PHOTOS: Bumbershoot 2023- Seattle, WA 9/2-9/3

With a lineup almost as diverse as the weather in Seattle this past weekend, Bumbershoot delivered on its 50th anniversary with and experience that was a full-on typical Pac NW affair with rain, clouds, and sun all accompanied by a wild variety of music, arts, food, and culture. Whether it was kids frolicking in the fountain, models walking the runway, short films playing, or thousands head-banging, the weekend truly offered something for everyone. The eclectic lineup combined late 90s and 20s grunge, punk, rock (mostly from Seattle) and more modern indie, funk, alternative rock (also mainly local). Bumbershoot’s crowds also varied largely in age. Regardless of age, similar to music, everyone seemed to be vibing, hooked on a similar high. The many DJ’s who performed throughout the weekend also shared in this trend with varied music and interesting mixes, their energy was palpable.

Highlights of the weekend included Matt and Kim. They hadn’t performed live in years and came home with an unmatched vibrancy that was contagious. Neither artist was able to stay seated for long and the crowd erupted when Kim ditched her drum sticks for a couple of giant dildos. Durand Jones, who now is touring solo after a few years with the interventions, commanded the stage as usual. Durand dedicated the weekends performance to the LGBTQA+ community mentioning that (He) recently has come out as queer, receiving tons of cheers and support from the audience. The cheers were only amplified when he moved away from the mic and began to soulfully lay it down on the saxophone. Brittany Howard came out with ENERGY, repping a shiny and flamboyant shawl. The only thing groovier than her outfit were the soulful guitar licks which gave balance to her powerful voice. From the looks of it, no one is having more fun than she is while performing on stage. Uncle Waffles walked on stage to a hyped crowd who minutes before the show began their chants “We Want Waffles!”. Once the South African DJ began her set, the whole front row began what seemed like a choreographed dance which lasted until too many passersby joined in and there was no longer room to dance. The weekend finished out with the legendary Fat Boy Slim, whose performance sampled and showed homage to many great artists like Arthea Franklin and Marvin Gaye. The perfect ending to reflect the diverse lineup of DJ’s and instrumentalist/vocalists. With so many great artists to choose from, one of the hardest decisions to make each day was where to start and even more difficult where to end. All in all, the 50th anniversary of the legendary Bumbershoot proved to be one special weekend for one special city.