In Focus: Pleasantville Music Festival 2023

The Pleasantville Music Festival 2023 was held on July 8th at Parkway Field, in Pleasantville.  This year’s lineup featured many New York State based performers; including headliners, They Might Be Giants

They Might Be Giants
They Might Be Giants

Curating a one-day event with 18 musical acts, on three stages, is a daunting task. Aiding in the selection process, The Garage at Lucy’s. The Garage, a Pleasantville music club, hosted a series of battle of the band competitions. Victors were given the opportunity to open the day on one of the three stages.

Allison Ponthier

With the lineup complete, the festival was good to go. First up on the Pamnation Party Stage, Hunter Road. This Valhalla based group set the bar high for the following acts, with their rocking opening set. On the Party Line Chill Tent Stage, singer songwriter Ursula Hansberry performed solo, sharing her bluesy jazz style with the early attendees. On the main stage, overall battle of the band winner Summer Fling welcomed everyone with a distinctive funk, rock, pop sound. 

Summer Fling
Summer Fling

Kudos to the festival for their music traffic management allowing people to move from stage to stage without missing acts they would like to see. From Chill, to Party, to Main, the groove of each stage matched its description. The sequencing of bands was also spot on. When one band finished, the next one picked up where the last one left off, talking it to the next level.

Hunter Road
Hunter Road

Mother nature made a special appearance at Pleasentville Music Festival 2023, bringing with her two rounds of pouring rain and lightning. This required the stoppage of music and the need for people to leave the park grounds till the storms passed. Even with two delays, many stayed through the end. In retrospect, instead of being a deterrent, the rain acted like a cleansing of the pallet, as if to prepare oneself for the next musical course. 

Allman Betts Band

In addition to some of New York State’s finest musicians, there were notable national acts on the bill. Sophie B. Hawkins took to the Chill tent stage in bare feet, closing out that performance space. People were spilling out beyond the sides of the tent to get an earful of her music. On the main stage The Allman Betts Band shared originals while slipping in a few Allman Brothers tunes, to the crowd’s pleasure. Allison Ponthier was a glow with her indie pop sound, sharing a new unreleased song as part of her set. 

Sophie B. Hawkins

Multi Grammy Award winners John Flansburgh and John Linnel, aka They Might Be Giants, brought the night to a close. With forty years of performing under their belt, they did not hold back. Backed by a full band (including The Horns), TMBG bestowed on the crowd their surreal, humorous, experimental style of music, jamming on tunes till it was time to go.

Main Stage

Pamnation Party Stage

Party Line Chill Tent Stage

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