Montauk’s 8th Annual Music Festival Happening Right… About…NOW
By Liam Sullivan
The 2017 Montauk Music Festival (MMF) runs May 18th-21st hosting over 100 bands across 40 venues around Montauk, featuring a comprehensive mix of musicians and talent. Some notable Montauk acts include Megan Leonardo, The Realm, Jim Turner, and The Montauk Project. You can vote for your favorite acts at montaukmusicfestival.com.
“Each year the festival extends the summer season by one weekend,” MMF organizer Ken Giustino said. “It takes place the weekend before Memorial Day giving restaurants, bars, and hotels an extra weekend to fill their venues,” Mr. Giustino explained.
A free shuttle bus, The Hopper, will hop around town. Saturday morning it will make a loop starting in Napeague with stops along the way: Gosman’s Dock, the Lighthouse, and the Montauk train station, etc. “It’s great for day trippers, it will lighten up traffic and there will be a timetable provided at each stop,” Mr. Giustino added.
The Village Green in downtown Montauk will also be employed over the weekend with two stages under a large tent. Friends of Erin will sell hot dogs, hamburgers, and beverages for all ages. “It’s a great way to spend the day. Families set up lawn chairs and blankets enjoying great live music,” Mr. Giustino said.
Keeping in the spirit of Montauk’s natural beauty, live performances will be held at the base of the Montauk lighthouse with an ocean backdrop. Performances start after 4 p.m. (parking $8 before 4:30). “It’s like sound on the sound.” Mr. Giustino laughed.
Other local performances of note: The East Hampton Jazz band will lend their talents to an outdoor concert at Gosman’s Dock on Friday afternoon, while the East Hampton Fiddle band will kick things off on Sunday morning on the Village Green.
The MMF opening night party will be held at Gurney’s on May 18th (tickets are available on the MMF website) and will feature local brews, finger food, and some of the bands and songwriters playing this year’s festival.
“The great thing about the festival is that it brings the entire community together for the love of music,” Mr. Giustino said. “And something unexpected always happens. Last year a band called ‘Remember September’ was playing an afternoon show on the Village Green. Mid-song the band stopped, then the lead-singer dropped down on one knee and proposed to his girlfriend standing in the audience. There was a hushed silence, and when she said “Yes” the whole place went nuts. The band finished their gig, by the way,” Mr. Giustino affirmed.