Exactly one week ago I was dancing….
2020 has been a really weird year. It seems the world is constantly in flux, tragedy, or confusing conflicting situations. That doesn’t even take into account all of the rain, rain , and more rain. I was in desperate need to check out, do something fun for the sake of simple joy. I am so thankful Savannah Stopover comes so early in the year. It literally kicks off new music and provides a nice distraction from politics and pandemics.
This year was my 5th year covering this sleeping giant of a festival. out of the ten years they have put it on. I feel so lucky to be a part of Stopover. It truly is a diamond in the rough, and needs more recognition for the amazing music exploration opportunities it provides.
So you say, I don’t know anyone going. I just have to say, I meet the most incredible people each year. All ages and in all stages of life. Also, I am surrounded by people that love music. What could be nicer than that?
So you say, I don’t like big, crowded festivals. Stopover is for you. Each band plays in a small venue located around the city. The main stage at Ships of the Sea holds the largest crowd, but there is always room in the back or along the side to stay out of the maddening crowd (there is also a VIP lounge area).
So you say, I am not an indie music fan, well Stopover is for you. Over 60 bands perform and fit in many different categories, country, rock, dance music, post punk, folk, blue grass. You name a genre, almost any big genre and there is a band or a few for you.
So you say, I don’t know any of the bands playing. That is the point! It is total music discovery! With a little bit of perseverance and a lot of walking, you can see almost every band and learn who your new favorites happen to be. For me, I end up tracking my favorites throughout the year and always hear their newest music first. Many Stopover newbies have albums/songs that end up in the top music for the year.
So even though this amazing festival has come to a close for 2020, you can make plans for March 2021 and live vicariously through my 2020 photos. I saw almost half the shows. So sit back and let me reminisce my happy weekend with you. Crazy that it was only last week….it feels like a lifetime ago.
Here is my photo montage of the opening night…..
Opening Night Thursday
Stomp, Clomp, and Romp to the great bands at StopoverX.
Tall Tall Trees
If you haven’t experienced this talented musician’s show…you haven’t fully lived. Tall Tall Trees is Mike Savino and his electric banjo comes to life through his magical plucking. He adds loops and effect pedals which enhance the folk, roots, psychedelic sound. Did I mention his banjo lights up and resonates with the music? What an amazing start to Stopover X!
I have to include a cute photo of my favorite Savannah Stopover music loving friends from Myrtle Beach! This guy is always on the front row and knows his music. I am surprised he isn’t wearing his signature dark shades! Lucky me to have him as a loyal blog follower! He even made me hand out cards to everyone around them.
The Bones of J.R. Jones
It was incredibly cold on Thursday night. My hands were frozen because I didn’t have any gloves. The photos reflect my shivering and my cold to the bone feeling. Because the music was so amazing, the dropping temperatures and wind didn’t seem to phase the crowds. We all just huddled up a bit tighter, and moved closer to the music to keep warm.
Meet Karla and her husband Pete. She DM’d JR Jones aka Jonathon Linaberry and said she hoped to hear her favorite song they used in their recent wedding. Low and behold he did and gave them a shout out! What a great guy! They were thrilled!
I rushed over to Service Brewing because I had a quick minute to check out another band. I took in a couple of songs with Savannah locals, Clouds and Satellites. I enjoyed their indie/country rock vibe. They had the perfect sound for a enjoying a nice cold brew and gathering with friends.
Clouds and Satellites
Acid Carousel slaps! They are 100% energy and left my head spinning a little. It was almost impossible to capture their on stage photos without a camera I can’t afford. But, I gave it a shot and here are a couple worth sharing. The hazy photos resemble their enigmatic music. Go check them out, if you ever get the chance to see them live. They gathered a bigger crowd with each song, and we were all dancing and singing, never taking our eyes off of their entertaining performance. So much fun! Seeing them play was a happy accident, because I was actually there to see the next band.
Acid Carousel is a molded combination of 60’s psych/pop, maybe some of The Beatles dreamier tunes, and surf rock. Be prepared for lots of guitar, full on drums, and head swinging /banging beats. It was a groovy time travel. I had the pleasure of chatting with them after their show and found them to be approachable, fun loving, and true to their on stage personas. It was a pleasant surprise to say the least. Here’s hoping they venture back to Georgia sometime soon!
Atlanta’s own, Neighbor Lady was up next. They always put on a great show. Their sound is indie-rock with a hint of country. The lead vocalist, Emily Braden, has a power packed voice and the rest of the band stands strong in support.
And just so you know, this is Jordan Reynolds (who fronts Rose Hotel), but she was off to the side and sort of hidden from the adoring crowd.
I love this short clip of the band, because it gives you a hint of their talent.
I slipped into The Jinx to listen to a few of The Cowboys’ tunes on my way to the next gig. They had a retro indie sound which captured the many fans. I was surprised they weren’t a country band. I looked them up and found they are out of Indiana, and have quite a lot of depth of music. Check them out.
Elf Power has a vast history of musical influence. They began in 1994 in Athens, GA. They have collaborated and had contributions from Neutral Milk Hotel, Kevin Barnes with Of Montreal, and supported acts like R.E.M. Their indie rock sound is totally relevant today and they have a large discography of well written nostalgic tunes. This timeless band is a classic.
Here’s just a hint of the Athens band….
Hallelujah! I was finally able to experience Omni live. I have been following their music for a while now and love their post punk sound. I have sooo many songs on repeat on my personal Spotify playlist and I have shared them here on the blog. They continue to get better and better. Their show was a solid one as well. I love when a band isn’t over produced in a studio, so the “live” version is a great one. Omni definitely met all of my expectations. The fans were rocking out too, squeezing in every nook and cranny of The Jinx.
I hope you are safe, that you have provisions for social distancing, and that you can simply enjoy the beauty of gifted musical creatives. I have a couple of other posts on Stopover. Stay tuned and follow me to bring a little joy into your life.