This weekend Pickathon Music Festival brings together more than 50 bands, several thousands attendees, an army of volunteers, and a spirit of sustainability that is unique in the festival world. Pickathon approaches its bookings with a noticeable curatorial hand. The “pick” in Pickathon is a nod to the traditional bluesgrass and folk traditions, represented by performers like Charlie Parr, Willie Watson, and Leroy Thomas & The Zydeco Roadrunners. But the festival books a spectrum of different kinds of acts, this year including post-punk 80s heavyweights X, indie rockers The War on Drugs, psychedelic bands Unknown Mortal Orchestra and Foxygen, Portland folk band Blind Pilot, and hard-to-classify but popular Pickathon performers like pianist Marco Benevento.
They play on two side-by-side main stages under a suspended fabric canopy of geometric shapes and colors, lending both mid-afternoon shade and a sense of cosiness to the late evening headlining shows. There are stages nearby in the Galaxy Barn, and a short walk through the trees to the Woods Stage. Vendors don’t sell food with disposable plates or beer in plastic cups, so attendees either bring their own, or buy a sturdy metal Pickathon beer cup and plastic dishes to take home and reuse.
Here are some past opbmusic studio guests among the performers we look forward to at this year’s festival, plus a vidoe we shot at Pickathon last year:
Marco Benevento (Saturday night at 1am, Sunday afternoon at 5)
Playlist: Marco Benevento at OPB
The Sadies (Saturday night at 11pm, Sunday at 12:30pm)
The Sadies - Ten More Songs
Unknown Mortal Orchestra (Saturday 2:45pm, Sunday 11:20pm)
Playlist: Unknown Mortal Orchestra at OPB
Yellowbirds, recorded at the 2013 festival
Yellowbirds: The Ceiling (Live for opbmusic at Pickathon)
Look for photos and a recap of the festival next week!