Snarky Puppy Announces 2018 GroundUP Music Festival In Miami Beach October 17, 2017 11:18


Snarky Puppy, The Wood Brothers, The Flecktones Trio feat. Béla Fleck,  Victor Wooten & Futureman, Robert Glasper, Kitailo featuring Buika, Buena Vista Social Club Great Eliades Ochoa, Lionel Loueke  & Many More Scheduled

October 17, 2017 – GroundUP Music announces its’ second annual GroundUP Music Festival in Miami Beach, FL February 9-11, 2018. Hosted by three-time Grammy-winning artist Snarky Puppy, the festival will feature a special set from Snarky each day along with performances from an eclectic list of international superstars including: The Wood Brothers; The Flecktones Trio feat. Béla Fleck, Victor Wooten and Futureman; Robert Glasper; Lionel Loueke (artist at large), Joshua Redman, Michael League, & Larnell Lewis; Eliades Ochoa (Buena Vista Social Club great); Kitailo feat. Buika; JoJo Mayer/Nerve; Knower; Mark Guiliana’s BEAT Music; Under One Sun; Weedie Braimah & the Hands of Time; Paris Monster; C4 Trio; Harold López-Nussa Trio; and GroundUP artists Charlie Hunter & Silvana Estrada; Banda Magda; Becca Stevens; FORQ; Roosevelt Collier; Breastfist; Sirintip; and Alina Engibaryan.

"After an incredible first year of the GroundUP Music Festival -- dubbed by some as the Art Basel of Music -- where attendees traveled to Miami Beach for the festival from 37 states and 34 countries, our goal is to continue to create a transformative annual event for South Florida and worldwide audiences,” says Miami Beach native and GroundUP Music CEO Paul Lehr.  Added Snarky Puppy bandleader and GroundUP Music founder Michael League, “our focus is not to expand, but to build the most ideal experience for both artist and audience while continuing even farther down the road of musical diversity in our programming.”  Two-time Rock and Roll Hall of Famer and 2017 GroundUP Music Festival performer David Crosby urged, “I don’t think you’ll get a better shot at hearing real music than at this festival.  It will knock your socks off.” 

Watch the official recap 2017 recap video here:

The North Beach Bandshell’s Amphitheater and sprawling adjacent Palm Grove Park and beachfront complex will once again host the festival during the three-day festival with intimate master classes and workshops and personal interactions with the artists, and top local chefs including Michelle Bernstein serving inspired food and libations in the park.  Partner hotel, the Deauville Beach Resort - site of the Beatles’ first U.S. appearance after the Ed Sullivan Show – will serve as the venue for late night concerts on two stages featuring new artists and surprises.

With room for only about 1500 people a day, tickets will go fast. The intent is to keep the space comfortable and intimate in order to create an optimal experience for both the audience and artists.

Tickets and info at:


Formed in 2003 by bandleader/bassist/composer Michael League, Snarky Puppy is a “D.I.Y. juggernaut” (New York Times) that has won three Grammy awards in the last four years. Through it all, the band has kept a rigorous touring schedule of 100-200 shows per year. They are a collective of sorts, with as many as 25 members in regular rotation.  Each maintains busy schedules as sidemen (with such artists as Erykah Badu, Snoop Dogg, Kendrick Lamar, and D’Angelo), producers (for Kirk Franklin, and David Crosby), and solo artists (many of whom are on the band’s independent label, GroundUP Music). At its core, the band represents the convergence of both black and white American music culture with various accents from around the world. Japan, Argentina, Canada, the United Kingdom, and Puerto Rico all have representation in the group’s membership. But more than the cultural diversity of the individual players, the defining characteristic of Snarky Puppy’s music is the joy of performing together in the perpetual push to grow creatively.


GroundUP Music was created to serve as an artistic oasis in the ever-changing world of independent music. The company was founded in 2012 by Michael League as a new home for his band Snarky Puppy and other independent artist he respected. GroundUP Music artists include David Crosby, Charlie Hunter, Michelle Willis, The Funky Knuckles, FORQ, Bill Laurance, and House of Waters, to name a few. As of 2017, GroundUP has continued to adjust to changing times by expanding beyond the traditional role of a record label. It is gradually changing into an artist services company with the aim of guiding like-minded musicians through the label’s tributaries, including a worldwide distribution deal through Verve/Universal Music and The Orchard, a publishing company run through Kobalt Music, an education foundation poised to redefine “music school” and the company’s debut music festival, with others planned in locations around the world.    

High Sierra Music Festival Adds Major Lineup Additions February 10, 2017 16:39

High Sierra Music Festival has confirmed one of the most impressive lineups of 2017 thus far, with performers such as Trey Anastasio Band, Ween, STS9, Snarky Puppy, Galactic, Mike Gordon, The Greyboy Allstars, The Infamous Stringdusters, Corey Heny & The Funk Apostles, Keller Williams, Fruition, Dopapod, The Werks, and many more.  Tickets and weekend passes are available now via the High Sierra official website. See below for a complete list of 2017 performers.

High Sierra Music Festival is a multi-day music festival held in Quincy, California, a mountainous area about 80 miles northwest of Reno, Nevada.The festival is held each year the weekend of July 4. The four-day festival features an eclectic mix of some of the most famous national and international names in jamband, newgrass and funk. Other represented genres include bluegrass, roots rock, electronica, reggae, jazz and afrobeat.

Away from the music stages, patrons can attend films and movement playshops - yoga, pilates, etc., shop for arts and crafts, or enjoy a wide variety of gourmet food and drink. It's a family friendly and community oriented event with an expanding Family Area full of activities and certified nannies available throughout the weekend.

The first High Sierra Music Festival was in 1991, and was the genesis of High Sierra Music, of Berkeley, California. The organization has also produced festivals and concerts elsewhere in California, and in Maryland, Nevada, Georgia, Massachusetts, and Missouri.

Watch Greensky Bluegrass perform "Windshield" at High Sierra 2016 here:

The Road To AURA: Chris Bullock of Snarky Puppy February 26, 2016 09:42

Interview by Taylor Pack: Live & Listen

The 7th Annual AURA Music & Arts Festival is right around the corner, taking place at The Spirit of Suwannee Music Park in Live Oak, Florida from Thursday, March 3rd to Saturday, March 5th.  As a part of our coverage of the festival, we are sitting down with a handful of this year's performers for a series of interviews called "The Road To AURA."  Next up is Chris Bullock (tenor sax/flute/clarinet/bass clarinet) of Snarky Puppy.  Snarky Puppy is scheduled to play the Amphitheater Stage at AURA on Saturday night from 8:00 PM - 9:30 PM.

Snarky Puppy’s latest album, Sylva just earned Snarky Puppy its second Grammy in as many years, this time for best contemporary instrumental album. But the recent success is a result of over 10 years of hard work and dedication to the music.  How does the album reflect the experiences and influences that have shaped Snarky Puppy along the way?

Chris: The album, Sylva, was the largest production of an album we have made to date. It was definitely one of those moments that everything we had done before, the numerous albums and multitude of gigs, had shaped us and prepared us to make that record with the Metropole Orchestra. It’s a diverse collection of music and genre mash-ups which I feel is an honest representation of the sound we have developed over the years. It’s also of note to mention how amazing of an organization and ensemble the Metropole Orchestra is!

How did the experience of winning your second Grammy different from the first one?

Chris: As per the first time we were awarded the Grammy, we were pleasantly surprised. This recent Grammy win had us in a category with some of our musical heroes, Marcus Miller and Bill Frisell. It was an extreme honor for us to be in a category with these two individuals who have had a collective musical impact on so many members of the band. The first time we won was a bit of a blur due to some rigorous travel/touring. This time around everyone had actually slept the night before.

Watch Snarky Puppy perform "Binky" from the live DVD groundUP:

Many years of rigorous touring led to the bands eventual breakthrough. It is rumored that at one point you guys were doing over 200 shows a year. Even your recent albums are recorded with live audiences. Are you guys just being really generous with your music or does performing in front of an audience have an effect on what happens on stage?

Chris: I would say that a “breakthrough” came because a combination of touring coupled with the power of the internet and friends sharing music with their friends and then repeating that cycle. Performing live in front of all varieties of audiences and different venues/spaces most definitely has an impact on the music we make. As a band, we improvise collectively within the compositions a lot during our performances. The energy that the audience gives is very easily felt on stage. We have a book’s worth of stories about bizarre, funny, and amazing moments of this interaction.

Snarky Puppy has almost 40 band members constantly fluctuating on and off its’ roster and your recent release Family Dinner Vol.2 has at least one featured artist on every track. Why is artist collaboration so important to what you guys are doing?

Chris: Everyone in the band writes their own music and participates in a plethora of different musical projects. Because of that, the band can often feel like a room of producers during the musical creative process. Working with a variety of artists from different genres and parts of the world challenges us to make authentic, honest music through the filter of Snarky Puppy. It’s a very rewarding experience for the band and helps up grow and push collectively and individually.

This year's lineup will feature a notably diverse lineup of some of the festival scene’s most exciting groups. What do you think the lineup says about the depth of the music scene in 2016?  

Chris: It’s an honest reflection of the the type of audience and listeners that are excited to support a variety of music that excites them.

With just one set, it has to count. How does the band go about deciding the set list for a major festival set and any teasers as to what the fans can expect on Saturday?

Chris: Regardless of the gig, whether it’s a festival or any other location, we always approach the music making process the same. A majority of the time the set is determined close to the performance time. We have a large catalog of original Snarky Puppy compositions that we draw upon depending on the vibe and setting. In December, we recorded a new Snarky Puppy studio album which will be released later this year. The title of that album is Culcha Vulcha. We will be playing a few of the 13 new compositions from that album.

Catch Snarky Puppy on the Amphitheater Stage at AURA on Saturday night from 8:00 PM - 9:30 PM.