Saturday vs. Sunday – 2012 Fiesta Del Sol Music Lineup


This year’s two-day Solana Beach Fiesta Del Sol lineup, booked by the Belly Up, offers up a ton of great music to choose from. With similarities and differences abounding, here’s an hour by hour breakdown of what to expect each day.

12:00 pm
The Kingsmen (Sat) -vs- Family Wagon (Sun)

Each day starts out with an early bird special, though Sunday’s band Family Wagon is sure to wake the neighbors. Lead singer Calen Lucas is known for his throat-rattling vocals and the five-piece Family Wagon band always leaves everything they got on stage. Saturday’s opener features The Kingsmen, who are the proud offspring of the local nonprofit Banding Together. For those who don’t know, Banding Together gives music therapy scholarships, mentorships, and instruments to kids with autism and other special needs. Though you might find tremendous differences in the music, The Kingsmen’s expressed goal is to make people smile; with honesty, energy, and talent, they embody the transformational power of music. I’m sure the Family Wagon can agree with that.

1:00 pm
The Professors (Sat) -vs- Nena Anderson and The Mules (Sun)

The second biggest difference between the two days shows up at one o’clock. With Saturday’s Professors, you get a groove laden dose of surf rock, reggae, and rock instrumentals jams. Whereas on Sunday, Nena Anderson, the sweetheart of Americana, will dazzle you with her alluring vocals and well-crafted originals. Her band The Mules features one of the festival’s best guitarists in Mike Butler. Butler’s tasty tone and well-placed solos are an early Sunday afternoon highlight.

2:00 pm
The Grass Heat (Sat) -vs- Atomic Groove (Sun)

Here’s the biggest difference in the two days–Saturday, you have The Grass Heat, who’s sure to deliver a heavy rock punch that all of Fletcher Cove will feel. And on Sunday, you have the variety dance band stage show of Atomic Groove. The Grass Heat’s three piece assault is prone to raw, loose rock jams and features the dazzling guitar of Billy Clements. Last time I saw them, Ron Blair of Tom Petty’s Heartbreakers jumped on stage and jammed with them. Yeah, they are that good! Atomic Groove packs their stage full of horns, percussionists, and AG Fly Girlz. Though miles apart in style from The Grass Heat, their high energy and good time vibe is sure to measure up in entertainment value.

3:00 pm
Abbey Road (Sat) -vs- The PettyBreakers (Sun)

It’s all about the tribute at the 3 o’clock post time! The Festival’s most evenly matched time slot finds two tribute bands doing justice to arguably the greatest band ever and one of rock’s greatest hit makers. It’s the Beatles and Tom Petty, how could you go wrong? Plus, George Harrison played with Tom Petty in the Traveling Wilburys, and Ringo Starr played on Tom Petty’s solo album Full Moon Fever. So, will we see George and Ringo sit in on the Sunday Petty set?

4:15 pm
Hi Roots (Sat) -vs- Stranger (Sun)

Some very similar sounds abound at the 4:15 mark. Large bands, one from Hawaii in Hi Roots, and one from San Diego in Stranger, bring the reggae feel to the festival. Good vibes aplenty, good grooves overflowing, these two bands offer up a nice mid- afternoon chilled out feeling.

5:15 pm
Stripes & Lines (Sat) -vs- Terraplane Sun (Sun)

The five piece Venice folk/blues/rock band Terraplane Sun has been all over television supplying tunes for commercials and shows. Their tight sound is going to be one of the festival’s highlights. Not to be outdone is Saturday’s Stripes & Lines. The San Diego band has a more progressive rock sound, though are akin to the energy of Sunday’s act. Both acts deliver a brand of rock and roll and a high energy to the stage.

6:15 pm
Vokab Kompany (Sat) -vs- Little Hurricane (Sun)

This is my favorite time slot of the Fiesta because it showcases the amazing talent that resides here in San Diego. The sounds may be a contrast, but the talent is evenly distributed between the two days. These are two of San Diego’s finest bands and will serve as a more-than-formidable opening act to the headliners. Sunday’s Little Hurricane has been unstoppable this last year. Garnishing 3 San Diego music awards, a spot at Lollapalooza, a Sports Illustrated Swimsuit video, and praise in Rolling Stone magazine for their South By Southwest performance, this two piece band is a must see. Saturday, you get the exhilarating sounds of the seven piece Vokab Kompany. Their eclectic sound is a mix of jazz, hip hop, techno, funk, and that is just the tip of the iceberg of this band’s multifaceted abilities.

7:45 pm
English Beat (Sat) -vs- Donavon Frankenreiter (Sun)

The Beat has been around since ’78 and always delivers a handful of hits in a ska, reggae, soul, rock package. Sunday’s Fiesta Del Sol closer Donavon Frankenreiter’s layed back vibe fits perfectly nestled up against the sounds of the ocean. Both of these acts are well-seasoned national touring artists that cap off a rich weekend of music. The Belly Up definitely outdid themselves with booking the lineup this year, jam packing the weekend with a diverse group of awesome talent.


SD Rock ‘n’ Roll will be covering the two day 2012 Fiesta Del Sol for The Belly Up. Follow us for extensive coverage before, during and after the show.

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