North Beach Music Festival (NBMF) has quickly established itself as an automatic ‘yes, I will attend’ festival based on its December timing, Miami Beach location and absolutely stellar lineup each year. Since its inception in 2021, the brothers Plotnicki, have curated incredible jam, funk, soul, electronica , and jazz artists onto the fest’s 3-day schedule. In just two short weeks, we’ll be back on the beach and here’s a quick rundown of the daily schedules.
Friday, December 1
This year the Disco Biscuits dominate NBMF with two sets on opening night + an encore on Saturday. The Philly jam band is know for its trippy fusion sets and extended journeys into the unknown. They’re guaranteed to take us places we’ve never been before.
Prior to that Mark Farina will be spinning, hopefully some intoxicating mushroom jazz. It’ll be interesting to see him as an intermezzo between Ajeva, the opener, and Biscuits.
I first saw Ajeva several years ago at Hulaween and have enjoyed their sets every time. They play some groove-laden funk and I’m glad to see them in the lineup.
Saturday, December 2
Saturday the schedule is stacked and will be running on two stages, the main Bandshell and the Park Stage in the grass among the beautiful palm trees. Part of the greatness of this festival is that with just two stages in close proximity to each other, you don’t have to miss a single minute of music.
The day kicks off on the main Bandshell stage with The Heavy Pets, a local Fort Lauderdale favorite known for their funky jazz and reggae sound. What a great way to start a Saturday.
Next up is a ‘sleeper’ of a set featuring local bassist Brad Miller who brings in the heavy hitters Oz Noy on guitar and Thomas Pridgen (The Mars Volta) on drums. This set is gonna be amazing withoug a doubt.
Say She She is an incredible girl-trio led band that just released their sophomore album Silver, on Colemine Records. As with other label-mates, they bring that old school soul sound to ya with that up-to-date flair. This is another coup addition to the NBMF lineup.
Electric Kif out of Miami are a favorite of mine. They’ve performed most recently at Hulaween in Live Oak, in the past at the Bandshell at GroundUP Music Festival and have toured nationally and internationally. Their funky, jazz fusion will be super cool on the Park Stage.
Sunsquabi is a power trio out of Denver and their heavy jamtronica will be a nice complement to Saturday afternoon schedule. I’m looking forward to hearing some material from their 2022 release Arise which I haven’t yet seen live. As the appetizer for the Saturday biscuits set, Adam Deitch of Lettuce and his own Quartet will perform a producer set which I’m all in for since seeing him with a late night set at last year’s NBMF.
Sunday, December 3
It’s hard to imagine a festival lineup where it’s 7/7 bands that I’m excited to see, but this year’s Sunday NBMF is just that. Starting off with the legendary George Porter Jr. & Runnin’ Pardners, I’l be at the Bandshell stage early. GPJ is an original member of The Meters and brings his own group’s quintessential New Orleand sound to beautiful Miami.
Next up is TWYN, a dynamic duo comprised of Jason Matthews (Electric Kif) on keys and Aaron Glueckauf (Lemon City Trio) on drums. I’m familiar with both of their respective bands but have yet to see TWYN, sure to be on point.
Daniel Donato’s Cosmic Country has been rising in their reach and on festival lineups. I’ve seen Daniel as part of Trouble No More, the Allman Brothers tribute band, but not with his own band which features my good buddy Will Clark (Funk You) on drums so this one’s another personal connection for me.
I’m familiar with Erica Falls as a former lead singer with NOLA funk band Galactic, and have seen her just once on her own. She’s electrifying and as dynamic a vocalist as there is and a strong addition to the NBMF roster.
EGGY has received tremendous hype over the last few years with catchy tunes and tasty jams. Since forming in 2016, they’ve toured nationally and come through Atlanta a few times. They’ll be rocking the Bandshell stage.
Adam Deitch Quartet is, for me, the most exciting addition to the lineup. AD4 features Lettuce bandmates Eric ‘Benny Bloom’ and Ryan Zoidis as well as Wil Blades on keys. Their just released album, Roll The Tape has been on repeat for me and you can expect a full review prior to the fest.
Wrapping up NBMF this year is the great Cory Wong, one of the most exciting guitarists, composers and bandleaders on the scene today. As a touring member of Vulfpeck he’s an integral part of their rolling funk machine. As a frontman, typically of a big band, he’s entertained with some of the most fun concerts in recent years, and I’ve been able to catch many of them, but never enough. Can’t wait for this amazing weekend just 2 weeks away!