This weekend Miami is going to experience the first festival of its kind when the GroundUP Music Festival touches down at the North Beach Bandshell. The three-day world music concert will boast contemporary and past legends like Esperanza Spalding and David Crosby. Organizers are the ever- popular two-time Grammy winners Snarky Puppy.
The idea for the festival is an extension of Snarky Puppy’s label GroundUp, which garnered a fan base with a community of listeners worldwide since their 2013 inception. Bassist and composer Michael League founded the band and said he’s been thinking about hosting a festival for the last ten years and when label president Andy Herwitz brought the idea up they began working on it that same week and have been for the past year. The band wanted to use their reputation to bring audiences in front of other artists, curating a lineup of renowned and diverse live performers.
Unlike most concerts where there’s a separation between festival-goers and musicians, Snarky Puppy wants to stay true to their ethos and down to earth style with a hands-on approach blending musicality with education. Throughout the weekend audiences can engage in master classes, panels, and workshops.
“I think with every individual member there’s a feeling of responsibility of giving back to others, and from our first tour we began giving clinics at colleges and that expanded to working with non-profits, inner city schools. Its become a thing for us, and educational outreach is a huge part of who we are,” League said. “We wanted to make it an important a part of GroundUP, and we’ve asked every single artist to engage in some form of interactive learning.”
Paul Lehr, YoungArts previous CEO is GroupUp Music label’s executive director and the creative director of the festival and hopes it becomes part of Miami’s cultural fabric for years to come.
“For me, it’s exciting to bring artist from all around the world, and more than half of the people attending are coming from out of state, and 16 percent are coming from outside the country for this unique group of musicians,” Lehr said. “I don’t know how many Grammy’s they have between them, but Snarky Puppy is one of the most exciting bands, and we want to break down the barriers of regular concert experiences with this festival.”
If you go:
What: Snarky Puppy’s GroundUP Music Festival
Where: North Beach Bandshell
7275 Collins Avenue
Miami Beach, FL 33141
When: Friday, Feb. 10 to Sunday Feb.12, 2017
Tickets: $85 to purchase tickets visit