Music festival features local flavor, bandsGet ready for a musical feast. Saturday’s Northwoods Music Festival serves up music for all appetites, from the soul blend of Diet Folk to the Indie piano tunes of Mary Bue and the hot rod surf rock of the Fractals. Add in some Mother Banjo, the folk harmonies of The Falderals and the modern rock taste of Albedo Effect, all served up on Barker’s Island.
By: Maria Lockwood, Superior Telegram
Get ready for a musical feast. Saturday’s Northwoods Music Festival serves up music for all appetites, from the soul blend of Diet Folk to the Indie piano tunes of Mary Bue and the hot rod surf rock of the Fractals. Add in some Mother Banjo, the folk harmonies of The Falderals and the modern rock taste of Albedo Effect, all served up on Barker’s Island.
“The quality of those performing is a given,” said Scott Johnson, owner of Northwoods Music, who coordinates the festival each summer. The area is blessed with talented musicians, many of whom Johnson features on his “Hometown Sounds” radio show on WWJC. Being able to keep his finger on the pulse of regional talent leads to the diverse sounds of the festival each year, Johnson said.
“We’ve thoroughly enjoyed the festivals,” said Pam Sprague of Florida, who has attended the last two. “We love to hear all that local talent. It’s a fun day.”
It features “basically home-grown bands from around the area,” said local musician Tony Garland of Poplar.
“The Twin Ports has great music here,” said Lori Mittlestadt of Superior. “Scott sets up a nice lineup of acts.”
The mood is relaxed and family-oriented, Garland said, with many things to do.
“It’s just a good way to spend the afternoon next to the water, being able to enjoy music,” he said.
Those who stick around for the headliners can even get “Fractalized,” what Marsha Wick of Superior calls being introduced to the Fractals. Wick admits she was the Fractals’ No. 1 fan for a long time. Her license plate used to read “Frac Fan.”
“They’re all wonderful guys,” she said. “Their spunk and toe-tap-ability make you feel welcome and glad you came.”
The band, which plays rock from the 1950s, ’60s and ’70s as well as original tunes, offers great dance music that appeals to all ages, said fellow Fractal fan Mittlestadt. Whether you just want to listen to music, sing along or kick up your heels, the Superior woman said, this band is for you.
“Get out and give them a listen and try to sit still,” Wick said.
The group interacts well with the crowd and members are very approachable between sets. Wick and her husband have gone golfing with drummer Marvin Pomeroy, they still meet former bassist Lefty Sandman monthly for supper and plan to attend band member Barry Pirkola’s wedding this Halloween.
One new feature of the festival this year is the inclusion of advanced music students from Northwoods Music, something Garland is looking forward to hearing.
The festival is once again partnering with the Humane Society of Douglas County. Johnson said adoptable animals will be featured, and all bar sale proceeds are earmarked for the organization. Both Johnson and his son have adopted shelter dogs, and they take turns serving up canine greetings as shop dogs at Northwoods Music. The family believes in the humane society, Johnson said, and they wanted to have a closer connection this year.
The Northwoods Music Festival takes place Saturday at the Barker’s Island pavilion. The gates open at noon with music starting at 2 p.m. A list of musicians and when they perform is available at http://northwoodsmusicfestival.com. Those hoping to be “Fractalized” can catch the Fractals at 7 p.m. Tickets are $20 at the gate, or $18 in advance through the website or at Northwoods Music, 1608 Tower Ave.