Amid pleasant weather, Buttermilk boasted one of the best opening days for a Michigan music festival in recent memory. Get the recap, photos and video at Local Spins.
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Early evening on Day One of Buttermilk Jamboree at the picturesque Circle Pines Center — with the sun breaking through the clouds — proved to be almost idyllic, both musically and in atmosphere.
While Ferndale Americana outfit Escaping Pavement was impressing fans with its harmonies and fetching melodies on the main Orchard Stage, Bowhunter (featuring members of Red Tail Ring) inspired animated Contra dancing in the Sugar Bush Pavilion and Channing & Quinn began mesmerizing ale lovers with their quirky and intoxicating indie-folk in the Beer Tent as children romped and rolled everywhere.
“Channing and Quinn are the shizzle,” remarked festivalgoer Kristina O’Brien.
“I love being out here in the woods and listening to them.”
Award-winning Nashville songwriter Beth Nielsen Chapman followed with a poignant, story-telling set on the main stage as the sun began to set.
Consummate professionals all, performing in an inviting, laid-back, family-friendly festival that ups the ante each year.
VIDEO: Buttermilk Jamboree 2019 – Opening Day Highlights
“My favorite part of it (Buttermilk Jamboree) is the community aspect of it,” said festivalgoer Rick Folkertsma. “You can let your kids run around here like you can’t in neighborhoods.”
LATE-NIGHT DANCE PARTIES
Fan Marlene Salmon cited Buttermilk’s safe environment as a big plus. “I also love the awesome music, great beer and the super friendly people,” she added.
Things just kept getting better from there on Friday night, with Ann Arbor’s Chirp unleashing instrumentally demanding and puissant jams in the Beer Tent (including a glorious twist on The Beatles’ “A Day in the Life”) followed by Nikki Hill’s furiously raucous and retro rock ‘n’ roll set with her incendiary band on the main Orchard Stage, attracting a sea of dancers in front of the stage.
(Hill returns to the intimate Tip Top Deluxe Bar & Grill in Grand Rapids on July 5, and I’d suggest you waste no time snagging tickets for this show because this is powerhouse, fire-starting rock ‘n’ roll at its best.)
Later, with Grand Rapids’ Jukejoint Handmedowns showcasing their entertaining Americana ditties for folks hanging out in the Beer Tent, Kalamazoo’s reunited Funktion unleashed a late-night, full-bore, funk-and-soul dance party in the jam-packed Sugar Bush Pavilion.
Lead singer Andrew Schrock and band urged happy fans to “shake everything you got” and most of them gleefully complied, putting a funky exclamation point on the night with help from Last Gasp Collective which followed with a 1 a.m. Sugar Bush set.
Indeed, it may have been the best opening salvo on the first day of any Michigan music festival in recent memory, with Days 2 and 3 looking pretty inviting too (provided the weather holds) – with headliners such as Las Cafeteras and May Erlewine, and a host of regional stars.
Get more details about Buttermilk and full schedule in this Local Spins feature story.
PHOTO GALLERY: Buttermilk Jamboree Day 1
Photos by Derek Ketchum and John Sinkevics