Throwback: Rise and Shine (2018)
Rise & Shine is a smaller festival that literally takes place in a backyard (albeit a large one). The intimate setting lends itself to a unique experience in a world where “the festival” has gone the way of the corporation and can tend to feel like more of a money grab than musical celebration. It also differentiates itself by taking place over one day and having 100% of their proceeds go to Rise & Shine: Captain Camps. Yes, that means that all these RAD artists are volunteering their time for a good cause: #partywithpurpose
Our one-day (and night) began in Vancouver. After eating at one of the Vancouver brunch hot spots while waiting for one of our crew to arrive, we drove to Pemberton where Rise and Shine takes place. Pemberton sits about 30 minutes north of Whistler, in a valley that accumulates residual heat. This effect makes for painful heat later in summer, but allows for nearly perfect conditions in June. Rise and Shine was met with sun that allowed for all festival goers to tent and party all night in total comfort.
Upon arrival at the festival grounds, we were directed to camp virtually wherever we pleased. There are essentially two campgrounds divided by a small ditch (that one member of NineEightSeven would later have trouble navigating). Each camp is a stone’s throw away from the festival stage – leading to an atmosphere that allows any festival music to be heard and felt upon entrance to the property, at the campground, and almost anywhere onsite. One campground came complete with a secondary stage / party scene operating out of a bus (ft. a beach volleyball court). The other campground had to pause partying while a school bus, surfed by one Rise and Shiner, found its spot.
Nine Eight Seven brought disc slam to the fest. We found that there were few who weren’t keen to take a toss or two of the Frisbee when walking by our campsite. The site itself is less camping-à-festival, and more one total experience.
The way the festival (and the acts themselves) is set-up creates a constant supply of beats to lose yourself in. We filtered in and out of the stage area over the course of the afternoon, evening, and night and each time were greeted with something dancey and different. From the more mellow afternoon WMNSTUDIES, to the vocals and drums of DiRTY RADiO, to the violin mastery of Kytami, each act progressed the night in a new way, and R&S founders/duo Average Gypsy throwing down a late set for the ages.
As the sun set and prior to his turn, we found ourselves in line for burgers with Shadi of DiRTY RADiO. Bonded by hunger, we chatted about the venue, and our excitement for the live vocals in their act. As we parted, we promised we wouldn’t miss their set.
DiRTY RADiO delivered, uniting the entire festival with a “commanding vocal performance” (as once described by Pitchfork). But more importantly, delivering the entire festival from the last rays of sunlight into the night.
The rest of the evening is a blur of dancing and music, and bright lights suspended in the stage-side shrubbery.
Can’t wait for this year.
Photos: A handful of rad Rise & Shine volunteers
Review: Alex Jardine