With only one main outdoor stage as opposed to the three last year, Martinez said he believes this will bring more focus to the indoor venues participating.
"We’re having the venues be showcases, and we’re really pushing that now," Martinez said. "So instead of three huge main stages in the street, plus eight venue stages, which added up to 11 last year, we’re going to pare it down a little bit, refine it a little bit more, but still have the same integrity in programming that will be able to be something for everybody."
Aside from the main stage and family stage, Martinez walked us through each venue and what festivalgoers can expect from them.
Women's Twentieth Century Club of Eagle Rock
This stage is the "Americana Stage," and will feature Triple Chicken Foot, Jessica Fichot, Big Search and The Tennessee Walker.
"The Women’s Club is going to be Americana folk music, which we stuck to last year and did really well. We had a band called Triple Chicken Foot, which we are asking back. They are like a square dance troop. They get people to straight square dance, it’s a beautiful thing. The Women’s Club, they have like lemonade and tea and serve deserts. It’s a family affair, it’s super sweet," Martinez said.
Bateman Water Heating Engineering
The "Punk/Metal/Hard Rock Stage" will feature Foli, The Chalon Ford Band, Loup Garou MF, Legion Underworld and San Pedro El Cortez.
"We are working with Bateman Water and Heating, which have been huge supporters over the years. They are going to help us outfit a stage, which is going to be like punk rock, indie, harder rock side of stuff. All local bands coming from the band applications, so we are honoring the idea that local bands are being heard," Martinez said.
Bands featured will include JR Black and the Restless Blues Band.
"Columbos, we have a band outside and multiple bands inside playing jazz, blues and classic covers, stuff like that, so it’s always very fun," Martinez said.
Rantz Auto Center
The "Sub-Tropical and Global Bass Stage" will include Subsuelo, Conjunto Nueva Ola, cumbia actQuitapenas, the Eagle Rock High School Latin Band, and Tijuana-based Ibi Ego.
"We have Rantz, which is like an automotive space, and that, we really focus on what I call sub-tropical global bass, which is really an extension of African, Latin rhythm but now infused with modern music," Martinez said. "The stereotype of Latin music for me, it just doesn’t ring right to me, there’s just so much kinds of music that exists, so I just want to create a new genre with certain elements of that, but it's still music and its not going to be salsa bands all night.
"I’m getting a couple bands from Tijuana, I’m working with an organization called IMAC, and also we are working with this festival called All My Friends Festival, which is a Tijuana based festival. And we’re getting two bands that they’ve submitted to me and we’re going to have them on two stages. We’re going to have one on Bateman and one on the Rantz stage. So it's electronic music, DJ culture stuff, but with global based theme. It’s more of a global way of thinking what a genre can be."
Los Angeles Filipino-American United Church of Christ
"The Experimental Stage" will feature String Theory, Team Supreme, Carmen Rizzo, and the Indian orchestra Arohi.
"We’re working with the Filipino church that’s on the route, doing a little bit more of an experimental music where I thought it would be interesting to create like a curated place, where it almost feels like an oasis to the chaos that’s out there," Martinez said. "When you go in there, all the artists will be playing ambient style music of whatever their genre is. I gave them the task of that."
The church will also have a significant visual element to the performances, Martinez explained.
"Museum of Traffic, which is a visual team that I know, will be video mapping the entire church, meaning they will be taking images from their projector and video mapping it to arches," Martinez said. "The technology now allows you to shoot a camera onto these pillars that we’re looking at and it will create a graph of that in your computer. And you can assign just whatever image you want just on the side of what pillar you want. And so there’s so much control now with technology. They will be essentially VJing these sets, which will be fun."
Eagle Rock City Hall
"The Family Stage" will feature family-friendly programming and include Bonne Musique Zydeco, NINE, Matt and Ellen, and Bob Baker Marionettes.
Martinez said a lot of the reasons for downsizing the festival this year was so that it remained safe for families.
"We’re really big on safety, we want this to be a family festival and not have it feel like there is any sense of danger. The changes are really for the benefit of the community," Martinez said.
The main stage will feature Bosnian Rainbows, Kingdom b2b Nguzunguzu, Dub Club, Young Adults, Boardwalk, Skin Town and Little Red Lung.
"The main stage this year is the culmination of the three stages we’ve had in the past. That’s going to be the draw for lot of people that know bigger names. The production will be better and I think the overall quality and experience for festivalgoers will be a lot better," Martinez said.
Come back this week for more with our conversation with Martinez.