Sertoma Youth Ranch to host jam bands, funk and electronica artists

Gainesville’s 3rd Stone will be among the scheduled 25 acts at this weekend’s Orange Blossom Jamboree Music and Art Festival. In addition to the music, about 30 vendors will sell food, beverages and crafts.

Special to the Times

Gainesville’s 3rd Stone will be among the scheduled 25 acts at this weekend’s Orange Blossom Jamboree Music and Art Festival. In addition to the music, about 30 vendors will sell food, beverages and crafts.

SPRING LAKE — Normally quiet during May, the Sertoma Youth Ranch will be the scene of two diverse music festivals this weekend and next. Both promise to break new ground at the venue, which traditionally plays host to bluegrass and folk music events.

This weekend's inaugural Orange Blossom Jamboree Music and Art Festival will beckon fans from the jam band culture with 25 acts scheduled to perform today through Sunday. Wake Up Florida, May 28-30, is touted as a multigenre sonic blowout featuring more than four dozen rock, punk and electronic artists on three stages.

Orange Blossom Jamboree promoter Russ Bowers said that his event is the first of its kind in Central Florida and will feature groups from throughout the state, including his own band, Fungus Garden Reverb.

Bowers, who lives in Fort Lauderdale, said he has been a fan of improvisational rock for many years. The music, whose roots can be traced to the iconic 1960s rock band, the Grateful Dead, and continued during the 1990s with bands such as Phish and Widespread Panic, has garnered a cult-like following in recent years.

Bowers, 34, said he has attended several jam band festivals in the Midwest and wanted to re-create the fun, family-friendly atmosphere in his home state.

"It's just a great, organic scene," Bowers said of his fellow jam band followers. "It's all about people enjoying live music and making friends."

Bowers said he's expecting about 1,000 people to attend; many who have bought advance tickets plan to camp for the weekend, he said. In addition to the music, about 30 vendors will be on hand selling food, beverages and crafts.

According to Bowers, most of the performers have only a regional following. But he expects that a number of fans will turn out to see the notable names, such as 3rd Stone, a popular Gainesville funk-soul sextet, and the Tampa blues-rock quartet COPE.

"These bands are getting known pretty well around the state, so we're hoping they'll draw a good crowd," Bowers said.

As genre-diverse as the Orange Blossom Jamboree is, nailing down the Wake Up Florida music festival is even tougher. Think rock meets hip-hop meets funk meets electronica — and just about everything in between.

One thing is for certain: It's not an event for people who can't tolerate high-volume sound.

Although promoter Ron Register did not return calls this week, the website for the festival lists more than 40 acts that are committed to perform at the event. Most of them fall into one of many subcategories of dance-based electronic music — including dub, breakbeat and electro — that are created using computers, synthesizers, turntables and drum machines.

In addition to the main stages for bands, the event will feature a "tek" lounge as well as a DJ/VJ tent that will operate from 7 a.m. to midnight each day.

Logan Neill can be reached at lneill@sptimes.com or (352) 848-1435.

If you go

Orange Blossom Jamboree Music and Art Festival

The festival will be today through Sunday at the Sertoma Youth Ranch. Performances will be from 2:30 to midnight today, 11 a.m. to midnight Saturday and 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Sunday. General admission is $40 at the gate and includes primitive camping. Children 12 and under get in free. RV hookup upgrades are available. For information, visit

orangeblossomjamboree.com.

Wake Up Florida Music Festival

The festival runs May 28-30 at the ranch. Performances on two main stages are scheduled from 7 a.m. to midnight each day. Tickets cost $40 in advance and $50 at the gate. For information, visit wakeupfl.com.

Directions

The Sertoma Youth Ranch is south of Spring Lake on Myers Road, near the Hernando-Pasco county line. From State Road 50, take Spring Lake Highway south to Church Road. Turn left onto Church and go east to Myers. Turn right on Myers and go south to the ranch. From Interstate 75, take Exit 293 and go east on County Road 41, then turn north on Clay Hill Road.

Sertoma Youth Ranch to host jam bands, funk and electronica artists 05/20/10 [Last modified: Thursday, May 20, 2010 4:51pm]

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