One Omaha Festival weekend, Night Moves, Whippets tonight; Wedding (the band) Saturday…

Category: Blog — Tags: , , , , — @ 8:56 am June 14, 2024
Night Moves at Reverb Oct. 4, 2022. The band plays tonight at The Waiting Room as part of One Omaha Festival.

by Tim McMahan,

I’ve been trying to get my arms around the One Omaha Festival, which kicked off last night at a number of downtown Omaha locations, including the Capitol District Plaza. The festival is a conglomeration of mostly local artists from different genres, with about 10 national acts thrown into the mix.

Among them is the band Night Moves, who is listed as the headliner for the festival’s programming tonight at The Waiting Room. The Minneapolis band, whose last EP was released on Domino Records, played Reverb Lounge in the fall of 2022 (and before that, at The Waiting Room waaay back in 2013). They even did a Ten Questions interview in 2022, which you can read here. Their sound reminded me of bands like Ambrosia, Gary Wright, 10cc and Jackson Browne – FM ’70s soft rock made for slow dancing. Kevin McClure Band, Jocelyn and Public Figure open for Night Moves tonight (Friday) at The Waiting Room starting at 6:30. 

Access to the show is part of a $30 Friday-only festival package that also gets you into Reverb, The B. Bar, Shakedown Street and the Benson Market Stage, which I assume is the outdoor stage on Military Ave. as well as Bullmoose and Secret Park – two bars I’m unfamiliar with. 

The One Omaha Festival concludes Saturday night in Benson with shows at The Waiting Room, Reverb, Shakedown Street, The Sydney and the Benson Market Stage. Omaha Latin-punk mavericks Las Cruxes headlines the Sydney bill. Tickets for Saturday’s festival events are $44.  Tickets are available online here.  

The festival is being produced by Hook n Sync, who has a website but the best place to to find festival schedules is on the Hook n Sync Facebook page

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You may have noticed The Sydney isn’t part of tonight’s One Omaha festivities. That’s because Madison, Wisconsin post-punk band Whippets are headlining there tonight (Friday). Whippets frontman Bobby Hussy, formerly of The Hussy, was a staple of the Omaha/O’Leaver’s post-punk scene back in the day. Hussy now runs No Coast Records, who released Whippets debut EP in 2022.  Also on tonight’s bill are The Poly Mall Cops, Cupholder and Cat Piss (or so it says on The Sydney’s website). $12, 9 p.m. (but probably starts at 10).

And finally…

The band Wedding, who plays at fabulous O’Leaver’s Saturday night, is a newish local project by singer/songwriter/artist Anne Schulte. The band released a 5-song EP in 2022 called Dream Car, which you can find on Spotify along with 2023 single “Bright as a Star,” which was recorded with Nate Van Fleet, Ben Brodin and Michael Frederickson – dreamy. Tom Bartolomei and Trey Moody open this free show at 8 p.m. 

And that’s all I got. With the College World Series going strong, I’ll be doing my level best to stay out of downtown this weekend… or for the next two weeks! That sound you hear as you pass The Slowdown on the way to the stadium is the warm buzz of the venue’s money-counting machines as they bring in their annual harvest…

If I missed your show, put it in the comments section. Have a great weekend!

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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 © 2024 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.


Petfest announces Aug. 17 festival line-up; what is the One Omaha festival?…

Category: Blog — Tags: , — @ 9:23 am April 8, 2024
Petfest just announced their 2024 lineup for the Aug. 17 event.

by Tim McMahan,

Petfest has the honor of being Omaha’s most-eclectic one-day festival, featuring mostly local indie acts and singer/songwriters. Held on the red-carpeted loose-rock parking lot behind Petshop Gallery in the heart of Benson, this year’s festival, slated for Aug. 17, will be no exception.

Unless my eyes deceive me (very possible) this year’s line-up is almost all Nebraska acts, though there are a couple names I don’t recognize. The 21-act list as of this morning:

  • – Problems
  • – Dance Me Pregnant 
  • – Ebba Rose
  • – Jeff in Leather 
  • – Flamboyant Gods
  • – Size Queen
  • – Western Haikus
  • – Heet Deth
  • – McCarthy Trenching
  • – Mesonjixx Trio
  • – The Dirts
  • – Clubdrugs 
  • – Saving Fiona
  • – Riké
  • – Universe Contest
  • – Queer Nite
  • – Bumpadump
  • – Mike Schlesinger
  • – Vempire 
  • – Ex-Lover 
  • – Ol’ Mo and the Varmits

A few highlights: Dance Me Pregnant is a golden nugget from a bygone era of Omaha indie/punk; Vempire is a newish Lincoln project featuring Mike Elfers from Thirst Things First; The Dirts are an emerging showgaze/indie act that has been a regular opener at Reverb indie shows; Mike Schlesinger is perhaps the most overlooked talent in the state, who I’m told has been working on a new album. And Darren Keen will be making the trip from Chicago to provide a return performance as PROBLEMS. 

The performance schedule hasn’t been released yet but the show will run from 2 p.m. to midnight. Tickets are $30 Adv/$40 DOS. More info at the BFF FB page. See you there.

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Speaking of festivals, late last month an organization called “Hook n Sync” announced a three-day, three-district music festival taking place this year during the heart of the College World Series weeks, June 13-15.

Called “One Omaha Music Festival,” it’s brought to you by the Hook N Sync Foundation, a non-profit “focused towards creating an extended support platform and performance exposure for local singer songwriters and musicians across the mid west community with a special side focus on uplifting gender equity in creative fields.” 

According to their website, last year “Hook n Sync already had 6 different diverse outdoor festivals including some 2 Day 2 stage ones with multiple National Artists, Grammy Winners, regional and other touring bands and many local artists.” Impressive. The organization’s executive director isn’t listed on their website or on their FB page. Considering the CWS connection, is MECA also involved, or the NCAA? 

Hook n Sync has alredy published a district schedule (Old Market, June 13; Benson & Midtown, June 14; Benson June 15) but no venue names are listed, though they say it’ll take place on “up to 20 stages” and will feature “up to 100 bands” who they appear to be in the process of booking. Hook n Sync posted a couple requests on their Facebook page last week. One asked for your ideas as to who they should book; the other is seeing out local “female influenced music” in Omaha and the surrounding area. 

According to their FB posts this NEVER DONE BEFORE event is a HUGE STEP FOR OMAHA MUSIC. This no doubt is a tremendous undertaking for someone. Just pulling off a one-day music festival like Petfest that focuses primarily on local bands is a major effort that involves lots of planning and coordination. One Omaha is three districts over three days with 20 venues and more than 100 bands during two of the most chaotic weeks in Omaha.

More info as it becomes available…

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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 © 2024 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.