"Sacramento is a diverse scene I feel like, you know, there's a lot of bands of different genres. When you're in an underground DIY scene you get more variety for sure", says Boreas member Teegan, when asked about the underground music scene and its reemergence this year despite the many challenges it's faced. It seems Sacramento is attempting to breathe life back into itself with this small but mighty community.
With bands all over California and across the globe looking to make their way back out into the sea of shows and events that surround the music industry, they seem to be collectively gathering to host shows themselves. From ticket sales to food and beverages, it appears nothing is out of reach for these kinds of motivated individuals. Many of the bands that played at the "Lollapaloser" event on Friday September 10th, organized by dedicated supporters and parents such as Greg and Bridget Leal, would love to see events like this continue and be a part of shaping them in any way possible. "The people that are down for the scene are very loyal, and I think that's awesome", Sacramento and San Diego band Tarnish explains, "We had a show in Riverside last weekend, that I feel was a really good example of it because the entire crowd was just people who like to go to shows on the weekend, no one knew us but it was sick. We had a great crowd, we had a good pit going, it literally felt like a home town show". They go on to mention communities like this in various places and how it's made them connect with people in ways they would have never would've imagined.
Photo by : @d2r98
The Blue Goose Event Center being the latest venue for this particular community, its seems just about every band interviewed would seize the opportunity to play here again. With multiple venues opening up, it's beginning to look like these kinds of home-made shows might stand a good chance of seeing success if they can garner the kind of attention needed by the local and outsider communities.
Sacramento appears to be a perfect host for niche, do-it-yourself groups, alongside other cities such as; Riverside, San Diego, and Santa Cruz, California. Even drawing in bands from places like Las Vegas, Nevada.
Part II and the Electric Boogaloos have wandered in the opposite direction of their bright lighted home-town to stumble upon this particular underground and independent music scene, and had this to say about it, "We couldn't be happier to be a part of such a supportive scene that has people from all the way over here in Sacramento asking us to play shows for them. It just goes to show that punk as a genre is definitely not dead and that it's very much alive. We couldn't ask for a better scene to be a part of."
Photo by : @d2r98
This small but fierce string of local bands have been setting up their own backyard shows long before the pandemic and are planning on continuing as long as they can manage. With older groups like Misfit Williams, and LoveRageChaos finding fresh energy and a sense of nostalgia from the younger crowds, the young teenage bands cemented in this particular scene seem to gain a sense of respect, self worth, and overall community from the older generations frequenting these events.
With bands such as Boreas, Tuff Toenailz, and The Real Conspiracy, being comprised of mainly teenagers with parents and friends in the scene, it comes as no surprise that they have found their way to music, and the stage. Being a new band in a crowd of veteran musicians can come with its own set of challenges, however these bands seem to have taken these challenges head on.
"It's really hard to get gigs, especially since we're younger, a lot of the venues are 21+, or bars, or they don't really take us seriously because we're a younger band. Once you get your foot in the door you get better connections to more bands, who invite you to play with them, and that's how we've gotten our gigs so far.", The Real Conspiracy front woman mentions.
Witnessing the contrast firsthand not only in the age of the bands playing, but in the age of the attendees as well, was truly a marvel where people felt comfortable enough to bring their little ones to enjoy the live music.. This tight knit family of talented and skilled individuals certainly has their audience coming back for more and all by the power of will.
Clear Vision Collective writer and photographer Diego had this to say when asked about what he would tell others when attending DIY events, "don't be afraid of attending smaller venues. There are usually less people, but the passion and energy is still there as an art form". With Lollapaloser being only the beginning, we expect to see many more bands join this specific scene and larger scaled events. Tuff Toenailz singer explains."We don't have like a ton of quote on quote big bands, but the bands that we have are tight, it's all kinda grass roots."
Here at Clear Vision, we're made up of motivated and driven individuals much like the ones that are scattered across the bands and crowds that host these events. It's no wonder even one of Clear Vision's co-founders, Spenser Judd, managed to find his way there to snap a few photos. If groups like this not only exist in Sacramento but across the globe, then there is certainly a bright future for DIY culture as a whole. Independent artists looking for community are in for a treat.
It's clear that there isn't a challenge these bands couldn't face, as long as they faced it with adversity together. From bands still in school, to bands celebrating member's 60th birthdays, if you are a part of an independent band and would like a chance to play with such welcoming individuals, community is but a DM away.
Many of the groups involved in these DIY events have simply created Craigslist posts to organize lineups, groups, and resources, and the same tools are available to you. Misfit Williams had this advice for those looking to start their own DIY scenes "When you get into a scene and you start playing music and keeping other people around you, the goal for me is to try and keep an open mind, and try and stay humble around people even though it's difficult. Everybody wants to think that they know everything." This sense of humility is not only present in these bands, but in their music as well. Whether you're new to underground music and the scene that accompanies it or a seasoned veteran of the musical stratosphere, there's a place for you to rest your bones in Northern Sacramento. Be sure to follow any of the bands mentioned to stay updated on any events that may be coming up in the near future and check out their music on most major streaming platforms. Be sure to check out our Youtube and Exclusive Q&A articles for full-length interviews gathered at Lollapaloser.