Trying to cash in on the recent trend of Small-market music festivals, St. Louis has decided to host the first annual LouFest in Forest Park between August 28-29.
The festival is positioning itself as an Austin City Limits type environment showcasing local bands and national acts that range in popularity and genre. 18 bands will pack two stages over the course of the two-day festival which features a headliner each night.
LouFest also bills itself as an eco-friendly festival offering an Eco Zone area to inform and teach concert goers about conservation, clean energy, recycling and local organizations committed to providing green alternatives. LouFest will also feature a Kids’ Village that provides the younger audience with activities and food specifically for children.
While ticket sales don’t begin until the end of March (date unspecified at time of publication), St. Louisans and other music enthusiasts are waiting for the lineup to be revealed. The LouFest website is encouraging fans to submit a list of bands they would like to see. If a band from their list makes the lineup they receive a free LouFest t-shirt.
The question is: what type of musical talent will St. Louis be able to recruit for LouFest? With the festival lineups across the United States and Europe already booked and announced, who is left to fill the bill in Forest Park this August?
The smart money is on Sammy Hagar headlining both nights, with hair-bands like Kansas, Styx, REO Speedwagon and the Scorpions padding the rest of lineup. Maybe throw in some Rascal Flatts and Brad Paisley just to be safe.
It seems to reason the indie rock genre will largely be ignored when promoters are contacting bands to play LouFest. Given St. Louis’ proclivity towards Top 40 hits, classic rock and pop country, it doesn’t seem likely that St. Louisans will embrace a truly diverse lineup like those offered at ACL, Coachella or Sasquatch.
Skepticism still remains on how much local talent will be present. Will So Many Dynamos, Gentleman Auction House or Thunderkid be asked to perform? What about larger acts like White Rabbits or Wilco – both with ties to St. Louis and the metro area?
No Matter who ends up performing at the inaugural LouFest, it’s nice to see St. Louis competing to become a summer music festival destination. And as with all things St. Louis, at least you can count on a pleasant atmosphere, good local food and plenty of Anheuser-Busch products.
LouFest will be held at Central Field in Forest Park between August 28-29. For up-to-date information follow LouFest on Facebook and Twitter.