You know the names and maybe even the places – England has Glastonbury and Download, Germany has Wacken Open Air, California has Coachella and Chicago has Lollapalooza (not to mention literally dozens and dozens of other great music festivals across the globe). And now Buffalo has Cobblestone Live! Music and Arts Festival, which could soon become the Queen City’s signature music fest, a welcome addition to our summer’s already jam packed outdoor event schedule.
The inaugural Cobblestone Live! Music and Arts Festival, located in the heart of the Historic Cobblestone district in downtown Buffalo, on July 15 and 16, is brought to all of us by Buffalo Iron Works, Lockhouse Distillery and Sunbeam Entertain ment. A portion of all proceeds from the fest will go directly to benefit Planned Parenthood (find ticket info below).
While Western New York has endless summer concert series, Kiss the Summer Hello, Kerfuffle and so on and so forth, Cobblestone Live! presents something different and something so inherently Buffalo.
“It’s important to showcase the local scene,” Buffalo Iron Works General Manager Josh Holtzman says. “Nationals get a broader reach and they pull people from outside markets, and so we wanted that, too. But this was all put together by people who really care about the city and the talent in the area, so we committed to a festival that would be comprised of more than half local talent. The businesses involved are all local, too, from the vendors to the production staffing – it’s all Buffalo.”
“It’s true that a lot of successful festivals have a very narrow focus, but this festival is particular to Buffalo, it’s reflective of the community that is producing it. And Buffalo has eclectic taste. When we put our heads together, we wanted to come up with a lineup that offers a little something for everyone, that covers a lot of ground,” he adds.
The first annual music and arts festival will feature three stages – one located outside on Illinois Street, one inside Iron Works and one inside Lockhouse. Music enthusiasts can eat, drink and consume the best that Buffalo has to offer, all while enjoying sounds from acts such as Moon Taxi, Real Estate, Aqueous, Moon Hooch, The Hip Abduction, Solidisco, Wild Child, The Dig, Delicate Steve, Funktional Flow & more. In addition to three stages featuring over 35 artists/bands, there will be food trucks, beer tents, local vendors and outdoor activities so attendees can wander from stage to stage to get the full experience.
“I’m really looking forward to all the great music,” Sonny Baker, who will perform solo and as part of local institution Lazlo Holyfield, says. “I’m excited to be a part of such a great lineup and getting the chance to play both days. They’ve curated such a great mix of national and local acts. This town has so much talent to offer and they’ve done a great job picking out some of Buffalo’s best. With that being said, I’m also excited for people to have the chance to check out all of these bands in the span of two days. I love that people can come and go whenever they want. A lot of bands that are playing early get passed over by people that can’t make it to a club at midnight. And then there are a lot of heavy hitters playing at night. Something for everyone. I can’t wait to see how all of this plays out. The organizers have been doing a great job so far. It’s long overdue for Buffalo to have a festival like this downtown. Great spot, good people and great music.”
Gates open at 1pm and music starts at 2pm daily, and music at the outdoor mainstage will end at 11pm, with music continuing in Iron Works and Lockhouse until 2am. Perhaps the most unique aspect of Cobblestone Live! is that re-entry will be allowed, something mostly unheard of at music festivals, but hopefully will become a trend in the future.
“With two days and nights of music spread across three stages, we realize that people might need to take a break, maybe stop back at home, or simply get a change of scenery,” Holtzman says. “We want people to come for as short or as long of a period of time as they want to and are able to. We just want them to come.”
Tickets are still available – $25 day tickets / $45 two day pass / $100/$200 VIP levels – and can be purchased at www.cobblestonelive.com. VIP Level 1 include a Two Day Pass, access to VIP areas at Main Stage, Iron Works Stage & Lockhouse Stage, complimentary food at VIP tents, special merchandise items and collectible laminate from Cobblestone Live and more perks TBA and the VIP Level 2 includes all of that and a private Sunday brunch with live music from The Emporium (Mike & Dave of Aqueous) & Midnight Snack as well as a private open bar Happy Hour on Saturday.