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The Thrival Innovation + Music Festival has announced its music lineup, featuring a blend of 19 national and local artists. Headliners Wiz Khalifa, Logic, Carnage, GRiZ, and Two Door Cinema Club and over a dozen more acts will perform at the historic Carrie Furnaces on September 29-30.
Two-day general admission and VIP festival passes go on sale Friday, May 19 at 10:00 AM EST.
Capping an extensive 2017 festival touring season — including performances at Lollapalooza and Okeechobee Music Festival — multi-platinum selling and Grammy-nominated recording artist, Wiz Khalifa, will make his only appearance in Pittsburgh in 2017 as one of Thrival’s headliners.
Logic, the 27-year-old Maryland-based rapper, will also headline Thrival, building off of a packed 28-date U.S. summer tour. His critically acclaimed, “Everybody,” sold 247,000 equivalent album units last week, earning Logic his first #1 album. The album touches on an array of societal issues that affect us all on a daily basis.
Irish alt-indie darlings, Two Door Cinema Club, are also touring the U.S., having just announced dozens of new dates across the country.
Detroit electronic funk outfit, GRiZ, and Los Angeles-based Guatemalan American DJ, Carnage, will both headline their own stages.
SuperDuperKyle will make his first-ever Pittsburgh performance after the release of his Billboard Top 10 hit, “iSpy” (currently #8). Chart-topper and multi-platinum artist, Kiiara, veteran DJ, TokiMonsta, Sirius Alt Nation mainstays, Missio, and Grammy-nominated DJ, Steve James, are all first-time Thrival artists, joined by Harts, Echos, Circa Waves, Welshly Arms, Michigander, The Garment District, Byron Nash & Plan B, Rachel B., and JRod.
“We started this initiative five years ago. To watch its growth has been pretty remarkable,” says Bobby Zappala, founder of Thrival and CEO of Ascender. “Thrival 2017 is set up to be a special experience. We’re proud to have a Pittsburgh artist headline the bill for the first time in the festival’s history.”
“Thrival Music continues to grow, and this year’s lineup is the biggest and most prolific to date. We welcome an eclectic mix of multi-platinum and chart-topping artists who will compliment a host site that has the potential to be one of the best live music venues in the entire U.S.,” says Dan Law, Director of Thrival and VP of Business Development at Ascender, the nonprofit organization that presents and produces Thrival every year.
The festival kicks off with Thrival Innovation (featuring a new partnership with San Francisco-based event and media company, NewCo) on September 27-28, a conference focused on “Intelligence: Humans X Tech” — a theme that leverages Pittsburgh’s strengths in robotics, artificial intelligence, and machine learning.
After Thrival Innovation, festival-goers will transition from Pittsburgh’s East End to the historic Carrie Furnaces in nearby Swissvale, Pennsylvania for a “one-of-a-kind Pittsburgh venue” that “features a stark contrast of new sound and rustic industrial setting” minutes away from Pittsburgh city limits.
For a unique local flair, Wiz Khalifa filmed the music video for his 2012 double platinum single, “Work Hard, Play Hard” at the Carrie Furnaces.
“With the right vision, leadership, and investment, the Carrie Furnaces are primed to be a premier destination for live music fans. By doing this together, we’re turning a mill back on. But instead of producing steel, we’re producing culture,” says Law. “A show at Carrie is unique. You can’t get it anywhere else.”
The festival is the flagship initiative of Ascender, a Pittsburgh-based 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to serving early-stage startups, entrepreneurs, and innovators.
To help manage this growth in 2017, Thrival has partnered with Live Nation Entertainment for venue operations, talent buying, and marketing efforts.
“Ascender’s partnership with Live Nation to deliver Thrival Music allows our core team to both invest more energy in scaling Thrival Innovation and more effectively engage our dynamic local audience, with Live Nation adding significantly to the festival’s expanding national reach. We’re very excited for the opportunities this presents,” says Zappala.
Thrival Festival just continues to get better and better every year. This year we were introduced to a new venue, the Carrie Furnaces. The festival also brought it’s largest lineup yet. I’ve saved you guys the trouble of reading all the other articles and posts out there, I’ll tell you the gist.
Friday wasn’t the best, and there’s a lot of feedback on social media to verify that. There were long lines galore; for drinks, for wristbands to GET drinks; and some heavy confusion around drink tokens. Oh, and then they ran out of water. BUT ALAS, no fear, they fixed everything all up for Saturday which was amazing! It’s not very often that an event like this fixes up main complaints in time for the following year, let alone Day Two!
The music has great feedback from Friday (shout-out to Lettuce!!!) EXCEPT for one MAJOR setback. Hmm…let’s see, we have Daya performing and we have The Chainsmokers performing. Daya and Chainsmokers have the hit song “Don’t Let Me Down” and yet they definitely let everyone down by not performing that song together! Whyyyyy? Blasphemy! I seriously don’t get it, can someone explain this to me? There was a chance for some legendary shit right there. *big sigh*
But, here’s a video of them performing their brand new song, “All We Know” featuring Phoebe Ryan:
Anyway, according to festival goers, Saturday ran much smoother and they nixed whatever the hell those drink tokens were about (Thank goodness because no one has time for that when they’re going to have a good time and listen to music!)
I did not make the Music Festival for Day One. But, my main passion was Thievery Corporation who was headlining on Day Two. You know how in your car, if you have Sirius, you can set “alerts” to let you know when certain artists or songs come on, and you can set it to auto-tune to that station. Well, Thievery Corporation is one of the groups on my “alerts” list….and lemme tell you, that alerts list has maybe 3 artists on it. So, that’s how excited I was, if that puts it into perspective for you.
I would have never known the fiasco of Day One had I not read about it, because Day Two was a dream. The weather was perfect; anyone from Pittsburgh knows that’s a huge accomplishment to have good weather for an exciting event. The crowds weren’t as big as Day One, which I attribute to the Chainsmokers crowd, but I welcomed the much more relaxed flow. Especially since only a week before, I was in California for the Kaaboo Music Festival (which The Chainsmokers also performed at) and it was way oversold and overcrowded. So much so that we were forced to leave the event early. Womp Womp.
I also did not deal with any of the parking or shuttle woes thanks to Uber. Though I very much like that a shuttle service was available. So, Uber dropped us off at a designated drop-off area and we marched on down to the entrance. The entrance brought on a teensy bit of confusion, since there were different locations for general admission, will call and VIP, but nothing major. I just have a really bad sense of direction. Once inside, we were thirsty (duh) and while I’m happy with almost anything, my friend was bummed about no liquor, unless you were VIP. BUT, it was still a step up from last year because this year there was wine. Maybe next year everyone can have access to liquor, who knows. Oh, but there were, however, two Skyy Vodka gals there though giving out free shots of a watermelon vodka of some sort, so we took advantage of that (again, duh).
I love that this festival has two stages with only one band playing at a time. This way, there’s no conflicts of interest and you can hear the band playing from anywhere on the festival grounds. And there’s no long waits in between the bands because the next one is already setting up on the other stage. Ty Dolla $ign was supposed to perform, but sadly had to cancel due to a death in his immediate family. But, there was lots to check out besides the music. There were vendors set up selling different items including clothing and coveted flower crowns. Rivers of Steel Arts created live iron pours. The Wheel Mill Stunt BMX team put on a show. There was even a tent with a virtual reality simulator to check out.
Metric put on a fantastic set and wowed us with some of their best songs. Here’s a video of “Breathing Underwater” from Shawn Glass on YouTube:
When it was getting to be that time (Thievery Corporation), the place was noticeably and expectedly even more crowded. I can’t even express how excited I was to see this group that’s been together for over 20 years and yet this was their very first time performing here in Pittsburgh! Their set exceeded mostly everyone’s wildest expectations and hopefully it doesn’t take them that long to come back! They were the most perfect close-out for a sensational Thrival Festival.
After their set, everyone wafted around seemingly walking on clouds. And then suddenly…something more happened. Over yonder, music started playing. The strange but cool artsy thing that everyone had been looking at all weekend sprung to life. It was the Squonk Opera! And what…pray tell, is that?
Squonk Opera is a group of interdisciplinary performing artists from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Led by artistic directors Jackie Dempsey and Steve O’Hearn, Squonk Opera’s shows consist of music, visual art, and acting elements in an attempt to make a form of opera accessible to all people. The group “like to think of ourselves as a wacky, provincial opera company,” says Dempsey, who named the group “Squonk” after a description of a jazz saxophonist’s playing as a “squonk-fest”, rather than the legendary creature of the same name. — From Wikipedia
Check out this little tidbit video of Squonk Opera performing from their Pneumatica show:
I’m so glad that Pittsburgh keeps moving up that cultural ladder and bringing more and more awesomeness, especially in the music department. There’s always going to be little hiccups but this festival was overall a huge success and I can’t wait to see what next year brings!
(P.S. I’m sure I’ll think of more suggestions, but I’d love to see Lotus come perform next year! — Here’s a video of them performing “Anti-Gravity” at the Summerdance Festival in Ohio this year!)
On the innovation side of things —- for the first time this year, the festival will transform over one hundred thousand square feet at Nova Place and Alloy 26 — a former indoor/outdoor mall and Woolworth’s five-and-dime — as its home base for its Thrival Innovation programming. A 14,000 square foot “Innovation Hall” will feature highlights from experiential electronic music collaborations through smart devices (CEEMI) to live demos by noted Pittsburgh chefs of a new hands-free cooking assistant app (Yes, Chef). This will be paired with an outdoor “Innovation Playground” that includes aesthetically graffitied demolition derby cars (PGH Art Car), adaptive sports games for people of all abilities (Find Some Flow), and a mobile office bus equipped with 3-D printing, laser engraving, and robotics (Tech Tank).
On Saturday, September 10, 2016, a new festival will rock the 6-2-6! The City of Alhambra, known as the gateway to the San Gabriel Valley, will host Main Fest Music Festival, a one day, all ages, ticketed event featuring performances by Capital Cities, Miami Horror, !!! (Chk Chk Chk), new editions include local favorites Nite-Funk, Dead Sara,Thee Commons and Swimm.
The festival will take place over three blocks of the City’s Main Street, from Garfield Avenue to 2nd Street. In addition to the concert, attendees will enjoy beer garden, food trucks, boutique vendors, and a variety of Downtown Alhambra’s best restaurants.
The festival is presented by Alt 98.7 FM and Downtown Alhambra Business Association, and produced by QueenVee Entertainment and Spaceland Presents. For more information, including sponsorship opportunities and vendor inquires, please visit www.mainfestalhambra.com.
Tickets for this all-ages event are on sale via Ticketfly for $25.00 to $60.00 each plus service fees.
Last weekend, while I was visiting friends in San Diego, we went to the first ever KAABOO festival at the Racetrack and Fairgrounds at Del Mar.
It. Was. Awesome.
We only went on 1 out of the 3 days; but it was still great. KAABOO was marketed as a classier festival in that there were actual real restrooms, instead of port-a-potties; there was better food and more choices; better beers and even wines, etc.
I thought I had seen the whole grounds, but after checking out some other pictures and articles online, clearly I was mistaken. And now I feel bummed out about it. Waaaaaaah.
Anyways, I got to see Ron Funches (comedian) who plays on the show “Undateable” and is my FAVORITE character in the show; possibly of all time.
So…that was fun. He put on a good show, but I think I was hoping he’d be more like his character “Shelley.” haha
After that, everyone was hungry so we went to the “Posh Nosh” food tent area. It was cooled down in there and a nice break from the heat.
Then we bounced around a bit between Counting Crows and Slightly Stoopid until it was time to see Young the Giant. I like Young the Giant, but they weren’t on my MUST SEE list — however, once I was watching them, I was loving it. Crazy how that happens, huh?
After that, the people in my company wanted to see Zac Brown Band (I am not really a fan), so we went over there. It killed time until Goldfish was playing anyway. At 10:00, they didn’t have any more bands playing outside because of the noise ordinance, so Goldfish, Big Gigantic and Girl Talk were all playing in a tent at the Encore Stage.
Goldfish was AWESOME. I was super excited to see them, and they did not disappoint. It was an amazing dance party. I posted a short video on YouTube from it — I don’t take many videos because I want to just feel and enjoy the moment fully — but I knew I’d be so upset if I didn’t have just a little bit to look back on! Here’s the video:
After that, I wanted to see Big Gigantic and dance some more, but everyone else wanted to go see Joel McHale at another stage. So — we mosey’d over there, but it was PACKED. The line was super long and then they weren’t letting any more people in, so it was a bust. We got back to the Encore Stage when Girl Talk was getting ready to come on. Now, everyone knows I love me some Girl Talk. Greg Gillis is from Pittsburgh and I’ve seen him 4-5 times here. I was excited to see him in San Diego this time, at this festival. But…I am saddened to say that it was not the hyped up dance party I am used to. It was just not good. We tried to get into it but weren’t able….and ended up leaving to catch an Uber before everyone at Kaaboo wanted one. I mean….it was probably a fluke, I’m sure.
Anyways — my experience was just a short chapter of the book. But, I’d like to go back again! Good times!
Here’s the flyer with the lineups:
Today Surfer Blood reveal its full national headline tour in support of 1000 Palms, the band’s third full-length and first release with acclaimed indie imprint Joyful Noise out May 12th. In addition to the upcoming 30+ date tour (listed in full below) the band also announces details of a NYC benefit show for guitarist Thomas Feteke’s cancer treatment May 12th at Bowery Ballroom (album release day).
Surfer Blood have organized a benefit concert for their guitarist Thomas Fekete, who is undergoing treatment for cancer. Friends of Thomas will join Surfer Blood for special performances at Bowery Ballroom (New York) on Tuesday, May 12. Performers will include Julianna Barwick, Kip Berman (The Pains of Being Pure at Heart), DJ Allen Blickle (Alpaca), Andy Boay (Tonstartssbandht), Cults, POP ETC (acoustic), Marnie Stern & The Figs (w/ members of Les Savy Fav & Girls Against Boys), We Are Scientists. More about Thomas at: http://www.surferblood.com/thomas
1000 Palms is the band’s return to indie label life after a frustrating experience on Warner Bros. The new record – which features stunners such as “Dorian”, newly-revealed track “Island” and first single “I Can’t Explain” – was written and recorded at home entirely by the band, free of major label tinkering. The record is Surfer Blood at its most adventurous and carefree.
Today also sees the reveal of the first video from the album for lead single “I Can’t Explain” – which you can check out below. Speaking of the video, Surfer Blood’s John Paul Pitts provided insight on the track and making of:
“The lyrics to “I Can’t Explain” are about a romantic encounter on a New Year’s Eve, so we wanted the video to show the events of a New Year’s party sped up. We ended up slowing down the song to half-tempo and choreographing all the background action in real time. This way the movement would appear to be sped up when played back at the normal tempo. Thankfully a lot of our friends showed up to help, I think a lot of them wanted an opportunity to throw cake at each other in their favorite bar… The video concept was created by our friend Ates Isildak: a local musician, videographer, promoter and clairvoyant.”
SURFER BLOOD NATIONAL HEADLINE TOUR
5/8: Atlanta, GA @ Shaky Knees Festival
5/9: Richmond, VA @ The Camel
5/10: Washington, DC @ Rock and Roll Hotel
5/11: Brooklyn, NY @ Music Hall of Williamsburg
5/12: Bowery Ballroom – Thomas Feteke Benefit Show
5/14: Philadelphia, PA @ Boot and Saddle
5/15: Asbury Park, NJ @ The Saint
5/16: Lancaster, PA @ Lizard Lounge
5/18: Akron, OH @ Musica
5/19: Indianapolis, IN @ Joyful Noise Recordings
5/20: Lansing, MI @ The Loft
5/21: Ann Arbor, MI @ Blind Pig
5/22: Chicago, IL @ Lincoln Hall
5/23: Milwaukee, WI @ Cactus Club
5/24: Madison, WI @ The Frequency
5/26: Minneapolis, MN @ 7th Street Entry
5/27: Kansas City, MO @ The Riot Room (Outdoors)
5/28: St. Louis, MO @ Firebird
5/29: Cincinnati, OH @ Fountain Square
5/30: Nashville, TN @ Exit In
6/8: San Francisco, CA @ The Chapel
6/10: Portland, OR @ Mississippi Studios
6/11: Seattle, WA @ The Crocodile Cafe
6/12: Vancouver, BC @ Venue Nightclub
6/13: Spokane, WA @ The Bartlett
6/15: Provo, UT @ Velour Live Music Gallery
6/16: Denver, CO @ Lost Lake Lounge
6/19: Los Angeles, CA @ Troubadour
6/20: San Diego, CA @ The Irenic
6/25: Jacksonville, FL @ Jack Rabbits
6/26: Charlotte, NC @ Fountain Plaza
6/27: Athens, GA @ Georgia Theater
7/11: Columbus, OH @ Seventh Son Brewing Co.
7/17: Rehoboth Beach, DE @ Dogfish Head Brew Pub
7/18: Frederick, MD @ Flying Dog Brewery
Click here to catch a sneak peek right now!!!
The Lips will perform songs from their Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band tribute album With A Little Help From My Fwends, as well as other predictably unpredictable surprises. The special premieres tonight at 11pm ET / 8pm PT on Howard Stern‘s exclusive SiriusXM channel Howard101, on the SiriusXM App, as well as online at http://www.siriusxm.com/. Check for repeats throughout the weekend!
With A Little Help From My Fwends, was released October 28th from Warner Bros. Records. The band has recorded their own versions of each track on The Beatles’ 1967 classic in their own inimitable style, with help from special friends Miley Cyrus, Moby, My Morning Jacket, J. Mascis, Dr. Dog, Phantogram, Tegan and Sara, Grace Potter, Electric Würms (THE LIPS side project, who recently released their 6-song debut album titled, Musik, Die Shwer Zu Twerk) and many others. Click here to purchase.
All proceeds from sales of THE LIPS current album, With A Little Help From My Fwends, will be donated to The Bella Foundation, a non-profit organization based in the band’s hometown of Oklahoma City that assists low-income, elderly, or terminally ill pet owners with the cost of veterinary care.
Feeding a growing appetite for vinyl and “specialty products” among passionate music fans, Federal Prism has partnered with Girlie Action, Acme Creative Group and Pledge Music to create a unique pop up Record Shop with an exciting mix of exclusive and limited addition titles. The store will operate for 60 days starting today.
Federal Prism’s managing partner, Jeff Bowers, discusses how the idea was conceived. “We are at a moment in music when some of the most well received artists and releases in recent memory have little to nothing in the retail space. It is my hope that we can take the lessons of Record Store Day and the resurgent popularity of vinyl, and pull these consumer models together and make a compelling experience for the fan. I am asking talented kids, the next generation, who have never sold anything in a record store to make something unique that interests them and their fan base, and we are placing that next to traditional music configurations by established artists. That doesn’t happen anywhere with any consistency. It doesn’t happen at iTunes and it certainly doesn’t happen at Best Buy.“
Bowers, who started DIY label Soul Force Records in his native Tempe, AZ at the age of 15, worked for a decade as a creative marketing consultant for Warner Bros. Records and Atlantic, where he worked on classic vinyl reissues by Led Zeppelin, Metallica and Neil Young, as well as Nirvana and Sonic Youth and more contemporary Record Store Day releases by Skrillex, Fun., Portugal. The Man and Grouplove. While at Warner between 2007-2014, Bowers helped the label secure the number one marketshare in the vinyl format, moving from mid-six figures when he started to eight figures by the time he left as well as founding three record labels signed to the group.
Flashback Cruise’s 3-day getaway hosted by MTV’s Downtown Julie Brown will celebrate four decades of dance music and pop culture with world renowned live performers, DJs, comedians, TV stars, and guest chefs. There will also be a celebrity cook-off for the winner’s charity of choice in addition to a Charity:Water awareness campaign where a portion of the proceeds will be donated on behalf of Flashback Cruise’s bookings. Setting sail from Miami to the Bahamas, February 27 – March 2, 2015, Flashback Cruise is the only cruise of its kind to unite entertainers, producers, radio and TV personalities, guest chefs, and a charity on a single voyage.
Live performers and DJs announced include: Lime, TKA, George Lamond, France Joli, Judy Torres, 2 In A Room, Nicky Siano, George Morel, Anthony Acid, Hex Hector and Angel Moraes. Artists just added include: DJ Skribble, DJ Riddler, Denny Tsettos, Razor & Guido, Johnny Vicious, Maximus 3000, and Jonathan Peters. A final round of headliners and special guests will be announced in September. Combined, they will represent the full spectrum of dance music from its inception as disco to its evolution as house and its present renaissance as EDM.
Organized by veterans of nightclubbing’s golden eras, Flashback Cruise offers more than just a great weekend of dancing. It offers a complete experience. “This is a trip music lovers, foodies, and party people can afford and appreciate much more than other festivals and cruises, where you feel like cattle being herded,” says Flashback Producer Ryan Morales. “We are offering people 72 hours of non-stop fun and excitement for less than a third of that price. They will get the show of a lifetime.”
Flashback Cruise is also connecting with past and present through social media. Flashback Cruise’s Facebook Ticketing Engine keep costs down, and make it easier for vacationers to buy their tickets, build party buzz, brand recognition, and share the memories with their friends.
Cabins start at $699 USD per person. Reserve a cabin with this special discount by visiting:HERE and use promotional code FLASHBACK. Payment plans available.
Flashback Cruise is the only experience-focused dance music, food and comedy event on water. The three-night cruise will entertain guests with original live acts from some of the greatest DJs and performers in the genres of disco, house music, freestyle and techno from the late ’70s, ’80s, and ’90s.
Flashback Cruise was created by Ryan Morales, a native New Yorker, audio engineer, and member of BMI. Ryan has been DJing since 1989. He was a resident DJ at New York’s notorious Limelight while still a teenager, and his production credits include remixes for major artists like Bon Jovi. He has played at some of the largest music festivals in the world including Ultra, and at some of the biggest clubs in New York and Miami. Ryan launched Flashback Cruise in response to the negative changes in the nightlife industry. “I wanted to go back to good old days, when you weren’t just a dollar bill to some club owner.”