By Mike Federali
In late October, Localpalooza will open its doors for the masses to experience a variety of music and entertainment. The full list of acts is massive and includes Clutch, Fairweather, Marcus Canty, I Am The Avalanche, Conditions, ASG, I The Breather, Jolley Brothers, Halloween, Glx Shxw, Flinch, CJ Milli, Freedom Hawk, Phillip Roebuck, Black Blinds, Born Loose, 138!, Iva, Audiostrobelight, From Fragile Seeds, The Dahus, Eli Cash, Jackmove, 710 Oil, Crossover, DJ Byrne 1, Misure, Straighten Up, Nova 6, Synesthesia, Streetz On Fire, Averman, Cooper And Stars, From Rooftops, Merchants Of Seven, The Holidays, DJ Wyr, The Bottle Babies, The Fuzz Band, The Gentlemen Bastards, The Alchemyst, Kelsey Vivien & The Clouds, Remnant, Unabombers, Dirty Steve, D*Nik, Southern Joint Committee, Corbin Dallas Band, Harvest The Innocent, Malt Liquor Sundae, Intalek And G Man, Pilot!, Rebel E, Full Fledge, Scram X Grit, Cock Diesel, Sanise’ Damone’ & Amnezia, Crazy Daze, No Dreads, Burn E Mac, Flyer Guy, Strike The Chord And Burn, Lost Rebellion, The Mercenaries, Hilary Drew, Suburban Sunday, Greg Gutty, Yell Rell, Soulstice Rebl, Hen Musik, Memoir Of A Massacre, As The World Burns, Diamond Dialect, Action Habit, Twenty 12 Tribe, Tuff Shorty, The Goodway, Union Picnic, Witness For Hope, Conquering Rome, Mindvent, Kaliwood, Defending Cain, Nzo Ferrari, The Pestilence Choir, Provoke/Destroy, The Loomis Fargo Band, Elko Tract, Tonezee, Jimmy New, Jj And The Buzz, Our Voice The Vessel, Life Love And Lunatics, DJ Sugarbearz!, The Great Dismal, Os76, This Is Your Life, DJ Jerm, DJ Mulli Mulls, The Daycations, We Call This Courage, Pin Up Troopers, Glasgow Kiss, Invisible Landscapes, Ebmh, 2 Bit, Starlife, We Never Sleep, Bbeck, and Avrex.
Organizer Rob Devinney is also amped for people to see this year’s EDM rave. “The Glow Show features the only unsigned 757 artist to sell out the NorVa four times in a row,” he said. “The Jolley Brothers crowd is massive and they have put together a big lineup of DJs for our festival. Flinch will be headlining the Glow Show stage this year and has toured with Skrillex, The Crystal Method, and several other huge DJ’s. We have a lot of surprises in store for this stage this year with it being Halloween themed. Nightmare Mansion out of Virginia Beach has some tricks up their sleeve!”
New for Localpalooza this year: WHRO and Defenestration have a streaming Localpalooza radio station that is 24-7. They have been a great supporter of the festival this year. We are updating it each week and it gives you a chance to hear a lot of this years artists! www.defenestration.net/localpaloozaplayer/
For the most up to date information visit the official Localpalooza page on Facebook: www.facebook.com/localpaloozafestival.
People can pick up General Admission and VIP tickets on sale at www.localpaloozava.com You can also pick them up at Shakas and Vinyl Daze in Virginia Beach and Executive Tattoo in Chesapeake, Virginia.
Local bands have been clamoring for the chance to play before so many new faces. As Tonezee (Tony Beckwith) explains, “I got involved with Localpalooza by hearing about it from other artists who performed at it the year before. I did a search and saw I could sign up for this year’s show. Not long after the show was announced i was asked to join the lineup. I love the idea of gathering local artists into one huge show. It’s hard getting new people to check out your music just from doing a lot of small shows. Performing at an event with hundreds of music fans is a great way to share your music with the masses. I’m excited to perform at Localpalooza not only because a lot of new people get to experience what I do but also because I get to see what other musical talents this area has to offer. Hopefully I’ll meet new artists to network and work with and catch up with others I haven’t seen in a while. No matter what, it’s going to be a fun time and I’m excited I get to be a part of it.”
The flipside of the crowd are also buzzing about the event. Dominion Derby Girl Christina Bieg can’t wait to see the show from the front row. “I think it’s a great opportunity for the local musicians and artists of Hampton Roads to showcase their work. It’s great for music appreciators to get a variety of genres and discover their new favorite bands.”
Rob Devinney is no fly-by-night rocker. He’s got deep roots in the Hampton Roads music community. When asked for a little look into his past Rob says, “I have been in several different VA bands over the years. Toured with Ki Theory, Fall of Transition and a few others. I got into trouble a lot as a teen. My uncle, Scott Secondino, gave me a bass guitar and from that point my life was changed. Music changed my life for the better and it is a very important and powerful tool for our youth.”
I sat down with Localpalooza founder and organizer Rob Devinney to talk about the festival’s fifth year and what fans should expect.
Why did you start Localpalooza?
Localpalooza was started as a way to showcase talent in the Hampton Roads market. Now in its fifth year we have grown from just 15 acts to featuring over 100 acts in one day. Acts from Virginia, DC, and even the tip of Maryland. Our goal is to showcase local and regional bands, DJs, comedians, local business owners, and a select charity each year. I guess I was tired of hearing people complain about the scene and the shortage of music venues. I want to prove to people year in and year out that our market has some of the most talented people in the country.
What’s the most exciting thing about Localpalooza?
Its unpredictable, you’re not going to find another festival with this much music, comedy, and arts in one day. I am very excited about moving up a month this year and doing it on Halloween weekend. Go karts, costume contests, a huge EDM rave, Clutch, a kids section, VIP areas everywhere, and the list could go on and on. I am most excited though about sharing this experience with each and every person that comes through that gate on Saturday, October 26. We are proud supporters of Operation Smile this year and they will be on hand to help raise awareness.
Did you have to overcome any major problems when organizing the event?
Our festival is the only of its kind in the United States. Providing over 100 bands, DJs, and comedians. Having this all in a twelve hour period is a huge task. Organizing 10 stages is a lot of work and the planning for this year has taken much more then years past. We learned some lessons from last year for sure. Having the event last year in over 7 venues at the same time was not an ideal situation but, it worked. We were able to provide support to “For Kids” a great Norfolk based charity. This year we decided on Motor World in Virginia Beach for the location. Having the event in one location solved a lot of our problems with permits and production which did provide a few snags last year.
Tell us about getting Clutch involved?
The timing for us and Clutch worked out just right. They were routing the second leg of their upcoming US tour when we started booking the main stage acts. Their team understood our format and how this festival works and wanted to be here. We are very excited to have them this year and look forward to seeing them back in Virginia Beach!
What local businesses or charity groups have helped with Localpalooza?
A Step in Time Chimney Sweeps is our 2013 presenter. They have been a tremendous supporter this year. Ray Gessner and his team have gone out of their way to help the festival. Every business and vendor involved this year and past years have been vital to our success. Having a network of stores, promoters, business owners and charity groups has helped us to grow each year. We are very excited to continue to support these people and the great work they do for us and the community.
Tell us more about working with the charity For Kids?
Working with For Kids was a great experience last year. The people in that organization do amazing things and are very humble. Just knowing that I helped to provide housing for a broken family is beyond words. I had a chance this year to work with Music 4 More, a group out of Baltimore that provides instruments to school music programs in need. I helped them in donating a ton of instruments to Oscar Smith High School. I invited the entire music class to perform the national anthem at Localpalooza this year. Make sure you come out early at gates to support the kids!
How many man hours do you think you’ve put into Localpalooza?
Way too many to even count. For about 4 months leading up I eat, sleep and breathe the festival.
Which acts are you most looking forward to seeing?
Of course, Clutch. Those guys are rock legends! They have been playing and selling out The NorVa for so long I am not even sure the last time they played in Virginia Beach. Getting to see Fairweather will be amazing; a band I grew up on and seeing them reunited and playing a festival I started is surreal. I will try and cram in seeing as many bands as possible. I am really excited about our EDM stage this year, some great up and coming DJ’s and National DJs. We are going over the top with the Halloween rave portion this year just wait and see. We have Nightmare Mansion and a Haunted walk through, a very spooky night planned! Also looking forward to seeing the painters live and all the artwork on hand.
What advice would you give to the people that complain about the music scene in Hampton Roads?
For the musicians complaining I say go pick up an instrument, go outside and play. Make your own stage, your own concert. You do not need a venue, do a house show. Scenes do not make or break because of one club or one promoter. Scenes start in basements and in hole in the wall venues. When I was 15, I would hitch a ride to Richmond each weekend to see bands play basement shows and small venues. DC’s Bad Brains had a very big influence on me when I was young.
Motor World, Virginia Beach