Let’s see how good you are with math! Ready? Go:
What does Music + Beer + the Dunedin Brewery + October equal?
Why, Oktoberfest, of course, the fabulous four-day event (Oct. 1-4) celebrating fall (well, the Florida version of it, anyway), amazing music, and spectacular beer, all at the amazing Dunedin Brewery. And the 2015 edition is, somehow, bigger and better than ever.
You can decide for yourself about the beer; let’s discuss the music.
The party starts in earnest even before the weekend officially shows up. Thursday is the day they fill up the liter mugs, and the only day they sell them. Get in line early. Your musical reward? Music from Row Jomah (7:30) and Serotonic.
Row Jomah are frequent visitors to the brewery; they held their CD release party there in July. This excellent rock quintet has been delivering knock-out performances all summer, including at the Keepin’ D Funky event. The album, Cat People, is great; you’ll hear lots of those tunes as well as some surprise covers.
Serotonic has been in overdrive ever since the Orange Blossom Jamboree. They have stretched well beyond their former jazz and funk boundaries to add some killer rockers to their setlist. The quintet absolutely blew it up opening for The Motet in August and threw down again at the Six Ring Circus.
DJ 45Revolver is as advertised, playing “hip house, acid house and deep house” with his good old 45s. He gets the party started early (5:00). The biggest surprise and recent addition to Oktobeerfest is Yojimbo (7:00). Actually, by the time they make it to Dunedin, whirling dervish Carly Meyers and her partner in crime, Adam Gertner, officially change the name of their NOLA band on October 1st to ROAR!
Yojimbo, or ROAR!, is the delivery vehicle for Meyers’ brilliance and madness. She is a mainstay in the Mike Dillon Band. When Yojimbo played the AURA Music and Arts Festival in March, the name Yojimbo did not register, but watching her flying around the stage certainly did. She plays manic trombone, Moog and bass pedals, and she sings. Cohort Gertner provides all manner of percussion, and Meyers does a bit of that herself. This will be special.
Then it’s time for Freekbass and the Bump Assembly (9:00). Freekbass (from Cincinnati) celebrated New Year’s Eve at the brewery, and it was magic. It’s magic every time he, Big Bamm on drums and Dan the sax man visit. This is funk, the whole funk, nothing but the funk. Deeper than deep. You’ve been warned.
Sumilan, an Athens GA prog/ambient/electro rock band, closes out the evening (11:00). They have played at the brewery a number of times as well, and they will send everyone home happy.
Now don’t be sleeping in. Displace begins Saturday’s crazy schedule at 2:00. This amazing quartet has been on a tear of late, including Reunion: Campout Concert Series at the Spirit of the Suwannee Music Park, a stunning post-Umphrey’s collaboaration with Roosevelt “The Dr.” Collier, and another superb set at the Six Ring Circus. Did we mention they’re playing Hulaween? No? Well, they’re playing Hulaween.
The Larry Mitchell Band (5:00) brings you transcendent trio rock and roll, followed by Rise of Saturn (8:30), a Tampa band who describe themselves as “nerdcore hip-hop fusion rock (prog hop).” And the ultimate performance of the night belongs to Florida jam royalty The Heavy Pets (11:00). The Pets hit the tour circuit hard this summer, including Peach Fest and AllGood, and they too are Hula-bound. Florida represent!
C’mon, you can do it. Just one more day. Music starts at 4:00 with a recently-solidified collaboration called the Dunedin Brewery House Band. Wednesday nights used to be an open jam, and you can still come sit in, but the house band now officially is: Brandan Lewis (Currentz), Austin Llewelyn (Row Jonah), Robert Sanger (Serotonic), and Dave Gerulat (shoeless soul, formerly with CopE). They sound great; check ‘em out.
The Groove Orient (7:00) motors in from Orlando bring their rocking set to the stage. They’ve played extensively this summer as well and have been holding dance parties wherever they go. Tommy Shugart is a very dangerous man on organ and electric piano, with guitar thrown in for good measure. Also: Hulaween!
If, somehow, improbably, your face has by now NOT melted off, Baltimore’s Pigeons Playing Ping Pong will finish the job. This is one insane quartet, all brilliant musicians who blew it up at their own Domefest and also blasted at The Big WHAT?, the Great Outdoors Jam, All-Good and the Peach Festival. Their psychedelic funk will grab you, because all they wanna do is “F.U… F.U.N.K.”
Do we need to go over that math one more time?