A FozzyFest Experience
– by Kristal Hunter (Danio Management Contributor / Special Projects)
FozzyFest is a place where music, nature and people come together. It is a place where people can come together as a community of like minded individuals and unify on the dance floor. “It’s like a homey party” Freddy J had told me as it was his 6th year attending. “You can find your friends easily and stick with them all weekend unlike the bigger festivals” he said. This was definitely the vibe that I got during my weekend on Lake Koocanusa.
It was evident the amount of love and dedication that the crew and volunteers had for this tight knit festival. For example, upon my arrival on Thursday night I was greeted at the gate by Guru the Parking Manager. He explained that parking was looking completely full, and instead of sending me in with no indication of where to go he jumped into a golf cart and magically helped me find the perfect spot. I was extremely grateful and it left a great lasting first impression of the helping hands at Fozzy.
– love and dedication, Fozzy Fest crew and volunteers
Big ideas and small details had gone into the look of Fozzy. Art installations of floating picture frames between two trees, geometric 3D shapes, and beautiful hand painted tapestries hung around the treeline. Tara Handleman, the assistant art director, was amazed with all the hard work of the FFOC (Fozzy Fest Organization Committee). She explained them as being the “backbone of the festival” as numerous hours had been put into making Fozzy Fest come alive this year.
A favorite of mine was the prehistoric scene set up near the Forest stage. A large round table had been transformed into a dinosaur habitat equipped with a volcano that spewed out smoke. There was also a framed picture of Jesus’ Last Supper that my buddy Shane Langan had photoshopped dinosaurs in place of the disciples and Jesus feasting and mowing down their last meal.
– prehistoric scene near the Fozzy Fest Forest Stage
The location of Fozzy Fest is a hidden gem. Beautiful BC Mountains with a sandy beach that felt like it could have been from a tropical destination. The beach was a chill place to hangout for many during the day as some were spinning poi and hula hooping in the sand while parents with children made sand castles. Some attendees chose to experience the festival and fill the shoreline with a handful of houseboats. At night it was ideal to take a group of friends to star gaze while enjoying a fire spinner perform.
– Fozzy Fest – beautiful Lake Koocanusa, BC
There were two main stages at Fozzy; Beach and Forest. Each stage had its own unique design.
The “Shipwrecked” Beach Stage was in the shape of a ship broken in two. During the day the stern of the ship was equipped with PK speakers projecting bass worthy sound toward the lake where people could dig their feet into the sand and dance. At night the bow was turned into a dance floor that was lit from the inside out with color changing lights as psychedelic visuals were projected on the sails overhead. Also on the beach was The Apex dome, an intimate dance floor and a unique space where workshops were held such as: Raising Your Vibration With Superfoods, Chakra Exploration and Finding Inspiration Through The Turbulence of Travel.
– Shipwrecked – Fozzy Fest Beach Stage
The Forest Stage resembled the look of an ancient temple that had prayer flags strung along the top. It was nuzzled in the trees that attracted all kinds of party goers dressed as furry animals. This is where I had the chance to see performances by BC/AB artists Freddy J, Defunk, Bass Panda, and Bag- O Beetz.
Like always Freddy J was throwing down tracks with a crunky groovy feel that had everyone shakin’ their bodies from left to right. Defunk rocked a cardboard robot head while bringing forth old school hip-hop mixed with melt your face off bass drops had the crowd jumping up for more. Bag O Beetz, since seeing him play about 4 years ago, has progressed in technique as well as style. His love for reggae has now been placed hand in hand with different sub genres as he is experimenting with new sounds while expanding his skill. As for Bass Panda his set will remain memorable as he got down on one knee and proposed to his lady.
It was Slynk’s first time at Fozzy and he loved that there was a very tight community vibe to the festival and all the crew and volunteers were extremely accommodating while being a pleasure to be around. His day was spent hanging out with friends on a houseboat and enjoying the sunset while editing a few tracks before his set. As I looked around the dance floor everyone was smiling, groovin’ and bouncin’. I loved how his set started with a chill groovy vibe and end with drum and bass bangers that had everyone, including myself, losing their minds.
He also featured a new track from his recently released album Front Yard Futon such as: Toys, Just Stay There, Say Yeah feat. Dunks, and Again feat. Ace.
I connected with UK based Sammy Senior who mentioned how Slynk had always been an inspiration and an influence to his music. Sammy’s set followed Slynk’s and was full of familiar tracks from other ghetto funk artist such as The Funk Hunters, A.Skillz, Stickybuds, and K+Lab. When I spoke with a close buddy of his he mentioned how the majority of his track list was made up of his own edits.
– check out -> Slynk
It was also Featurecast’s first time at Fozzy and as he wandered around the grounds he got a similar vibe to Shambhala; friendly people, great crew and awesome surroundings. Kudos to everyone on the transportation and hospitality team for being on the ball taking care of artists’ needs. A special big shout out to Adam and Kazz for looking after him so well.
Featurecast’s set started with a groovy scratch on the turntables and as it progressed he threw down crowd favorites such as “Let Me Clear My Throat” with a breakdown that had every chest rumbling. Then out of left field he played the theme song for Fresh Prince of Bel Air mixed with “Very Superstitious” while cutting out the vocals for the audience to sing their hearts out. With his large variety of well known tracks it was evident that everyone was having an awesome time. With the help of PK sound it was by far the loudest set all weekend. To end off his set he played a familiar feel good track “Hit The Road Jack” which brought back that old school Featurecast feel.
The whole thing was totally insane in the membrane. If there is one thing I know for sure it’s that whenever I have the chance to hear and experience Featurecast live, I’m smiling ear to ear and dancing until my bones are stiff. Remember kids, always limber up before hitting the dance floor…especially when it’s Featurecast.
– check out Featurecast.
FozzyFest will go down in the memory book. The amount of local and international talent under two stages is worthy for anyone to experience. The dedication and hard work from the FFOC and crew makes it possible for Fozzy to keep truckin’ on and it’s no wonder they are on their 11th year and running. I would like to personally thank everyone that was involved at Fozzy Fest for making my first, but not the last, such a memorable experience.
– Kristal Hunter – Danio Management Contributor / Special Projects