For this installation of “The Midwesterner’s Guide to Music Festivals” we’re continuing our quest and branching out, covering music festivals from all over the United States. Whether it’s down south for Wakarusa or out east for Rootwire, organic focused like The Werk Out or all electronic like Movement; globetrotters from near and far will be able to find something of interest in this week’s edition. Here is this week’s scrumptious list of festivals:

1. Wakarusa









WHEN: June 5th-8th, admission on June 4th included in VIP passes

WHERE: Ozark, AK

Cost: $204 4-Day GA, $139 3-Day Pass, $109 2-Day Pass $705 VIP (prices shown without tax and fees)

Style: Multi-genre focused on jam and EDM

Extra Attractions

16 artist collectives and performance troupes will be in attendance at Waka this year. Activities, performers, and installations include: workshops, stilt walkers, flow jams, meditations, audiovisual installations, a slackline park, spray art walls, mobile art installations, a New Earth Sacred Temple, and much, much more. Here at IndyMojo, we’re crossing our fingers for a repeat appearance of last year’s Ferris wheel; buy the weekend pass if you see it!

Things to Know

You must buy parking passes for your car at Wakarusa; up to 5 people can ride per car and split in on the cost. Passes can be bought for the main venue, west woods, and riverside locations. At this point, only riverside spots remain, but they’ve been known to release more passes as the festival nears. Don’t count on it, though, last year’s extra releases sold out in about 15 minutes. Other words of wisdom: you are truly in the middle of nowhere at this festival, come prepared. But to begin…

Oh yes, Wakarusa. By now this name should resonate with seasoned festie goers and newbies alike. With kick-ass lineups, artists, and one hell of a location this festival is not one to miss this summer (or any summer for that matter). Nestled on top of Mulberry Mountain near the southern edge of the Ozarks, Wakarusa can be a bit of a hike to get to from most parts of the Midwest. But, as past attendees will tell you, it’s well worth it.

Ranging from festival mainstays like The String Cheese Incident, Bassnectar, and Umphrey’s McGee to lesser known acts like The Werks, The Magic Beans, and D.V.S.*, fans are drooling at the thought of this year’s shenanigans. In addition to the musical lineup, Waka has one of the more diverse art and performance influences that you’ll find at a festival. Make sure to check out the woven wooden domes from Helping Hands, the interstellar 3D projections in the tree line from Maizz Visual, and the atmospheric sculptures and installations from BhuddaBones Art, just to name a few.

With a lineup that nears the greatest of the year, completely subjective of course, planning a trip down to Arkansas can be tantalizing. Unbelievable scenery, unbelievable tunes, and unbelievable artistry will exude from the Ozarks the weekend of June 6th. And, with all of the sights, sounds, an experiences promised be had at Waka this year it only one problem exists… which shows to hit?

Must See Headliners

-The String Cheese Incident



-John Butler Trio



-Xavier Rudd


More Lineup Surprises


-The Werks




-The Magic Beans

-Random Rab



2. The Werk Out Music & Arts Festival

The Werk Out Poster 2014 Photo













When: August 7th – 9th

Where: Thornville, OH

Cost: $99.99 GA, $179.99 VIP (OG Status)

Style: Diverse, ranging from freak out jam to downtempo and everything in between.

Things to Know

If there’s one festival that pays respect to the Midwest music scene, it’s The Werk Out. Thrown annually by Ohio natives, The Werks, this year’s lineup features multiple night performances from nine different acts. That’s right, nine different acts! What does that mean, you ask? You’ll not only get to catch double the performances from your favorite bands but you’ll get to hear all of the deep tracks that rarely get played in one-off festival performances.

Although this festival does prominently feature many bands and artists that first made their mark in the Midwest, don’t think that that’s all that there is to see (read: hear) at The Werk Out. Emancipator, Phutureprimitive, Dopapod, Twiddle, and many more round out the out-of-the-region acts. If you like a healthy heaping of face melting rock, check out The Werks. If you’re more into mind-bending jamtronica, find Papadosio for your fix. If chilled out downtempo is your thing, Emancipator is the act to see. Jonesin’ for some high-energy trashgrass, the Rumpke Mountain Boys are your guys. All in all, there’s only one thing to do: grab a beer, go dance, and have a good time. 

Must See Headliners

-Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of the Moon played in its entirety by members of Papadosio, The Werks, and Dopapod

-The Werks (x3)

-Papadosio (x2)


-Future Rock (x2)

-Zoogma (x2)

-Dopapod (x2)

More Lineup Surprises


-Rumpke Mountain Boys (x2)

-UV Hippo (x2)

-DJ no DJ (A Live Band Tribute to Daft Punk)



3. Spring Awakening Music Festival

Soldier Field, Chicago

Soldier Field, Chicago

When: June 13th – 15th

Where: Chicago, IL

Cost: $246.09 GA*, $363.21 VIP* (21+ only)

*Includes tax and fees

Style: EDM

Things to know

This is NOT a camping festival, so prepare to hit up some Chi-town buddies to do some couch surfing or save up and split in on a hotel with some friends. Also, the VIP section is 21+ so keep that in mind. No totems/rage sticks, glowsticks, LED gloves, food, or empty water bottles are allowed inside the venue. With no outside food or water allowed in, make sure to being enough cash to grab adequate food and hydration inside the gates. Also, the music ends at 11:00pm each night so you might want to plan on hitting some after parties to keep the good times rolling into the late night.

Held in Soldier Field in Chicago, IL, Spring Awakening is a relative newbie to the festival circuit. One of the few all EDM festivals that we’ll be covering in this series, Spring Awakening is a festival geared towards all the bass loving EDM cats of the world. Featuring huge names from all over the electronic scene: Tiesto, Pretty Lights, Kaskade, Diplo, and Benny Benassi just to name a few, Spring Awakening promises to be a rager. Chicago won’t know what hit it.

Must See Headliners

-Pretty Lights



-Big Gigantic

-Knife Party

More Lineup Surprises

 -Benny Benassi

-Bingo Players

-Paper Diamond

-Manic Focus

-Thomas Gold

4. Movement Electronic Music Festival 

Movement Photo

Hart Plaza, Detroit

When: May 24th – 26th

Where: Detroit, MI

Cost: $130 3-Day Pass (Tier 2), $55 1-Day Passes for Saturday, Sunday, and Monday.

Style: EDM

Things to Know

Movement, like Spring Awakening, is NOT a campout. It’s held in the heart of Detroit, so plan on finding a place to stay for the weekend. And, unlike most festivals, Movement runs Saturday-Monday so plan accordingly. Also, this one is HUGE. Last year’s attendance was over 107,000 so be prepared.

Movement Electronic Music Festival takes place in Detroit, the birthplace of Techno. A Mecca, for decades, as many see it. A hard won and well worn spot for producers, DJ’s, and rave culture as a whole. Located downtown in Hart Plaza and on the city’s riverfront, Movement boasts 5 stages and over 100 acts to see. If you haven’t heard about this festival before and need to know you need to know one thing: it’s old school. For many festival goers, be prepared to see producers that have been doing it right since you were a toddler.

National and international musicians make the yearly pilgrimage to the holy land for Movement, and for many, it will be their only stateside appearance of the year. Music runs from noon to midnight each day, so it might be wise to get some late night plans in order. Don’t worry though, the people over at Paxahau (the producers of the event) have you covered. There are literally dozens of afterparties that have been organized around the city that weekend; all that you have to do is pick a couple.

Must See Headliners 


-Richie Hawtin


-John Digweed

-Carl Cox

-Loco Dice


5. Rootwire Transformational Arts Festival

Rootwire Hooper

When: July 17th – 20th

Where: Terra Alta, WV

Cost: $125 4-Day GA

Style: Organic and electronic blend

Extra Additions: Gallery works and presentations will be held by Alex and Allyson Grey.

Things to Know

While holding a nearly identical name as to Rootwire Music & Arts Festival, Rootwire Transformational Festival is loosely associated with the festival from which it gets its namesake.

Rootwire fans the world over held their collective breath this year; waiting to hear if their beloved festival would be thrown again. After it was announced that Rootwire Music & Arts festival would be changing locations this year, nobody knew what to expect. After months of waiting it was announced that Papadosio and EQ Endeavors would split, with EQ picking up the responsibilities for this year’s festival. This year has some of the bigger acts to grace Rootiwre’s stages: Shpongle, Beats Antique, Love & Light, the list goes on. With the changes to the organization for 2014’s event, it will be interesting to see how Rootwire will transform itself as well as the rest of us.

Must See Headliners


-Beats Antique (x2)



-Love & Light


More Lineup Surprises



-Cosby Sweater




Continued from The Midwesterner’s Guide to Music Festivals: East Coast Styleeee

On Saturday morning, the rain came, which had me chilling at camp for most of the day. All of the music was shut down for a couple of hours. But it didn’t ruin our good time.

Photographs by Aaron Lingenfelter of Wide Aperture Images
To view more photos from the festival, Click here

Summer Camp Music Festival 2012 during Pretty Lights

Summer Camp Music Festival 2012 during Pretty Lights


To a lot of us Midwesterners Summer Camp Music Festival, held annually on the second to last weekend in May in Chillicothe, IL is like a warm gentle welcome to summer that we all wildly anticipate. And when I mean gentle I mean the chance of knee deep mud, dust bowls, guys walking around in tutus with Donny Darko masks, the sweet sounds of jams going on well till the crack of dawn and the reunion of old friends forgotten in the screen of snow that was winter.

Last years Summer Camp presented me with a great opportunity to get to know a lot of new bands while also allowing me the ability to reacquaint and fall in love with ones I had already been familiar with. There was the scorching sun, dust everywhere, hammocks and tents as far as the eye could see, great people, music and most of all experiences. We were able to see Moe., Umphrey’s McGee, Gogol Bordello late night and Bob Wier take the stage with Les Claypool for the return of Primus to the festival scene. It was hot, it was sweaty, it was glorious and man was it good, which is why we are all going back this year to experience all the glory that is Scamp.

Even more though we are going back for the people, for those freakers by the speaker, those tweekers and geekers, the weird the wet and the wild, the ones that us festy kids just cant live without. It’s life, and once you’ve bought the ticket, you gotta take the ride. This years Summer Camp experience will surely be one to remember with the staple 3 days of Moe. and Umphrey’s McGee, but it’s the addition of the Trey Anastasio Band, STS9 and Thievery Corporation as co-headliners that really have me excited.

Now here’s what you REALLY need to know about this years Summer Camp, again it is set in Chillicothe, IL from May 24th – May 26th. Currently weekend tickets are in the last purchasing tier costing around $218.00. There is also the Thursday night pre-party pass where anybody that is anybody will be in attendance. Thursday allows the regulars a chance to grab the best camping spots, get settled early, avoid super long lines and you get to catch a set of Digital Tape Machine as well as Jaik Willis in the barn, these passes cost an additional $33.00. They have an assortment of VIP upgrades, Primitive RV hook-ups, single day as well as full weekend and pre party passes available on the Summer Camp 2013 website for purchase. Definitely grab yo shit before hitting the road, trust me you do not want to stand in line with all your gear for 3 hours for tickets, only to have to do it for 3 more to get searched and enter the festival.

Summer Camp isn’t just about the music, it’s also about the people, and knowing how to plan ahead can be crucial to a good time. Be sure to check out all the camping rules and info as well as get aquatinted with the schedule and the additional workshops and kids camp if you want a little more out of your experience or are bringing young ones, because if you didn’t know, you need to, and now you can.

Like I said above, ultimately Scamp is about the experience, the people, the conversations and the love. Before you set out for scamp take a second to separate yourself from the greater world that we live in daily, take some deep breathes and prepare and ready yourself for what will be a magical experience, if you make it one. Be open to try new things, meet new people, converse on life, love stress and set backs but also on the positive aspects of life and the NOW, for that’s how you grow, and that is why Scamp is beautiful, because it gives you opportunities to grow and learn and become wiser. Remember, you’re traveling to Edge City, and as it was put to me so concisely by a good friend one of the greatest writing influences I have, “people die out here, it happens every day! It doesn’t take much, but it goes against the grain,” so be safe, be smart but most of all be open and have fun. I’ll see you kids in the campgrounds, come say whattup, you can call me Toph.


Words by Chris Lucas

Photograph by Aaron Lingenfelter of Wide Aperture Images

To view photos from last year’s Summer Camp Music Festival, click here




Pretty Lights w/Cosby Sweater, Paul Basic, and Eliot Lipp @ Old National Centre Egyptian Room-Indianapolis, IN 11/14/12

Most shows during the middle of the week on a brisk fall evening wouldn’t even come close to selling out, but an event headlined by Pretty Lights isn’t like most shows. The Indy Mojo event featuring PL, Eliot Lipp, Paul Basic, and Cosby Sweater nearly did sell out and proved to be a special night for attendees. Local act Cosby Sweater kicked off the evening, but due to odd restrictions drummer Richard “Sleepy” Floyd(also of The Native Sun) wasn’t allowed to join the rest of the trio. That didn’t stop David Embry(also of Embryonic Fluid) and Nicholas Gerlach(also of The Twin Cats) from putting on an amazing set.  Cosby forged ahead with an eclectic mixture of Embry churning out heavy electronic beats and Gerlach’s perfectly timed usage of both the Tenor Saxophone and EWI(electronic wind instrument). The jazz element was a perfect compliment to the electro-paced tempo. It was clear the two were having fun, which fueled the energy of the amassing crowd. Cosby Sweater’s one-two punch of “Indiana Song” and their remix of Outkast’s “So Fresh & So Clean” sent the crowd into a dance frenzy, setting the tone for the rest of the evening. Their set was solid, despite the absence of a drummer.

Next up was Paul Basic, a fellow member of PL’s record label, Pretty Lights Music. Basic flowed seamlessly between up tempo melodies with intricate bass chops, down tempo beats, and heavy dub build ups and breakdowns. Pretty Lights’ influence on his music was obvious, but lacked the pizzaz of PL’s showmanship and stage setup. The highlight Basic’s set was his remix of I Monster’s “Daydream in Blue.” Basic was followed by fellow Pretty Lights Music artist Eliot Lipp, no stranger to the EDM community. Lipp’s set showed a new side of his musical prowess. Normally, his music features only down tempo beats, but this set included quicker tempos with breaks containing jazz elements. I was impressed with how Lipp’s music has evolved over the years. His nearly perfect set perfectly primed the crowd for Pretty Lights.

After a short intermission, it was time for Pretty Lights to wow the crowd musically and visually. His awe-inspiring stage setup is the best in the business and equally as impressive as his musical production. From the start, his music featured perfectly mixed components of blues, rock & roll, and hip hop. The beautiful melodic grooves were highlighted with perfectly executed use of lasers, lights, and his projection screen stage setup. His mixing of Jay-Z and Notorious B.I.G’s tracks and laser blasts filling the room took the crowd to another dimension. I was wowed by his perfectly produced cocktail of melodic grooves, high energy beats, and well-executed breaks during this part of the show. These elements in conjunction with his stage presence and amazing stage setup culminated in the best live presentation of electronic music currently being produced. It is easy to forget about the incredible projection setup with all of the lights and lasers flashing above, until your eyes look toward the stage and witness the visual insanity taking place.  PL pushed the boundaries further during “Finally Moving”, relentlessly pushing the music and his light show faster and harder. This fueled the crowd, who welcomed the increasing intensity by dancing like fools, present company included.

The second half of his set featured newly produced music. His new tracks contained dark and spooky bass drops to contrast bright and happy melodies, sounding somewhat different from past PL work. I enjoyed the new stuff very much. It featured tight breaks, the dirty bass was pleasingly raunchy, and mixes were very crisp. It is clear he has mastered his signature sound, but isn’t afraid to explore different avenues in his music. Furthermore, PL’s new stuff included glitch hop elements. It sounded different from his past work, but equally as impressive. In typical fashion, his glitches were well executed and perfectly timed. He was a true maestro, using his music to manipulate his audience beautifully.  Honestly, it was one of the best dance parties I’ve ever been a part of or witnessed. Indy Mojo created the perfect event with every artist delivering incredible music, especially Pretty Lights and Cosby Sweater. I’ll definitely be attending Cosby Sweater’s upcoming show with Digital Tape Machine on December 6, also an Indy Mojo event. Don’t miss out on this event, it is the cd release party for Cosby Sweater and will surely be another dance amazing dance party.Words by: Alex Toy

Photos by: Aaron Lingenfelter(Wide Aperture Images)