By Maria Rodriguez
T-shirts for The Strokes peppered the crowd, mingling with tees representing the myriad of bands that came out during the last weekend in September to support the rebuilding of the National Mall.
Landmark Music Festival’s inaugural year went by rather smoothly. The weather was fall at its best, the bands were good, the food was tasty, and the location was unbeatable.
Cloudy skies stretched over the crowds.
“Ominous” said the frontman for U.S. Royalty, one of a good number of local bands brought out for the first proper D.C. based festival. Luckily, he was incorrect.
“This weather is great!” said Katie Jane Earl of The Mowglis. “It isn’t raining and I’m not sweating my ass off!”
The crowds seemed to agree.
Opening act, Ex Hex, put on a girl-power rock show that had them pounding their guitars to a crowd excited for the weekend to begin.
Location, location, location. While the crowds were asked to make their mark on the National Mall, it was the city that made its mark on the festival. Local bands, local chefs, and local scenery were the sturdy platform that staged the popular and unknown performing artists.
By no means was the festival without problems. Incredibly long lines for the few alcohol tents snaked between the five stages. There was a bit of a sound issue on the Lincoln stage. But, it was the festival’s first year, if there weren’t problems, the organizers probably didn’t go out on enough of a limb.
Festivals are notorious for their exaggerated and inflated food prices, especially since most of it likely comes from a freezer bag. Luckily, Landmark’s production team reached out to Washington’s local celebrity chef, Jose Andrés, to curate the restaurants to be represented at the festival.
Old Ebbitt Grill, Shake Shake, and several of Andrés’ own restaraunts churned out edible tasties to the munching crowds.
Lots of people come to CUA for the location; going to school in Washington D.C. is like no other place. Sophomores Ian Higgins, English, and Grayce Burns, Nursing, were no exceptions. Coming from Rochester, NY and North Carolina respectively, these two were excited to attend their first festival.
“Saw an ad on social media and knew immediately I had to go,” said Higgins. This captain from CUA’s sailing team called The Strokes one of his “favorite bands of all time.”
Burns too was there for The Strokes.
“And George Ezra!” said Burns.
She heard of Landmark a while back and wished that more of her friends knew about it. Burns said that the festival held great appeal for college kids, especially CUA students, but she hoped that in the future Landmark would bring bands from more genres than primarily alternative.
“Maybe even a country artist!” said Burns.