It is impossible to fully understand the magic behind Lightning in a Bottle until you attend. The five-day camping festival created by DoLab took place May 25th – 30th at Buena Vista Lake in Bakersfield California.
The festival is so much more than just music. Immersive performances, yoga, movements, interactive healthy cooking demos, talent shows, and lake swims, were some of our favorites, to just name a few, from an activity-packed weekend. If you wanted to get in touch with yourself and explore the world outside of your normal life, Lightning in a Bottle was the right place to be. FestivalsForLife was lucky enough be a part of this wonderland. Here are some of our highlights:
The French producer played on one of the final sets of the festival and did not disappoint. Her songs harness sounds from around the world and take the audience on a rhythmic journey. Playing at the Thunder stage for her third year in a row, Clozee has definitely become a LIB favorite.
Oscar, aka Opiuo, energized the crowd with a unique and uplifting set! The producer from New Zealand had a clear love for being at LIB, gracing the festival crowd with a mix of funk and heavy-hitting bass.
The producer played his live electronic act to an energetic crowd. Big Wild incorporated live drums, keyboard, beats pads, and singing into his performance. He even mixed in some of his classic remixes along with his newest tracks. If you were there to dance, you picked the right show.
HIGH STEP SOCIETY
The self-proclaimed Jazz, Swing, and Dubstep live electronic band brought the party to the Grand Artique. The band mixes sounds like you’ve never heard before and featured a group of indelibly talented musicians.
The Detroit electronic sax legend, Griz, closed out the festival Sunday night. Griz has definitely moved towards his hard-hitting music and the crowd was perfectly fine with that. The show involved live musicians, rappers, singers, lasers, and fire. He definitely left people on a high note.
Other notable performances from the festival were Kaytrana, Gone Gone Beyond, Austin Mills, Four Tet, Glass Animals, and Meghan Hamilton, and Dirtwire.
ART & INSTALLATIONS
One thing everyone at Lightning in a Bottle must do is step back and look at everything that goes into the beautiful structures placed throughout the festival. I had the pleasure of speaking with a festival volunteer who mentioned that “heart and soul are poured into every structure at the festival.” This does not go unnoticed. One of our favorites was the Grand Artique stage which was placed in the festival town of “Fronterville.” The town includes a mini-school, a trading post, and a stand where you could gamble anything of your choosing. We also loved the pop-up prom that involved a secret door for access.
Daytime at Lightning in a Bottle served as a swim/float/boat outdoor party. The water even included a couple of art installations. I spoke to one festival-goer who told me one of her festival highlights was dancing in the lake while cleaning festival-goers off with eco-friendly soap. The lake added an additional element of beauty and adventure to Lightning in a Bottle. The main stages were well placed on the outskirts of the water, allowing festival-goers to enjoy the natural beauty while listening to music. The best part of the lake though may have been repeatedly jumping into it to escape the heat of the day.
LIGHTNING IN A BOTTLE VIBES
The Lightning in a Bottle experience embraces the weirdness within every person and allows each festival goer to have their own, one-of-a-kind weekend. Whether it’s morning yoga, ecstatic dance, or a mind-opening workshop, LIB allows people to grow. I sat down with a festival-goer to get the inside scoop on what made Lightning in a Bottle special to her, Carly Hyde, explained, “Lightning in a Bottle made me leave my whole world behind and play at a summer camp with other people who just wanted to play with me! I came back from the festival with a more positive outlook which has enhanced my daily experiences.”
Lightning in a Bottle is not an easy place to describe. It’s not every day you find people dancing on cars at the campsite, people howling at the sky when the sun sets, strangers dancing like they’ve known each other for life, and it’s not every day you see so many beautiful people expressing themselves. An interview, a picture, a video, or an article won’t do LIB justice. The LIB magic is something that you just have to feel and experience for yourself. We can’t wait to experience it again next year.