Music

Ridgestock 2015 Preview

The Ridgestock Music and Sustainability Expo promises to feature the best local music in Central New York

Former flower children, find your roach clips and feel the love.

Peace, love and rock ‘n roll will be the order of the day at the Ridge Golf Club and Tavern, 1281 Salt Springs Road in Chittenango on Sunday for the inaugural Ridgestock festival.

Ridgestock is a micro-recreation of Woodstock, the timeless music gathering in Bethel, NY nearly 50 years ago. Sixty-one local musicians will perform their favorite tunes from the iconic festival, including major backing bands The Barndogs, The Hoffman Family Band and Grupo Pagan.

Jordan Davies is the house manager at the Ridge. He and his team have had the festival in the works for two years, and the buzz is growing louder.

“This event itself is a monumental aspect for Central New York music history,” he said. “Never before have this many musicians been combined together.”

When he first with spoke with the performers, Davies said most of them already knew who they wanted to cover. Members of Syracuse Women in Music (SWIM) immediately called dibs on Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young. Butternut Creek Revival had a hankering for Arlo Guthrie. As for powerful women? Ashley Cox and Lisa Romano will be channeling Jefferson Airplane.

Music by Jimi Hendrix will bookend the day, starting in the morning and ending with Star-Spangled Banner sendoff worthy of the Woodstock legend. In a psychedelic sendup to the late 60s, hungry revelers can dig into Deep Fried Shrooms, wavy gravy fries or nut-free half-baked brownies — after visiting the tie-dye booth, of course.

The lineup includes performances by Sharon Allen, Todd Fitzsimmons, Carolyn Kelly, Steve Winston and Pearly Bakers Best, to name only a handful. Country-duo Castle Creek, fresh from a tour with the Zac Brown Band, will also perform.

Davies acknowledged the challenge of recapturing an event like Woodstock.

“The original Woodstock itself was so haphazard and it was so very last-second that no matter what you did, you could not recreate the experience itself,” he said. “All we’re going on is a feeling of the times.”

That doesn’t mean he’s shrinking back from the challenge, though. The year 2019 will see the 50th anniversary of Woodstock, and Davies has his eye on the Lakeview Amphitheater for the celebration.

As for this year’s festival, admission is $25 per ticket or $100 for five tickets. Between 1,000 and 1,200 people are expected to attend. Music will happen rain or shine, so folks should dress for the weather. (If it rains, you can channel the weather-defying determination of the original Woodstock crowd.)

Doors open at 2 p.m. with music starting at 2:30 p.m. The event runs until around 10:30 p.m. with food and drink provided by the Ridge.

Davies wants the public to share the excitement of both the organizers and the musicians, and not to miss out on the event because of end-of-summer plan cramming.

“To recreate something of the caliber of Woodstock itself in a picturesque, beautiful atmosphere with the caliber of musicians we have,” he said, “it’s not to be missed.”

For more information or to purchase tickets, visit www.ridgestock.com.

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