The “biggest little festival” in Massachusetts just grew a little bigger. Starting off as a humble friendly barbeque, the Levitate Music and Arts Festival has since grown into a full-fledged weekend-long festival featuring top national touring acts, expecting a draw of over 10,000 fans per day. The fifth year will see the festival running two days: Saturday, July 8th and Sunday, July 9th.
The festival has gathered a lot of attention from fans and press alike most notably receiving a nomination from Pollstar Concert Industry Awards for “Music Festival of the Year.” Levitate blossomed in part thanks to rave reviews from The Boston Globe, Vanyaland, JamBase, and Live For Live Music, who have cited previous lineups as “supremely stacked” and “explosive.”
Levitate provides a unique and affordable festival experience fit for the entire family. The hand-picked selection and scheduling processes guarantee no overlap between major acts, meaning fans can enjoy the full offerings of every artist. It also allows for a one-of-a-kind lineup that is sure to stand apart from those of the shockingly similar major summertime festivals, all while maintaining a homegrown vibe centered around community building.
The Levitate Music and Arts Festival (LMF) is produced by Levitate, a community oriented surf/skate shop and apparel line based out of Marshfield. The husband and wife team of Daniel and Jessica Hassett own and operate the shop and threw the first LMF in 2013 as a ten-year anniversary party. Daniel began working at the store as a high school student in 2003 under the previous owner Bob Pollard, who taught Daniel how to surf and skate.
For more than a decade, Levitate has been involved in youth programs, beach cleanups, surf and skateboard contests and fundraising initiatives, including donating $18,000 to the Boys and Girls Club of Marshfield in 2016, with hopes to raise even more this year. The Hassett’s have consciously honored Levitate’s mission to lift up and grow the surrounding communities with their event. The organizers are adding a comprehensive recycling program at the festival, and are planning for more environmentally sustainable measures for future events.
This year’s headliners perfectly encapsulate the socially conscious spirit of the festival. From Boston-based favorites Dispatch, who have remained faithful to their independent roots while enjoying high levels of success, including being the first independent artist to sell out the historic Madison Square Garden. The purpose of that show? Raising funds for humanitarian efforts in Zimbabwe. Dispatch are set to take center stage alongside the likes of GRAMMY Award-Winning Ziggy Marley, and the label-defying musicianship of Umphrey’s McGee. The mix of rock, funk, and reggae is strengthened with the gifted and talented Lake Street Dive and the deep dubby atmosphere of Stick Figure.
The spirit of New Orleans will be showcased from its roots with the Rebirth Brass Band, all the way to the latest branch of The Revivalists, who are enjoying the success of their hit song “Wish I Knew You” which found the band taking top honors on the Billboard Adult Alternative chart.
East Coast favorites will share stages with national legends during this summer festival. Jazz-inspired jam rockers Twiddle will be representing Vermont, while the small state of Rhode Island brings a big sound in Deer Tick. Southern rockers JJ Grey & Mofro hold down Florida while Rubblebucket will showcase their brass-laden dance music. Boston-based funky rockers Ripe and alliteration-friendly Pigeons Playing Ping Pong will join stage as well. The conscious music of Trevor Hall and Giant Panda Guerilla Dub Squad compliment the lineup with an extra dose of reggae.
Ghost of Paul Revere offers a unique folk vibe to a carefully curated lineup while teenage blues prodigy Quinn Sullivan is set to impress festival goers of all ages. Landon McNamara will be flying in from Hawaii for his first east coast performance, fresh off the release of his debut album. Capping off the lineup announcement is Six Fox Whiskey, a local Boston folk-rock group.
Traveling the middle path of combining top-drawing acts with local legends, encompassed by a supportive community, helps Daniel Hassett continue to build on the Levitate legacy while remaining true to the culture of the festival’s roots. Hassett explains “It’s been an eye opening experience. It was like we threw a block party in a neighborhood that hadn’t had one in decades and you weren’t sure what the neighbors would think, and every single person said ‘Yes! What can we bring?’ That’s the reaction we’ve had from day one.” Hassett adds “Our community deserves to experience world class music and art in their own backyard. It’s been a very rewarding experience providing this, and being able to jump to two days this year is really special.”
Full Artist Line-Up:
- Ziggy Marley
- Umphrey’s McGee
- Lake Street Dive
- Stick Figure
- The Revivalists
- Deer Tick
- Trevor Hall
- JJ Grey & Mofro
- Rebirth Brass Band
- Pigeons Playing Ping Pong
- Giant Panda Guerilla Dub Squad
- Ghost of Paul Revere
- Quinn Sullivan
- Landon McNamara
- Six Fox Whiskey
The Fifth Annual Levitate Music and Arts Festival
Dates: Saturday, July 8th and Sunday, July 9th, 2017
Venue: Marshfield Fairgrounds
Address: 140 Main Street, Marshfield, MA 02050
Tickets: On Sale January 18th, 2017 $99 – 2 Day Tickets