Celebrating its 9th year, Northside Festival brought innovation and music to the city that has been the epicenter of music culture for years, Brooklyn. The festival started with focus on Williamsburg and Greenpoint, two extremely popular neighborhoods. If you live in New York you know that this wasn’t always the case. Pre-gentrification, there were no luxury hotels and trendy restaurants or boutiques.
As the neighborhoods changed, so did Northside, growing and expanding to Bushwick which has become the new hot spot of Brooklyn. With growth comes money, and inevitably corporate sponsors. That is a whole discussion all together, but it’s also what keeps these events going year after year. If it does right by the artists and community, I personally don’t think it’s a bad thing. Like it or not, it is a reflection of the current culture of north Brooklyn.
While most festivals focus on big name artists for the draw, Northside keeps it real, having smaller venues which drive the music culture hold a crucial role in the event. Although the festival showcased many emerging artists from all over, out of the 300 plus bands that participated this year a good chunk of them call Brooklyn their home.
Being cool is all about knowing something before everyone else, and one of Northside’s goals is to be a platform for discovery. Yaeji is one such emerging artist who only recently played her first show in L.A. where she created even a bigger buzz by premiering a remix of Drake’s “Passionfruit.”