Get dirty at Green Groove
When Busta Rhymes took the stage at last year’s Green Groove festival in Boryeong, South Chungcheong Province, it was raining so hard that the festival’s organizer said that “his passion and energy were expressed in the form of music in such a way that he reminded us of a beast. That was the moment in which artist, music and audience became one.”
With over 25,000 people turning out for the show, it was a smashing success. This year, they’re aiming even higher. The goal is 50,000 people to attend the festival, which runs the weekend of July 21 and 22.
Overlook the Green Groove festival at your own peril, for this is shaping up to be one of the best weekends of music on the peninsula. (Plus, you get free beer for picking up trash.) A few people we talked to who attended in 2011 described it as diverse, energetic and just plain fun. Whereas other festivals tend to zero-in on one or two genres, the music at the Green Groove festival comes in all forms.
From hip-hop, R&B, electronic, indie-rock, ska-punk and even K-pop, they try to cover all kinds of music. This year’s top draw looks to be multi-platinum-selling music artist and producer Akon. Infected Mushroom, the popular electronic band from Israel, is also making an appearance. Big Korean names include Delispice and 10cm.
Festival organizers said they were surprised at the number of expats that attended the festival in its first year last year. The stacked lineup that included Busta Rhymes, Afrojack, apl.de.ap of the Black Eyed Peas and Daishi Dance didn’t hurt, either. And they told Groove Korea that they would be even more prepared to accommodate the crowd this time around.
“Honestly, we did not expect that many foreigners would come to the festival (in 2011),” said a spokesperson. “Surprisingly, perhaps due to the world-class line-up, many foreigners came and enjoyed it. This year, with the knowledge gained from last year’s experience, we extended our marketing and services to foreigners from the beginning. Notably, we scheduled the festival so it falls at the same time as the mud festival, which attracts more than 200,000 foreigners.”
The Boryeong Mud Festival (July 14 to July 24) and the Green Groove festival both take place on Daecheon Beach in the city of Boryeong.
It seems every music festival has a cause these days, and Green Groove is on the side of environmentalism. “We hope to raise awareness of environmental issues and to send out the message that saving the environment can be as fun as enjoying the festival,” said the spokesperson.
“The earth is not disposable. We must hand it down to the next generation. A cigarette butt can start a fire in seconds. Getting rid of cigarette litter can be one way to start saving our earth. It’s that simple.”
What better incentive to save the environment than to get a free beer? Just bring some trash to one of the designated booths and walk away with a cold one.