Livid Festival, 1998

The 12th installment of the alternative rock music festival, the Livid Festival, was held on 3 October 1998 at the Brisbane Showgrounds in Bowen Hills.

Brisbane band Custard playing in front of a large crowd at the Livid Festival in Bowen Hills, Queensland,1998. From 27510 Peter Fischmann Photographs. In copyright. John Oxley Library, State Library of Queensland. Image 27510-0001-0038

Brisbane band Custard playing in front of a large crowd at the Livid Festival in Bowen Hills, Queensland,1998. From 27510 Peter Fischmann Photographs. In copyright. John Oxley Library, State Library of Queensland. Image 27510-0001-0038

Inconveniently the festival fell on the same date as the Australian federal election. This was the second time in the festival’s history that Livid coincided with an election day. During the second Livid on 2 December 1989, the results of the Queensland state election were announced to the crowd, with Wayne Goss and the Labor Party ousting the National Party who had been in power in the state since 1957.

Musician Frank Yamma at the Livid Festival at the RNA Showgrounds in Bowen Hills, Queensland, 1998. From 30299 Jo-Anne Driessens photographs. In copyright. John Oxley Library, State Library of Queensland. Image 30299-0001-0029

Musician Frank Yamma at the Livid Festival at the RNA Showgrounds in Bowen Hills, Queensland, 1998. From 30299 Jo-Anne Driessens photographs. In copyright. John Oxley Library, State Library of Queensland. Image 30299-0001-0029

The line-up for ’98’s Livid featured a number of Australian and international acts including Public Enemy, Pulp, Sonic Youth, Regurgitator, Custard, The Living End, The Dandy Warhols, The Whitlams, Grinspoon, Toothfaeries, Underground Lovers, Resin Dogs, Lavish, Even, Frank Yamma, Robert Forster and more. Spread across seven stages with over 30,000 fans in attendance, it was a far cry from the first Livid at University of Queensland back in January 1989 with a crowd of 1,500, albeit with a much small line-up consisting of the Go-Betweens, Chris Bailey, Died Pretty, Ups and Downs and Great Caesar’s Ghost.

Crowd watches Custard perform at the Livid Festival in Bowen Hills, Queensland, 1998. From 27510 Peter Fischmann Photographs. In copyright. John Oxley Library, State Library of Queensland. Image 27510-0001-0027

Crowd watches Custard perform at the Livid Festival in Bowen Hills, Queensland, 1998. From 27510 Peter Fischmann Photographs. In copyright. John Oxley Library, State Library of Queensland. Image 27510-0001-0027

In State Library of Queensland’s digital collection of photographs are 20 images taken during Livid 1998 by photographers Jo-Anne Driessens and Peter Fischmann. These photographs include pictures of the crowds, Brisbane group Custard performing, Aboriginal singer/songwriter Frank Yamma and a photograph of Public Enemy’s Flava Flav signing autographs with fans. These images can be viewed via our One Search catalogue.

Livid Festival continued to run annually up until 2003, after which the festival was discontinued.

Further reading

Myles Sinnamon – Engagement Officer, State Library of Queensland