After having a couple years off from hosting its annual jazz festival, the town of Wayne brought it back as the Wayne Music Festival, incorporating more rock and acoustic artists with the jazz music. Now in its third year, the Wayne Music Festival got yet another big upgrade with a third stage and even more (local) musicians to entertain the suburbs. It may not qualify as a jazz festival anymore, but this year’s Wayne Music Festival managed to bring out more than enough music fans to pack the center of Wayne by the time Rusted Root started their headlining set on Saturday night.
While the festival started around noon with the local restaurants and bars serving up food and drinks to the early birds, the midday acts got the energy flowing; which is important due to the weekend heatwave trying to drain our energy out of us, at the same time. Darla from Philadelphia had the early audience not only dancing along with their songs but also laughing between songs. It was when the reunited Huffamoose was introduced by WXPN’s Dan Reid that the party really got started, though, and with Ben Arnold and his whole band following, the festival took off.
You could watch North Wayne avenue fill in while Rusted Root soundchecked; it felt as though the street was even more packed than in previous years. The whole day seemed to go quickly, jumping between stages from one set to the next. If there wasn’t anyone on the main stage, then both small stages were occupied. The only time it felt like there may have been a little lull was right before Rusted Root began their headlining set, but it could have been due to people taking a quick break to refuel or charge their phones.
Once Rusted Root took the stage, the festival was strong through the end. Being a Pittsburgh band playing in Philadelphia territory, they definitely had their fans in attendance. They came back out for an encore and kept on going as the soundtrack to the fireworks show which ended the 2017 Wayne Music Festival. Check out a full photo gallery from the day below.
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