Feature: All Good Music Festival & Campout

From the July 19, 2012 edition

Like the hippie culture it facilitates, All Good Music Festival & Campout evolves with the times. It began in Maryland, then it moved to a West Virginia mountaintop, and now it’s coming to our backyard.

Starting today and continuing through Sunday, All Good will unfold at Legend Valley, a sprawling festival venue in Thornville, located 25 miles east of Downtown Columbus. The reason for the relocation, festival organizers explained, is that the scenic mountaintop that used to host the event was not properly accessible. There simply weren’t enough well-maintained roads, which resulted in lengthy, narrow traffic jams creeping up the mountainside.

Central Ohio has plenty of drivable highways, which happen to link our area to lots of other areas, so now we get the benefit of The Allman Brothers Band, The Flaming Lips and more descending upon us for four straight days. Organizers are expecting 20,000 people. It’s a big deal that this event moved to our area — maybe not Rock on the Range huge, but huge nonetheless.

Though there will be plenty of music history and years of artistic progression on hand, this music shares a common bond: It’s feel-good music built for having a blast in a large field filled with people. Forty-five years after the Summer of Love, there’s still a teeming market for this stuff.

For real, All Good seems to be servicing several generations’ worth of hippies. You’ve got old-timers like the Allmans, plus two separate Grateful Dead affiliates (Phil Lesh & Friends plus Bob Weir’s partnership with Bruce Hornsby). You’ve got their psychedelic descendents The Flaming Lips, who’ve evolved into a giddy, absurdist live-action cartoon. Then there’s a slew of DJs and “jamtronica” acts that appeal to all the young dubsteppers.

Of particular note to Columbus listeners: local natives The Werks (now flourishing nationwide), Papadosio (ditto) and Red Wanting Blue (fresh off an appearance on “The Late Show With David Letterman”) will perform.

Furthermore, Columbus DJ crew My Best Friend’s Party is providing the late-night entertainment, and they do mean late — so late you might even call it early. Electronic acts including Attak + Carma, Heady Ruxpin and Ill Atmospherics will perform from 3 a.m. to 5 a.m. nightly.

Ticket info, the full festival lineup and camping instructions are available at allgoodfestival.com. Take care of each other, and stay safe in the heat!