Richmond's ears will buzz with a new indie-rock music fest that's bringing headliners the Breeders and Deerhunter to town in early August.
The festival is the brainchild of former Virginia Commonwealth University student Andrew Holden and his business partner, Scott Tripp — whose parent company, Big Plate Services, is based in Northern Virginia.
"We saw an opportunity here for a music and beer festival," Holden says. "This is the first one we're rolling out. We want it to be an annual event."
In the age of the corporate-driven music festival, outdoor concerts keep popping up like sweaty, hula hooping whack-a-moles emerging from a sea of Porta-Potty holes. The successful ones draw big crowds and big business, with Fortune magazine reporting that Coachella made $47.3 million in revenue last year.
But we're still learning what works in Richmond, where a Bonnaroo-like bonanza has been elusive, save the popular Richmond Folk Festival.
The Sound City RVA Bands and Brews festival (soundcityrva.com) is scheduled to feature 10 bands during two days — Saturday, Aug. 10, and Sunday, Aug. 11 — at Historic Tredegar in the field behind the American Civil War Center.
Such local bands as the Trillions and Leagues are on the roster alongside touring acts including the Mexican Elvis, El Vez, and Those Darlins from Nashville, organizers say. Holden says some details are still being finalized.
The field can hold 10,000 people, but Holden says the festival hopes to cap ticket sales at 5,000. Tickets are $30 per day, or $50 for the weekend, with VIP packages available. Numerous local breweries will be represented, including Hardywood Park Craft Brewery, James River Brewing Co., Starr Hill, Devil's Backbone and others. Clear Channel is a corporate sponsor, with XL-102 as the presenter.
The event comes on the heels of news about the Fall Line Festival, a locally run music bash scheduled to play out at a variety of downtown clubs Sept. 6 and 7. It features mostly local acts as well as touring dance sensation Big Freedia. That's the same weekend as Interlocken Festival in Nelson County, which expects more than 70,000 concertgoers, and the annual Hopscotch Festival in Raleigh, N.C.