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August in Music: Favorites from Eaux Claires 2015

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Inspired by the Eaux Claires 2015 music festival! |

Music festivals are hot, crowded, sweaty, exhausting…and utterly transformative. I spent July 17 and 18 hanging out with a few close friends (and 22,000 new ones) in Eau Claire, Wisconsin, at the inaugral Eaux Claires music festival. Organized by Justin Vernon (the genius behind Bon Iver), the event brought together a diverse line-up of musicians who joined each other on stage, wandered the grounds like “regular people,” and—most importantly—made pass-holders extremely happy with solid performances in the July heat.

Eaux Claires featured artists I’ve seen multiple times and/or followed for years (The National, Sufjan Stevens, Bon Iver), bands I’d only recently started obsessing over (Sylvan Esso, S. Carey, Field Report), and acts that I’d never heard of before but quickly jumped to the top of my new favorites list (Polica, The Staves). For this month’s music post, here’s a non-exhaustive playlist of Eaux Claires artists I especially dug. May you find some new favorites, too.

Check out the Eaux Claires site to discover even more artists and prep for next year: You won’t want to miss the second installment of this truly great festival. It’s the only fest I’ve ever been to in which an entire crowd has fallen completely silent in reverence to the music—this after 12 long hours of listening, drinking and dancing, when Bon Iver closed the show with two new songs. It was a beautiful moment, and I hope you get to experience something just as elevating in 2016!

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Sarah Magill

Sarah Magill has a full-time movie habit made possible by a day-time greeting card writing gig. She blogs at Gimme Some Film and is learning to write scripts and direct. She tries to balance her screen obsession with trail running, jazz singing, book clubbing, and hanging out with The Best Golden Retriever Ever, Copa.

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4 comments on “August in Music: Favorites from Eaux Claires 2015”

  1. Yes! Thanks for this! I will listen along and just pretend that I was there with you. ??

  2. Thanks for posting!! Now that I’m a stay at home/freelancing Mom I don’t always get exposure to new music. Looking forward to checking this out. Ironically- I live in Eau Claire & really wanted to check out the festival this year but didn’t due to it being too warm for our new addition.  #yay :)

  3. This reads like something I personally want to experience in 2016. You named a lot of my favorite bands and artists. My home boy Sufjan Stevens is always a great experience. Also, love just about everything Justin Vernon (Bon Iver) has done to date. Same with The National and Poliça. Are you privy to listening to the Phox band? They’re another great gotta listen to Wisconsin band. Maybe I’ll see you at Eau Claire next time. Thanks.