MAHA Music Festival Saturday; New Lungs, Solid Goldberg, LotM tonight…

Category: Blog — Tags: — @ 1:08 pm August 12, 2011

by Tim McMahan,

In a way, it all comes down to the weather.

Well, that and the bands, of course. And the ticket price. Look, we know the venue’s going to work out, right?

I’m talking about the third annual MAHA Music Festival, which runs this Saturday afternoon and into the evening at Stinson Park in Aksarben Village. In addition to a solid lineup, it looks like MAHA will have something else that no other festival has had this year — fantastic weather. They’re talking sunny and 80 degrees. It should be so nice, in fact, that the MAHA folks won’t have the convenient excuse that Red Sky / MECA had for the embarrassing crowds at their afternoon endurance-test day sessions. I’ve avoided talking about Red Sky because, well, what’s the point? No one has access to their day-pass ticket sales numbers, which must have totaled fewer than 100. Can you imagine anyone buying a three-day second-stage pass to Red Sky? Whether they’re willing to admit it or not, MECA knows it has a problem. At the core of any festival is selling multi-day tickets/passes; without that, you’re merely hosting a series of unrelated evening concerts, not a festival.

But when it comes defining a festival, MAHA isn’t without criticism –a one-afternoon/evening concert event does not a festival make. Until they spread MAHA out to two or three days, I’m hesitant to call it a true festival, either. The organizers know this. There are plans/hopes to expand MAHA to multiple days…some day. Right now, they just want to get through Saturday with a decent-sized crowd to cover costs and so their vendors can make some money — something that Red Sky’s day vendors weren’t able to do.

Today is the last day to buy MAHA tickets at the $30 price point. You can buy them online, right here. Tomorrow, the price goes up to $35 per ticket, but even at that price this concert is a bargain (especially considering parking is free (yet another perk over Red Sky)).

Here’s the schedule:

Noon: Gates Open
12:30 — The Big Deep
1:10 — The Envy Corp
2:00 — The Machete Archive
2:40 — The Reverend Horton Heat
3:50 — The So-So Sailors
4:30 — J Mascis
5:25 — Noah’s Ark Was a Spaceship
6:00 — Cursive
7:15 — Somasphere
8:00 — Guided By Voices
9:30 — Matisyahu
11 — Show’s Over

The organizers have asked to pass on this warning to anyone attending: There will be no re-entry allowed after 4:30. If you leave the park after that time, you can’t come back in. “(We) want people to stay and hear the locals, not just go in and out for the nationals,” said MAHA organizer Tre Brashear. Other than those who live in nearby condos, I’m not sure where people would go anyway, especially with all the beer and food available right there in the park. Regardless, heed the warning.

And buy a ticket. Buy it right now, while you’re thinking of it. Go.

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What about the rest of the weekend?

Tonight New Lungs (Little Brazil bass player Danny Maxwell’s other band) is headlining a gig at O’Leaver’s with Birthday Suits and Solid Goldberg (Dave Goldberg of Box Elders/Carsinogents fame). Fantastic show. $5, 9:30 p.m.

Also tonight, Landing on the Moon (Little Brazil drummer Oliver Morgan’s other band) is on the lineup of what’s being billed as a “pre-MAHA show” at Mojo Smokehouse with Midwest Dilemma and Snake Island. $8, 10 p.m.

Finally, the Barley Street Tavern is hosting the Nebraska Pop Festival tonight and tomorrow; with the festival wrapping up Sunday afternoon at The Side Door Lounge. More info and band lineup at the NPF website.

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Read Tim McMahan’s blog daily at — an online music magazine that includes feature interviews, reviews and news. The focus is on the national indie music scene with a special emphasis on the best original bands in the Omaha area. Copyright © 2011 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.

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