It’s that time of the year again when LTAM gives its annual “5 reasons” to attend the best concert in Chicago, North Coast Music Festival. Some things on this list are the same as last year and some are new because while North Coast makes sure to reinvent itself each year, it also makes sure to keep the aspects that make it great.
Anyway, like always, this list is not for the festival rats or music snobs, those guys already know that North Coast is the can’t miss festival of the summer. This list is for you normal folk who are more likely to go to Bruce Springsteen on September 7 & 8 than ever step inside a music festival that features a few dozen DJs mixed in with jam bands and hip-hop artists. And, I get it. I was one of you up until the first North Coast on Labor Day weekend 2010.
So, once again, here are the 5 reasons you should trade in your business casual for a tank-top and cheap sunglasses, and join the folks over at Union Park this Labor Day Weekend.
5. Judgment-Free environment: Unlike Lollapalooza, you don't have to worry about seeing somebody from work at this show. Because if you do see someone from work at North Coast, they won't expose you for the tank-wearing partier you really are because people who hate fun don't show up for North Coast. Judgmental fun-haters go to f-ing Coldplay concerts, drink 2 beers, and cry during the "Scientist"
4. Awesomely Weird People: At North Coast 2010, my friend hit me on the shoulder and I turned to see his jaw on the ground as he pointed in the direction of the most awesomely weird thing I've ever scene: A 200lb man rolling around on the ground pretending he was a dog, and lapping Dr. Pepper with his tongue from a glass placed on the ground by one of his friends. Upon quenching his thirst, he looked up to his friend/"master" for approval, just like a good dog would. Do I seriously need to give 3 more reasons to go to this show?
Oh yeah... he wasn't on drugs. He was just on weird.
3. Independently owned: The North Coast Music Group is comprised of Lucas King, Jeff Callahan, Michael Berg (aka the frontman of Van Ghost), Michael Raspatello, Martin Malafaktor, Ed Walsh, Max Wagner, Leif Moravy, Pat Grumley, Adam King, Peter Ski, and Eddie Carranza. And they rely on hundreds of other independent promoters and volunteers and entrepreneurs to make it happen. These guys are the mom & pop grocery store of the music industry, except they are so ahead of the curve, that the corporate owned festivals and promotion companies can’t put them out of business.
2. See the Acts that are about to make it big: Look no further than Lollapalooza stealing half their acts each year to know just how ahead of the curve they truly are. So come to North Coast this year before the acts cost double at Lolla 2013.
Need more proof? Last year at North Coast I saw Rubblebucket at 2pm on Saturday, one of the first acts of the day, with just a few hundred people and they absolutely killed it. Ten months later they were on Jimmy Kimmel Live. So, yeah, these guys know how to spot talent.
1. No Work on Monday: This is more about us Americans giving the Laborers of America a day off on the first Monday of September than anything the festival actually does. Nonetheless, rage away on Sunday without the guilt of having to call in sick on Monday.