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Forecastle Fest 2015


By Angela Ash

Photo Credit:  Tim Ash

Forecastle Fest 2015 is held on Louisvile's beautiful Waterfront, and it is something that everyone should experience... at least once a year. Throw your ideas of the regular music festival out of the window, because this is one of the most unique, creative weekends of live music that you will ever experience.  And the food isn't too bad, either. 

Forecastle is a genius, in brilliant disguise as a musical gathering, with plenty of fantastic local food and drink, imaginative art, quirky little memento and curiosity table fronts, empowering eco-informative booths, and a comradery amongst its fans that is not likely to be found again during this century in a crowd this massive.  In short, Forecastle completely rocks, without knocking over the person next to you or spilling your Four Roses Bourbon. 

Some may have wondered if Forecastle could possibly outdo booking the rock legend Jack White, but this lineup is absolutely stellar!

Friday, July 17

  On the Main Stage, festival goers see performances from Milo Greene, ZZ Ward, St. Paul & The Broken Bones, Cage The Elephant, and Sam Smith.


ZZ Ward

ZZ Ward performs early in the afternoon, racing through hits like "365 Days". Her interaction with the crowd is amazing, and festival goers get up off their blankets to move to her catchy, driven rhythms.

Due to weather conditions, Sam Smith was not able to finish his set as the headliner, beginning with numbers like "I'm Not The Only One" and "I've Told You Now", so it is a great thing that Cage The Elephant really gives the audience something to remember. Hailing from around the Louisville area, this band is nothing short of brilliant. Their onstage energy is explosive, and frontman Matt Schultz produces stellar vocals, even when crowd surfing! CTE explodes through fan favorites like "In One Ear", "Back Against The Wall", and "Ain't No Rest For The Wicked".


Cage The Elephant

The Boom Stage explodes with JEFF The Brotherhood, Cold War Kids, Gaslight Anthem, and Houndmouth.

Cold War Kids, hailing from Long Beach, California, illustrate why the Boom Stage is always a favorite at Forecastle, dishing out musical masterpeices like "All This Could Be Yours" and "Miracle Mile".

   The Ocean Stage showcases Empires, Cathedrals, People Under The Stairs, Kiesza, and Big K.R.I.T.

Kiesza easily rasises the energy at Forecastle with her unique style, mixing dance beats with nearly angelic vocals. Her set includes "Take You There" and "Hideaway".

 The WFPK Port Stage thrills with Parker Millsap, Sister Sparrow & The Dirty Birds, Fly Golden Eagle, San Fermin, and Alvvays.

Sister Sparrow & The Dirty Birds HAS to put on one of the best performances of the day! Arleigh Kincheloe is a vocal goddess, belting out songs like "Sugar" and "Mama Knows". This act is so infectious that there is a constant chatter throughout the crowd about JUST how impressive they really are. If you came to Forecastle without a familiarity of this group, then get on iTunes and purchase their latest album, "The Weather Below".



Sister Sparrow & The Dirty Birds

Saturday, July 18

   The Main Stage offers Mariachi El Bronx, Desaparecidos, The Word (John Medeski, Robert Randolph, Luther Dickinson, Cody Dickinson, Chris Chew), The War on Drugs, and My Morning Jacket.

My Morning Jacket, back home for the festival in their native home, bring the crowd to a frenzy with songs like "I'm Amazed".  Their six song encore also includes "Good Intentions" and "One Big Holiday". Everything about My Morning Jacket is just spot on for the "feel" of Forecastle, and the audience responds in a big way!

   The Boom Stage draws in crowds with Knox Hamilton, The Revivalists, Chris Stapleton, Shovels & Rope, and Sturgill Simpson.

The Revivalists offer their patented sound from New Orleans, showcasing "Standup", "Criminal", and "Catching Fireflies". David Shaw's vocals are magnificent, as the crowd often sings along.

 Festival goers also crowd around the Ocean Stage as they present Lower Dens, Son Lux, Dr. Dundiff & Friends, iLoveMakonnen, and Cherub.

 The WFPK Port Stage doesn't disappoint with Jeffrey James, Earl Burrows, The Wind and The Wave, Broncho, Twin Peaks, and The Barr Brothers.


 Sunday, July 19

   The final day of Forecastle is in full swing on the Main Stage with The SteelDrivers, First Aid Kit, TWEEDY, Modest Mouse, and Widespread Panic.

Widespread Panic are true veterans of the music festival, and they operate like a well-oiled machine, bringing the crowd through peaks and valleys as they sling out "Climb To Safety", "Chainsaw City" and "Sell Sell".

The Boom Stage offers performances from Noah Gundersen, Over The Rhine, The Lone Bellow, Portugal. The Man, and The Tallest Man On Earth.

Portugal. The Man brings in an eclectic aura to the stage, all the way from Alaska! They perform "Hip Hop Kids", "Modern Jesus", and a fantastic mash-up of "Another Brick in the Wall 2" and "Purple Yellow Red and Blue".

  On the Ocean Stage, crowds are treated with Fat Tony, Gabriel Garzon-Montano, Lizzo, Robert DeLong, and RL Grime.

  The WFPK Port Stage winds up with Twin Limb, White reaper, Diarrhea Planet, Field Report, and King Tuff.

Diarrhea Planet grace the stage with their exploding, almost Hendrix-like sound. They barrel through "Kids", "Heat Wave", and "Emmett's Vision".

  And surely by now you may be wondering where all of those delicious smells are wafting in from!  Forecastle brings some of the best food vendors in the area to offer quality, tasty food choices when it's time to fuel up before that next band hits the stage.  Visit Holy Mole Tacos, Mellow Mushroom, and a host of other regional favorites!


Even with hot weather and evacuations, the 2015 Forecastle Festival draws in elated crowds, ready to go with the flow, hear some phenomenal music, and eat deliciously crafted, local food.

For additional information on Forecastle, visit them online, and keep a lookout for more of next year's festival details coming soon. 

You can also take a peak at the feature from last year's Forecastle HERE.