Final Words On Bumbershoot 2012

Pak talking story with Ishmael Butler (Digible Planets, Shabazz Palaces) at Bumbershoot 2012.

Totem Star Records (read more), the non-profit youth-run record label and mentoring program co-founded by Pak and Thaddeus, spent the entire weekend at Bumbershoot 2012 with their recording artists, promoting their life-changing organization and enjoying a few shows along the way. Here’s their summary of what went down this weekend:

Two Weeks Before: Jon Stone, Executive Director of One Reel (Bumbershoot), calls us out of the blue and asks if Totem Star Records would like to be part of the festival with a featured booth at the first annual City of Music Community Expo. We have a quick business meeting and reply “yes!”

The Day Before: While loading our mobile studio into the Armory / Center House we run into Mayor Mike McGinn. A big fan of Kore Ionz, he just gave an address at the annual Mayor’s Arts Awards. Already on his way to another meeting, he says we need to catch up soon, gives us a stack of drink tickets, and tells us we should crash the reception by the fountain.

Day One: Set up our Totem Star Records booth and start promoting. Stepped out to check out Don’t Talk To The Cops – felt like the local press really hyped a group that does need a little more work before getting hyped so much. Thaddeus ducked out to check out JC Brooks & The Uptown Sound and promote the new Thaddillac record. He came back in like ten minutes and said, “Cornball.” We didn’t even try to get in line for Gotye. THEESatisfaction was cool as always. We packed up and left after that.

Day Two: Set up our Totem Star Records booth and start promoting. Stepped out to check out Theoretics (bass player Birch Pereira fills in on bass for Kore Ionz from time to time). Nice sound and both MCs got lots of energy. Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings was pretty phenomenal. They did a cover of “I Heard It Through The Grapevine.” All the instruments on stage were made in the 1960’s. Pretty cool. A little funny to witness soul in Key Arena though. Across the festival ground we found out that Yelawolf perpetuates “white boy shit,” and smoking weed. Big surprise. While at the Yelawolf show we see Macklemore backstage hiding out behind a wig of dreadlocks. We pack up. The guys go check out Big Sean and Mac Miller. Pak and Thaddeus go home.

Day Three: Last day. Set up our Totem Star Records booth and start promoting. Wow, we got almost 100 email signups! Pak and Thaddeus step out to check out Tuareg guitarist and songwriter Bombino. We run into Ishmael Butler (Digible Planets, Shabazz Palaces) backstage and hang out for a bit before going back to the booth. Fishbone is on in the early evening, and they kick some serious ass, including a great cover of Bradley Nowell’s “Date Rape.” As we load-out the gear, the line to get into Key Arena to see Skrillex is completely out of control. Security guards jump over the blacked-out fence to enforce crowd control on the drug-induced teenagers. Do we get in line to join the madness? What you think?

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