MixFest 2000

by Larry Dunne


Mix 98.5 lucked out with the weather this year for their MixFest concert that was held on September 23rd. There were overcast clouds that were always threatening to open up but the rain held off. They did have an impressive line up of acts. The show kicked off with Lisa Loeb and ended with Barenaked Ladies.

MixFest has changed year to year. They originally started on the Boston Common with a free show opened to the public. That changed last year when they added an extra day and had it at Foxboro Stadium charging tickets this time with some of the proceeds going to charity. A portion of this year's ticket sales went to the Children's Advocacy Center of Suffolk County and the National Sclerosis Society Central New England Chapter.

One of the DJ's proclaimed this show to be New England's Woodstock. Well, if you count the vendor's prices it was pretty damn close. A bottle of water ran you $2.50. The food prices overall were expensive. Many of the concert attendees brought their lunches along, a wise move for future planning.

The acts were very good and the radio station did have a good plan by placing both stages next to each other. Usually, the two stages are further apart and you need to walk about a mile between the two stages. This moved the acts along quickly because one performer could be setting up while one was playing. There was some downtime between acts that was about 15 minutes.

This did prevent smaller local acts, like EnTrain, being able to perform since the stages were reserved for more nationally known acts. Local band making national airplay, Guster, was on hand for the concert along with: Lisa Loeb, Roxette, the Corrs, Fastball, the Go-Go's, Ben Harper, Vertical Horizon, Macy Gray, Smash Mouth, Tracy Chapman, Goo Goo Dolls, and Barenaked Ladies. During their set Smash Mouth debuted a new song for the crowd. Steve Harwell, the lead singer, jumped over to the other stage at one point and during another song, brought a bunch of female concertgoers onto the stage. The Go-Go's played a few songs off their new CD but included a lot of their old favorites. All of the band members still looking fine. Johnny Resnik of the Goo Goo Dolls still went on the stage for his set even though he was feeling a bit under the weather. Macy Gray was definitely the 'grooviest' act wearing a loud jumper suit and emitting a lot of energy from the stage. Closing the show was the house band, Barenaked Ladies, who always put on a good concert. Although all of the members of the band sing, Steve Page and Ed Robertson trade off doing the lead vocals depending on the song. They often make songs up on stage at the spur of the moment. The whole band gets involved with on stage antics to provide the audience with a show.

Over all MixFest was a good show. We noticed that since the charging of concert tickets the station was trying to mimic the success of another radio stations concerts, but with their organization they just aren't there yet. Keep working on it guys; you're getting close.






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