McDowell Mountain Music Festival: A Weekend of Indie, Funk, and Jam
Written by Andrea Hnatievych
McDowell Mountain Music Festival (MMMF) is back this March 3rd-5th in Phoenix, AZ for its celebration of community, culture, and charity. Dedicated attendees return year by year for the diverse lineup, desert landscape, and great atmosphere. Though there are no set overlaps, here is a day by day breakdown of the lineup to serve as both an introduction to some new talent as well hype for some our favorites:
DAY 1- “INDIE EASE IN”
Bob Moses(5:30-6:30 pm)
A great start for the electronic acts of the weekend, this deep house duo describes their sounds as “music that will make you want to build a highway through a low-income neighborhood”. Be sure to catch this sunset set on Friday at Stage 1.
This LA-based, contemporary indie rock band with hits such as “Tounge Tied” and “NEVER TRUST A HAPPY SONG” will get you relaxed after a long week at work or school.
The Shins(9:30-11:00 pm)
Originally from New Mexico, this popular Indie Rock band resembles traditions of classics such as The Beatles, the Zombies, and the Beach Boys with a twist for the newer generations.
DAY 2 – “FUNK PARTY”
A 9 member “Powerfunk” group, they have elements of Pop, R&B, & Soul interlaced with their main aspect of funk. Their live shows are described as “high energy & “floor shaking”.
2016 was a huge year for this Colorado trio, launching their EP, Odyssey (All Good Records), that featured world-famous funk master, Griz, and members of Big Gigantic. They are classified as live-electronic music, describing their sound as an “Electronic Hydro Funk Experience”.
Emancipator Ensemble (8:45-9:45 pm)
Based out of Portland, Oregon, Douglas Appling has released six albums, founded his own record label, and formed this live band that creates unforgettable experiences since his original debut in 2006. This four piece band is of the electronica, ambient, and downtempo variety.
Originally from Australia, Flume just recently won Best Dance/Electronic Album at the 2017 Grammy Awards for his album Skin. His music is best described as atmospheric dance music that was originally inspired by British garage music and house.
DAY 3- “JAM CHURCH”
Railroad Earth(5:00-6:00 pm)
This amplified string band uses drums as well as amplifiers, something considered quite unique in the jam/bluegrass world. Their sound is similar to rock music but with the use of acoustic instruments, check out their debut album “The Black Bear Sessions” for a sneak peak.
Bass-heavy funk and spidery guitar work describe this psychedelic funk family, giving a new spin to the EDM genre of future funk. Check out “Get Greasy” and “Phyllis” if you haven’t heard of them before.
Gov’t Mule(8:00-9:30 pm)
Government Mule is a side project of The Allman Brothers Band, often referred to as Mule. They are considered jam with a taste of funk and blues rock elements and will be closing out Sunday night, an hour and a half long set that you don’t want to miss!