Text by Mary Mistretta

My first Night Lights Music Festival in 2014 was so amazing I started writing about music. From Western New York favorites to heavy-hitting Grammy winners and everyone in between, Night Lights has given an incredible lineup year after year, and this one is clearly no exception:

Phase 1 Lineup:

Beats Antique

Moon Hooch

Aqueous x 3



Broccoli Samurai


Buffalo Afrobeat Orchestra

Funktional Flow

Also on the initial phase 1 lineup:

  • The Truth
  • JP3
  • Relics – WNY’s Tribute To The Music of Pink Floyd
  • The Commonheart
  • Aircraft
  • Pine Fever
  • Daybreak Radio
  • French Quarter Hounds
  • Tough Old Bird, Sonder
  • The Observers
  • Soul Night w/ Sugar City and Neon Veins.

Anyone who attends festivals knows the kinship is just as important as the music, and Night Lights brings out some of the best of our people. While one leaves this festival hard-pressed to channel the listening and viewing experience into words, here is a glimpse:

The intimate venue of The Heron allows for spectators to view each band’s pungent stage presence and skill from a perspective not always seen by festival attendees. With roughly only 1,000 in attendance, nearly every location permits a front-row analysis. Add to that the mellifluous glow of the thousands of lights throughout the woods and the constant fluctuation of music between stages, and Pan himself would be appeased.

With Night Lights’ unpretentious feel and carefully spaced performances (hell yes to no overlap!), band members also welcome the chance to mix talents on stage. Last year’s examples saw members of Aqueous and Broccoli Samurai mix the woods, while Lazlo Hollyfeld brought up multiple guests for their off-the-hook Talking Heads set. This year, great collaborations are bound to ensue.

Particularly notable is the reverence amongst musical aficionados and professionals alike. There is no comparison or competition. When able, many stick around after their sets and rock out alongside the rest of the crowd. There’s something special about watching musicians enjoy other musicians. It’s one of the facets that elevates the communal appreciation of a festival, and is a palpable characteristic of the Night Lights event.

If you haven’t caught onto these amazing bands, be sure to get acquainted. Tickets are currently being sold for the fabulous price of $80 and can be purchased at http://www.nightlightsfest.com.

Stay tuned for additional lineup announcements, ticket giveaways, and other news!