There is no place on the planet like the Shambhala Music Festival. Each year, along the life-giving Salmo River in BC - clearly Canada's most beautiful province - thousands of people gather around the semi-permanent stages that have waited all year, to build a colourful, loving, excessively fun community for three-to-five days (Depending on how you Shambs). The setting, the people, the music...it's been the basis for an entirely new part of my life. I have forged stronger friendships with old friends there, I have met new beautiful friends that I talk to near-daily and, last but not least, it opened me up to the thrillingly diverse world of electronic music. The learning curve is steep and I wouldn't have even started the process if I hadn't stepped onto the Farm for the first time a few summers ago. So, as we prepare to return Home a mere three weeks from now, I present my first batch of must-see (that-I-will-probably-get-distracted-from-seeing) picks.
Actually, first off, let's get mushy. Remember those new friends I mentioned earlier? Well, thanks to the lovely people at the Pagoda, they were able to have the most perfect wedding, early Friday afternoon last year. The day was a Pinnacle of Life. Two giant rainbow people, bursting with love, combining their powers once and for all in the heart of the most loving place I've experienced in my short time on Earth. To you two, to everyone who was there, to everyone who stopped by camp for a dance and to everyone who makes that wondrous place go, THANK YOU. I'll stop now.
Russ Liquid Test
(Grove – Friday, 4PM)
This is the year I spend more time in the Grove and Russ Liquid is where I'm going to start. I don't really know what this “Test” thing is all about. I don't know if the homie is testing new stuff, playing with guests or whatever else, but it really doesn't matter, because if I've learned anything over the last few years of musical digging, it's that anything that has the name RUSS LIQUID on it is going to be of some major quality. It doesn't matter if he's working with heavy-hitters like Gramatik and Opiuo or working on his own, the guy clearly knows his music and, more specifically, he knows his grooves. Armed with his incredible trumpet abilities and a seemingly unquenchable thirst for sultry, hip-winding rhythms, Russ Liquid is guaranteed to be the perfect start to your first night of ultimate partying at Shambhala this year.