Waterloo Festival Brings the Funk to Texas

Article Contributed by Kelly Hafner | Published on Thursday, September 13, 2018

Austinites and travelers around the world came to Carson Creek Ranch on September 7th through September 9th, to see some of the best jambands from around the world. Although the Waterloo Festival saw some rain this weekend, it didn’t stop anyone from dancing to their favorite musicians in the mud! Concertgoers were all different ages, from families, young adults, middle-aged people, and older generations combined. The diverse combination of festival-goers was refreshing and felt like a community affair.

The Motet

Joey Porter | The Motet

The Motet gave concert goers an unforgettable show on, with a tight band of musicians, complete with horns and all! Lyle Divinsky, the charismatic and lively frontman had dance moves for days and got the crowd involved by clapping and dancing along with him throughout the night. Although the studio albums from The Motet are amazing, their live concert experience is one of a kind and well worth the money if you get a chance to see them.

Easy Star All-Stars

Easy Star All-Stars | Waterloo Music Festival

I was excited to see the Easy Star All-Stars perform one of their best albums The Dub Side of the Moon, and extra excited to see that they were playing on the Relix stage on the water! The drizzling rain above and grey skies created a mysterious atmosphere perfect for the Easy Star All-Stars dubby show.  Shelton Garner Jr. slayed the guitar in the crowd favorite track “Money,” transporting listeners to a new time and place with his improvisational prowess. Kirsty Rock gave a standout performance when she sang “The Great Gig in the Sky” and really brought it, and trust me that song is not easy to cover! Jenny Hill’s soulful and playful, smooth saxophone playing left listeners in a dreamy hypnotized state.

The String Cheese Incident

The String Cheese Incident | photo by Josha Timmermans

The String Cheese Incident played all three nights of the festival, and their fans came out in droves to watch their performances in both rain and shine. Pools of mud didn’t stop families, young adults, and older generations of jamband lovers from enjoying the unmistakable and rare band chemistry that The String Cheese Incident has. Not only can you tell how much they trust each other musically, seamlessly passing improvisational solos from the keys to the guitars, to the bass, the violin, and to the drums, but they also give out the genuine feeling that they’re good friends. They make you feel like you’re a part of the gang when you’re at their shows, speaking with kind words and silly jokes. And being the loved band that they are, they definitely bring friends and family together to enjoy the eclectic music.

Fecal Pickle

Fecal Pickle | Waterloo Music Festival

There was a surprise show that no one saw coming, but once people heard Fecal Pickle would be performing after the festival on Saturday at the campsite, fans came a running. Enzo Loechel and Zack Morgan + Eddie Robbins stunned listeners with their unique and fantastic set, complete with only the best covers. Fan favorites included “Enrique Inglesias’ Mole,” “I Really Like Boobs Though,” and “Danke Schoen.”


BoomBox | Waterlook Music Festival

BoomBox closed out the festival on the Relix stage (on the river), and damn did they close it outright. The duo created much more sound than one would imagine two people could make, with innovative synth lines, fat and funky basslines, and impeccable style. The band fused psychedelic rock with electronic synths and 808s, creating a new sound that shows just how much music has evolved over the years. Combining sonic influences and moods from the 1960s with the modern production technology made for an unforgettable show.

Waterloo Music Festival | photo by Jaime Seed

Other standout acts like Pimps of Joytime, Mamafesta, Kalu and the Electric Joint, Orgone, TAUK, Leftover Salmon and more left concertgoers satisfied, chatting about their concerts throughout the weekend! Along with a badass lineup of musicians, Waterloo also invited some amazing painters and artists come out to create live art during the festival.

Oteil & Friends | Waterloo Music Festival | photo by Joshua Timmermans

One thing’s for sure; Waterloo Music Festival definitely can bring the funk, no matter what the weather decides to do.