Random Reflections: Our Thoughts on the New Priorities of Bumbershoot 2011


While there are certainly those who’ve been outspoken about the lack of relevant big name acts (sorry Hall & Oates) at Bumbershoot 2011, we’re seeing the silver lining in the fact that local acts have been given access to a potentially larger and more appreciative audience.

While the Black Eyed Peas or Katy Perrys from previous years drew in thousands of screaming fans, the presence of mainstream radio enthusiasts didn’t translate into increased interest in what makes Seattle music festivals so great – The intermix of homegrown local talent with lauded artists (musical and otherwise) from all corners of the world.


The lack of pop radio powerhouses, outside of Wiz Khalifa and a few others, brought an admittedly smaller crowd. Of those in attendance, however, a larger percentage was at Seattle Center to experience the variety of all Bumbershoot has to offer. From visual art to comedy to film to theater to music and beyond, at Bumbershoot 2011 there was certainly something to keep most everyone happy.


Could the festival have scored a few more buzz bands to help the festival’s reputation and attendance? Certainly. But all in all, with a widespread variety of acts ranging from Little Dragon (see our Day 2 recap) to Charles Bradley (see our Day 3 recap), we fully support One Reel’s initiative to focus on smaller bands and not spend exorbitant amounts on disappointing sets like Bob Dylan’s from 2010.

Be sure to check out our Bumbershoot 2011 coverage.

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