Toledo Music Fest returns to Headliners June 30Written by Mike Bauman | | firstname.lastname@example.org
On June 30, more than 75 artists from across the musical spectrum will perform at Headliners as part of the 2012 Toledo Music Fest.
“The cool thing about this event is we try to keep it as local as possible,” said Broc Curry, president and founder of Innovation Concerts, which is putting on the event. “We want bands from basically like a 40-to 50-mile radius. We get hit up from bands all over that are like, ‘Hey, we want to jump on this. Can we come play?’
“We tried to stay away from bringing bands from Cincinnati and Cleveland because we want it to be more of a networking situation for bands.”
Among the area artists performing at this year’s Toledo Music Fest are Raine Wilder, Great Lakes Crew, OnceOver, Tropic Bombs, GOLD and The Strong Talk. After a seven-year hiatus, Toledo Music Fest made a successful return in 2011 with more than 70 area artists performing on four different stages at Headliners.
“Last year was actually overwhelming,” Curry said. “We actually ended up having too many bands. I had to cut it off at 71 just because there would’ve been no way for us to have enough time for all the acts if we had any more. We had another, like, 20 acts that really wanted on it.”
Curry helped put together the first Toledo Music Fest in the late ’90s at Main Event after the idea was brought to him by a member of the band Jank.
“It was a lot of fun,” Curry said. “And then ever since then, it hasn’t been an every year thing, but I’ve probably done it myself six or seven years. And when I wasn’t around, Verso [Group] did it about a couple times also on their own.”
Jeremy Lublin, a local veteran of bands Hearsay TAO and We Are The Fury who works with Curry at Innovation Concerts, played Toledo Music Fest in the early days and remembered the sense of community and excitement it brought to the scene.
“It was really cool because I think the first show I went to at the Main Event I saw Deftones, and I was like 15- or 16 years old,” Lublin said. “And then, you know, to a year, two years after that be able to play that same stage and have 2,000 people be in Main Event — you know, the patio, and the main bar and the concert room — it was kind of like a dream come true at that point.”
Tropic Bombs vocalist Ryan Wayton had a similar experience when his former band Promise of Tomorrow first played Toledo Music Fest in the early 2000s to a crowd of about 2,500 people.
“It was awesome to get to play for that many people because we were on the big stage — they call it ‘Main Stage’ — and it was just nice because all these people that never would have seen us before got to see us and we got to get our music out to them,” Wayton said. “What Music Fest is, it’s a really great tool for promotion and also for the fans to find new artists they like because it’s pretty hard to just find local music, unless you feel like going to different bars every night seeking it out.”
By booking a variety of artists from different genres, Curry wants Toledo Music Fest to provide a platform for local musicians to connect.
“It’s really cool just to have everybody come together, and it’s also really cool to see the aftereffects because you kind of see the relationships that are built after the show,” Curry said.
With a turnout of approximately 2,000 people at last year’s Toledo Music Fest and an active local music scene, Wayton and Lublin expressed their desire for Toledo Music Fest to be an annual event each summer.
“I want people — when they have to work — I want them to take off work every year,” said Wayton, whose band will perform at 11:30 p.m. June 30 on the Main Stage this year. “I want this to be the thing where they say, ‘There’s no way I’m working because Toledo Music Fest is going on.’ And I think it can get there if enough people promote it, support it [and] enough artists play it.”
“I would love to do it every year, and I hope that we can keep doing it every year,” Lublin said. “It’s a shame that it took such a long hiatus.”
The 2012 Toledo Music Fest will take place June 30 at Headliners, 4500 N. Detroit Ave. The event will feature a three-stage setup for an all-ages show that starts at 2 p.m. Tickets are $10 and available through Ticketmaster, Culture Clash Records, RamaLama Records, Shakin’ Street Records, the Headliners box office and all bands performing. For more information, visit innovationconcerts.com or 2012toledomusicfest.com.