Three Days of Blood, Sweat, and Overpriced Rideshares: A Preview of Bumbershoot 2016

Is it just me, or has it been one hell of a summer? Though I’m not ready to say “goodbye” to it just yet, I am ready to party one last time, Seattle style, with Bumbershoot 2016.

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It’s that time of the year again when Seattle Center becomes one of the largest arts and culture meet-ups in the Pacific Northwest. Thousands of people from all over the world flock to our city, drink our water, eat our food, and make it nearly impossible to get anywhere unless you’re willing to hoof it up and down the ridiculously steep hills or pay triple the rate for Ubers or Lyfts. Normally, I would be The Queen of Shade about this, but for Bumbershoot, I can hold it all in until after the fest.

Bumbershoot celebrates its 46th year with over 150 performances, ranging from local and international music, spoken words and ideas, dance, film, comedy, theater, and so much more; it’s amazing we can fit it all into just three days!

Alt-rock deities Death Cab For Cutie will grace their hometown with their presence on Sunday, September 4, in honor of their eighth studio album, Kintsugi, which refers to the Japanese art of fixing cracked ceramics and turning the flaws into a part of the piece. The title is a clear depiction of the band’s ups and downs through the nearly 20 years they have been together, as both individuals and as a whole. It can also be assumed that the album speaks as a breakup record, as Gibbard sings, “Was I in your way when the cameras turned to face you? No room in frame for two,” in the track “No Room in Frame.” Anyone else still sad about the end of the Ben Gibbard/Zooey Deschanel power couple? Where is the hope? A sad reality that I can already feel, but I believe it’s the emotions that Gibbard pours out on stage that makes for a good show. I’ll be sad watching it. But a good kind of sad. Like a “You’re not alone, Ben, I love you” sort of sad.

The people of Bumbershoot are going to be seeing a wide variety of electronic music with performances by Cali brothers and electronic duo Hippie Sabotage, abstract artist/producer Cashmere Cat, manga and Dance Dance Revolution inspired Porter Robinson, and LA native hip-hop inducing TOKiMONSTA, among many others. And if you want to just keep on dancing after your favorite EDM artists are finished on the stage, head on over to the Silent Disco, happening at the EMP Skychurch.

After DJ Snake pulled out of the lineup “due to unforeseen personal circumstances” (according to the Bumbershoot Facebook page), the day was saved thanks to YG, adding the festival to his FDT (F*ck Donald Trump) Tour. The rapper released a remix of the heavy-hitting “FDT” track, which features verses from both G-Eazy and Macklemore. Considering both are also guests on the Bumbershoot lineup, we can only assume that there will be some special appearances happening inside the KeyArena on the last night that you’re going to want to see.

No doubt, it is an honor to have an angel such as Halsey as one of our headliners at Bumbershoot 2016. This girl is nothing short of impressive. Selling out her first two headlining tours, debuting at #2 on the Billboard 200 Albums chart for her first studio album, Badlands, and opening in arenas across the country for Imagine Dragons and The Weeknd (all while only being 21 years old, might I add), you can’t help but wonder where else this chick can go. Not sure what I was doing when I was 21, but clearly it was the wrong thing. Do I sound jealous? Because I’m not. Sort of. Catch Halsey Friday night on the Main Stage at 8:20 p.m. And, if you’re a fan of hers, I suggest you peep Zella Day, another young and talented chicka, just before her on the Starbucks Stage the same night. It’s like they planned it all out perfectly.

Other must-sees of the Labor Day weekend include Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, Tame Impala, Kygo, JoJo, JoywaveThe Flavr Blue, Fly Moon Royalty, Margo Price, Andrew Bird, Shaprece, Father John Misty, Manatee Commune… I may as well list off the entire poster.

Besides the incredible lineup of musical performances, let’s not forget comedy featuring such names like MTV’S GUY CODE series regular Kevin Barnett, feminist improv comedy Feelings, and Seattle’s homegrown one-liner king Nick Thune. I highly recommend hitting up your friend Netflix and watching his comedy special from Brooklyn, Folk Hero. He’s got that Sea-town humor we all know and love.

From Friday September 2 to Sunday September 4, Bumbershoot 2016 will take over a number of areas in Seattle Center including KEXP’s new home, the Vera Project, Mural Amphitheater, the entirety of the Fisher Pavilion, KeyArena, and Memorial Stadium. Pathways between each stage will be covered with art, created by a number of artists from our very own city and surrounding areas. Be sure to download the app to get all the latest updates and see the schedule.

I was told that it would be a miracle if I’m able to catch even half of what I want to see in these three days. Challenge accepted.


PRISCILLA GAMIT | The Queen of Shade Needs a Vacation | General Manager


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