What began as an idea several years ago by New Found Glory guitarist and local transplant Chad Gilbert, and finally manifested into an inaugural event last year at The Factory at Franklin’s Liberty Hall, breakfast-themed punk rock and alternative day fest BreakFEST was an absolute blast in its first year, and we’re thrilled to see the event return for year two, hopefully the start of an annual tradition, on June 2!
A novel concept (you can read more about the inspiration and backstory in our interview with Gilbert from last summer) BreakFEST is a great way to bring fans of pop punk, emo, alternative, and everything in between together in the daytime, to enjoy great tunes and great food, and this year’s lineup once again boasts a stellar mix of old and new acts along with a few locals, with New Found Glory, Real Friends, Hawthorne Heights, Mae, The Early November, Microwave, Jetty Bones, H.A.R.D., Love You Later, and Doll Skin all set to perform. Plus, with great local venders like Frothy Monkey, Honest Coffee, Five Daughters, High Brow Coffee, Tiny Little Donuts, Mojo’s Tacos, Juice Bar, Triple Crown Bakery, Muletown Coffee, and Ruby Sunshine all announced as well, the breakfast side of BreakFEST warrants just as much excitement.
To help you get ready for this year’s event, we’ll be highlighting a different performer each day until BreakFEST weekend, with daily Artist Spotlight features (similar to what we’re also doing ahead of Bonnaroo). So, whether you’re checking in on an old favorite or discovering a new one, you’ll arrive ready to rock and prepared to sing along! And finally, for more about all things BreakFEST, including a helpful FAQ section, be sure to check out the event’s website.
BreakFEST is an all ages event, and, as the concept would suggest, it kicks off early, with doors set to open at 8 a.m. You can still get GA tickets for less than $40, or upgrade to $100 VIP, which grants you special balcony seating, a separate bathroom and bar, special entry, and some freebies like a t-shirt and poster. Food and beverage are not included in the price of admission, but there will be a well-curated selection of local goodies that are well worth the cost.
Get your tickets right here if you haven’t already, and keep reading to learn more about the lineup in our BreakFEST Artist Spotlight…
Formed in 2001 in Norfolk, Virginia, beloved group Mae quickly became a fixture of the indie scene after singing to Tooth & Nail and releasing their classic debut LP, Destination: Beautiful, in 2003. Though they’ve always been associated with the emo explosion of the mid-’00s, and did, in fact, typically tour and rub elbows with acts from that scene, as well as appear at events like Warped Tour, their sound was always a bit more power pop than pop punk, a layered, melodic, lush and emo-laced indie rock, more akin to peers like Copeland or Something Corporate. Already commanding a cult following, Mae found even more widespread acclaim for their fan-favorite sophomore release The Everglow in 2005, and briefly made the major label jump to Capital Records for their 2007 followup, Singularity.
A core trio of frontman Dave Elkins, guitarist Zach Gehring, and drummer Jacob Marshall (bassist Mark Padgett and keyboard player Rob Sweitzer departed in ’07, returned a few years later for some anniversary runs, and have been absent the current lineup for the past few years), Mae self-released a trio of EPs, Morning, Afternoon, and Evening through 2009 and ’10, before announcing their intent to go on hiatus. Fortunately for us, their split never really seemed to take; despite a marked slowdown in activity, the band managed to extended their farewell shows for a couple years, then returned not long after for some Destination: Beautiful 10th anniversary dates. By 2015, a short run of Everglow 10th dates had turned into a full-on tour, seemingly sparking a desire to mount a proper return, eventually leading to their first album in over a decade, last year’s sprawling, cosmic, and stellar Multisensory Aesthetic Experience, recored in Nashville by Elkins at his Schematic Studios (he’s been a Music City resident and full-time for almost a decade, and also has a side-project called Schematic). Though no strangers to Nashville in recent years, it’s still always a treat to see Mae live, and with new music in tow, their BreakFEST set is sure to be a standout!
LISTEN | “5 Light Years”
WATCH | “Suspension” (Official Music Video)