Boogaloo 2017: A Talk With The Co-Founder

May 1, 2017 -

Daily Beat Staff

As you grow there are certain freedoms you lose, but silly isn't one of them.
The Boogaloo Art Car Music Festival co-founder, Brian Crain, describes Boogaloo's mission to "make people laugh, smile and have fun" at the unique three day festival in Oak Canyon Park this past weekend. Thrown by the Dirty Beetles, a creative community born out of Burning Man, Boogaloo is entering its magical fifth year. They brought out familiar names like Z-Trip, A. Skillz, Vanilla Ace, Fritz Carlton, Josh Billings, Nonfiction and many more rising DJs this year.


 How did the Boogaloo community come together?

We were a bunch of friends that did festivals together, like LIB and Burning Man. One fateful day we were camping together in NorCal, not at a festival. We started chatting about buying an art car.  A week later, we came home and one of our founding members, Ashley Bowers, had found this awesome 1981 international Short Bus. We bought that bus and our silly little group of friends became festival rock stars.

How similar/different is the vision for Boogaloo from when it first started?

As you grow there are certain freedoms you lose, but silly isn't one of them. Our mission straight out of the gate was to make people laugh, smile, and have fun. We're still doing that, just on a way larger scale than any of us dreamed of.

What makes Boogaloo stand out from other similar festivals like Desert Hearts and Burning Man?

First off, both of those events are awesome and for us to be mentioned in the same sentence is awesome. Now, as a good friend once said "no one started a counter culture event because they were the same as everyone else” - Boogaloo provides a space for you to be different and still feel like you're part of the family.

How do you see Boogaloo continuously grow in the art/ music community in the next few years?

We hope to manage it like a master gardener. Growth is important to us; it keeps things fresh, but at the same time scaling up can be a tricky thing. This year, we grew by increasing our management team. Best move yet.

What goals do you have for the future of Boogaloo?

Once we master this, I would love to take this concept back to the Midwest where Ian Stone, my partner, and I are from.

What was the biggest challenge that you faced when planning this years festival?

The location we call home just switched from a private piece of land, to land owned by Orange County.  So there are some changes in noise ordinance and other logistical things, but since day one our mission was to build strong relationship with with the community of OC.
We feel that we have created something very special and most of all safe. That is not easy to do.

With four main stages and ten plus renegade stages, Boogaloo is all about the collective bond and energy we share on the dance floor away from daily lives. Bringing the crowd together through art, music, dancing and love, the vibrant presence can be felt throughout Oak Canyon Park. Excited for this life-transforming weekend, I had the opportunity to discuss the creation of Boogaloo with co-founder Brian Crain about his his team's mystical journey creating this enchanted community filled with joy.

- Karen Tang

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