VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) — You’ve heard about Something in the Water, but how about Something *Indie* Water?
That’s indie, as in independent artists.
50 of them from across Virginia are scheduled to perform at the free three-day event happening in Virginia Beach on April 28-30. It’s the same weekend as Pharrell Williams’ Something in the Water music festival, which will feature homegrown stars in Williams, Clipse and possibly a few others (Missy Elliott?)
Something Indie Water will run from noon to 5 p.m. on Friday and Saturday, with more music during a brunch event that Sunday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. It’s one of the many free events happening that weekend, including live music at 17th Street, 24th Street and 31st Street parks and the Something in the Water Pop-Up Church on Sunday, April 30.
Will Keck with theMSQshop, a creative agency that specializes in helping independent artists, created the festival to highlight Virginia talent in particular through the national spotlight of Something in the Water.
“It’s really something that’s in support of Something in the Water … it’s something that we hope spans past this and can create connectivity between these major artists and regional artists,” said the Richmond native, who also goes by the rap name OG Illa.
“We have over 45 acts, we have rappers, singers, bands, all types of music,” Keck said. “We have acts coming from 757, 804, Fredericksburg, NoVa, Roanoke, it’s really a collaboration of the entire state.”
More than half of the artists will be from right here in the 757, including Virginia Beach’s Shaolinn and Gee Litt, both female singers that blend R&B and alternative elements.
To make the festival happen, Keck reached out to a longtime friend in Virginia Beach hip-hop artist Intalek, who’s serving as a community liaison for the event.
“Being in the scene for over 15 years, we don’t much opportunity like this, where you’ll get thousands of fans of music, media, things like that to come to Hampton Roads,” Intalek says. “So the importance of getting our artists and creatives in front of a crowd that normally doesn’t come here is a very big deal for me.”
Who knows? Maybe the next in a long line of Virginia-grown talent, from Missy Elliott and Timbaland to Clipse and The Neptunes, gets their big break.
“Pharrell’s got the national acts, we’ve got the Virginia, soon to be national acts,” Intalek says.
It’s all going down right near the Something in the Water entrance, at the FFX Theater at the corner of 16th Street and Atlantic Avenue.
The address might ring a bell for some older Tidewater natives. It was the longtime home of Chester’s Upper Deck, which closed back in 2014. The Upper Deck and the nearby Peppermint Beach Club were instrumental in popularizing beach music back in the 1960s.
The FFX, a non-profit interactive theater that mostly caters to families, actually features a sign from the Peppermint behind its bar.
“We came to them with a plan and they welcome us with open arms,” Keck says of the FFX, which opened three years ago.
The space typically fits about 250 people, but capacity will bump up to above 300 for the event, says FFX “Xecutive” Director Tim Ritter.
No reservations are required, but you might want to get there early to grab a spot.
“It’s come and go, anybody’s welcome, we’re gonna make sure we have our doors open to the public and we hope to see everybody there,” Keck says.
Here’s the latest information from the Something Indie Water team, including the full list of acts and descriptions of what to expect:
Friday, April 28th – Day 1 – CNTR Marketplace
Come enjoy the fashion marketplace, vendors, and networking mixer experience. There will be a bar for refreshments and music provided by DJs and bands.
Shaolinn • Gee Litt • Ni’eve • Cane • Roberta Lea • Weekend Plans
Hosted by Jackie Live + MONI
Music by DJ Suave
Saturday, April 29th – Day 2 – theMSQshop Showcase
We will be celebrating the indie music scene in Virginia by displaying the best music talent from the state. Vendors and the marketplace will be open. Bar and refreshments available.
Khi infinite • Noah o x Big No • Kingna Scott • Fishskale Rabble • FulMetalParkas
Lewsid • WhyNotDuce • G-Salih • Jade Josephine • Nat • Gifted Hands
Shuntell Diverse • Will Jung • Tell’em ImBizzy • Corey Jah
Hosted by Sev
Music by DJ Trapreem x DJ Lou Dawg
Sunday, April 30th – Day 3 – Slight Brunch w/ Virginia Natural Gas
Slight Since + VA Natural Gas will be sponsoring brunch event. Including “Virginia Talks Different” Playlist Set + Beat Battle | Powered by Biggz x Prime Studios. Bar and refreshments available. Music provided by DJ. Brunch will be first come, first serve.
Rudy Walker x Taesean
Virginia Talks Different Playlist Set:
Dyfferant • Bobby Blaze • Will Amadeus
T.R.I.G • Slim Kartel • MachineMook • Illa Styles
Drew Famous • Khalif Bryant • Pvvli • Kalene Scott
Beat Battle Producers:
Hyphen • Andre Palace • Diggity Dash • Josh Forte
RazJah • J. Clyde • IlLien Roswell JR Swiftz • Zeek
VonLow • Nay G
Hosted by Je’Nyah
Music by E Shorty
The Something Indie Water team has created a playlist featuring all of the artists to get ready for the weekend. You can also follow themsqshop and Intalek on social media for all of the latest updates on artists, vendors and more.
You can also visit the festival’s website.