The 80/35 celebrated ten years running with the July 2017 music festival, 7th & 8th, Friday & Saturday. Over 35,000 people attended the two-day event in downtown Des Moines. There were nationally known bands, small bands on the verge of a big break, and local musicians looking to be known.
It’s hard to be everywhere at 80/35. There are four stages. Three are free and open to the public stages. There is the paid access main stage where the main acts are. Pick one stage and camp out there or walk back and forth, there is no wrong answer. If you go for a walk, you get to see the great food and art vendors. You will see some old friends around too.
Elizabeth Moen is from Iowa City only two hours east and played a great set at her first appearance at 80/35. MarKaus returned to 80/35 and his band tore up the Nationwide Stage with their show. Bully brought their fuzz guitar sound to the Kum & Go Stage.
Charles Bradley had a great day in the sun on the Hy-Vee Main Stage. As the sun went down MGMT lit up the night with a crazy light show and good music. Amedeo Rossi, 80/35 Project Manager, took the stage on the last night. He ran down a list of people, thanking them for their help over the ten years running 80/35. The Shins took the stage on Saturday night, closing out the 2017 run of 80/35. Who will close out the music festival next year? In ten years? Stay tuned and find out.
-words & photos: Lance Shuey