BY: JOSHUA J. HORTON
It really is happening. Community engagement, caring to share, the networking of those willing to reconnect and build upon ancient traditions, and the embodiment of uplifting people from all walks of life through the pure expression of art and music.
The ARISE Music Festival 2016 reached its fourth year of manifesting a positive and safe atmosphere for all ages to play, heal and express oneself freely. The Sunrise Spiritual Ranch just outside Loveland, Colorado has provided a uniquely built environment for the three days that were full of festivities. From August 5th through the 7th, many memories, stories and energies were exchanged which brightened the hearts and desires of festival goers, staff and artists alike. These exchanges have sparked passionate movements— from knowledge about conscious and mindful solutions to combatting climate change, living more sustainable lifestyles, as well as honoring indigenous cultures.
The opening ceremony of the festival involved many residents of the spiritual ranch, as well as youth and elders representing the Healing, NoCo Hemp, Wisdom and Solutions Villages, respectively. All were garbed in white to extend the message of purity and the lighthearted nature in which ARISE promotes. Early arrivals, vendors adding final touches to booths, and volunteers waiting to put in a helping hand were invited to join and expand the ever widening drum circle of chanting and involvement in front of the main platform, the Eagle Stage.
Performances of bluegrass and folk tunes rang throughout Sunrise Spiritual Ranch as the festival ensued into Friday afternoon. Those lucky enough who set up camp in the VIP and West Side camping areas were treated to a special spontaneous jam session by Rising Appalachia. Two sisters, Leah and Chloe, and their talented bandmates, Biko Casini and David Brown, would later take their impromptu jam session to the Eagle Stage, where they set the tone of dancing and joyous amusement for the headliners of the first night of the festival, and their idols, Jurassic 5. Consisting of four emcees from the 90’s, Chali 2NA, Zaakir, Akil and Marc 7even rocked the house into late Friday evening with the Hip Hop group’s two disc jockeys, DJ Numark and Cut Chemist. In between songs like “Freedom” and “What’s Golden,” the two old school disc jockeys provided an awe-inspiring performance with their innovative toys, which included hybrid turntables fashioned into guitars, a drum pad made from CDs and worn on the chest like a washboard, as well as a giant upright turntable complete with a vinyl record that towered eight feet into the air.
The second day of merriments on Saturday brought together the flourishment of encouraging intent for gratitude from the presence of the diverse festival collective. Offerings of sanctuaries for yoga, healing through metaphysical practitioners and teachings, delectable and healthy foods, spaces for kids to be kids, and several educational workshops gave way to another night of amazing artists and musicians. Del The Funky Homosapien headlined the festival Saturday evening bringing his eclectic and futuristic forms of Hip Hop expression with songs throughout his venerable career, such as “Dr. Bombay” and “Deltron 3030.” The events in which arose into the late hours as a result of the wonderment envisioned through the manifested mysticism from the entirety of the festival’s presence on Saturday into Sunday brought together insurmountable energies that are still unidentified to this day. This reason alone may be why ARISE has become an out of this world commemoration showcasing “Colorado Hospitality”.
Help from an extended eternal family assisted in the miracles of magical signs that only perceptions of the third and fourth kind can comprehend beyond the frequencies of control set upon the masses. Age old sages, medicine women and men, goddesses and gods, musical geniuses, acrobatic aerial performers, and yes, even mermaids. Many societal creature comforts were set aside during those three days to connect on a higher plain with Earth, its inhabitants and the idea of Nature itself. Installations of mind-altering artistic conceptions, a myriad of musical frequencies to enhance the alignment of chakras, and incredible interactions amongst individuals of imaginative designs gave forth an understanding as to why we are all here on this planet as one. Ziggy Marley stated best on Sunday evening while on stage as the grand finale to the ARISE Music Festival 2016, “I am not black, white, red, yellow, purple, I am the People! Love is my religion, I don’t want to have to go to Mars, because this Mother is home!”
Ziggy Marley stated best on Sunday evening while on stage as the grand finale to the ARISE Music Festival 2016, “I am not black, white, red, yellow, purple, I am the People! Love is my religion, I don’t want to have to go to Mars, because this Mother is home!”