When this year’s festival season began, never before had I heard hype surrounding a Midwest event like what buzzed for Papadosio’s Rootwire Music and Arts Festival 2012. Touted by many as the region’s do-not-miss event of the summer, the decision of whether or not to attend became an easy one to make. Tickets were only $85 prior to the festival and $100 at the gate – featuring nationally touring musical talent, beautiful art installations, seminars and workshops that, when combined, suggested value worth much, much more than the ticket cost. Rootwire 2012 was hands down one of the best festival deals of the summer.
Throughout the weekend, music, people, and art equally triangulated their offerings in perfect fashion. Set against the venue’s natural beauty, these human elements morphed into vessels of self-expression – each inspiring the next, the people of Rootwire playfully celebrated life together. The gain of new friends, family, and experiences became everyone’s triumph, a collective statement proclaiming that once we become comfortable with ourselves, meaningful and long lasting relationships are inevitable.
Highlights of the Weekend
Jazz music at Rootwire? It’d be an incongruous notion for some, but Snarky Puppy absolutely fit the bill. Bassist Michael League and his funky cast of fusioneers brought their unbelievable chemistry and surely must’ve opened some ears to new sounds. Never straying far from accessible grooves, this show was an early indicator that Papadosio had booked some serious heat into the Rootwire 2012 artist lineup.
When The Nadis Warriors dug deep into their roaring version of “War Pigs,” I couldn’t help but smile, gently grinding my teeth in dark delight. Challenging the audience’s comfort zone by playing a Heavy Metal classic, this was a courageous selection filled with tasty bass thickness which presided over the entire set.
For any performing band, throwing down old-school favorites is a sure bet to get the crowd hyped. Signal Path’s set with Lotus’s Mike Rempel featured many including “Math Machine” and “Gangsterer than Me.” From all indications from their Rootwire set, SP mainstays Damon Metzger (drums) and Ryan Burnett (producer, guitar) are as focused as they’ve been throughout their already successful career. Expect great things to continue for these livetronica veterans.
Sometimes in life, you simply have to stop what you’re doing, look around, and appreciate the majesty of what surrounds you. Kaeppner’s Woods, located in Logan, Ohio, differed greatly from any typical “park in one giant field, camp in another giant field, see music in a third giant field” festival grounds. Rolling hills, ponds, and trees wove people and surroundings together for experience with nature, an idea some might take for granted in today’s age of corporate events.