Same Same But Different Festival Returns to Showcase So-Cal's Musical Talent

By: Benjamin Tillis 

This past weekend, a couple thousand outdoor-loving Southern Californians gathered for the second year of Same Same But Different Festival (SSBD). Taking place in Perris Beach, just a couple of hours east from Los Angeles and San Diego, this small and quickly-growing festival features up-and-coming artists as well as established musicians. Overall, most artists hail from the West Coast though, giving the event a homey and homecoming feel, which sets it apart from other festivals.

Lake Vibes. Photo Credit:   Timothy Bailey Photography

Lake Vibes. Photo Credit: Timothy Bailey Photography

For such a small music and arts festival, it somehow still feels like there are endless things to do at SSBD. In addition to the music, SSBD hosted a myriad of local artists of all mediums, including live painters, ceramics, and more with a full lineup of workshops that included classes like “Mindful Eating,” “The Human Story,” “Abundance Activation,” and “Sunset Yoga”. Best of all, the festival took place right on the sandy beach next to the beautiful Lake Perris, so you could lay out and tan if you felt so inclined, or take an inflatable toy to the water and make a splash with other festival goers. The community-driven spirit around this event is one to be reckoned with.

Still, this festival is here for the music first and foremost, and the impressively eclectic and talented bands and DJs SSBD curates aren’t the ones you’re exhausted of seeing at every other summer music fest. This was immediately made clear by how varied the two headliners this year were: Friday night, Baauer was the main act, and he brought the energy for his entire 90-minute set. The “Harlem Shake” DJ threw in crowd favorites like “One Touch,” which features Rae Sremmurd and Aluna George, and he closed the night with his own remix to “Sicko Mode.” 

Elektric Voodoo. Photo Credit:   Timothy Bailey Photography

Elektric Voodoo. Photo Credit: Timothy Bailey Photography

Prior to Baauer’s set were two separate San Diego-based bands, Fashion Jackson and Elektric Voodoo. Fashion Jackson, a returning band from last year, played their signature unapologetic surf punk rock jams. Before leaving the crowd wanting more, they closed with their rowdiest song, “Gossamer.” But what was so beautiful about this festival is that the musicians wanted to enjoy SSBD just as much as the attendees, so it was easy to make friends with the performers after their sets, especially those in Fashion Jackson, who spent plenty of time floating on the lake.

Elektric Voodoo brought their signature tropical jam band sound as the sun began setting. Equipped with two saxophone players and a myriad of different percussion instruments, maracas, and tambourines, the group did a great job of mixing up the vibes while also getting everyone ready to dance for Baauer. 

CAPYAC. Photo Credit:   Timothy Bailey Photography

CAPYAC. Photo Credit: Timothy Bailey Photography

Saturday, the second and final day of the festival, saw equally memorable and varied musical acts. Another group hailing from sunny San Diego, The Moves Collective kicked off the afternoon with a set that can be best described as psychedelic bluegrass. Most notable was the fact that their horns player was continuously playing TWO saxophones at once. It was one of the most impressive things I have seen onstage in a while. 

Later on, CAPYAC, another act from last year’s lineup, played arguably the best set of the festival. Intertwined between their easy-to-dance-to funk songs, the eccentric duo acted out the roles of aliens that had just landed on Earth. Somewhere in this nonsensical story, they managed to sing an ad-libbed song which entailed them selling a loaf of bread on stage, and ultimately trading their loaf of bread for a banana an audience member was dancing with. It was bizarre, but hilarious, and it really brought the crowd together!

The Bread. Photo Credit:   Timothy Bailey Photography

The Bread. Photo Credit: Timothy Bailey Photography

Beats Antique headlined Saturday night. David Satori, who is also a member of Dirtwire, a band that played Same Same’s inagural year, showed off his musical prowess by changing instruments nearly every song. And to complement the group’s Middle Eastern flavor, there were incredibly talented belly dancers on stage, which made the set both a visual and musical experience.

SameSameButDiffrent2019_825.jpg

On both nights at 2AM, everyone headed to the Coconut Club, a small sandy dance floor that played house music until sunrise. It was the perfect way to wind down the night with new friends from the day.

SSBD is a true hidden gem of the California music scene. The people are there for a good time, the venue is beautiful, and the music will keep you dancing for hours. It’s more affordable than other festivals, and it’s only two days if you are looking for something a little more low-key than some of the 3-5 day fests. Stay tuned for the announcement of SSBD III! We’re really hoping we can return for another year!

For more information on Same Same But Different, visit the fest’s website. See the full photo gallery from SSBD here.

-Ben

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artist featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.









Same Same But Different Music Festival Returns for a Second Year to Perris Beach, CA

By: Benjamin Tillis

After a successful inaugural year of the Southern California music festival, Same Same But Different (SSBD), we are excited to see that the two-day arts and music event is returning for a second year. Taking place September 20 and 21 at Perris Beach, CA, which IS 90 minutes from both Los Angeles and San Diego, SSBD just released its funk and jam focused musical lineup, and now we simply cannot wait to attend.

62375180_2651203031560576_1886037246251892736_o.jpg

The weekend’s headliners are Baauer and Beats Antique, and they will be joined by Turkauz, Exmag, Cofresi, Megan Hamilton, and CAPYAC. Beats Antique is a favorite on the list, an electronic trio that incorporates sounds from all over the world with a focus on Middle Eastern beats. David Satori, who plays guitar among many other instruments for Beats Antique, also performed at last year’s Same Same But Different as part of his other musical project, Dirtwire.

There are other names from last year’s lineup that are returning this year, and we’re not sad about it! Those names include, CAPYAC, an LA-based funk band that plays to a beat of its own, Fashion Jackson, a San Diego-based garage pop group who gained our fandom last year when they played their rock-heavy but humorous song “Gossamer,” and MDRN HSTRY, another group out of San Diego that plays surf rock.

43137292_2272979066049643_8487194524693561344_o.jpg

With just one band or artist playing on one of two stages at a time, SSBD is unique in that you can truly see every artist if you want to. And the crowd is very small, so you never have a bad seat or feel too crowded. On top of that, Same Same takes place on a beautiful beach under the California sun. What else can you ask for from a music festival?

We are very excited about this year’s festival and are already counting down the days! For more information, visit the fest’s website.

-Ben

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artist featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.

Emissions Festival in Belden Town, California Was Full of Surprise Vibes

By: Taj Leahy

When a friend decided that I simply must join her at a so-called “bass festival,” I at once figured it was not where I wanted to be. Why? I judged the whole thing to be a hyper-masculine meat market with a shitty sound system and profanities on perpetual loop. But surprisingly, I wasn’t disappointed. It was nothing like that at all. In fact, I had the time of my life, and this “dirt rave” was one of the best parties this old raver has been to in a long time.

Emissions Festival.

Emissions Festival.

With a rocksolid vibe and a fairly insane sound system, Emissions Festival is a gem of an event. Held in the old mining and logging town of Belden, CA, the setting is idyllic as well. The Belden Town Resort is a sprawling building with a restaurant, mercantile, and hotel. The lengthy bar has surely seen and heard many a story, though I didn’t get to add any of my own. Most of the “town” seems to be held up by this single lodge on the banks of the mighty Feather River.

Oddly enough, this oft-used festival site is also a known stopover on the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT). It’s not hard to imagine taking to foot in this lush country. Everywhere you look is either soaring canyon walls, rivulets making their way to the Feather, or some other natural feature reminding you of nature’s enormity and grandeur. It’s little wonder that this area was chosen to be a part of the PCT, though it’s hard to imagine a hiker on a months-long trek pulling into a dirt rave like Emissions. They’d find everything but a respite. The bass cranks all night long; it rattles your waking hours as well as your dreams. Pots and pans vibrate off of stoves. It’s bonkers.

Belden.

Belden.

Another factor that was outside of reckoning was the multitude of Black people at this event. It came as a welcome surprise. Too often, I am one of a handful, and that’s being nice. Honestly, I am more often than not one of perhaps two Black people at a rave. This phenomenon is so normal, and the opposite was so true at Emissions, that when we melinated people did cross each other’s paths, it was hard not to acknowledge it. One Black raver, after commenting on my outfit for the day, pulled down his sunglasses and issued forth a simple and complete statement, “Black people!”

Yes indeed. Judgment be damned. This dirt rave was nothing that I expected, save for the prevalent use of n*gger and b*tch used in the stripped-down and non-melodic music. To be fair, the music didn’t all sound the same, but the genre itself is styled off of Trap music, which is a style of rap with an emphasis on sparse lyrics and a high attention to bass. The funny part is hearing White people play and love this style of music, knowing that it comes from “The Hood” and that it directly contributes to the detriment of Black people, as well as women in general. But I digress.

Speaking of degrading women for sport, the skin at this event was enough to work everyone into a frenzy. But the kicker was that never, not once did this event feel like a meat market, as I had earlier feared. In fact, from the production team to the average partier, everyone I met said that this rave felt “safe.” These days, that’s an important factor. “It’s so good not to have to fight someone off every five minutes,” said one raver to the nods and exclamations of her female friends standing nearby.

Bass. Photo Credit: Audrey A.

Bass. Photo Credit: Audrey A.

Then it hit me: there was something about this party that seemed so good. Partly, I accredit it to being such a small event; they cap the ticket sales at around 600. Coupled with the small area in which the rave takes place, you end up seeing everyone over and over again. It’s ripe for a good time and you can make rave buddies and keep interacting with them for literally days, which took the edge off. Even with the hefty amount of drug use around, most people seemed happy and willing to be there together. Instead of women hiding from men and people lurking, there were spontaneous dance groups and speaker piles, the likes of which I haven’t seen since the 90s. Yes, I’m that old. Yes, I’m still raving.

Rave franz.

Rave franz.

This rave was bliss; ecstasy even. When it was time to go, I found myself sad to leave the new dancer buddies I’d met, which really was a good feeling. The couple of “bromances” I had at Emissions left me feeling very differently than I had expected when first invited to come to this dirt rave in the forest. The plain of it is that I barely want to tell anyone about this festival, but I’ve made an exception for you dear reader. Emissions was such a good party that I’d hate to have it spoiled by too much notoriety.

That said, everyone is welcome, and I myself would love to see Belden from the vantage of a hiker on the PCT. Once again I was reminded of what the raver gods teach us: that all are welcome and that music is life. Life indeed is music, if only we are willing to let it play and be open to its many forms. Everyone is welcome on the dance floor no matter if they have a hiking stick or a Thai stick. Emissions in Belden Town is the place to be.

Learn more about Emissions here.

-Taj

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artist featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.    

Joshua Tree Music Festival is an Oasis for All

By: Moriel O'Connor

I was in Youssoupha Sidibe's vintage aluminum artist trailer, listening to the Kora and drinking coffee with Senegalese spice. I had lost my voice from singing higher than ever before. Raspy and sandy, I sat in reflection and recognized the greatness of Joshua Tree, California and their amazing bi-annual festival.

Life at Joshua Tree Music Festival.

Life at Joshua Tree Music Festival.

The night before, the rainbow sherbet skies turned to black as the full moon rose. She shined golden over the vista. The air was cold and crisp, yet still my heart was warm. Everywhere I looked, there was an art installation or mural. I realized nobody was fighting and everyone was friends. There was no room for hate. We stepped, swayed, and sang together to gather all the precious moments we could.  

LRM_EXPORT_16480585319061_20190601_122919036.jpeg

The festival was all encompassing and unconventional. For 17 years, it has been run without corporate interests or greed. The music fit this mood, with rebellious acts such as Vintage Trouble, Earth Arrow, Cole Williams Band and Trouble in the Streets. The collection of local bands included Gene Evaro Jr, The Adobe Collective, Megan Hutch and more. Dynohunter brought some Colorado funk, and Oliver Koletzki and My Baby flew in from overseas. Much more than a dance party, there were yoga classes, workshops, children's activities, a  healing village and songwriter sessions.

LRM_EXPORT_16496514586429_20190601_122934965.jpeg

The Mojave Desert Land Trust was there as well, educating us on the land and park. The town and national park are named after the Joshua Tree (Yucca Brevifolia). This is the largest species of Yucca, and it only grows in the Mojave Desert. The Joshua Tree and Pronuba Moth are in an everlasting relationship. They cannot survive alone. Sometimes called the Yucca Moth, it is the only insect that can pollinate the Joshua Tree. Female moths collect pollen while laying eggs inside the ovaries. Larvae hatched from the eggs, then use the seed of Joshua tree as a food source. From this kinship, I learned life itself is incomplete without one another. This was a vibe felt strongly among Joshua Tree festival-goers throughout the weekend.

LRM_EXPORT_16466708605595_20190601_122905159.jpeg

If you missed the spring fest, the 14th annual fall Joshua Tree Music Festival will take place this October. North Mississippi All Stars and The California Honeydrops are headlining.

To see more from Joshua Tree Music Festival, view this photo album.

-Moriel

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.

Lightning in a Bottle Is One Transformative Experience You Shouldn't Miss

By: Benjamin Tillis

Lightning in a Bottle (LIB), Southern California’s hidden gem of a “transformative” music festival, took place last weekend from May 8-12 at Buena Vista Lake, a few hours north of Los Angeles. This year was the first time LIB took place at this venue and not on Memorial Day Weekend, which led to attendees being wary about what to expect. But it is safe to say the festival was a huge success. Lightning in a Bottle continues to be one of the best music festivals out there and something that truly everyone should experience, and here’s why:

The Music

If you look at Lightning in a Bottle’s lineups, you will definitely see names you know and love. This year, those names included Disclosure, Big Gigantic, Santigold, Flying Lotus, and Toro Y Moi. But more than other festivals, LIB curates music that is so diverse and exciting to listen to- and watch.

Flying Lotus. Photo Credit: Jess Bernstein

Flying Lotus. Photo Credit: Jess Bernstein

The festival is made up of 7 main stages. Some of the most popular are Lightning Stage and Thunder Stage, where most headliners play. But then there’s Woogie, a bass-lover’s paradise. There are people who come to the festival with full intentions to be at Woogie for the entire festival. And on the other end of the spectrum is my personal favorite, Grand Artique. Grand Artique is the brainchild of a thrift shop in San Diego and has become a staple at LIB. It is so much more than a stage for music. Grand Artique creates a setting that takes you back to the early 1900s and has a distinct “Western” feel. They host one-of-a-kind jam bands and this year that included Ozomatli and WC Thornbush & The Great American Show, as well as talent shows and interactive theater and games.

As opposed to other music festivals where hype is built around certain artists, it seems like discovering new music is what is really encouraged at Lightning in a Bottle. It is safe to say that my three favorite acts were ones I hadn’t heard of and didn’t plan to see. The group that stole the show out of nowhere for me was My Baby. Closing out the night until 4:00AM at Grand Artique, this trio hailing from The Netherlands got the whole crowd going wild. They brought a new energy to psychedelic rock, and people were dancing like crazy.

Clozee and Hellmana. Photo Credit: Timothy Bailey

Clozee and Hellmana. Photo Credit: Timothy Bailey

Other great acts were Clozee, the French DJ who spins incredibly exotic music. Clozee played alongside Hellamana, a fire eating group of acrobatic dancers.

Elohim. Photo Credit: JLB

Elohim. Photo Credit: JLB

Also very fun to watch was, Elohim, an electro-pop DJ and singer who relates to her fans by getting real about mental illness with her lyrics, while also singing incredibly upbeat songs with hooks like “I got love f*ck your money,” “I just wanna go where love is alive,” and “Don’t half love me, love me all the way.” It’s notable that these three best performers (in my opinion) are all females or projects led by a female. The festival does a great job of diversifying their lineup in regards to gender, where artists are from, and genres of music.

The Workshops

During the day you can roam around the festival grounds finding endless music and entertainment. But if you want to go a different route, there are plenty of workshops and classes taking place. This is what truly makes LIB the transformative festival that it is. There are 11 “Arts and Culture” tents/stages that host amazing experiences like a Cacao Ceremony, meditations, and classes on things like painting, keto diets, hula-hooping, and the list goes on. On top of this, there were two tents hosting yoga throughout the weekend.

Vibes. Photo Credit: Jess Bernstein

Vibes. Photo Credit: Jess Bernstein

One of the most impactful and unique workshops I experienced was Psychedelic Breath & Meditation, lead by Anne Marie Kramer. Just through breathing exercises and partnered activities, a group of around 100 people who hadn’t known each other before became very connected and vulnerable together. It was something I had never experienced before, and it set me up for an incredible last day of the festival.

These countless workshops allow one to really grow over the weekend at LIB. They’re a great way to meet like-minded people or really put yourself out there to learn about something new. These are highly recommended for those who attend next year’s Lightning in a Bottle!

The Atmosphere

The past several years of Lightning in a Bottle took place at Lake San Antonio, about halfway between San Francisco and LA. The grounds had rolling hills that really made you feel disconnected and free from the real world. Many long-time LIB attendees feared the new grounds would take away from this feeling. But this year, we learned it’s not the venue that gives LIB its special vibes, but the people and artists. For five days straight, LIBers roamed the grounds with smiles on their faces and positive attitudes. People came to share a new experience with new people. It was easy to open up, meet new people, dance how you want, and roam freely without any judgement.

Photo Credit: Jess Bernstein

Photo Credit: Jess Bernstein

On top of that, although it lacked the typical hills of LIB, the new venue was beautiful. There’s a giant lake with plenty of beachy shoreline with breathtaking hills in the distance and green grass on the grounds. During the hot, sunny days, you could go to the lake and party with new friends. Or you could go to the stages and dance alongside people who couldn’t be happier to be there.

Even when it rained the first night, everyone was there working as a team, providing shelter to those who needed it, while many didn’t let the weather get to them and just kept dancing in the mud and wetness. It was a site to see!

Photo Credit: JLB.

Photo Credit: JLB.

Days after leaving the festival I still feel like I am on cloud nine. LIB allows you to get to know yourself and others better than you could imagine. It gives you a better sense of self. And a stronger connection to those around you.

Lightning in a Bottle truly is a transformative experience filled with amazing art and people. I can’t recommend it enough. If you’re looking for a one-of-a-kind event, LIB is for you. Look out for details on LIB 2020 at https://lightninginabottle.org.

-Ben

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.


KAABOO Del Mar's Music Lineup Perfectly Combines New and Old

By: Benjamin Tillis

We may be in the thick of spring, but who isn’t counting down the days until summer and summer festival season? One we’re most excited for is the return of KAABOO Del Mar in sunny San Diego. This three day festival prides itself on providing a premium experience compared to other festivals because it focuses on “comfort, hospitality, and good times.” It’s true. The camp grounds are clean, roomy, and filled with friendly faces who are happy to be there.

53625568_2017269695052401_2713906623646007296_o.jpg

Aside from music, KAABOO features delicious food served by trendy restaurants in the area, and they invite world famous chefs to lead workshops for festival goers. Additionally, you can see some of today’s top comics, as they host a full comedy lineup. This year’s laughs lineup includes Pete Holmes, Bert Kreischer, Bob Saget, Wayne Brady, and Tig Notaro.

But we’d be lying if we said it wasn’t the music lineup that has us most excited, especially because of how unique it is compared to other festivals this year. KAABOO’s list of artists provides an incredibly eclectic mix of up-and-coming artists while also booking headliners who have been at the top of their genre for decades.

Bert Kreischer.

Bert Kreischer.

First, let’s start with the classic names. Some of the biggest headliners this year are Dave Matthews Band, Mumford & Sons, Duran Duran, Black Eyed Peas, Snoop Dogg, Wu-Tang Clan, The Bangles, Boyz II Men, REO Speedwagon, and Silversun Pickups. That list alone is packed with musical legends, some of whom haven’t played live in years. It will be a real treat to see these artists underneath the Southern California sun.

Duran Duran.

Duran Duran.

Additionally, KAABOO always has a great eye for fresh artists who are doing something new and exciting. Performers this year include Con Brio, Griz Folk, Cash Cash, Cheat Codes, and Keuning. These musicians are relatively new to the game, with the exception of Keuning, the lead guitarist of The Killers who has recently begun his own solo career.

Overall, we cannot wait to see what KAABOO has in store for us. Learn more about the festival here.

-Benjamin

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.

The Top 5 Acts to See at Lighting In A Bottle This Week

By: Benjamin Tillis

Lightning In A Bottle is less than a week away! The music lineup is one-of-a-kind this year, and it’s difficult to go through the lineup without getting excited over and over again. Here are the top acts we can’t wait to see at LIB:

LIB.

LIB.

5. Cautious Clay- A year and a half ago, Joshua Karpeh, a.k.a. Cautious Clay, was unheard of. That is until he released one song on Soundcloud in 2017 which blew up, titled “Cold War.” Most recently, Cautious Clay released his EP Table Of Context. Packed with soul and creative song lyrics, it’s hard not to look forward to his set. Listen to his songs “SIDEWINDER” andSETTLER’S PARADISE” if you want to get an idea of what to expect.

4. Elohim- Elohim is an electro-pop DJ and performer based out of Los Angeles. What makes her sets so much fun compared to other DJs is that she sings over the awesome beats she plays. Her lyrics are uplifting and positive, and her songs are fast paced, giving you no choice but to bounce up and down with the rest of the crowd. Fan favorites that she’s destined to play at LIB include “Sleepy Eyes”, “The Wave,” and “Half Love.” Don’t miss her at The Lightning Stage.

3. WC Thornbush & The Great American Show- One of the most unique things LIB has to offer is its Grand Artique stage. Grand Artique began as an art collective based out of San Diego, and it is now a Lightning In A Bottle staple, coming up on its ninth year at the festival. The Grand Artique stage hosts unique musical acts, immersive art, and fun theatrical performances. Returning once again to Grand Artique is WC Thornbush & The Great American Show. It’s a full hour of comedic songs and theater taking place in old-time America. It’s amazingly creative, funny, and will still make you want to dance!

2. Disclosure- A rare performer in the U.S., Disclosure is no doubt the most popular name on LIB’s lineup, and for good reason. Their 2014 debut album Settle arguably gave artists Sam Smith and AlunaGeorge their first big hits. And their follow up album Caracal in 2015 also had plenty of big songs, most notably “Magnets” featuring Lorde. Since then, the group took a short hiatus of touring, but has returned with some very unique singles, including “Talk” featuring Khalid. Disclosure will be the final act of the week on Lightning Stage, slated for a 90-minute long DJ set.

1. Lane 8- A California-born and Denver-based house DJ quickly climbing in popularity, Lane 8 makes beautifully melodic music which gives you no choice but to feel good. Many of his songs feature incredibly talented vocalists over instrumentals he creates, which can only be described as ethereal. This set will put the crowd through an emotional journey that will vibe perfectly with the spirit of Lightning In A Bottle. Expect there to be tears in everyone’s eyes when he plays “No Captain.” Check him out at Woogie Stage at midnight Saturday night!

59624383_2672402269442874_3618958161077075968_o.jpg

Of course there are an so many other acts that we’re looking forward to, along with the full itinerary of yoga and workshops focused on mindfulness, health, and community taking place throughout the weekend. The sun will be out and the lake will be full. We can’t wait! See you there Cali!

-Benjamin

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.

KABOO Announces Stellar Lineup For Music Festival Under the San Diego Sun

KABOO. 

KABOO. 

While most music festivals reward those with extensive knowledge of alternative artists, KABOO Del Mar gears toward those who listen to artists commonly heard on the radio, and their 2018 lineup certainly does not disappoint. Held at the Del Mar Racetrack and Fairgrounds in San Diego on September 14th-16th, the festival hosts multiple forms of art with a star studded music and food lineup.

Huge names in rock will grace the fest, including Foo Fighters, Imagine Dragons, and legendary Led Zeppelin lead singer Robert Plant. Other artists performing include pop sensation Katy Perry, Jewel, Blondie, Cake, Jimmy Eat World, Robert Delong, and The Spencer Lee Band.

21765533_1358416534271057_8520751807161086538_o.jpg

The comedy portion looks just as appealing as the tunes this year. Craig Ferguson is the top billed gutbuster, along with Iliza Shlesinger, Nick Offerman, and Chris Hardwick. On top of that, featured chefs of the festival include Troy Johnson, a regular face on Food Network, and Dakota Weiss.

KABOO is certainly worth making the trip for even if you don’t reside in San Diego. With plenty of hotel options like L’Auberge Del Mar and Doubletree Del Mar, there should be nothing stopping you if you want to see some of music’s top performers of current and late. Get your tickets here if you want in on the fun!

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.

Splash House Returns To Palm Springs For A Sixth Year of Pool Parties

32168988_2198609313489806_5349899667209453568_o.jpg

This June and August, Splash House festival returns to Palm Springs, CA for its sixth year of EDM-fueled pool parties and concerts. So far, the lineup has been announced for the first weekend, June 8th-10th, and it includes all-stars like Duke Dumont, Blacklizt (Zhu), and What So Not.

What is so unique about Splash House is that it takes place in three different hotel resorts in Palm Springs: The Renaissance, The Riviera, and The Saguaro, all of which are equipped with pools that the DJ’s play near. It’s the fun of Las Vegas day parties, just with a bit more laidback California attitude. Following the pool parties, there are late night shows at the Air Museum, an incredibly unique venue which has helicopters and airplanes scattered around its grounds. Playing the after-hours shows so far this year are Nora En Pure, Autograf, and SNBRN, among others.

20861907_1839968822687192_1945886106543069001_o.jpg

If you can make it out to Palm Springs, the rest of the festival is surprisingly affordable, with a number of different hotel and ticket packages. Currently a general admission ticket goes for $135. Although June hotel packages are sold-out, there are still a select few tickets available for the August 10th-12th event. These packages start at $700 and include two tickets and a two person hotel room for three nights.

Make sure you bring your favorite pool floaties and dress in your brightest colored clothes for this one! Splash House definitely plays on the colorful design of the hotels in aesthetic and sound. You can even check out The Saguaro in Neon Trees’ music video for “Feel Good.” Buy tickets here for the June event and here for August before it’s too late! We can’t wait to cannonball with you into great music!

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.

Trevor Hall's 'The Fruitful Darkness EP' Is A Labor of Love

By: Elizabeth Lee

In today’s profit-driven world, it can be hard to define yourself as an artist and maintain the initial passion that drew you to your art. Trevor Hall is one of those whose focus and love for music have lead him to fruition.

Trevor Hall.

Trevor Hall.

Raised in South Carolina, he recorded his first album at the age of sixteen and then traveled to California where he learned classical guitar, as well as the practices of yoga and meditation. Both of these areas of his life would play a major part in the making of his eastern-inspired sound. Trevor would also draw from his roots of spirituality when it came to building a fanbase and connecting with his listeners.

The Fruitful Darkness EP is Trevor’s first independent release, and it was funded entirely by supporters through Kickstarter. Trevor’s fanbase, known as “The Villagers” worked together to raise a total of $137,570, making it the #1 Kickstarter music campaign in 2017. The collaborative effort resulted in its debut at #9 on the iTunes Alternative Charts.

27983544_10156290365543117_7359040682964388330_o.jpg

Artistically, the album pushes boundaries by releasing in three separate installments of 3-5 songs all on specific lunar dates. Trevor’s smooth vocals and guitar weave through every soulful track, bringing to mind the folksy vibe of Bon Iver or songwriting prowess of Jack Johnson. He has a tendency to surprise too- when you hear him rapping over Asian-inspired acoustics, the listener is brought back to his roots and reminded of his leadership in the conscious music community.

Be sure to listen to parts I, II, and III of The Fruitful Darkness EP and catch Trevor on his A Night in the Village Tour this spring across the United States and Europe.

Keep up with Trevor Hall here.  

-Elizabeth

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.

J.D. King Just Wants Your Love In New Music Video

By: Hannah Oreskovich

LA’s J.D. King recently release his new video for “Love Me Back,” the single from his upcoming record 'Moon Gardens,' which was recorded entirely in J.D.’s home studio. The “Love Me Back” video, which was directed by his longtime collaborator Avery Wheless (HUSH) stars King, director and actress Kansas Bowling, and cameos from Parker Love Bowling, JuJu Sorelli, and Linda Ramone. It was filmed entirely at Ramone Ranch (yes, Johnny Ramone’s place) in Los Angeles, a place that you’ll want to party at with J.D. (or maybe more so with Kansas?) after watching the video. After a few views, we caught up with J.D. to talk about his most recent release:

Let’s start with a bit about your background. Where are you from and how has that environment shaped your music?

I’m from the city of Norco in Southern California. The environment for music there was interesting [growing up]: oldies radio, learning piano, Catholic hymns, gospel hymns, Gregorian chants, saxophone/flute classes, bluegrass, cowboys, and rock’n’roll. One of my earliest memories is trying to sing into recorders to have a reproduced sound. I made cassette tapes from the radio. I'd also make tapes from vinyl and CDs that I would borrow from the public library and transfer them. I had a genuine thirst to listen to a lot of music and gravitated mainly to pre-1973 stuff. My father found a nice collection of Beatles and Elvis vinyl albums on the beach one time, and I listened to those a lot. I would also watch Hard Days Night often. I found skateboarding videos to have some tasteful music to sample as well. Skateboarders are more often appreciators of non-mainstream music.   

I can definitely feel some of these styles coming together musically and visually for “Love Me Back.” What was the concept behind this video? 

[It’s] “The Fool” who needs love. You’re vulnerable when you love. You fixate, focus, and place your bets; you need the validation of another person to love you back. You are torn to shreds sometimes if they don’t. Make your own happiness and the rest will follow.

J.D. King.

J.D. King.

 Sound advice. What else are you working on?

Paintings, writing more songs, motion films, poems...

Sweet. Any other special plans for 2018?

More beautiful holograms with sound and visions. Probably some live shows.

Speaking of those, when you perform live, what type of environment are you trying to cultivate?

The “I’m gonna take all my clothes off!” vibe. I want the free people to come out, let loose, and listen.

You heard the man. Take off your clothes and give J.D.’s new video a view below:

Keep up with J.D. King here.

-Hannah

Follow Hannah on Instagram and Twitter.

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.

Lightning In A Bottle Is Not Your Average Festival & Here's Why

By: Aviva Sonenreich

Memorial Day planning just got significantly easier with LIB, Lightning in A Bottle Arts and Music Festival, which takes place in Bradley, California. This immersive art experience is unlike any music festival of its kind. For that, we have the LA-based artist collective, the Do LaB to thank.

Photo Credit:   Get Tiny Photography

Photo Credit: Get Tiny Photography

It’s important to note that LIB is not just a music festival. It’s a gathering and celebration of the arts. Fire dancers? Check. Late night burlesque shows? Covered. Need we say more?

26840835_1998703700146071_2916060578088142296_o.jpg

As for the main event: the music. Now aside from a stellar lineup, the Do LaB's stage design is nothing short of a spectacle. The Do Lab employs artists to create open-air structures that double as stages. The festival is homemade, and you can taste it.

27797819_2023711607645280_753816053863584128_o.jpg

The headliners this year are notable. LIB 2018 will be graced with top musicians from across the globe. Spanning genres from tech house, to jamtonica, to feel good hip hop, you’ll find us front and center for Zhu, Anderson .Paak & The Free Nationals, Nicole Moudaber, and newcomers to the scene X&G.

Structures by   Prescott McCarthy   &   Reincarnature  . Photo Credit: Watchara

Structures by Prescott McCarthy & Reincarnature. Photo Credit: Watchara

To add to the entertainment there will be talks, workshops, wellness practices, cooking classes and more. Need to sweat? Enjoy LIB's yoga classes, dances classes, and finish it off with a group meditation. Perhaps after the Must - Dash 5k Run, feast at a sit-down dinner at one of LIB's farm to table dining experiences. Plus- don’t forget to grab your unicorn floatation device and take a dip in lake LIB (formally known as Lake San Antonio).

Photo Credit:   Marko Prelic

Photo Credit: Marko Prelic

Festival attendees consistently agree, LIB is unlike any festival they've ever been to, and that’s why BolderBeat is bringing you these deets. Immerse yourself in a music and art experience with live painting, art installations, and music for all ages.

Passes on are sale now.

-Aviva

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.

Denver's Indie Folk Band HERESTOFIGHTIN Feeds The Soul With Their Fresh Perspective

By: Jura Daubenspeck

Nestled within the rocky mountains, sprouted along with the pines and the aspens, is Denver’s indie folk band HERESTOFIGHTIN. Since 2013, members Gabe Wyatt and Aaron Campbell, along with newer members Lazarus Blehm and Levi Blehm, have been pushing the boundaries of traditional folk music, catering their sound and message to resnoate in the hearts of young creatives.

HERESTOFIGHTIN fluctuates between a soothingly forward-thinking and a gently nostalgic feel. Their message is simple, yet multi-faceted: embrace your truth, embrace the moments that tear you down, only to build you back up again, and don’t be afraid to get a little lost, because no matter what, you’re alive. Their mantra, “remember who you are in the struggles you’re facing; we all have our fight, that’s just you in the making” is a fresh perspective for anyone going through a rough patch.

HERESTOFIGHTIN.

HERESTOFIGHTIN.

HERESTOFIGHTIN’s recently released EP Becoming Native (2016) is a 12 song storybook about searching for the lost pieces of your soul before finding your way home again. Listening to Becoming Native, I heard influences ranging from Mumford & Sons, to The Decemberists, and The Strumbellas. Wyatt’s vocals are smooth, yet have a wide, bluesy range. Songs such as “Whiskey Choir” and “Hard Nights” are loud and soulful, while others such as “California” and “Down the Road” take on a more backwoods folk feel. Other favorites of mine are the darker “Ghost” and the EP’s finale, “Voices.” The band also released a music video for “Heart & Soul,” a song that’s sure to make you want to get up and dance around.

Check out HERESTOFIGHTIN's "Heart & Soul":

In a city where locally made talent reigns the most high, and where tweaking the norm is welcomed, HERESTOFIGHTIN fits right in. Their message is clear, honest, and without a hidden agenda. If you’re intrigued now, you’re in luck! The band will be performing at Larimer Lounge tomorrow night (December 7th), and will be joined by Cody Statz, The Samuel Edgar Band, and Steamboat Revival. Tickets can be purchased here. So stick it to the snow, and get yourself out to Larimer Lounge tomorrow night for some warm, feel-good tunes.

Connect with HERESTOFIGHTIN on their Facebook and Instagram. Also, check out their website for a closer look into their world, including the chance to join their street team. You know you want to!

-Jura

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artist featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.

Allah-Las Will Bring Their Dreamy California Rock to The Fox Theatre Next Wednesday

By: Zach Dahmen

Backlit by a hazy Denver sky on the Underground Music Showcase’s main stage, the Allah-Las dreamy California rock’n’roll blew through like a summer breeze. With vocals that melted into the warm evening air, the band proved that they make their influences their own by mixing modern indie and 60s dream pop. It was a nice moment in a festival full of movement to pause and take in the Allah-Las. There was no better place to be. But whether you were there or you’re FOMO-ing just at the thought of it, you’re in luck. The Allah-Las are headed back to Colorado for a headlining show next Wednesday at Boulder’s Fox Theatre.

Hours before their UMS set, I sat down with Miles Michaud, the lead singer of the L.A.-based band. We shared some whiskey as we chatted about writing music, their latest album, 'Calico Review', and the ups and downs of tour life. Read on:

It’s easy to hear in your work that you are music buffs, with an appreciation for what has come before you. Where did that come from and how did that influence your music?

Before we were musicians we were just music fans. Never really expected to be in a band professionally. We were kids just buying tapes and CD’s. We try to distill our inspirations and all the things that turn us on into a sound that is timeless.

Allah-las. Photo Credit:   Hannah Oreskovich

Allah-las. Photo Credit: Hannah Oreskovich

So how much of that comes into play with song craft and writing?

The way that I write is basically a concept; a lyric or a melody that builds into something. It’s something that comes out when it does; I just have to be careful to capture it and write it down. Too often, it’s easy to forget those ideas.

You took several years to make your first record, and then spent a significant amount of time on 'Calico Review'. What is the process of producing an album like for you?

We demoed 40 songs for this new record. For our process, we do take care to release songs that meet our criteria of what we want them to be. A lot of people these days release a lot of shit and that’s one way to do it, because people are always hungry for more. But I think that the downside to that is that if you release too much, people can’t digest it all and it kind of gets lost and becomes too much. It’s a natural rhythm [for us]. We write a record, we record it, we tour on it, and we come back to write more songs. We try not to put out just whatever goes down on tape; we keep it tight.

Miles Michaud. Photo Credit:   Hannah Oreskovich

Miles Michaud. Photo Credit: Hannah Oreskovich

Talk to me about the new record, 'Calico Review'.

Our first record, we wrote all together. On this record, the writing was done individually. You have a lot more diversity and various textures. We spent a lot of time building these songs in the studio together because of that. It’s always strange making a record; you do it until you feel it’s done, but you really don’t know how it sounds to anyone else. I like it; I hope everyone else likes it. Especially after spending a year on it.

Watch Allah-Las’ official music video for “Could Be You”:

You are embarking on a pretty big tour this fall, which includes your Fox Theatre show next Wednesday in Boulder, Colorado. What are the best and worst parts about touring?

Touring is great; touring is a lot of fun. Playing shows in different parts of the world and feeling that energy from people who speak different languages and come from different lifestyles, it’s pretty amazing to have that uniting experience. The downside is [your] health. You start to lose track of the days. It’s a snake eating its tail kind of lifestyle sometimes. It is rewarding though.

Pedrum Siadatian.  Photo Credit:   Hannah Oreskovich

Pedrum Siadatian.  Photo Credit: Hannah Oreskovich

Do you feel like being from California, and L.A. specifically, significantly influences the music you make?

Sure, everything you do, everything you experience… [it] somehow manifests itself. We grew up in L.A and that’s who we are; it’s just a natural thing. I love that city, and I’m happy that people see that [in us].

And we’re happy the band is trekking from the CA to Boulder! The Allah-La’s new release, 'Calico Review', drops next Friday, September 9th! Make sure to check it out here and get your tickets to The Fox for their show next Wednesday, September 7th, while you still can. We’ll see you there.

-Zach

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.

Grimy with a Splash of Flash: Brick Flair is Cali's Newest Rapper

Southern California’s Brick Flair dropped his debut music video last week, and we’ve got it for you here with details on the rapper, his latest album, and all other things Brick Flair related. So keep reading:

Tell us a bit about your story man.

When I was 5, my family moved from Birmingham, AL to Minneapolis, MN. My brother and I would get made fun of constantly for our Southern accents. While I started faking a “normal” accent in order to not get made fun of, my brother actually looked to music to escape the BS. And that’s when I was introduced to hip-hop. I instantly fell in love with it. I f*cking love hip hop. I love the music; I love the lifestyle. The artists bravado gave my brother and I confidence in ourselves when we didn’t have any.

I was raised on this shit. Whenever I heard my parents fighting, I would blare Tupac, Biggie, DMX, or Eminem until they would come yell at me for being too loud. But it made them stop arguing. I wanted to be like those guys, so in middle school my friends and I would spit little one liners back and forth. Then we started freestyling and it just grew from there. I still lacked confidence to release anything to the public, but the fire was there.

Eventually through networking with artists based out of Omaha I gained the confidence to just go for it. If it wasn’t for my homies Cesar Jesus, Teknique Omaha and Jordy (Cake Eater), I would never have had the nuts in my swag bag to put this out. So much love to them and the rest of my homies who pushed me to do this.

12716108_1118578538174972_2899058986592553795_o.jpg

That’s awesome. How did you choose the name Brick Flair?

After much soul searching and many failed attempts at cool names, this moniker just stuck. When I was a kid, really the only good memory I have of my dad was watching WWF and WCW wrestling with him. Ric Flair, one of the greatest wrasssstlers of all time, had that confidence that I wanted to have as a kid. Plus, he was always partying and had pretty women at his side. I mean who doesn’t want that, ya know? A combination of that and the fact that I sold a loooooooot of shitty schwag weed in college to pay the bills as a matter of circumstance and necessity to graduate and pay my bills. On top of that, one other glaring similarity that I share with Ric Flair is that we both have gorgeous heads of hair… well he DID anyway. Homeboy looking a little thinned out now, hahaha. But there you have it… the creation of Brick Flair.

Sweet. We know you just dropped a video last Friday- tell us more about it.

Man, the video thing was one of the coolest experiences. I just moved to Southern California so I don’t really have a lot of resources and contacts out here to reach out to. Luckily I met someone through work who just so happened to love photography and have experience filming, and he shot the video for me. We filmed this bad boy right in downtown Redlands a few blocks from my apartment. There’s some really cool alleyways with awesome artwork painted on the walls. It really gave the video that Brick Flair feel: grimey with a splash of flash. I might have to trademark that.

When it comes to the video itself, I honestly can’t tell you how I thought of it. I decided it would be funny if someone filmed a music video and the artist was just getting drilled with shit.

Overall, we really wanted the video to have a raw feel to match the sound of the track. So we decided to shoot the entire video in one shot, chorus aside. We wanted to let the small slip ups and spontaneity give the video some character. But, since I didn’t really know anyone else besides the guy filming the video and his roommate, we just asked random people on the street to help out by throwing things at me off camera.

Listen to Brick Flair’s album:

Ahaha nice. How did you decide which track you wanted to create a music video for?

Ultimately, it came down to what track would catch people’s eyes and ears. I had a lot of positive feedback [on the album] for “This Is Me Sober”. When I thought about how I wanted to be seen for the first time, it was kind of a no-brainer. You don’t wanna take yourself too seriously because this stuff is supposed to be fun, but at the same time you want some solid subject matter in there that can make people think. For example, why are we all fighting and arguing about politicians who clearly don’t give a f*ck about us? This is a question I hope people can start to really think about when they hear the song and see the video. In short, “This Is Me Sober” has a solid combination of fun and depth.

Do you often rock a fu-man-chu?

Only when the time is right. The stars, moon, and facial hair must be aligned for it to arise from its 5 o’clock shadow. Did it make you feel some type of way? It tends to have that effect on both men and women...

Some type of way indeed my friend. So what are your plans for 2016?

Right now we are just continuing to push the album, Brick Flair Presents...Illicits S. Grant. We are talking about filming another video, we just gotta choose a track. I am also working on a new album with my homie Cesar Jesus out of Raleigh. That dude is nuts. Love his style and flow. He’s all over my album, so if you check it out, you’ll hear what I’m talkin’ about. 2016 is gonna be a real busy year- just gonna continue to work and grow and try to make people smile, cry, and laugh with my music!

Smile. Cry. Laugh. You choose- watch “This Is Me Sober” below:

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited.

The Weekend Six: Six Shows to See 02/26 & 02/27

By: Hannah Oreskovich

Picks! Picks! Here they are yo:

Today (Friday 02/26):

Analog Son featuring Jason Hann with The Pamlico Sound at The Fox Theatre in Boulder 8PM-Close


Denver’s funky duo Analog Son will rock your socks at The Fox tonight with Jason Hann (String Cheese Incident) and other special guests. And Boulder’s The Pamlico Sound will open this magical show, a spot they had to compete for in a recent Battle of the Bands contest. Go get baptized by all these talented funkadelics, and if you’re in Denver, catch both acts at Ophelia’s tomorrow night. Or be a rockstar and see both shows! What a sweet start to the weekend- get tickets to tonight’s performance here.

Listen to Analog Son’s “Shady Nights”:

Jaden Carlson and Friends Birthday Celebration at The Lazy Dog in Boulder 10PM-Close

12688169_1027817483945253_1434677776368379645_n.jpg


Earlier this week, we dropped a sweet feature on Jaden Carlson and her headlining set at The LD tonight. Did we mention Jaden is 15 and has played with Michael Franti and SpearheadThe Revivalists, John Popper, and Blues Traveler? We might have, but you know what? This lady is insanely talented so it’s worth mentioning again! Come celebrate her birthday- she’s sharing the stage with musicians from TAUK, Eminence Ensemble, Lady and the Gentleman, The Drunken Hearts, Mama Magnolia, the Jacob Larson Band, and more. Get to her gig!

Listen to The Jaden Carlson Band’s album Polychromatic:

The Alcapones at Conor O’Neill’s Irish Pub in Boulder 10PM-Close

12647411_955442221176421_9105334130029531182_n.jpg

Reggae/ska six-piece The Alcapones will take the Conor’s stage this evening. Formed on the Front Range, they “bring a new-school feel to what was made popular in Jamaica in the 1960s”. Righteous. The band plans to make you dance alllll night, so come by and get down. And grab an Irish brew while you’re at it!

Listen to their song “Molotov Dub”:

Tomorrow (Saturday 02/27):

Antonio Lopez CD Release Show at Swallow Hill Music in Denver 8PM-Close

12525434_917607504974441_1215294280246191361_o.jpg


We just brought you a feature on Antonio Lopez’s Cloud 9000: Vol. 2: The Alamosa EP when it hit the interwebs a couple of days ago. And now it’s time for the release parties! The first one is tomorrow evening at Tuft Theatre at Swallow Hill in Denver. Get your tickets before they’re gone and celebrate with Lopez and opener Theresa Peterson. These two talents are going to put on one awesome show!

Listen to Cloud 9000: Vol. 2: The Alamosa EP:

ASA Martin, Ludlow, Patrick the Pirate, The Real Lyin’ Rohr, & Crust-E the Katt at The Forge in Boulder 630PM-Close

Look- we could give you the info on all of these awesome acts, but half of the fun of walking into a Forge show is not knowing what the h*ll is going on. So we’re not going to. If you just really have to know more, check out the event page right here and preview the bands.

And you know what, here’s ASA Martin’s new EP for your curious listening pleasure:

Anna Englander Trio at Johnny’s Cigar Bar 9PM-Close


Cozy up to some jazz, some bourbon, and a stranger at tonight’s Johnny’s show. Why? Because it’s fun. Anna Englander, Adam Sammakia, and Alex Heffron will light your jazz fire. And Johnny will light your cigar (only in the back room, of course). Read more about the event here.

download.jpeg

PS: This week, our Sunday partnership with Green Light Radio and Streetside Productions will feature a track by Denver’s Miles Wide! The trio released their new EP this week, The Kindness of Strangers, and they’re throwing a release party next weekend. So tune in Sunday to any of the Colorado Community Network Radio Stations here (95.3 or 95.5 Boulder) or stream Green Light between 9-10PM to listen to Miles Wide’s new song “California”!

Thanks Boulder- see you around!

-Hannah

Follow Hannah on Instagram and Twitter.

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.