Though San Luis Obispo is far from a major city like San Francisco and Los Angeles, there are still a lot of great live, local music and national acts that come to the city.
The multitude of genres matches the diversity of students that attend Cal Poly. From reggae, funk, punk, blues and swing, the local music scene has something for everyone.
“Surprisingly the student population has become more progressive and forward thinking when it comes to music genres,” said Eddie Burges of Numbskull Productions.
Numbskull Productions puts on many live music shows in SLO, featuring both local and not-so localbands. With national acts, they have an 80 to 100-percent turnout rate, Burges said.
Venues used by Numbskull Productions are SLO Brew, the Cal Poly Recreation Center and The Graduate.
Of course, there are other shows organized by other groups that generate crowds at various venues such as The Dwelling, Frog and Peach, Mother’s Tavern and the Veterens Memorial Building.
The best way to find out about upcoming concerts is to visit www.pollstar.com or go to the venues Web site.
ASI also hosts concerts for students throughout the year, such as Flogging Molly on October 15 at 8 p.m., local acts during Thursday’s UU hour 11 to 12 p.m. and “Pre-Funk Friday Concerts” on the third Friday of every month at 5 p.m..
During Farmers’ Market, on Thursday nights beginning at 5:30 p.m., there is usually a local band playing on one of the side streets.
For instance, the band Resignation will be playing at Farmers’ Market on November 10 and December 15. Resignation is a popular local reggae band that has a large Cal Poly student fan base. Most of their music is original, but they also play covers of Bob Marley songs.
Joose is another local band with a large fan base in their hometown of San Luis Obispo thanks to their harmonious blend of hip-hop, bluegrass, soul and rock.
Joose frontman Sam Sharp’s signature soul-filled voice sends the crowd into a trance. A majority of the crowd sings along with Sharp as he sings popular songs such as “Fresno,” “The Doctor” and many others.
“I have seen the music scene change a lot since 2001,” said event and promotions coordinator Taylor Stevens for SLY 96 (KSLY 96.1 FM). “It has gone from almost nil to not that bad.”
Burges also agrees on the progress of the local music scene in San Luis Obispo.
“The local scene is better now than it’s ever been,” Burges said. “Some bands are even getting label attention.”
Many mainstream acts are also brought to San Luis Obispo through various sources. OAR, Jack Johnson, Long Beach All Stars, Papa Roach and Living Legends have all performed here.
“When we bring the music most people are pretty supportive,” Burges said.
Some upcoming shows include the punk group Expendables on Oct. 5 at 8 p.m. at SLO Brew and for all ages. The hip-hop group People Under the Stairs make it to SLO Brew on October 13 at 8 p.m., which also an all-ages show. Tickets can be purchased at Boo Boo Records.
“As far as the students go, we really try to cater to them,” Burges said. “We strive to be appealing to them and what they want.”
Rich “Intellekt Conduit” Ford, 23, a Cal Poly animal science student, will be the opening act for the Alkoholiks all-ages show on October 4 at 8 p.m. at SLO Brew.
Ford has been writing since he was in the 6th grade. He is currently finishing up his first album which contains 17 tracks. He has played many shows in the area including an AIDS Awareness benefit at the Veterans Memorial Building in San Luis Obispo. Ford has been involved with San Luis Obispo’s hip-hop scene since he moved to the area and sees the location of the town, in the middle of San Francisco and Los Angeles, as a factor in hip-hop existence.
“It’s developed, but there’s always been something here,” Ford said.