It’s hard to find fault when your destination is a beautiful park on a beach with sizzling 25 acts and the weather cooperates, too. With three stages of a variety of blues, rock and soul, there was something for everyone May 17-18 in Dana Point, California. There are huge video screens at the main stage so you can see what’s going on “bigtime” even from a far. The Sailor Jerry Stage is very large, too and the grassy audience-area slopes up to a picnic patio for a bit of an amphitheater view. The Backporch Stage is more intimate (yet always packed) and maybe more theatrical in that acts seem to maybe feel more loose there!
I like this event for not only these reasons but also that I get to see legendary artists like James Cotton with Darrell Nulish and discover some artists I haven’t had the opportunity to witness in person, like the energetic California Honeydrops (who had people on the tables dancing… okay, including me!). Gov’t Mule had guests sitting in from other acts like Ty Taylor of Vintage Trouble and Ruthie Foster, which was a very entertaining surprise. The food court features BBQ, crepes, Thai, Mexican and much more and the other vendors have affordable, unique wares. It’s hard to not walk around with a smile on your face all day and I do find it’s infectious. Put this winning festival on your bucket list.