Bonnaroo Artists Spotlight by Sarah Sharp

With less than a week away until Tennessee’s most anticipated annual music festival, it’s time to crack the whip and do your Bonnaroo research. So we thought we’d help you through the long ass list of bands, especially since this year’s lineup is full of up and coming artists that not everyone is familiar.  Click here to read the full preview.

Fitz and The Tantrums

This L.A. six piece came out with a hell of a retro soul pop album in August 2010, Pickin’ Up the Pieces. It’s a little Motown, a little Hall & Oates, and a lot of organ, which tends to be the centerpiece to which the songs are constructed. If you happened to miss them at Cannery Ballroom in October, don’t be foolin’ around and miss them again at Bonnaroo.

Gary Clark Jr. 

This guy is the definition of blues. True story. He is known as the “savior of blues” in his hometown of Austin, Texas. He’s not yet 30, but he rips on guitar like it’s an extension of his own body, and howls like a man that sold his soul to the devil down in the Mississippi Delta.
Little Dragon

The Swedish indietronica band sounds like sexy, rhythmic synthpop. They are lead by Yukimi Nagano, whose dreamy vocals are a hot commodity, as she has been featured on tracks by Gorillaz, José González, DJ Shadow, and fellow Bonnaroo artist SBTRKT.

DJ and producer from London, AKA Aaron Jerome, fuses together two-step, house, R&B and dubstep to create elegant electro R&B.  He performs live with fellow Young Turks artist, Sampha, who sings, plays keyboards and samples, while Jerome plays acoustic and electronic drums and mixes. The live show is super physical, because yes they are actually playing their instruments. Who knows, after such buzz over “Wildfire”, which features vocals by Little Dragon’s Yukimi Nagano, perhaps a live collaboration could be in store.

Machines Are People Too

Sun. June 10, 7 p.m.

Café Where

This quartet from Chattanooga is a synthpop machine. MRP2 originally started as a two-man project with singer Brian Sylvester and JJ Clark doing production. When they added Ivan Garcia on drums and Cain Lassiter on keys, they began touring nationwide with bands like Ghostland Observatory, Miami Horror and Two Fresh.



Thurs. June 7, 10:15 p.m.

The Other Tent

Psychedelic indie-pop duo from Saratoga Springs, NY—Sarah Barthel makes beats, plays keys, and sings, while Josh Carter sings and plays guitar. They incorporate various rhythms, winding guitars, and echoing effects to give off a dreamy, psychedelic vibe.



Fri. June 8, 1:45 p.m.

This Tent

The genre-blurring indie-pop duo makes super soul rhythmic pop while actively creating drum loops, and multi-layering with vocals, ukelele, bass, and saxophone. Merrill Garbus’s vocal style is gutteral and off-kilter, as if she were roaring, yet she’s also subtle with cooing falsettos. Live, she is a true performer, ultra-theatrical, and altogether captivating.



Sat. June 9, 5 p.m.

That Tent

Maynard James Keenan’s (Tool) integrated media project started in 2007, and finally became what Keenan had envisioned with Puscifer’s most recent release, Conditions of My Parole. Puscifer is a multidimensional project that intertwines music, comedy, and technology.


Danny Brown

Thurs. June 7, 7 p.m.

This Tent

Danny Brown is the king of Detroit’s underground hip-hop scene. His style is spastic, visceral, uncensored and raw. His critically acclaimed XXX is a masterpiece concept album about hedonism and his upbringing in Detroit, which proved to be a powerful introduction into the mind of this lyrical genius.


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