LIVE: Drum Boogie Festival @ Andy Lee Field, Woodstock 9/7/2019
The biennial Drum Boogie festival celebrating rhythm and life was held in Woodstock. This free family-friendly festival run by the Woodstock Chimes Foundation celebrates all things percussion. All the action is run across two side-by-side alternating stages on the Andy Lee Athletic Field.
With an opening ceremony featuring Paul Winter solo and Jack DeJohnette reciting a poem. The festival then got underway with the local youth POOK (Percussion Orchestra of Kingston) with the Energy Dance Company performing contemporary rhythms and dance.
All-female Japanese Taiko drumming troupe Kobu followed with a high-energy act involving highly complex choreography and costume changes.
Kotoko Brass followed an African percussion and brass Band playing a hybrid of reggae, North Ghana Percussion and NOLA brass that had the audience on its feet.
World-class Beatbox House followed with their entirely vocal-based percussion complete with breakdancers.
Eclectic soprano saxophonist Paul Winter played a set of Brazilian music with a quintet.
Jack DeJohnette explored the outer reaches of jazz-fusion with John Medeski, Matthew Garrison, and Lusito Quintero with a completely improvised set.
A complete change of pace followed with contemporary classic based Nexus performed with So Percussion a Steve Reich composition entitled “Drumming”. Consisting of repetitive xylophone figures that varied slightly in tone and rhythm starting with a single player and evolving in multiple. The sounds mesmerized the audience.
The NYU Steel Drum Band followed. A 21-member steel drum-based ensemble playing all manners of song.
The Hudson Valley’s favorite ska/rocksteady/reggae band The Big Takeover closed the festival with a set of dance numbers and ending with a cover of CCR’s “Proud Mary”.
A long and varied day of live music with something for everybody. Hopefully, the audience enjoyed what they were familiar with and were exposed to new music that they will explore more.