Aug. 10, 11 and 12 marked the annual Bohemian Nights at New West Fest, which entertained Fort Collins with more than 100 live performances.
This year’s festival started differently from years past by featuring nine local bands on Friday, a noticeable increase from 2011’s opening night of two local performers and a national headliner. Among Friday’s best were Wasteland Hop, You Me and Apollo, Fierce Bad Rabbit and, of course, the headliner Michael Franti.
But rising above the rest were Wasteland Hop and You Me and Apollo. Lead Singer of Wasteland Hop, Steph Jay’s voice emanated throughout all of mountain street as the festival began on friday evening.
Each crowd for the day was so energized and so excited to be there enjoying free music that the energy carried on through the night ending with Michael Franti, who make sure he kept the crowd’s excitement moving through the entire night .
But on Saturday the horrible weather brought about a bad energy in the crowd, and not so fantastic performances either. The one stand out of the day was Sam Lee. lee is a singer songwriter from the Fort Collins area who is now in denver.
Being that this was Lee’s first time at New West Fest he was very grateful to be there. “They have really taken care of me,” Lee said.
Walking through Old Town square offered more than just the official entertainment, including a small street band off the beaten path that entertained an audience with folk music from makeshift instruments.
The rest of the day seemed to be filled with jam bands or ones that sounded as if “nickelback had an acoustic set” mentioned festival goer Jordy Fleming, making the rainy day even less pleasant.
The final closing day was filled great bands. Local group Sour Boy, Bitter Girl played midway through the day and didn’t disappoint as always.
Common Anomaly nearly filled old town square, and their special brand of electronic rock attracted a crowd of all ages and kept them dancing until their very last song despite unbearable heat.
The greatest standout on Sunday, however, was Denver band Air Dubai. They put on a fantastic show by the dispersing their energy throughout the crowd.
Despite some rotten weather and a few lackluster crowds, New West Fest did not disappoint this year, showcasing the best and brightest local bands as well as bringing in genre-spanning headliners.