Shambhala Music Festival 2016, hosted on Salmo River Ranch in British Columbia, Canada, went off with absolute madness this year. Shambhala Music Festival is a place where the weirdest of weird can get down and vibe with each other, and this year the festival hit its landmark 19th Annual Event. The festival is often credited with being an artist favorite, and it’s no surprise why. Shambhala veterans meshed with Shambhala virgins, creating a homey, family connection with each interaction while either on the dance floor or while frolicking through the forest. The energy goes beyond that of a “typical” festival, with mellow music floating through the trees during the daytime as attendees chill in the beautiful Salmo River, and loud vibrations creeping through the air at night. It’s almost as though nobody sleeps during the week-long heaven that is Shambhala Music Festival. The festival reaches over almost a week long of sheninigans, including yoga, hip hop showcases, and down and dirty fun. The festival stages opened early Thursday morning, after excited attendees flooded the long road onto the ranch Wednesday.
Shambhala Arrival – Wednesday Sprint Sessions
Thursday morning blasted off in the Living Room (Bass Yoga was definitely not one to miss!) and AmpiTtheatre with Stylust Beats (who also played Saturday), Pigeon Hole, SkiiTour, Yan Zombie, DJ Just-B, Jorma, Lorne B, and many more. For those unfamiliar with the AmpiTheatre, think bright red and white circus tents surrounding a crowd full of beautiful people getting down to some funky beats.
Stylust Beats : The Living Room on Saturday
Friday evening was scattered with a light sprinkle from the festival rain gods, cooling down crowds as they swayed to the beats of DJ Soup, Kennedy Jones, Meow Mix, Stickybuds, Gorgon City, Boys Noize, Troyboi, Excision, Wallis, and more. The Village hosted Ephwurd at night for their debuted Shambhala Music Festival appearance; a packed the crowd was in high spirits while the Rogue Babez danced for smiling, bass hungry fans.
All crafts are appreciated and loved at Shambhala Music Festival; Saturday morning started with a Hula Hoop workshop with FunkConcious. The change in beat from dancing was welcomed during the daytime.
I was able to catch up with the dancers from the Village and Pagodas stage this year, who gave me some insight into the dancing world. Rogue Babez team leader, “Sparkles” Jessa, seemed completely blissful as her team prepared to rock the crowds. Rogue Babez is the biggest dance crew out of the West Coast of Canada, with members from Kelowna, Calgary, Vancouver, Victoria, and Edmonton. The outfits doned by crew members were completely custom, handmade by the team, with intricate details such as bedazzled storm trooper costumes (Friday), lighted Dark Angel wings (Saturday), and DJ Specific attire for each set. The Rogue Babez are known in the EDM world for their crowd energizing routines and their desire to make all dance partner’s creative abilities come to light. Once again, the family vibes shined bright at Shambhala.
Saturday night was action packed, with sets from Z-Trip, Subfocus, REZZ, DJ Q, and more.
The final “official” day of Shambhala brought more rain, but the drizzle didn’t discourage party goers. Floods of people stomped into the mud to dance to Nightmares on Wax, Mat the Alien, and the Originalz. The rain stopped just in time for a spooky sunset to cast it’s shadow on the enchanted forest. Church was followed by Mija, Getter, Marshemello, What So Not, and Desctruco in the Pagoda. Jumping from stage to stage was almost mandatory while Green Velvet, Ghastly, and DJ Fresch crushed the Fractal Forest; Andy C, G Jones, and Marvel Years in the Village, Bleep Bloop and more in the Ampitheatre. The Grove and Living Room were a calming oasis if the bass got to be too much….every stage was completely hectic. But the Shambhala Music Festival crowd is much different than other crowds because you are never alone. You can meet new friends at each stage, each one willing to share their memories with you.
Mondays at Shambhala Music Festival are a bittersweet end, where campers finally pack up their belongings and hit the road back to reality. The week long affair was fun, and memories are always made that can never be replaced. With attendees traveling from Europe, America and across Canada, next year’s festival is sure to be even more insane for Shambhala Music Festival’s 20th Anniversary.
Tickets to the event sell out quickly, so if you are hoping to find yourself among the magical forest, perhaps floating down the river during the August heat, be sure to check back with us periodically! See you next year, and welcome home.
See our photos from Shambhala 2016 here.