with ticket refunds available for those who bought tickets last year and can no longer attend the event. Details on refunds will be announced at a later date.

A separate note on the website from Smash Japan President Masahiro Hidaka thanked fans for hanging onto their “outrageously priced” tickets for a year, conveyed condolences to those affected by COVID-19 and expressed support for the medical workers fighting on the front lines of the pandemic.

With Japan’s borders largely closed to international travel it is unlikely that overseas acts would have been able to play Fuji Rock this year anyway. And considering the decision of the Tokyo Olympic Committee to ban international spectators from the Summer Games, which run July 23 to Aug. 8, the domestic-only lineup is hardly a surprise.

The first edition of the festival, held in 1997 and featuring the Red Hot Chili Peppers, was battered by a typhoon, resulting in its second day being canceled, but 2020 was the first time in Fuji Rock’s history that the entire three-day event did not take place.

Tickets for this year’s festival will go on sale in April. For more information, visit en.fujirockfestival.com.

In line with COVID-19 guidelines, the government is strongly requesting that residents and visitors exercise caution if they choose to visit bars, restaurants, music venues and other public spaces.

In a time of both misinformation and too much information, quality journalism is more crucial than ever.
By subscribing, you can help us get the story right.