Exclusive: Big Guava Music Festival Preview

Guava fest

This year Tampa, FL introduces a new event, the “Big Guava Music festival”.  The Big Guava music festival will feature some of the very best in today’s indie rock, hip hop, alternative and pop artists over three days of music. It will be held at the Mid Florida Credit Union Amphitheatre in Tampa, FL from May 2-4. – http://www.bigguavafest.com

Some of our staff members put together their “Top 5 Artists To Watch” at this year’s Big Guava music festival.

Brandon Bradley –

1)Chance The Rapper – Chance the Rapper is indescribable, yet instantly recognizable. The Chicago rapper released “Acid Rap in 2013, a game-changing album on which no two songs sound the same. A unique voice and flow, Chance is likely to stand out from the pack at Big Guava

2)Twenty One Pilots – I have seen this band live twice, and they flat out put on one of the best live performances I’ve ever seen. Frontman Tyler Joseph brings an incredibly unique energy and presence to their live show and manages to connect with the crowd on a personal level, as well as make them laugh on several occasions. This band are sure to transition well with the large and diverse crowd that Big Guava fest is sure to bring.

3)Tegan & Sara – The twin-sister-duet performs energetic, catchy, keyboard driven indie rock that the listener will be humming for days. The Calgary indie heavyweights have remained mainstays on the radio since 1995. If the duo’s performance pulses with even a fraction of the energy and positivity that its music contains, Tegan and Sara will be a memorable performance indeed.

4)Grouplove – If you’re into indie pop/rock, then you have to check this band out at Big Guava. Grouplove’s late success on the billboard charts is testament to their live performance. The Los Angeles natives are sure to be one of the festival’s high points, as they are sure to have everyone singing and dancing along.

5)Unlikely Candidates – Even though this band has a low slot on this festival, it’s no reason to count them out as one of the possible highlights. The Texas quintet are one of indie rock’s bright up-and-coming bands, who’s intimite live performance will leave you wanting more. Singer Kyle Morris is without a doubt one of the best in the business, displaying intense yet soothing vocals over the duel melody guitars and infectious basslines. The Unlikely Candidates are more than likely to impress at Big Guava.

Vince Bellino

1)Violent Femmes – The 80s and 90s alt rock trio is active again, and could well be one of the festival’s biggest highlights. The trio’s unique sound smacks of the nineties while still being catchy and interesting enough to remain relevant and fun in 2013.

2)Jason Bonham’s Led Zeppelin Experience – The son of legendary Zepp drummer John Bonham has put together one of the most talented groups currently active to tour his father’s music. Bonham’s Led Zeppelin Experience plays Led Zeppelin’s classics with a chilling accuracy, leaving little doubt in the mind of the listener that one has just heard the next best thing to seeing Led Zeppelin at the height of the 1970s.

3)Earl Sweatshirt – The Odd Future rapper has seemingly mastered the art of sounding effortlessly intense, a very real paradox as presented on DORIS. The hip-hop star is clearly the prodigy of Tyler, the Creator, yet the 19-year-old rapper may have surpassed Tyler. Earl Sweatshirt is sure to be one of Big Guava’s highlights this year.

4)Blue October – The alt-rock quintet presents a unique brand of music that sounds equal parts both tragic and beautiful. Songs like “Hate Me” and “Bleed Out” show a fresh twist on classic nineties music, with melodic guitars and haunting lyrics.

5)Band of Skulls – The Southampton alt-rockers have some of the best guitar playing and vocals in the past decade. The guitar riffs are tinged with psychedelic influences, and the solos are straight rock ‘n’ roll. The wailing vocals take listeners back to rock ‘n’ roll’s great ages, because Band of Skulls plays like a great rock band.

Nick Zimmer –

The organizers of this years Big Guava Festival have managed to put together a diverse lineup of acts that all share something unique… I have never seen any of them live. I’ve been covering shows for various outlets for nearly a decade and let me tell you, I am extremely excited to have an experience with all new (live) bands to me and to have a fresh perspective of the events. Also, anything that involves food trucks has my full attention. Here are a few things I’m looking forward to seeing and shooting.

1)Outkast – Do I really need to explain this one? The duo have been away for quite some time while Andre 3000 and Big Boi have gone on to have successful solo careers. They’re headlining just about every music festival there is this year, and I couldn’t be more excited to finally see these legends take the stage.

2)Earl Sweatshirt – I’ve been a big fan of Odd Future for quite some time now, and while some venues in the area have been hinting at the group coming here soon, I can’t help but be more excited to catch Earl performing a set. Doris was one of the best hop hop albums to come out last year and he is sure to blow a lot of people’s minds this year.

3)Violent Femmes – While I have only been a casual listener of Violent Femmes over the years, their set it definitely not one to miss. The group have been around longer than I have been alive, and it’s going to be great to catch a band that has influenced so many of my current favorite acts. The band has had their share of ups and downs, who knows when an opportunity like this will come around again.

4)Tegan and Sara – I’m a fan of Tegan and Sara and have missed them coming through Florida on more than one occasion. They have an extensive discography and it’s intriguing to see how their setlist breaks down. Playing in front of huge crowds is nothing new for the duo, and I’m really looking forward to finally catching them live.

5) Instead of listing a fifth group, I’m going to leave this spot to say I’m excited to check out a lot of groups who I otherwise wouldn’t be introduced to without this festival. I’m intrigued by acts like Kitten, Bear Hands (best name of all the bands performing), and Hoodie Allen. The festival is full of great groups and there are a lot of people who will be finding their new favorite acts throughout the weekend.