An immersive, genre-crossing lineup heralded the mid-July Forecastle Festival along Louisville’s sultry waterfront. Mix in the makings of an adult playground: a Ferris wheel, bourbon tastings, party cove, and you have a summer festival worthy of a road trip.
Layers of brightly colored streamers adorned the VIP entrance - a perfect photo opp to commemorate your weekend. With scorching temps, the disco ball-decorated lounge provided a much-needed respite from the blazing summer sun and a place to crash between sets. You could settle in front of the screen streaming the main stage show if you didn’t want to venture out. Admission also included exclusive glam perks like massages, a braid bar, and glitter body art stations. The upgrade is worth it alone for the air-conditioned trailers with bathrooms, I promise.
Favorite Food Discovery
A sandwich toasted with peanut butter, jelly, and perfectly crispy bacon from Hippie Dips was a sweet and savory highlight. Their fresh fruit smoothies were fantastic, too. For supper, I headed to the La Chandeleur food truck and indulged in a delicious crepe stuffed with pulled chicken, spinach, creamy pesto sauce, and Parmesan.
Five stages with diverse lineups allowed us to take in acts like Sunflower Bean, Yungblud, Johnnyswim, Dawes, and more. The spirited atmosphere enables you to mosh with the best or soak in the sounds sprawled on a blanket in the shade. The fashion is also anything goes - the more glitter, the better.
With selections from 2018’s “Encore,” Anderson East drew one of the biggest crowds on the festival’s closing day. The Grammy-nominated artist fuses roots and R&B with an electrifying set.
Best Live Act
Tyler Childers has turned on listeners to his East Kentucky country sounds, and the grassroots movement has turned into a nationwide phenomenon. Less than a month until his next album release, “Country Squire,” - his first record for RCA - his set featured tracks from the upcoming Sturgill Simpson and David Ferguson produced project. The storytelling in songs like “Bus Route,” the stellar band, and witty banter make Tyler a can’t-miss act.
Music with a Mission
The fun and whimsy make the event unforgettable, but The Forecastle Foundation mission celebrates our planet, which is even cooler. A special auction was held in the VIP area to bid on limited-edition items and experiences.
“Our mission is to protect and connect the world’s natural awesome. We do so by shining a light on biodiversity hotspots - the richest reservoirs of life.”
I wasn’t super familiar with most of the acts on the bill, but that’s the beautiful thing about music. You don’t have to understand it - you feel it. It’s a freeing experience with people who are there to share a common passion. Forecastle Festival, with its emphasis on environmental matters and community, is a music lover’s dream.
For more on details, including alerts when tickets go on sale for Forecastle Festival 2020, click here.