News Archives - Wakarusa Music Festival

News Archives

    02 Jun 2015

    Freebie with Gravity A

    Author: Rebecca | Category: News | Tags:

    Today’s freebie is from Gravity A. The prize package includes an album and hat. For your chance to win, share this post from our Facebook page and like Gravity A’s Facebook page.

    02 Jun 2015

    Freebie with Coyote Union

    Author: Rebecca | Category: News | Tags:

    Only two more days until Wakarusa! Today’s freebie is from Coyote Union. The prize package includes a poster, t-shirt, sticker and hat. For your chance to win, share this post from our Facebook page and like Coyote Union’s Facebook page.

    29 May 2015

    Indie Rock at Wakarusa

    Author: Rebecca | Category: News | Tags:

    Wakarusa 2015 is less than one week away! Don’t miss out on all of the Indie Rock acts this year. Some of this year’s Indie Rock artists include Young the Giant, Portugal. the Man, Glass Animals, The Growlers and many more! Be sure to click for tickets to secure your spot on the Mountain!

    28 May 2015

    Interstellar Meltdown

    Author: Rebecca | Category: News | Tags:

    Wakarusa 2015 is one week away! Don’t miss out on all of the Interstellar Meltdown acts this year. Some of this year’s Interstellar artists include Major Lazer, Thievery Corporation, STS9, Big Gigantic, Lotus, Thomas Jack, Paper Diamond and many more! Be sure to click for tickets to secure your spot on the Mountain!

    28 May 2015

    Meet and Greet with The Dirty Heads

    Author: Rebecca | Category: News | Tags:

    We’ve teamed up with and the Dirty Heads to host a contest with an opportunity to meet the Dirty Heads! Simply send an email to telling them how you first came to discover Dirty Heads. You have until Monday June 1, at 12pm PDT to submit your story.  The most in-depth story will be selected and the winner will receive 2 General Admission Tickets, Side-Stage Viewing of Dirty Heads Set, Meet & Greet a long with FREE Merchandise courtesy of Dirty Heads, Wakarusa & The Pier. Winner will be announced June 1st at 7pm PDT. 

    More info HERE

    28 May 2015

    Road Closure on Highway 23 near Mulberry Mountain

    Author: Rebecca | Category: News | Tags:

    The Arkansas Highway Department has released an official statement that Highway 23, north of Mulberry Mountain will be closed until further notice. Due to a landslide affecting the road clearance, all festival traffic will need to utilize Interstate 40 to Highway 23 at Ozark, AR to access the festival site.

    The North Toll at Highway 23 and Highway 16 will be closed and all resources and staff will be moved to the South Toll. The number of check lanes will be increased to accommodate the additional traffic. Wakarusa organizers expect minimal impact from the road closure and expect the detour to take an additional 20-30 minutes.

    It is extremely important for Wakarusa patrons to use Highway 23 from Interstate 40 near Ozark. All patrons coming from the north should remain on I-49/540 South to I-40 East to Hwy 23. GPS devices may suggest alternative routes from the north. These will likely be logging or utility roads that are impassable by regular cars or are dead ends. All festival traffic needs to utilize Interstate 40 to Highway 23 at Ozark, AR to access the site. 

    Please see the map and official Arkansas Highway Department press release below for more information regarding the road closure.

    28 May 2015

    Freebie with Aplsoz

    Author: Rebecca | Category: News | Tags:

    Next up: A freebie from Aplsoz! Aplsoz is the Waka Winter Classic Winner from Lawrence. Don’t miss him at the Riverside Stage on Thursday at Noon. The prize package includes a sticker, t-shirt and a red delicious apple! For your chance to win, share this post from our Facebook page and like Aplsoz’s Facebook Page!

    28 May 2015

    Freebie with The Floozies

    Author: Rebecca | Category: News | Tags:

    Today’s freebie is from The Floozies! The prize package includes two t-shirts. For your chance to win, share this post from our Facebook page and like The Floozies’ Facebook Page!

    28 May 2015

    Interview with Alana Rocklin of STS9

    Author: Rebecca | Category: News | Tags:


    Ok, ok, ok gotta focus here. Interviewing Alana Rocklin – bass fondler for STS9. Can’t be screwin’ this up now. Let’s see, where should I start this hot doozey off? Ahhhh yes…

    You see, STS9 has never been about one person. It’s a mission. No, no…maybe it’s a higher purpose loaded with interstellar space sauce crammed into a Merkaba BLT sandwich. Or maybe even an infinite dimension embedded within a wormhole somewhere out in the nether regions of the multi-verse being beamed back down to Planet Earth…

    “Yo, yo, were you at Waka last year when da boys busted out wit dat Baraka opener da first night and theeeeeeen Wiki Chikana the next?! Ohhhhhhh shit son!!!!

    Damn it, can’t you see I’m trying to wax some filthy-ass Sector 9 poetic here! (I swear, you can never completely get away from them. You know – “them.”)

    “What chu got goin’ on, like a fancypants article or some shit?”

    Yes, yes – I’m getting ready to interview Alana Rocklin. Kind of a big deal. Got some real hard-hitting investigative questions lined up. Real, real juicy stuff here. You see the juices dripping off of this page? Easy there guy, hands off the juices! Don’t you dare touch the fucking juices!

    “Yo, you should totally ask her why they kicked Murph outta da band!”

    You know what? That sounds like a terrible idea. Just let me handle the buffet line of questions here. What’s up with all the shiny hat flare anyways? You trying to microwave popcorn up inside that thing?

    “Yo, I gots 27 pins for erry time I been up inside Tribe. 27 SON! How many shows you been at?”


    “Fitty-two?! THAT’S IT??? I saw Tribe 52 times in March alone, son. YO – THAT’S WHAT’S UP.”

    That’s not even close to being mathematically freaking possible!

    “Yo, last year at Waka tho! Dat Poseidon into March into Circus into 20-12 INTO Tap-In doh! Straight fi-ya, boy! Dat’s what’s up yo!”

    Gee-thanks for the painstakingly detailed play-by-play there, guy. (Just don’t make eye contact. Don’t look in his eyes!)

    “Phipps and HB were up there onstage totally geekin’ out and dancin’ and shit. Yo, I ain’t never seen nothin’ like dat befo’!”

    Ok, you just might have a point there. Can’t say I’ve ever seen those guys having so much filthy fun up on stage either. The dance moves were just a tad questionable…”

    “You know that’s all cuz of Alana doh. She’s the booooooooooooooooooomb! Ahhhhhhhh yeaaaaaaaaah son! Just sayin’…”

    Yes, yes she is the bomb-shit indeed. Oh boy is she ever!

    “Alana Woot Alana Wut!”

    Wut Woot!

    “Alana Really Wut Wut!”

    Wut Woot! Woot Wut! Ok, ok gosh freakin’ darn it, guy. You’re gonna make me piss myself before the interview even starts. (Damn it, this is what happens when eye contact is established!)

    “Seems pretty legit”

    TOTALLY fucking legit. Alana came in and completely changed the game. Like a whole new freaking band. Next level yo!

    “Yo, not bad for a girl. Just sayin’.”

    Whoooaaaa! You see that?! They’re doin’ an Axe the Cables set over there on top of the porta-potties!

    “Wait what?! Where? No way!”

    DEFINITELY NEXT LEVEL – Whooooooaaaaaaaaaaa! Ok, gotta go! Hugs and kisses!

    Good lord, that wore me the golly heck out. Freakin’ Tribe kids, I tell ya. Always gotta be takin’ it up a notch – Woooooooo! Ok, while the coast is clear, you guys follow me. It looks like I’ll have to finish my filthy poetic waxing later. You know, because I’m getting ready to talk with Alana Rocklin and stuff. The gal who used to play in Sub-ID with her husband Brad Bowden and even opened for STS9 way back in the day. FYI – that’s how she became good pals with those guys. Oh yeah, I almost forgot. This one time she played on a Rick Ross album and also toured with Jim freakin’ James’ solo band. Geez Louise, did I mention that she’s a girl? I had no idea girls even played music. Oh boy, just what will those Sector 9 boys come up with next? Ok guys, the interview is getting ready to start. Gotta put on my serious game time face now and see where this hot doozey take us…


    MC: Alana Rocklin, thank you for joining me today. To start things off, I’ve got some fun zone sauce icebreakers to get the party started. When you’re coming in hot, are you coming in sideways, regular ways or another direction altogether?

    Alana: Head on!

    MC: How many car batteries do you hook up to Zac Velmer before a show?

    Alana: Oh man, so many that we finally just have a solar panel going on him so we can charge him up during the day.

    MC: Ah yes, how very green-minded of you. I figured ya’ll might have a secret line going out to AutoZone with Zac getting his own aisle of batteries. That’s because nowadays he probably needs a few extras to get the steam going. Even though he might be gettin’ up there a smidge in age and might’ve even lost a quarter of a hit on the high-hat, the man is still like a fine wine. Perhaps a well aged, Southern Pinot Grigio? You know, just a tangent. Ok, ok next question. Would you ever consider re-enacting the Civil War against the Disco Biscuits?

    Alana: (laughs) Uhhhh no. (laughs)

    MC: Damn it, that would’ve been super duper fun too. Ok, when you joined Sound Tribe Sector 9, part of me wants to believe there was a rite of passage to board a secret star cruiser spaceship. So Alana, which one of the guys was the guy who said “Alana Rocklin, permission to board Sector 9 Space Portal granted”?

    Alana: Oh wow. Actually, Hunter called and beamed me up.

    MC: Aw well shit, I would’ve put my money on Phipps only because I could totally see him dressing up like Sun Ra wearing Klingon ears while holding a staff with a fishbowl on the top of it. But you know, that’s just me.

    Alana: (Laughs)


    MC: So we might as well get this question out of the interview’s system from the get-go. Filthy inquiring Sector 9 minds must know. No matter what you want to call the saga – “As the Murph Turns” or “Days of our Murph” or maybe something involving Murph and a Muppets movie – you joined STS9 at the beginning of last year under some rather difficult circumstances. You replaced David Murphy, who had essentially been with the band from Day One. On top of that, the band was already deep into production on a new album, which is still forthcoming. Whether it was the gauntlet of emotions being worked through on the inside or even the speculation and disappointment coming from the outside through the fans/media, how were you able to make the transition as smoothly as possible? How were you able to not let any of the tough circumstances of the situation become a distraction to your assimilation into the daily flow of life as a full-fledged member of STS9?

    Alana: From Day One we consciously wanted everything to be focused on music. If you noticed, we didn’t have some big announcement that I was in the band. I just walked onstage and that’s how we did it. And it was intentional in that we never wanted people to focus on anything but what we were musically doing. And for me personally, this is what I do. I’ve played the bass in other people’s bands for a long time. Whatever the circumstances, you sort of learn to put all that into music. It’s cathartic in that way. I had so much to prepare for that it really wasn’t hard to focus because I was very determined to make sure that I came in with a certain level of comfort. It was really important to me that I lived up to the standard that I felt the music deserved. Of course as a fan myself I wanted the fans to feel that too.

    MC: Speaking of, word on the street is that STS9 has one of the more fervent fan bases around within this scene and rightfully so. A base that comes with a healthy, sometimes over-the-top level of obsession from your fans. I remember one instance when some people were getting all lubed up a few summers backs. They were openly speculating on whether Phipps wearing a hat during shows, but the fact Jeffree wasn’t wearing any kind of hat, meant they were taking more chances onstage. It’s hilarious and also perplexing the amount fans analyze every little detail sometimes. It’s very Dungeons and Dragons-esque at times. Is this level of fan-dom simply just humorous or does the scrutiny among the STS9 faithful actually do a good job of holding you accountable?

    Alana: I LOVE the fans. I couldn’t feel more embraced by the fans and more loved by them. I think it’s amazing how entrenched they are in the details of what we do. I think it’s beautiful. And so there’s a positive and negative to that. You have people that are going to be scrutinizing every little thing or comparing me to Murphy. Of course I’m aware of that and accept it. I’m not trying to replace anybody. I’m trying to do what I do and bring that into a group atmosphere. I am well aware of how special the band is to the fans and how much they care for it. It means a lot to me too. Does it influence how I approach music or anything like that? No, it doesn’t influence how I approach it. I think it definitely is something we pay attention to in terms of making sure we’re recognizing how important it is and what the fans want and what they need. So there’s a balance there. But I really think the main thing is that fans want to see us exploring. They want to see us having fun. They want to see us being true to our art and our music. And I think when we do that, it’s all positive in my opinion.


    MC: You’ve been involved with the band in different forms since the turn of the century. Whether it be Sub-ID opening for STS9, being on 1320 Records or sitting in from time to time. So you were already very well versed in their material just as a fan before even taking the stage for the first time as an official member. Being a musician, especially in a group like STS9, is all about exploring and getting out of your comfort zone. Please describe to me what it’s like to find the right balance in this paradoxical position of getting your footing with the band, but at the same time having the wherewithal to confidently break out of your comfort zone and take chances onstage?

    Alana: When you’re a freelance musician in Nashville, most of the time when you get a call to do something you might get a day to prepare for a tour. Or you might walk into a gig without any idea what you’re going to play or who’s on the gig and there’s just a common language that you share. Whether it be in terms of songs that you know or you’re playing jazz standards. So this is something that I’m used to doing on a regular basis. With STS9 that was no different. I would say that the only real big difference was that I took 6 weeks to personally prepare before I met with the guys. So I would say, as a musician, it’s part of what you prepare to do all the time. Which is to take something that may seem uncomfortable and elevate it. But I think for me the main thing was just really knowing the catalog. I never wanted us to be hindered by me being new. I wanted us to feel like we could play any song at any time. So I think there was a certain amount of trust they had that I could do it. And it was also a lot easier because these are my friends and we have a relationship. To be honest, it was like if you were going into a big exam and you had to really prepare all this information. It was very methodical in terms of how I prepared, so when I got to the stage I left all of that at the door and just played.

    MC: I would imagine you are quite familiar with the “in’s and out’s” of what comprises the construct of the band’s DNA, if you will. And therefore I’m sure you were already pretty aware of the intentions put into the music. A couple of years ago I came across a very insightful, off the beaten path interview that Phipps did back in ’03 where he spoke in-depth about his relationship with the study of Tama-Do, which is vibrational sound therapy. Granted, the discussion wasn’t meant to draw a strong connection between the practice of Tama-Do and STS9, but he talked about how the band’s music can still be a source of healing, depending on what someone at a show wants to take away from it. Whether it be the intentions going into the music, shared ecstatic dance, the frequency people resonate at during a show or whatever, there are many ways to come at this. In your honest opinion, how do you find STS9’s music to be healing?

    Alana: Music is meditative and healing for me everyday. You know, I’ve played the bass since I was 8 years old. I’ve gotten into a very meditative state in terms of how I practice and what I do. And I have certain things that I do everyday that kind of slow me down and make me more grounded. I think one of the things I’ve always loved about STS9 is just the patience in their music, which is probably the single thing that blew me away the first time I saw them. The patience in that feeling can be very healing when music can slow you down in a way and kind of make you more aware of your surroundings. I think that with STS9 there’s that yin and yang happening to where you’re slowing down and you’re speeding up at the same time. I can’t really put it into words so much, but there’s definitely intention from everyone to put that out there. When you put that in what you play and in your heart – it comes through. I believe people can really feel that at the shows and however they internalize it or feel it, it can be a very healing moment to go to an STS9 show.


    MC: I know that the word “role model” can be a sticky term for some people to wrap their head around. Do you embrace being a role model for female fans? If so, how do you want to use this opportunity to be an embodiment of female empowerment?

    Alana: That’s an interesting question. I’ve never in my life thought about being a female musician – ever. And I owe that to my parents because I don’t think they ever informed me it was a different thing. It never even occurred to me. And it’s something as I went on in life and started to get more serious about making music my profession, it became more of a thread – “female bass player.” To me, I’m a musician just the same as anyone else. And so for that reason I do embrace that and I hope it does inspire people to follow their dreams and not let anything hinder that. With STS9, it’s a bit of a different role even for me. If I play in Jim James’ band I’m a part of his band. It’s really about me elevating his art. With STS9 I’m a part of the art. I have a more invested interest in what we’re doing and my voice is more a part of the whole. For that reason I think that people see me in a different light all of a sudden. Which is new for me, but I totally embrace that. I know for me, when I had just graduated college I went to see Prince. That was a huge moment for me to see a female bass player like Rhonda Smith play with Prince. It was life changing. I remember going to see David Bowie with Gail Ann Dorsey and how big of a life change that was too. And I think that if I can do that for somebody else, then that just absolutely blows me away.

    MC: It is important though because from a fan’s perspective, seeing is definitely believing. And you’re a living testament to that just in what you’re speaking to right now. Speaking of female empowerment, we have an election coming up next year with a female running for the Presidency. This isn’t a totally new enterprise, but definitely is still the most realistic opportunity there has ever been in the history of this country for a female to rise to the highest political office. Let’s say Hilary Clinton does go all the way. In your honest opinion, how much validation can possibly come from that? Because when President Obama was elected, from the outside looking in one could certainly say, “Well, this is a testament to how African-Americans have made huge strides in the kingdom of racial harmony, justice and equality.” But then, you look at everything that has happened from Ferguson to Baltimore, which is a stark reminder of how far we still have to go. I know these are two different struggles, yet one can definitely still lend perspective to the other. If Hillary Clinton were to win, is this a giant leap where women have finally “made it” in a man’s world with even more tangible progress on the horizon? Or is it just some kind of symbolic win?

    Alana: I think it would be amazing if we had a female President. That’s empowering for any woman. But I don’t think it’s really about her being female being the same way as it was with Barack Obama. It wasn’t about him being African-American. I think he was the best guy for the job. He had a lot of wonderful ideas and ideals. I hope that we can get to a place in our world where we can let go of those things. Where we can just say, “Hey, this is the person for the job.” And it not be a “thing.” That maybe is the challenge of why seeing someone different in that kind of role stirs things up a bit. It challenges people. I can’t wait for the day when people stop looking at me like a female musician. It’s funny because so many people will say to me, “Oh my gosh, you’re so great for a girl.” Or even be shocked. And I’m sure for somebody like Hillary Clinton, it’s the same thing. “Oh my God, it’s a female!” It’s like, “Uhhhh YEAH!” I hope that it just becomes a non-issue and that it’s just about being President. And just about making the world a better place. If we could get to that point then we’d really be getting somewhere I think.


    MC: This year marks the 50th anniversary of the Grateful Dead, which is a legendary band who I’m sure STS9 draws influence from. The Dead were trailblazers in so many ways including being the godfathers of the “jam band” scene. Jam band or not, there are countless bands whose lineage can be traced back to them in some fashion. Not to take anything away from the Disco Biscuits here, but I believe STS9 are trailblazers as well in that same sense. Whether it be groups or solo producers, so many artists owe a debt of gratitude to STS9, who was on the front line of this livetronica movement that started in the late ’90’s. What are your thoughts on the legacy of STS9?

    Alana: Man, I’m in such agreement with that. Regardless of me being a part of it now, I’ve always felt that way. There have been times before when I’ve played at festivals and would hear some band and be like “Wow!” It’s amazing how STS9 has influenced so many people. I think that’s why Brian and I with Sub-ID connected with them from the get-go because of this thing we both had for combining electronic elements and live elements together in harmony. And that notion was something that was very new back then in the late ’90’s. Back then I was in Chicago and there were a few people doing it at the time like Tortoise, Isotope 217 and Chicago Underground Trio. And I think we immediately gravitated towards them for that reason. We knew it could be next level to have programmed elements and live elements working together. We knew it could work. And now that’s the norm. Almost everybody does that in some way, whether it be in pop music or whatever. There are a lot of bands who do that even if you don’t realize it. So I definitely think that STS9 were pioneers in that realm without trying. It wasn’t their intention at the time. They were just following their art and their muse – and that’s what came of it.

    “And that’s what came of it,” she said. Geez Louise, the gall she has to speak about “it” in such a bold, matter of fact way. But what exactly could “it” be though? Indeed, there is the ever-reverberating “Alana Rocklin effect” that continues to make profoundly positive ripples upon the morale and overall direction of the group. There’s the revitalized work ethic she’s infused into their approach. There’s the band’s renewed invigoration in not only revisiting older, once thought to be vanished material, but also busting the portal for exploration wide open again. You know, actually improvising freely. Oh sweet golly – imagine that. There’s even the super boss power stance she takes during shows, harnessing the gravitational energy of the Sector 9 universe from the precipice out upon us magnetized faithful. And yes, I think it’s safe to say she is somehow, some way responsible for inspiring those big, cheesy-ass grins across the stoic, once impenetrable facade of none other than – David Phipps. Good lord, the freaking audacity this woman has! No, not this woman – this highly gifted game changer of a bass fondling human being. That’s what I’m talkin’ about!

    Yes, she has indubitably been the “it” factor during this STS9 renaissance. But then again, her “it-ness” is just one piece of the much deeper, overarching “it” factor that the quintet has manifested all along. The Dead had “it.” So did Miles. Ok, maybe even Chuck Mangione too.

    You see, Sound Tribe Sector 9 has never been about one person. No, not even David Murphy. Like any of the landscape altering, big enchilada acts that come once or so a generation, there has been an “it” at play. An “it” born of brave, unforeseen elements colliding over time: hours upon hours of crafting, touring, listening, experimenting, friction, arguing, fire, amending, risk taking, peaks, valleys, burn-outs, breakthroughs…And from all this emerges an alchemy of synthesized magic. A “WOW” idea that exists in the purest of forms, yet is formless in shape. One that not only sparks the fearless advancement of musical language we once knew, but a legion of devout believers who come together strong, moving from show to show, city to city, state to state of being, all the while attempting to reconcile in their hearts what the hell “it” even is. Yet there’s no formula for this “it” stuff. Even the ones who created the “it” madness only know so much. Sure, STS9 is the setter of intentions behind this intergalactic vehicle of unwinding dreams, but ultimately they can only travel where the music wants to go. Where the spirit will be honored. They unwaveringly continue to follow “it.” And hopefully so might we…

    See you on the Mountain…

    Original Article:

    Interview by and Photo Credit: Matthew Cremer

    27 May 2015

    Freebie with Minnesota

    Author: Rebecca | Category: News | Tags:

    Next up: a freebie from Minnesota! The prize package includes a his and her t-shirt. For your chance to win, share this post from our Facebook page and like Minnesota’s Facebook Page!


    27 May 2015

    Freebie with Collie Buddz

    Author: Rebecca | Category: News | Tags:

    Next up: A freebie from Collie Buddz. The prize package includes a CD, stickers and a t-shirt. For your chance to win, share this post from our Facebook page and like Collie Buddz Facebook Page!

    27 May 2015

    Freebie with Portugual. the Man

    Author: Rebecca | Category: News | Tags:

    This week we are giving Waka fans something EVERYDAY leading up to the festival! This first freebie is from Portugal. the Man. The prize package includes two Got It All (This Can’t Be Living Now) albums and a t-shirt. For your chance to win, share this post from our Facebook page and like Portugal. the Man’s Facebook page! Be sure to check our Facebook page for something from multiple bands spanning all genres!

    19 May 2015


    Author: Josh | Category: News | Tags:

    In the early morning of Sunday June 7th, Wakarusa‘s Satellite stage is going to be rocked by Kannibalen label heads Black Tiger Sex Machine. Whether you’re a night owl or an early bird, you’re going to have to make it to their 5:15 AM set, as not to miss out on one of the hottest acts of 2015.

    For fans of Black Tiger Sex Machine, we have a special giveaway that will put you in a ferris wheel with the trio. Tickets won’t be an issue for the winner, as two general admission tickets will be given away, alongside a merchandise package from both Black Tiger Sex Machine and Wakarusa. Enter for your chance to win through the app below, and get yourself ready for the tiger takeover that has already commenced in a big way. Stay tuned for more to come from BTSM!




    14 May 2015

    Win a STS9 Prize Package on

    Author: Rebecca | Category: News | Tags: , , ,

    Wakarusa & Fest300 have teamed up to offer an epic festival package! One winner and a friend will win two GA tickets to Wakarusa, two VIP daily upgrades for Friday at Wakarusa (for up-close viewing of the STS9 Main Stage set), one main stage camping pass to Wakarusa, a Waka merchandise package and a STS9 merchandise package!


    Web Banner_Fest 30 Contest V3_1200x630

    14 May 2015

    Interview with DESTRUCTO

    Author: Rebecca | Category: News | Tags:

    Where is home for you?


    How has that place influenced the music you’ve made?

    In so many ways, [especially] all the West Coast hip hop vibes [from artists like] Dr. Dre, Too $hort, [and] Kurupt. It all comes from the West Coast.

    Is hip-hop a genre you grew up listening to?


    If so, who are your top five artists and producers?

    Dr. Dre, Rakim, N.W.A., Snoop Dogg, Afrika Bambaataa

    Other EDM producers and DJs like Tiesto, Diplo and Steve Aoki have also worked with rappers.  How is your work with rappers different from theirs?

    I’m just making tunes I would play in my sets – nothing more, nothing less.  Club [music].

    The West Coast EP sounds like a conceptual project. Is it? How did it come about?

    I want to make a tribute to all the G’s I grew up listening to with a new flavor added on top.

    You worked with some of the premier hip-hop artists from California. Did you listen to their music before this project or did you just feel their vibes could round out the EP?

    Yes, [I’ve] always been down with Ty and YG since “Toot and Boot It.”

    What was the goal of the EP?  What sound were you going for?

    The goal is the finished project that you can listen to. I did exactly what I wanted to.

    You’re going to perform at the Wakarusa music festival in Arkansas. Word around the Web is that you have experience with music festivals behind the scenes. What’s that about?

    I produce the HARD festival, among others for years and years.

    As an artist, what has been your favorite festival experience so far?

    There are too many to list, [but some include] Coachella, Sonic Mania in Tokyo, [and] Electric Forest.

    What track from the EP are you most excited to perform at Wakarusa? Why?

    All of them. (laughs)

    How can people follow your experience and check out new music?

    [My username is] @DestructoHARD [on] everything, SoundCloud, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, etc.

    Interview by Arkansas Traveler contributor: Brittany Williams

    13 May 2015

    Reggae at Wakarusa 2015

    Wakarusa 2015 is just around the corner! In order to help you get prepared, we will be featuring different groups of artists between now and the festival! For today’s feature, we’ve partnered with to showcase the amazing Reggae music that will be on Mulberry Mountain in June! Some of this year’s Reggae artist include Slightly Stoopid, Rebelution, Dirty Heads, Matisyahu & many more! Be sure to click for tickets to secure your spot on the Mountain!

    Reggae at WAKA Banner_1200x630

    07 May 2015

    Fee Free Friday | No Service Charges on Your Wakarusa Tickets for 24 Hours!

    Author: Josh | Category: Freebie Friday, News | Tags: , ,

    No Service Charges On Your Wakarusa Ticket Purchases! Offer applies to all festival tickets (camping passes are not included in this offer). You can take advantage of this offer beginning at 12:01am on Friday May 8th – 11:59pm on Friday May 8th! Click the photo below to purchase your tickets!

    Waka Fee Free Friday_1200x630

    07 May 2015

    Wakaursa Pays Homage To The Grateful Dead With A Series Of Special Performances

    Author: Josh | Category: News | Tags: , , ,

    Wakarusa is celebrating the 50th Anniversary of The Grateful Dead with a special series of Late Night & Early Morning performances inspired by the music of the band that started it all! The series of Dead Tributes will include late night performances by Kansas City’s Play Dead on Thursday night, Forgotten Space from Dallas, TX on Friday night and a huge from Joe Russo’s Almost Dead. Finally, ease into your final day of Wakarusa with the Play Dead Gospel Revival* on Sunday morning at the Backwoods Stage! Web-Banner_Honoring-GD_1200x630 (1)

    *We’d like to clarify any confusion that may have arisen with the original announcement that a band called ‘Grateful Gospel’ would be playing Wakarusa.  We want to be clear that Keller Williams’ Grateful Gospel is NOT playing Wakarusa this year.  The band “Play Dead” will, however, be performing a special Grateful Dead themed gospel set on Sunday morning entitled “The Play Dead Gospel Revival.” 

    06 May 2015

    Win a VIP Cocktail Hour w/ Umphrey’s McGee & Slightly Stoopid at Wakarusa

    Author: Josh | Category: News | Tags: , , ,

    Wakarusa & JamBase have teamed up to offer some lucky fans this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to hang out and kick back with Umphrey’s McGee and Slightly Stoopid in the artist lounge! One grand prize winner will win a pair of VIP Tickets to Wakarusa plus access to an exclusive Cocktail Hour with Umphrey’s McGee & Slightly Stoopid in the Wakarusa Artist Lounge on Thursday June 4th, an autographed copy of The London Session and official merchandise from Slightly Stoopid & Wakarusa! Runners up will also win access to the cocktail hour / meet & greet with the bands!



    06 May 2015

    Win An All Expense Paid Trip to Wakarusa and a Helicopter Ride with Thomas Jack

    Author: Josh | Category: News, Waka Wednesday | Tags: , , ,

    For the second year in a row we’ve teamed up with to bring you a MASSIVE contest to get you and a friend to the festival! This year TSIS favorite Thomas Jack is in the mix! The prize package includes getting a travel budget to make your way out to the festival ($500 budget), 2 VIP tickets to the festival AND a helicopter ride around the festival grounds with Thomas Jack where you will be able to meet him in a personal setting!

    Click Here To Enter at


    30 Apr 2015

    Love Hope Strength

    Author: Rebecca | Category: News | Tags:

    Wakarusa is thrilled to have Love Hope Strength back for the third year!

    Love Hope Strength turns concerts and festivals into lifesaving events. Through the “GET ON THE LIST” campaign Love Hope Strength registers fans to the national marrow registry, FREE of charge.

    All it takes is a simple cheek swab and a completion of a consent form for someone to become a registered marrow donor. The donation process, should someone become a match, is now an outpatient procedure. Most concertgoers revel in the opportunity to give back to the cancer community, which has touched so many of us. All of the testing is financially covered. Incredibly, every time a match is found, we can trace it back to a single event, thus letting you know when Wakarusa has offered hope to someone out there with a blood cancer in need of a lifesaving transplant!

    To date, Love Hope Strength has found an amazing EIGHT potentially lifesaving matches at Wakarusa!

    30 Apr 2015

    The Road to Wakarusa 2015: Thievery Corporation

    Author: Rebecca | Category: News | Tags:

    Thievery Corporation is officially Rob Garza and Eric Hilton. Thievery Corporation is officially celebrating their 20th anniversary this year. If you count back 20 years, that’s last century. Thievery Corporation is originally from Washington DC, which last century had a mayor who really enjoyed smoking crack. Crack is no joke. Thievery Corporation is in the process of recording their next album and it’s being done so in Jamaica. Pretty much the entire country of Jamaica is high right now. Jamaica is not a territory of the United States of America. The USA does not condone being high. The USA does not condone thinking for yourself either. Thievery Corporation incorporates a collective of different musicians during their live performances. Thievery Corporation has a sitar player. Thievery Corporation has a woman named LouLou in it too. Thievery Corporation especially has a bass player who has been known to wear a Speedo onstage. One time onstage the Speedo-wearing guy slapped a fan on the face when he wasn’t slappin’ da bass. He may or may not have been wearing the Speedo at the time. If you don’t want to get slapped in the face, you probably shouldn’t go up onstage. Saying “slappin da bass” is fun. Thievery Corporation does not condone slapping fans on the face, but is officially okay with slappin da bass. Bass music is good for you. Thievery Corporation has lots of bass and beats and melodies and other stuffs in their music from all over the planet. Thievery Corporation is officially Rob Garza and Eric Hilton. Thievery Corporation is playing at the Wakarusa Music Festival this year. The interview below is with Rob Garza of Thievery Corporation. You should read it. Reading is fun.

    Ok Mr. Rob Garza of the Thievery Corporation, now that I’ve gotten all the pleasantries and the introductions and the pleasantries out of the way, let’s start off with a handful of fun zone time icebreaker sauce. Or what I like to call – “The Cool Breeze Round,” sponsored by Springtime. So yeah, in this day and age where the “EDM” music is so, soooooooooo god forsaken heavily mired in an onslaught of new wanna-be, beat slangin’ baller-ass “producers” coming out of the filthy woodwork practically by the freaking nanosecond, would it be such a horrible idea to have a “Shitty EDM Police Special Task Force Unit” or STFU for short?

    (Laughs) I don’t know, man. That sounds like a tough job for somebody. It sounds like a never-ending battle actually. I think that person would have job security though.

    Yeah, it sounds like a real ‘round the clock kind of gig, but somebody’s gotta do it. Moving on – sprinkles on your ice cream, extra sprinkles or no sprinkles whatsoever at all ever?

    I’ll skip the sprinkles (laughs).

    Lasers – old hat or old faithful?

    Depends on if somebody knows what they’re doing with those lasers. I think it can be old hat in a lot of ways, but I think people do some really dope stuff with lasers too.

    Yes, dope. Moving on – can there ever be too many drunken floozies dancing onstage at once? If so, what’s the cut-off on how many?

    (Laughs) Um, it depends. With Thievery, we have a lot of people come up and dance. Sometimes it can be distracting for the particular song or whatever. Sometimes it really depends on who is dancing and how good the dancing is, to be honest.

    So like 50, give or take 14 maybe?

    Yeah, we’ll go with 50 (laughs).

    I was actually going to say 77 just to keep things symmetrical. But anywho, I know you guys have played this Burning Man festival before that all the wacko, crazy kiddies are talking about. At said Burning Man, if a “plug and play” camp wanted to hire you to do a DJ set, would you really consider doing such a thing?

    The thing about Burning Man is that it’s people coming together from all different walks of life, having very sort of multi-dimensional experiences. I’ve met people from all sorts of camps that I’ve really gotten along with. You know, it’s music. For me, it’s about sharing music. I know there is a lot of backlash against all of that, but I think that hopefully Burning Man will affect the “plug and play” camps more than “plug and play” will affect all of Burning Man. If you catch my drift.

    I do, I do. So you would not be against performing exclusively for a “plug and play” camp?

    I mean, whenever we do shows, we play for all segments of people. Unless it’s doing something that’s just straight ahead corporate, like DJ’ing for some corporation or something. You could even get into the argument how some festivals are sponsored by corporations and you can get on that whole chain as well. For me it’s just always about sharing the music and the vibes.

    Ok, enough fun time softballs already. Might as well get after it while the sun is still shining and the birds are chirping and shit. So yeah, Rob Garza, with regard to the current state of the music industry, I’m sure you are well aware of the rather awkward as fuck roll-out of Tidal a month ago. And how it has stirred up discussion yet again with regards to the merits of music streaming services and the huge, mind-numbing disparity that exists between the payout a record label receives compared to the miniscule amount an artist actually gets. For example, there was an article published recently on Mic, which had fancypants graphs and stuff determining that for a signed artist with content on Spotify, it would require 1,117,021 streams of a song to make the U.S. monthly minimum wage of $1,260. An unsigned artist would still need 180,000 streams to make the same amount. To me, whether it be Spotify, Tidal, Google Play or whatever, it more or less comes down to an iteration of the same tired model that makes it increasingly difficult for a musician to even get remotely compensated for their blood, sweat and tears. I’ve read that this was a big reason why you and Eric decided to shut down your independent label, Eighteen Street Lounge Music. Rob Garza, can you please share with me your experience dealing with this issue and if you see any form of flickering light at the end of the tunnel?

    The whole music making, music business environment has shifted. And running a label, it’s like squeezing a dry lemon. It’s a lot of work and a little juice at the end. And it becomes frustrating to try to be supportive of smaller artists trying to make a living because it becomesa lot of work from every way you look at it. When we started, it was very simple. We had friends who made music and we liked their music. We pressed CD’s and gave them to the distributors, they sold them, we split the proceeds and that was it. Now you get royalty statements from streaming services that will be like 100 pages of a minuscule percentage of pennies and at the end don’t add up to a lot of anything. And it just sort of becomes disheartening. As far as the flickering light at the end of the tunnel, (laughs) I hope that there’s something there. I don’t know what that is, but it seems like people are waking up a little bit, but I’m not even sure myself. The one thing that I do hear is that the streaming model is becoming better. But I think it’s really hard to gauge one way or the other.

    I know that Tidal aims to improve the experience by providing exclusive content as well as lossless audio quality instead of just MP3 quality. But I don’t know how willing people are going to be to pay $13-26 a month for this. With regards to the enhancement in music quality, I’m not sure how seamlessly that’s going to translate if people are just listening to the music through a pair of earbuds or their laptop speakers or even the little speaker on their iPhone, god forbid. I don’t know if Jay-Z and pals are just in over their collective heads or know something that we don’t. Perhaps the “free-mium” model will get phased out in the next 5 years or so. Regardless, for Tidal to bank on these features and the “we’re cutting out the middle man” and the “us poor artists don’t get paid enough, take pity” cards doesn’t seem like a viable business model. Rob Garza, did you follow the Tidal rollout at all or do really care, if anything at all, about its existence?

    I followed it a little bit. I do like the idea of it, but I don’t know enough about it to really make a statement one way or another. Anything that is more supportive towards artists, obviously I am totally in favor of. I did notice a lot of people looked at it like, “Oh, here’s all these stars drinking their champagne.” I just saw a lot of comments about how it was maybe a little toochichi. It would’ve been nice if they would’ve had younger artists included in their campaign instead of Jay-Z and Madonna. Maybe it would’ve resonated a little more with people feeling compassionate towards artists and supporting their livelihood. That would be my only thing. I don’t think anyone’s going to feel sorry because Madonna’s royalties are a little less or Jay-Z’s royalties are a little less. But if you saw some other artists who are smaller, it might be different.

    Yeah, I know that two of the more prominent voices of opposition were Marcus Mumford and Ben Gibbard of Death Cab for Cutie. All it looked like was…

    It looked elitist a little bit.

    Yeah, it definitely could’ve been viewed as elitist. Instead of putting up-and-coming and/or struggling artists up there who would be a much better embodiment of the cause, they opted to let the face of their effort be a roll call of mega-millionaires who are essentially complaining about not getting enough pay. It definitely came across as out of touch, Rob Garza.

    Yeah, I think it did come off that way.

    Yes, it sure did. Ok, now we’re going to quite possibly trivialize the shit out of everything we were just talking about. Performing for 20 years now (since last century), you guys have been around the block a few times and know your way around the neighborhood. So I would imagine you’ve been posed with this question before in some form or another. Or whatever’s clever. So when it comes to music festivals, how in good conscience can we go out and rage ourselves into a ditch with a puddle next to it when there is so much unresolved crazy shit out there like famine, military conflict, melting glaciers, refugees dying at sea, trained monkeys in political office and so on? Basically, Rob Garza, how on Earth can we party at a festival when the world is burning around us?

    Yeah, you know, that’s a very interesting question because definitely no matter where you go, what culture around the world, people like you enjoy themselves and like to party. So that’s universal, first of all. You can’t say, “why do people party when there’s all these things going on” because as human beings, people crave those sorts of situations. I think in terms of what we do is just try to raise awareness when it comes to social and political issues. Because at the end of the day those things are going to affect all of us. To be part of these things, but to also have songs like “Richest Man in Babylon” or “Amerimacka” or things like that. Hopefully through performing at some of these places people will discover Thievery Corporation, go and check out some of the catalogs and maybe they will become aware of some of these things. And also maybe their ears will be opened. You know, we’ve been doing this for awhile, so there’s a lot of old school influences and a lot of influences from all over the world. Not just flavor of the day, EDM kind of sounds.

    Right, and you and Eric are no strangers to using your platform for voicing dissent against issues like the Iraq War or the IMF or even travelling to Nepal and Sudan to raise awareness on world hunger. For those reading this who are unfamiliar with your work with World Food Programme, what role were you, Rob Garza, playing and how did it open your eyes to the ongoing world hunger crisis?

    I was involved in fundraising aspects. I think we first got involved after the tsunami in Asia back in 2004. We did a fundraising effort for them. Then I got to go out and do some trips with the World Food Programme visiting different sites in Nepal and Southern Sudan raising awareness. Generally more as an ambassador sort of thing. For us it was an honor to get asked to be involved with that program and it’s all about raising awareness for issues involving food security. And off of that some issues having to do with women, feeding programs for children and women, healthcare and things like that.

    To this day, have you continued to have involvement with that effort?

    Not as much as I did before. I moved out to San Francisco and the woman we were working with in Washington, she actually went to Rome and is working up within the top of the organization. And so we’ve kind of lost a little contact, but have been talking recently about doing some more trips together.

    Well that’s very encouraging to hear. With regard to this conversation, there are definitely at least a few misconceptions floating around out there about the issue of world hunger. One of which being there is some kind of imaginary gaping hole in the world food supply and that’s one of the main contributors to people not having adequate access to food and having to endure malnutrition as a result. When in all actuality, not only is there plenty of food to go around, but for some absurd yet not so shocking reason, those in power who control the markets stifle the flow of distribution like a vice grip. To quote a rather insightful article I came across:

    “We produce more calories per person than ever before in human history. A common misperception is that the reason people go hungry is a shortage of food, but there’s actually enough food in the world to feed everyone. The problem is one of distribution. That’s the story of modern hunger. There is plenty of food around, but the way we mediate access to that food today is through the market. That’s why even though we have more food than ever before, around a billion people go hungry. The story of hunger has always been the story of the desire of powerful people to be able to manage hunger, rather than sharing our abundance more fairly.”

    Would you say that based on your experience on the ground in places like Nepal and Sudan, this is consistent with what you were seeing?

    I think so. I think you could also say the same thing about money and the distribution of wealth. There’s plenty of wealth in the world. There’s plenty of resources in the world to keep people from going hungry on any part of the planet. But it does come down to the way the system is designed and the way the methods of distribution of all these things. The West in particular. Being in a place like Southern Sudan, you come back and you pass by some place like The Cheesecake Factory (laughs) and it’s insane. When you talk about calories per person, it really does seem like we are living on two different planets.

    And this global issue is not merely a continuation of a “We are the World” scenario from the 1980’s where the only humans being affected by this are those in poor, impoverished 3rd world countries. This is a major problem taking place on U.S. soil in more than one way. In the United States, there are fifty million people who at some time during a given year don’t even know where their next meal is coming from. Fifty million! That’s about 1 out of every 6 people in this country!

    Exactly. People think this is something that happens in other parts of the world. But this is something that is happening on our own doorstep. When you think of families and you think of children who don’t know exactly when or where their next meal is coming from, that is a very important issue for all of us.

    It’s not just a matter of people not knowing where their next meal is coming from either. For me personally, I’m the kind of guy who makes a concerted effort to buy as much in organic food as I can afford. For anyone doing the same, that can become a pretty expensive lifestyle to lead. Then you think about those hard-working Americans scraping to get by who are near or below the poverty line. It’s a vicious cycle they are caught in of neither having anywhere near the income needed to buy organic or nutritious, non-processed food, not having the time to prepare a healthy meal because they’re too busy just trying to survive nor having the education to even know how to discern what is healthy/nutritious and what might ultimately contribute to them getting cancer, a heart attack, type-2 diabetes and so on. The food pyramid taught in public schools, in its revised state, is still not exactly up to par either. Now that you’ve focused your energy with a cause with like WFP, have you, Rob Garza, ever considered starting any campaigns here in the States to raise awareness on the kind of issues here?

    These are issues that me and Eric, we’re definitely very aware and we discuss them. But I don’t think that’s really our area of expertise. But I definitely agree that things are weighed to make it more convenient to buy unhealthy meals and food. When you look at so many of these systems, whether it’s the food pyramid, the educational system, Monsanto, it’s a pretty tall order trying to rise up against. I think the best you can do is try to stimulate people’s awareness when it comes to the different problems and things like that. And then hopefully after awhile, enough people will be aware that it just starts to happen on its own. I remember having these kinds of conversations about 8 years ago talking about all of these things, whether that be about the surveillance state or the genetically modified food aspect of our culture. Back in the day people would look at you like you were a tinfoil hat-wearing conspiracy theorist! But now a lot of these things are just accepted as part of what everybody knows. I think that by slowly making people more conscious about what’s going on around them, it stimulates all these different kinds of discussions and creates possibilities for all of us to become more involved. And making personal decisions, which hopefully will have a greater influence on the whole society.

    You touched on genetically modified crops. This is actually a concern that can affect anyone, no matter how much you’re making it rain with the Benjamin’s, who isn’t aware and/or educated about the current struggle just to know what’s in our food supply. If you are buying any conventionally grown food, especially soy and corn among others, there is a pretty strong chance it came from a genetically modified crop. So unless you are growing your own food, buying strictly organic or are extremely diligent about knowing where your food is coming from, it’s become a roll of the dice in a way. Whether it be just regionally or countrywide, there are quite a few countries in Europe along with Russia, Japan and Australia, who have placed bans on GMO crops in one form or another. Yet here in the United States it is scary that not only is there no form of a ban in this country, but we have to fight to just get mandatory GMO labeling. Not to mention culprits like Monsanto actually suing states that attempt to institute labeling. It’s insane to know that nowadays we can’t even trust our own food supply. Rob Garza, with your level of involvement and the relationships you’ve created over the years through organizations like WFP, have you ever considered organizing a festival or a benefit show? One where you assemble a line-up of musicians who care deeply about the cause and have tools available at the event for disseminating information like workshops, seminars, speakers etc?

    I mean, that’s a great idea. There are a lot of artists and musicians who are very interested in this. That would be a really great project. Whether I have the bandwidth right now to organize something like that, that’s a full-time endeavor of itself. We did a thing awhile back. A protest on the National Mall against the Iraqi War back in the day and I would be more than happy to be involved. But organizing that is a whole ‘nother…it’s a full-time job in itself. But I think it’s a great idea.

    I would love to see a collective effort come together here. Last, but not least, this is your chance, Mr. Rob Garza, to voice a rally call to your fans out there coming to see you at Wakarusa. What kind of intention, what kind of vibe, what kind of energy do you want to see people bring to the space that Thievery Corporation will be inhabiting during your set at Waka?

    I would just say an open mind, open ears and a willingness to enjoy themselves, really.

    Interview by Matthew Cremer

    Original article HERE


    03 Apr 2015

    Freebie Friday with Twiddle

    Author: Rebecca | Category: News | Tags:

    This week’s Freebie Friday is from the Vermont quartet, Twiddle! For your chance to win a t-shirt, CD, water bottle, sweatshirt, lighter, sticker or koozie share this post from our Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages and like Twiddle’s Facebook page! Good luck!

    20 Mar 2015

    Waka Winter Classic Finalists and Voting

    Author: Billy | Category: News | Tags:

    The Waka Winter Classic finalists are in and the voting page is now live. Vote for your favorite Waka Winter Classic finalist, the top two bands in this vote will play their sets on the Revival Tent Stage!

    Go have a listen to all the finalists and vote for your favorite!

    All voters are limited to 1 vote per 24hr period, voting is logged via cookies and IP logs, so if you are having issues voting, someone else on your shared local internet connection may have already voted in this poll. If that is/may be the case try to vote via mobile data on your phone (as that will be a different public IP). Unfortunately we have to run this level of tracking/logging to ensure the consistency and fairness of the vote.


    11 Mar 2015

    Wakarusa Tickets Have Shipped!

    Author: | Category: News | Tags:

    It’s that time of year and ‪#‎Waka2015‬ is right around the corner! We’re excited to inform you that ticket shipments have begun.
    Delivery Times:
    USPS: up to six weeks
    USPS Priority: up to two weeks
    FedEx: up to one week
    If you selected Print Pass delivery, they will be emailed today. Please check your spam, junk mail and promotions folders for this email. Feel free to reach out to the ticketing ladies if you haven’t received your tickets after the maximum delivery time!

    02 Mar 2015

    Music Monday with KOPECKY

    Author: Rebecca | Category: News | Tags:

    KOPECKY is a Nashville, Tennessee-based indie rock band and will be playing Wakarusa 2015. Vocalist, keyboardist and bassist Kelsey Kopecky recently discussed how she became interested in music, late night mimosa madness and what she’s looking forward to about Wakarusa.

    What was your earliest musical memory?

    Let’s see..My earliest musical memory involves me on roller skates in my Dad’s garage listening to Tom Petty and and John Mellencamp. I remember my dad sweeping the floor and singing into the broom handle like a mic. He’s quite a ham..I guess that’s where I get my love of performance. haha

    How did KOPECKY get started?

    Gabe and I met at a party in college and talked about collaborating. We met up the next day and wrote like 6 was pretty magical!

    How does your creative process work when songwriting?

    I usually start with a melody and an inspiring phrase. Then I find a beat that matches the movement I want to create in my body when listening. The rest just sorts itself out. I’m big on using colorful words and imagery.

    What inspires you lyrically?

    Honesty. I think the more truth, the more relatable/compelling a song can be.

    What do you feel is the most autobiographical song you’ve written for KOPECKY?

    There’s a song called “Change” on our first full length album, “Kids Raising Kids.” It basically sums up my experience of love through the lens of those closest to me. The first verse being my father, the second my mom, and the third verse through the lens of my sister. It’s all about being brave enough to get hurt in love and recklessly knowing that’s where the best part can be found.

    What was the first song written for Kids Raising Kids?

    hmmm I can’t remember. I do remember writing some of the lyrics to “Birds” in my old bedroom. That one was about my dad. He’s amazing and we had a really hard conversation about addiction and the song was a result of it.

    How did the song “Wandering Eyes” come together?

    We were all at a studio in Charlottesville camped out for the weekend to write. I think Gabe started singing something about “wild wandering eyes” and we all just started jamming on it and drinking $3 bottles of wine until the song was finished.

    You tour a ton. What have been some of your strangest moments on the road?

    One time we took a wrong turn and our van battery died near a walmart parking lot. It happened to be Steven and Markus’ birthday, so we went inside the walmart and bought OJ and champaign and made mimosas in colorful Solo cups. No one slept and it was 7am. We recently found a video of this and it cracked me up so much. I’ve been through so much with these boys.

    You’re playing Wakarusa 2015. What are you most looking forward to about Wakarusa?

    Excited to see Young The Giant & our friends, Givers. I also hope stop by Fayetteville and see my friends at my favorite clothing store Lola’s Boutique. Should be a fun time! I love festivals!

    What do you enjoy most about the music scene in Nashville?

    There is just so much talent here. People are true players and excellent at their craft. It makes us all want to keep getting better.

    What have been the biggest obstacles you’ve had to overcome in your career?

    The hardest thing about being an aspiring band is trying to make ends meet financially while needing to be on the road all the time, when your band isn’t making money. There were many years of being on the road for 3 weeks at a time and then being home for 2 weeks and working crazy hours baby sitting trying to pay all of my bills for the month. With 6 band members it was a lot of juggling. But I feel like that tension give us the appreciation and drive to make this work. There is not a day that goes by where I am not grateful I get to pay my water bill or phone bill with money I made from creating music. It is such a gift.

    What advice would you give to musicians just starting out?

    Write what you know. Write the crappiest songs. Just keep writing..the rest will sort itself out. AND WATCH THIS video on what Ira Glass says: (so inspiring)

    11 Feb 2015

    Waka Wednesday with SAVOY

    Author: Rebecca | Category: News, Waka Wednesday | Tags:

    SAVOY is a Brooklyn, NY based band and will be playing Wakarusa 2015. They recently discussed SAVOY’s beginnings, creative process and love of Wakarusa.

    Did you come from a musical family? Were your parents musical?

    Our parents weren’t musicians but we they were all pretty passionate about music.  They grew up in the the golden age of rock, so the three of us share that musical backbone.

    How did SAVOY first come together?

    The three of us met in the dorms at college in Boulder.  We used to play together acoustically in hallways and lawns.  The next year we had a shed behind Ben and Gray’s house which became the place where the Savoy sound really started to take shape.

    Did you start DJing or producing first?

    Its a tricky question, but producing came first. We started as a rock band and gradually added synth bass and other electronic layers to really make our stuff sound big on the dance floor.  Over time the music evolved to be electronic music dance music that was based around sequencers and computers.  We then added instrumentation back into our productions and live performances to maintain the live, raw, feel that we love about rock music.

    You put on an amazing live performance. How has your live show evolved since you first started out?

    The answer above touched on this a little, but now our live shows are now a complete hybrid of a rock band and dance music.  We have huge builds and bass heavy drops but we also have the energy of distorted guitars and huge rock drums. We have been touring with singers as well.  Our lighting setup is also a hybrid of the two genres.  We fuse powerful lasers with epic ACDC style lighting. The energy level of the new live show keeps getting crazier and more dimensional.

    How do you approach creating tracks in the studio?

    Our influences and musical styles are varied and this shows in our productions.  I think our appreciation for the old school really influences how we make a modern sound.  If we are working on a house or drumstep track, we will ask ourselves, “What would Zeppelin do here?”  But we wouldn’t pull up a Skrillex song and use that as a reference.

    You are a past winner of Waka Winter Classic. What did winning the Waka Winter Classic mean to you?

    It was a big turning point for us. It was one of the first big festivals we ever played.  It was a time in college when a lot of people were studying abroad or going on spring break trips but we decided to take advantage of opportunities like Waka and make music our priority.

    What advice would you give to the artists competing this year?

    Well aside from playing your best and preparing you really have to bring a crowd.  That’s what all music festivals want in a band, but our strategy was a little more unconventional.  We rented a school bus and filled it with kegs.  The “party bus” took a bunch of our fans and friends from Boulder to Denver which is about 30 mins away.  Needless to say, the show was nuts and we got a bunch of votes and won the Waka Winer Classic.  But it is worth pointing out that the band before us was really talented and despite them loosing the vote they still got to play Waka.  So either way you just have to throw down.

    You are playing Wakarusa 2015. What do you enjoy most about playing Wakarusa?

    Yeah, we are always pumped to come back!  Wakarusa is great because their lineup is pretty eclectic.  We love playing festivals that aren’t based around one genre.  Some of the electronic music festivals are crazy but three days of a similar sound could be a little intense.  But at Waka we are able to stand out and provide something different.  When it gets later in the night and kids want to take it to the next level, we drop the bass and lasers on them and its always insanity.

    What are some of your favorite memories from playing Wakarusa?

    There have been many but for me it was the first year we played a late night slot in the tent. The band before us was great, but pretty mellow.  We went up there with lasers blaring and the tent quickly turned into an all out rave.  The tent was packed and everyone went nuts and really connected with what we were doing.  We had a lot of fans in the first half of the crowd, but you could tell a lot of people were caught off guard and seeing us for the first time. The best music festival experiences are always based around the unexpected.  It was cool to see that happening.

    Interview By: McClain Johnson

    03 Feb 2015

    Glamping Options Now Available

    Author: Rebecca | Category: News | Tags:

    Whether you’re going to Waka GA or VIP this year, Glamping‬ will give you the indoor luxuries of rest, relaxation and privacy while still waking up to the great outdoors! Check it out here:

    30 Jan 2015

    Full Artist Lineup

    Author: Rebecca | Category: News | Tags:

    The full lineup of artists for Wakarusa 2015 is here! Get your tickets today!

    28 Jan 2015

    Mulberry Mountain is My Muse

    Author: Rebecca | Category: News | Tags:

    Wakarusa encourages and promotes an ongoing artistic and creative community within the festival through funded art grants. Wakarusa will provide visual and expressive artists with a platform in which they can entertain, engage, and inspire thousands of spectators. Execute your creative visions with a WAKARUSA ART GRANT! Wakarusa is currently accepting art submissions through Friday, March 20, 2015 this year. Help build the artistic & creative community at WAKARUSA! More info here:

    27 Jan 2015

    Poster Design Contest

    Author: Rebecca | Category: News | Tags:

    Wakarusa is looking for some creative folks to submit artwork for the Poster Design Contest! Check out the details here:

    21 Jan 2015

    Third Lineup Announced!

    Author: Rebecca | Category: News | Tags:

    Wakarusa Music Festival is thrilled to announce the third and final round of the artist lineup for the 2015 festival. This year’s final announcement of artists includes Major Lazer, Thievery Corporation, Umphrey’s McGee, Dirty Heads, Lotus and many more.

    This year’s lineup will feature an eclectic mix of indie, rock, EDM, hip-hop, reggae and more. Headliners will include Ben Harper & The Innocent Criminals, back from a seven-year hiatus, and electronic music powerhouse Major Lazer. In addition, Jimmy Fallon’s house band and neo-soul group The Roots, and dub-infused electronic bandThievery Corporation will be joining the musical talent at Wakarusa.

    It is widely known that Wakarusa has been the premier showcase for up and coming bands and this year is no different. Fresh acts include hip-hop artist Chance the Rapper, tropical house DJ Thomas Jack, funky duo of brothers The Floozies, EDM producer Bro Safari, indie-progressive rock band Moon Taxi, and Vermont based quartet Twiddle, to name a few.

    14 Jan 2015

    Second Lineup Announced!

    Author: Rebecca | Category: News | Tags:

    Round two of the artist lineup is here! The second round of artists includes Ben Harper & The Innocent Criminals, Slightly StoopidChance the RapperPortugal. The Man and many more. Stay tuned for next weeks third and final lineup which will be announced on Jan 21!

    07 Jan 2015

    First Artist Lineup Announced!

    Author: Rebecca | Category: News | Tags:

    Round one of the artist lineup for Wakarusa 2015 is finally here! This year’s first round of artists includes The Roots, STS9, Rebelution, Young the Giant, The Devil Makes Three and many more.

    06 Nov 2014

    Wakarusa 2015 Ticket info is now posted! Tickets go on sale tomorrow at 10am!

    Author: Billy | Category: News | Tags:

    Wakarusa 2015 Ticket info is now posted! Tickets go on sale tomorrow at 10am! Start your road to Waka 2015 will all the details, pricing and info you need right here, right now!
    Just hit up our Ticket Gateway at for all the info to plan for your purchase tomorrow morning!

    31 Oct 2014

    Tickets on sale Nov 7th!

    Author: Billy | Category: News | Tags:

    Oh just hanging out at the office, thinking about Halloween, #Waka2015, and how tickets go on sale Friday, Nov 7th at 10am (CST). Get your Full Event, Early Arrival, VIP, and camping passes next Friday to save the most cash!!! We want to see YOU on the mountain in 2015!

    18 Jun 2014

    Thank You For An Amazing Wakarusa 2014!

    Author: Billy | Category: News | Tags:

    Thank you for making Wakarusa 2014 a huge success!  We’re already looking forward to seeing you all back on the mountain in 2015!

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