On the banks of the Chippewa River, just outside Eau Claire, WI, there is an open field that is soon to grow more than just wildflowers. Friendships, memories, and the crescendos of the many voices with soon ignite an aura in this Midwestern festival. Coming off a recent overdose of hip hop in the Twin Cities with Soundset, it is clear that putting together a major festival can be difficult with the last minute cancellations and no-shows. The chaos only multiples when considering multiple genres, blending artists, and international travelers. This is an aspect that I look forward to seeing coming together.
Over the last decade or two the idea of blending genres and artists has become more and more commonplace. Whether it is Tech n9ne bringing The Doors into the studio or Ludacris stepping into the realm of a country song for Jason Aldean's Dirt Road Anthem. Eaux Claires offers a great blend of music that fits perfect in the summertime festival atmosphere. For myself, this will be my first time at Eaux Claires, but it will not be my first time seeing Chance the Rapper or Danny Brown.
The most intriguing aspect of the festival for me will be to see how Danny Brown can connect with this unique crowd. Playing sets at everything from fellow Wisconsin Festival Summer Set to Coachella to performing in front of the ever difficult to sway Juggalos at the Gathering, Danny Brown knows how to prepare for any crowd. This venue boasts some legends like Paul Simon, some Grammy winners like Julieta Venegas, and some current megastars like Chance the Rapper. Sufficient to say, this is a festival that lets me step out of my comfort zone musically from a festival like SoundSet and I for one am looking forward to every minute of it.