The 2nd annual Eastlake Music Festival (EMF) saw a dramatic increase in attendance, superb performances and overall production on May 23, 2015. By all accounts, festival attendance topped 7,500 people during 8 hours of DIY produced and nonprofit arts & entertainment programming.
Headliners the Oakland Interfaith Gospel Choir (OIGC), the Seshen, David Harness and Waterstrider brought incredible performances befitting their respective professionalism and expertise in their respective genres & styles ranging from gospel to indie rock and deep house to progressive psych rock. Through these acts and others (including Namarados Da Lua, the Bobby Young Project, Gilgamachine, TURFinc and the Oakland Future Trio), EMF curated an eclectic, eccentric and downright unparalleled line up of Oakland art.
Following the success of its debut in 2014, production, scale and layout of the festival expanded further in the Henry J. Kaiser Convention Center parking, where a 20′ Electronic Music Stage featured Dance-A-Vision’s gallery of dancers, many from the ever changing line up of the Oakland Dance Festival held annually in April. (Dance-A-Vision produces and curates the Oakland Dance Festival as well as their own stage at the City of Oakland’s annual Art & Soul Festival).
Legendary DJ’s from Oakland’s electronic music scene such as Jayson Kincaid (About the Music), Brian Salazar (Soul Camp), Taj Turner / Rahiem Jihad (Madu Soul), and David Harness (Mouton Records) took the reigns of the Henry J Kaiser Convention Center Stage and began to amass a dance crowd of hundreds into the evening hours. Against the backdrop of the dilapidated and blighted Henry J. Kaiser Convention Center still closed by the City of Oakland after 11 years conjured images reminiscent of the annual Movement Electronic Music Festival in Detroit, Michigan.
Late into the evening hours of 8pm, the Seshen took stage in the Lake Merritt Amphitheater and rocked the capacity crowd, leaving them rabid and thirsty for nothing more than a parade of encore songs. The Seshen obliged and flooded the festival, the lake and the city of Oakland in their sonic landscapes. Don’t believe me? Watch for yourself!
The Eastlake Music Festival is a nonprofit, 100% organized and run music and arts festival. We’re neighbors, friends, music / dance / art lovers who don’t believe in monopolistic, hegemonic, top down culture like that peddled by Clear Channel, Viacom, Spotify, iTunes, or even Pandora. New music is more than a gimmick; new music is a way of life. Discover the sounds of Oakland’s streets at the Eastlake Music Festival as it echoes across Lake Merritt, into the Oakland Hills and out to the rest of the world.