Sloss music festival showcases local and national artists

Sloss+music+festival+showcases+local+and+national+artists

| Shelby Akin

Peyton Shepard

As Sloss Music and Arts Festival made its second appearance in Birmingham, attendees were well prepared for the same hot temperatures it faced last year.

What they weren’t prepared for was Sunday’s brief but heavy downpour a little after 6 p.m. that had festival goers huddled under any cover they could find.

Thankfully, the rain subsided soon after it started. The grounds of Birmingham’s historic Sloss Furnaces were turned into a mud pit and humidity peaked, but Sloss organizers kept the event on track – after an hour long delay, a new schedule was released through the festival’s app and social media accounts, and the show went on as planned.

Ryan Adams and the Shining led this year’s lineup, along with 40 other acts that played on four stages from 1 p.m. to midnight each day. Other major acts included Ray Lamontagne, Fitz and the Tantrums, Death Cab for Cutie, Grouplove and the Flaming Lips.

Sloss Fest organizers have not released their attendance figures, but according to Red Mountain Entertainment, over 25,000 people attended the two-day event in 2015 for the festival’s first year.

Sloss Fest featured multiple musicians with ties to Alabama, including Athens native and country artist Anderson East, Birmingham-based band the Burning Peppermints and singer-songwriter Dylan LeBlanc, who spent a large part of his early career performing in Muscle Shoals. The lineup for the festival’s new fourth stage, sponsored by Seasick Records, also featured acts from around the state.

When patrons weren’t listening to music, they could peruse the various vendor tents lining the spray pond and viaduct. Tuscaloosa-based Left Hand Soap Company was one of the featured vendors. Other vendors’ products ranged from art prints and handmade jewelry to boutique clothing and henna.

Local food and drinks were also on display, including Jim ‘n’ Nick’s Barbecue, Steel City Pops and Local Roots food truck, as well as the Piggly Wiggly Craftly Beerly beer garden, which featured local craft brews.

Keeping true to the venue’s origins, Sloss Fest included an iron-pouring demonstration from the Sloss Metal Arts program, where attendees could pay to make their own personalized iron plate while also getting to witness the process that goes into creating iron art.

Though Sloss organizers have yet to confirm a 2017 engagement, on Monday, the festival’s twitter account tweeted a picture of festival act Glass Animals’ lead singer and wrote, “The face you make when you have to wait a WHOLE YEAR for #slossfest 2017.”

While that by no means confirms anything, it is probable that Sloss will return for a third round next July.