If ever there were a man who knows how to throw pre-parties (and festivals), it is Russ Bowers. We are less than two weeks away from the 8th annual Orange Blossom Jamboree at Sertoma Ranch in Brooksville presented by Dunedin Brewery, celebrating the spectacular Florida music scene (May 18-21).
Did we say pre-parties? Russ held one last Friday at Will’s Pub in Orlando featuring The Applebutter Express, Harmonica Man and the Sawgrass Band, funkUs, and Wild Root, all of whom (except funkUs) will be at OBJ.
There is a pre-party on the Wednesday evening before OBJ at the ranch featuring Russ Bowers Isn’t Dead Yet, Antelope, Veird, and Free Range Strange (read more about that and the complete lineup here).
Isn’t that enough? NOOOOOOO, says Bowers. In fact, there are four shows this weekend featuring artists going to OBJ. Two are official pre-parties, and the other two might as well be.
Friday night (May 5th) at Skipper’s Smokehouse in Tampa, check out the hot grooves of Displace, Row Jomah, and shoeless soul, all of whom have been on fire of late. Displace did their annual week’s residency at Hog’s Breath Tavern in Key West not long ago, Row Jonah just released an excellent recording Live at Dunedin Brewery, and shoeless soul makes a joyful noise each time they play.
Saturday night (May 6th) at the Funky Biscuit in Boca Raton, there is an overpowering collection of talent with The Heavy Pets, Guavatron, and Electric Kif. The Pets are once again OBJ headliners. Electric Kif is proudly promoting their dynamite new album Heist, and Guavatron really knocked us out at Hometeam New Year’s Rally with their funky psychedelic prog.
Those are the official shows. But also consider the Orlando Double Decker, two great nights at Will’s Pub featuring The Groove Orient (Friday and Saturday). The Groove Orient has into a formidable beast after their cross-country tour last year. On Friday, they welcome the aforementioned Guavatron to the stage along with the always outstanding Leisure Chief (LC will not be at OBJ). Saturday, the Evan Taylor Jones Band and the Daniel Heitz Band join The Groove Orient.
So here are four outstanding opportunities to see nine of the bands who will play this year’s Orange Blossom Jamboree.
Get off your A$$ and JAM!