Element Music Festival aims to turn back the clock this August 3-6, with a festival full of top tier talent, but one that allows “time and room to breathe,” as EMF Left Winger Keither Duggan likes to put it.
The String Cheese Incident are headlining this festival at Snug Lake Amphitheatre near Princeton, British Columbia, along with Garaj Mahal, who will be reuniting for the first time in nearly a decade. Garaj Mahal will be the only band playing on Thursday night, so arrive early if you want to catch their first show back in action.
“Some of our guys were really into Latin fusion and fusion jazz, and so when Garaj Mahal first came together and we played some shows together it was always kind of like ‘Oh my God, this is going to be like going to school,’ and Fareed is actually a professor. So for anybody that plays any instrument, their world class musicianship makes it so it’s always a treat to check them out.” said Michael Kang, mandolin and fiddle player for The String Cheese Incident, in an interview with The Poke Around, published just last week.
Message from Kai Eckhardt, bassist of Garaj Mahal:
SCI and Garaj Mahal have crossed paths more than a few times over the years, as they each carved out reputations as two of the most creative bands on the scene. Joining forces at Element Music Festival, with SCI playing six sets, and Garaj Mahal playing five, they should provide a fresh and creative musical environment for everyone in attendance.
Sunday’s SCI sets will be sandwiched by multiple sets of a special Steve Kimock and Friends roster that includes Jeff Chimenti, Bobby Vega and John Morgan Kimock, in addition to the collaborative possibility of anyone else on this intimate festival lineup. That list is filled out by the Denver-based prog-rock band Genetics, as well as a few of Vancouver’s finest, funk-rockers Five Alarm Funk, Brickhouse, and Big Easy Funk Ensemble.
The team at Element Music Festival booked so few, yet high-quality, artists so that each one could play longer sets, and more of them, with no music starting before 3 p.m. This will give people the chance to explore the pristine grounds during the day, and every note of music at night.
“The other side of this formula is the incredible beauty of the Snug Lake Amphitheatre site. It’s truly breathtaking, and it would be a shame if folks didn’t have the time to relax and enjoy the venue, or to explore the surrounding area, because their schedules were packed too full. Just like great music, a great festival is a living thing that needs to breathe, in our opinion.” Duggan said in an email exchange with The Poke Around.
Snug Lake Amphitheatre (Gate to Snug Lake):
Snug Lake Amphitheatre has a single main stage situated at the bottom of a natural bowl, and in front of Snug Lake itself, where patrons are free to spend their days swimming, fishing or just relaxing by the water. There are also mountain biking and hiking trails weaving through half-dozen lakes within a 30-minute hike from the venue, and virtually zero light or noise pollution from the surrounding area.
For more information on Element Music Festival, including very reasonable camping gear-rental packages, please visit their website, here.
Article by Richard Oakley
Element Music Festival – Daily Schedule: