Pemberton Music Festival 2016 || Gina’s Top 10 Artists

The task of narrowing down my top performances in Pemberton Music Festival’s enticing 2016 lineup was difficult to say the least. They’ve appealed to a pretty wide range of attendees with a diverse assortment of music and comedy. And with each genre being represented by some of their best artists. Though a tough pick, the following ten performers are some who I’d be quite excited to see, especially given that most of them would be a first time experience for me. I chose to arrange the my selections by genre rather than chronologically, since they’re all too great to stratify.

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Gina’s Top 10 Performers at Pemberton Music Festival 2016

Hip Hop

Snoop Dogg

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It definitely goes without saying that Snoop Dogg is a pop culture icon and a musical legend. Regardless of whether or not your affinity lies within the hip hop realm, it’d be difficult to voluntarily squander the opportunity to catch his performance at least once in life. Snoop Dogg is one whose name evokes humor and good-natured debauchery. I’ve never seen him before and I imagine his live performances as nothing less than an absurdly fun time.

Die Antwoord

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Die Antwoord is known for their bizarre, borderline offensive, fringe pop, hip hop style. I have yet to see one of their live performances, which I understand to be as outlandish as their exaggerated collective persona. Whether their schtick is sincere or satire, their live sets, though highly controversial, are undoubtedly entertaining. Though I wouldn’t call myself a huge fan, I’ve enjoyed many of their hit tracks, as well as their recent film Chappie, and would love to experience their disturbing intrigue for myself.

Cypress Hill

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The name Cypress Hill incites the nostalgia of smoke-filled hangouts and impromptu bursts into vigorous rhyme. After two and a half decades, this group still throws down with unwavering vitality. Including recent beats most effectively blasted with excessive volume. Cypress Hill’s 2012 collaboration with dubstep patriarch Rusko (Cypress X Rusko) hit me right in the bass music soft spot. This EP features Cypress Hill’s age-old grit, stomping rhythm and cutting lyrics all enveloped within into Rusko’s volatile wobbles. It’s an album that displays their persistent dedication and aptitude for their craft in addition to their unshakeable energy expended. I would be far too lucky to catch them back in their element. 


Ra Ra Riot

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Indie rock is a genre’s that I appreciate more live than as a lone listener. Sharing its heart-tugging soul whilst culminated in an outdoor amphitheater with the vibes of thousands gathered for the same shared experience, sounds spectacular to say the least. There’s no other band with whom I’d rather participate in such a setting than Ra Ra Riot. Their uplifting nostalgic sound backed by syncopated percussive style is one with which I can blithely enjoy and would eagerly dance the night away.



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Datsik is both forefather and frontrunner of the modern dubstep generation. Fiercely talented and tirelessly dedicated, his suitable name is synonymous with merciless wubs and spine-shattering drops. I’ve seen him several times in the past, including just last month wrecking the bass stage at Paradiso Festival, east of Seattle. I would be most excited to catch British Columbian native melt the faces of an ever-convivial bass-loving crowd.

Big Gigantic

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I am absolutely beyond excited that Big Gigantic is on this lineup! This is the number one set that I would most be anticipating at Pemby Fest. The dynamic combination of live instrumentation and electronic jazzy funkstep is challenged by few other artists save for Gramatik and GRiZ. Being a relentless dancing fiend, I could honestly get down with Big Gigantic if they played a sunset to sunrise performance. Big G is not only composed of two extremely talented musicians, but when set to the stage, they compound the experience with spectacular production and unparalleled presence.


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There are few forces in existence grander than that of Bassnectar on stage, except perhaps his own sumptuous mane and obscenely felicitous moniker. Every set he commandeers is less a musical performance than an supra-spiritual experience, involving the fiber of one’s nature being blended with that of everything around, animate or otherwise. His distinctive downtempo style transforms an otherwise terrestrial space into a boundless chasm of concentrated, booming bass. Anyone who’s really experienced Bassnectar can attest to their complete, involuntary acquiescence to the music and no further beyond the present space in which it magnanimously circulates. 


Cheech & Chong Pemberton Music Festival 2016
Photo credit: Robert Gauthier / Los Angeles Times
Cheech & Chong

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Cheech and Chong are among the living ancestors of comedy. When the screwy duo contentiously split, a somber air that fell upon the comedy world. Now, after decades of separation we finally get to see them back in action! Being that they originally met in British Columbia, Pemberton is a profoundly apt place for them to perform during their long-awaited reunion. Being best known for their cannabis humor also lends itself painfully well to performing in the smokey Northwest. If there were anywhere to finally catch comedic architects Cheech and Chong, Pemby Fest couldn’t be a better place.

Maria Bamford

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Maria Bamford’s animated, self-deprecating style of is one that I’ve enjoyed for years. Her comedic persona was seldom seen in person for a while due to her fairly reclusive tendencies. But she’s very recently ventured back out with her brand new Netflix series Lady Dynamite, and gracing us again with her silly antics and impressions. Maria is a very talented voice actress who’s portrayed many dynamic characters in some of my favorite cartoons such as Adventure Time, Bravest Warriors and Bojack Horseman. One might wonder, what with her wide-eyed, high-pitched, spastic stage presence, whether Maria is in fact a living cartoon herself.  

Doug Benson

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Doug Benson wears many hats as an actor, comedian and activist, both laudable and hilarious to boot. He’s been all over the place from comedy clubs and tv productions to comedy fests and talk shows. He’s best known for his roles in Trailer Park Boys, Best Week Ever, and most notably starring in his own documentary Super High Me, a cannabic parody of the grimly revealing film Super Size Me. Doug Benson’s dry sense of humor and outwardly perma-stoned character, lend perfectly to a relaxing vibe with embellished with cleverly comical flavor. 

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Gina relocated from monotonous central California to the damp, musically dense Pacific Northwest in 2009. Not long after, she became completely enveloped in the vibrant world of electronic dance music. Obsessed with the catharsis of dance and unparalleled sense of community, her life’s pursuit became attending as many live music events as possible. While she doesn’t limit her eclectic musical taste by any means, bass music is what most activates her tumultuous soul. Soon, within her grew the desire to become more involved and contribute to the community which has shown her interminable acceptance and purpose. In that pursuit, she began working with the artist relations teams at local powerhouse Foundation Nightclub and its parent company USC Events in Seattle. She’s now found a space where meaning and motivation converge and intends to embed herself as much as possible within those musical spaces.