The drive from Philly to Morrisville was a quick hour. The thunderstorm along the way didn’t even scare me because we knew it would be a beautiful weekend and it was – only a few sprinkles here and there after we arrived. We pulled in and setup camp to the sounds of Hamburger Hunt, a fun funky five piece progressive rock band.
Next up was Saska (my neighbors in the campground) and they were the first of several bands fronted by a woman with a great voice. They played on the side stage, right next to the main stage, and they began a trend that would continue all weekend – every band started on time and no breaks between sets! Just constant awesome music.
Next was Sonni Shine & the Underwater Sounds, one of the most exciting bands from Philly with a sound that is all their own. They get some funky beats going which also include some reggae and rock influences. Their jams keep changing up the mood of the crowd while the groove and the rhythms keeps getting better. And Sonni’s voice kicks ass!
During Sonni Shine & the Underwater Sounds set, a band called Native Maze (some rocking’ young talent) fired up the tent stage. This stage was a more intimate experience just a couple hundred yards away from the main stage- just a quick stroll through the vendor area to get there.
The band Consider the Source blew me away – best new (to me) band I’ve heard in a while. They rock a very modern beat which started out Middle Eastern and had some progressive sound to it. But it was real music that jammed with a psychedelic funky style. These boys from NY should be on your radar screen if you like modern music!
By now it’s late afternoon and we’ve got the band NY Funk on the main stage rocking some serious funk along with a great horn section and killer female vocals. A double rainbow put everyone in a great mood (as if we weren’t already). And under the tent stage, Flux Capacitor, an awesome rock band from Reading, PA who plays regularly in Philly, took the stage. Flux has a huge fan base and they deserve it because they play some great groovin rock.
Throughout the rest of the late afternoon into the early evening we heard sets from: Multiple Mono, Mike Montrey Band, Natural Breakdown, Karmic Juggeraut, Segway, and the Juggling Suns. The Suns played a great set on the main stage and got everyone into the jamband mood for dancing, hooping, and a night of raging fun. As the night jammed on we heard sets from Kung Fu!, Dopapod, and Jimkata – all of whom played great sets.
At midnight the party moved to the tent stage and Dough Mikula played a solo set with some amazing music (Keller Williams style) by looping some acoustic guitar rhythms and then tearing up solos on top of them. He played some crowd pleasing covers like “Ghostbusters” and “Thriller”, as well as some original tunes. Definitely look out for this guy!.
The New York City based band, Turbine, closed the night with a great set! And following their set, the party continued with an awesome bonfire complete with drum circles that lasted till the early hours of the morning.
We woke up Saturday morning to the most beautiful sky as our backdrop. The day started with music from Matt & Jafrey and FiKus, as well as Keith Monaccio. At 1:00PM Little Jimmy & Midnight Son took the main stage and Jim played some awesome guitar with a backing band that was first rate. Jimmy sings great and has the stage presence of a seasoned journeyman, even though he’s only just 12 years old! Hanging out with Jimmy in the campground was a joy – I wish my kids had that much poise and skill at that age!
Copper Tonic always puts on a great show with their leading lady Michelle Sarah who is always rocking some serious vocals. Other bands that played Saturday afternoon included: Comet Toast, Jason Crosby & Dark Loft, Quincy Mumford & the Rason Why, Mystery Train, Dakini, Juggling Suns, Turtle Soup, The Point, Lemon Juice, Ryan Montbleau Band (an awesome sound who played for three hours!), and Matt O’Ree Band.
So much music, such a beautiful day and by this time everyone was in full party mode. Lots of costumes, lots of hippies, great vendors, great hula hoopers. This fest was complete with a fire show each night along with bonfires, drum circles, and just a ton of music.
Although Splintered Sunlight was not listed as a headliner, they were the band most people were looking forward to and closed the show in great style. They played two sets which were fronted by lead vocalist ButchyS, along with DanL on rhythm, SteveS on bass, MikeyB on keys, and TonyG & JerryH on drums. Appearances on keyboards, vocals, and bass by PaulB on made the first set a ton of fun. New Brunswick, NJ native, Keith Kenny, played a set of acoustic blues in between Splintered Sunlight’s sets to keep the mood going and then Splintered ended with a great set of acoustic style Grateful Dead music.
A great job by the promoters and volunteers, a great job by the vendors and staff, and awesome music! What a wonderful, peaceful, fun, partying crowd! Can’t wait for next year!