Sasquatch! is known for having an abundance of smaller Seattle artists as part of its bill but this year there is a noticeable absence of local indie bands. I assume there will be additional locals announced as it gets closer to Memorial Day weekend but as it stands right now the lineup is pretty full and the smaller local indie bands are limited to Fresh Espresso, Shabazz Palaces, The Long Winters, The Lonely Forest, The Long Winters and Minus The Bear.
Sure having six lesser-known hometown bands on the bill of a major three-day festival is great and the exposure will likely be helpful for those six groups, but in 2008 there were 22 indie acts from Seattle at Sasquatch! out of the 73 total that performed at the festival. That’s a pretty big number of local artists considering last year there were 11 local indie groups out of the 78 total at Sasquatch! according to my count. Given last year’s number is half as many small locals on the bill the year before, perhaps Sasquatch! is shifting away from its tradition of focusing on indie talent from Seattle and focusing on making money instead. After all, Live Nation is a co-producer of the festival and as anyone who has purchased an $11 beer at the Gorge will tell you, Live Nation likes to make money.
There are 10 weeks until Sasquatch! 2010 and so far 81(!) bands are lined up, which I believe is the biggest number of acts ever to play Sasquatch! Hopefully there’s still room for a few more bands of the local indie variety to be added to the festival.
Speaking of additions to Sasquatch!, a few additions have been added to this year’s Sasquatch! lineup. Boston geek rockers They Might Be Giants will play on May 30, hometown power-pop icons The Posies will be at the festival May 29 and indie favorites The Heavy will grace the main stage May 31. The other musician added is Brit-popper Martina Topley Bird.
There have also been some additions on the comedy front. Pothead comic Doug Benson, UPDATE: On March 20, 2010 Bobcat Goldtwait was added, replacing Benson in the lineup, diary-reading Mike Birbiglia and Todd Barry are the three big names. Other comics that have been added include: Rory Scovel, Hannibal Buress and Moshe Kasher.