The third annual StoopFest is taking place in Lansing this Saturday, April 21st. Located in six house venues, The Avenue Cafe, Mac’s Bar, and Allen Market Place, StoopFest features a full day of music, comedy, food, and art all over Lansing’s East Side Neighborhood. Headliners this year include Speedy Ortiz, Erica Freas from RVIVR, and Suzi Analogue, with a variety of Lansing area acts rounding out much of the bill including GTG Fest alums City Mouse, Blaine and His Keyboard, Dasterds, Birdhouse, Tidal, Half Tongue, Jake Simmons and the Little Ghosts, and Rent Strike alongside many other solid area acts like V Soul, Ozay Moore, Conspicuous Bystanders, Worn Spirit, Krissy Booth, Welman and so much more. Tickets, schedule, and more info can be found at the official StoopFest website.
This year GTG Records is an official fest sponsor and your humblish writer Tommy Plural is on the fest organizing board. I won’t claim any credit in securing the lineup, I’ve mostly been a brainstorming presence and sounding board that will be completely overworked show-running the day of the festival, but I’m super proud to be involved with this festival. The Plurals played the first two years and I also stage managed/volunteered but it’s been a blast being involved from the ground up this year. I’ll be stageside at the Avenue for much of the day before high-tailing it to run sounds at Mac’s Bar for the night show there but I’m hoping I’ll get a chance to pop into a house venue or two at some point in the day. There’s too many acts to highlight but if I can catch a tune by Erica Freas and Speedy Ortiz I’ll be satisfied as a fan.
Before we know it the fest will be here and done so I want to quickly give a shout to the people that I’ve had the good fortune to work alongside. The entire group of folks that have curated the fest this year is a great collective of different Lansing music figures from different backgrounds and perspectives, not like GTG Fest’s boring old “all indie/punk musician” fest board. Dom Korzecke – whom I’ve known as a radio personality at 88.9 for many years – and James Radick – from Fusion Shows and GTGers Small Parks – are the festival founders and main movers and shakers, the ones that are there first and stay the latest, agonizing over every detail and I can only assume somehow they enjoy themselves (they do). Working alongside Cale Sauter once again has been a pleasure, he and I go too far back and too deep together with the Cartridge Family and Bermuda Mohawk, but having someone with Cale’s wealth of knowledge and experience (dude was already a veteran of running house shows and booking DIY bands when I met him as a wee lad in 2005) is a big plus for the fest this year. Fusion Shows fixtures Erica Marra and Claire Postelli are always a joy to work with, they’ve shared the pain with me during some of the long load-ins and soundchecks and delayed schedules at Mac’s Bar so kudos to them for wanting to continue being around all this show garbage! I’ve really enjoyed hearing their perspective on the best way to put this fest together and I hope they don’t think I’m just ripping off their ideas at GTG Fest this year. John Warmb from Rent Strike is a force of nature and his vision and passion for house shows is something we could all aspire to – along with Cale, John is hosting performances at his own house as well as organizing (and performing, sheesh!) so that’s a big tip of the hat right there. Joe Steinhardt from Don Giovanni Records is the last of the main organizers and also the latest for me that I’ve had the pleasure to make the acquaintance. Joe has many years of different experiences in the DIY community that we’ve all gained something from in the final manifestation of this fest and I look forward to seeing him stumble around the fest showing the touring bands a good time. There’s of course many other cogs in the wheel and I know graphic designers Zoshua Korzecke and Autumn Hilden, Ted Wilson from Replay, Tricia Chamberlain from Comedy Coven, Zane Vicknair from StreetKitchen, and all of the venue hosts deserve a shout-out too – basically this is a great festival highlighting Lansing. Let’s show ’em all a good time!