Miami Beach, Florida December 1 – 3 2023 Words and Photos by Jordan Kravitz
The opening day of the north Miami Beach music festival kicked off on a seasonably warm Friday afternoon with St. Petersburg based five-piece Ajeva. The band brought their signature version of progressive, jam rock to the humid afternoon of Miami Beach. With vocal and guitar driven melodies and soaring jams, the energy to start the festival was exactly right.
Ajeva got the crowd energized for Chicago House legend Mark Farina to take the main stage. Farina got the crowd juiced for Friday night’s headliner The Disco Biscuits.
Jon “The Barber” Gutwillig was first out on stage , wearing what looked like a “designer painters’ suit.” The fascinating wardrobe choice did not seem to stifle the band’s blistering opening salvo of “Munchkin Invasion> Falling> Orch Theme>Munchkin Invasion Reprise . The second set featured more face melting jams opening with “Little Shimmy in a Conga Line” and the set/show closer was a great version of “I-Man” (Gloria Estefan and Miami Sound Machine cover).
DISCO BISCUITS setlist:
(Conspirator cover) (> “Munchkin Invasion” reprise)
One Chance to Save the World
Little Shimmy in a Conga Line
(> “Little Shimmy in a Conga Line” reprise)
Buy the Time
(Perfume style. >)
Day two of the North Miami Beach Music Fest was highlighted by a performance from the incredible R&B soul throw down, the Los Angeles based female led trio : “ Say She She.” This reporter was truly blown away by the musicality and raw talent of this group. They surely won over many new fans this weekend.
Meanwhile, over on the “Park Stage” “Electric Kif” was causing trouble with their rendition of the “Weather Report “ classic “Elegant People” . This was the first time I had seen or heard the Miami based quartet, and there is no quicker way to win me over with a cover song than to cover one of my favs, Weather Report.
Once the sun set in Miami this Saturday night, the mood shifted to feature the feels and vibes of Jamtronica. First to blast off was Denver based trio, Sunsquabi. I spent time earlier in the day with the band, checking in with them and their busy tour schedule – (see interview here). Sunsquabi got the crowd dancing and prepped for Adam Deitch’s producer set over on the Park Stage.
Adam Deitch, The Grammy nominated beat master for the band Lettuce, crafted a clever set that segued naturally into “The Disco Biscuits “ final performance of the weekend. Playing one long set that featured one of my personal favs “Mindless Dribble” and a guest appearance from Adam Deitch, the Biscuits sent night two of the North Miami beach music fest out with a bang!
Disco Biscuits day two setlst:
Spaga’s Last Stand
(> “Spaga’s Last Stand” reprise)
Who’s in Charge
(with Adam Deitch) (Inverted. >)
(LCD Soundsystem cover) (>)
The final Day of the North Miami beach music fest Highlights included performances by Daniel Donato’s Cosmic Country , Adam Deitch, Eggy and the evenings headliner Cory Wong. This was my first time seeing Daniel Donato and his Cosmic Country band. It is clear why he is such a phenomenon in the scene, he makes his insane guitar skills look almost effortless. Backed by a band that stays on frame like a Swiss clock, Donato put on an amazing performance. This co -tour with Eggy is a perfect melding of styles and fan bases.
Daniel Donato setlist:
Sunshine in the Rain
Rose in a Garden
‘Til the Daylight
Halfway (In Between)
Luck of the Draw
Sugar Leg Rag
Eggy, which is currently one of my favorite live acts, delivered a soaring set which included a cover of Little Feats ” All that you dream” and an original tune “Smile.” Im personally impressed by Eggy’s unique formula with drummer (Alex Bailey ) who has quite the vocal range and pleasing singing voice. This adds an exciting dynamic to this jam bands harmonies.
Between You and Me
Here and Now
All That You Dream
(Little Feat cover)
A Moments Notice
One More Dance
Golden Gate Dancer
The evening and festival concluded with yet another insanely tight, stylish, and downright cool festival performance by Corey Wong. Filled with soaring guitar solos and a horn section dominating the background, it was the perfect way to send the festival goers home with a smile on their faces, eager for next year’s lineup announcement.
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