by Emily Meenan
The “beardspace” is that place in your mind where your best ideas and most profound thoughts emerge from. At least, that’s how Jeremy Savo of Out of the Beardspace, a New Jersey experimental rock band, explains it. Savo, his brother and four other friends of almost eight years have meshed their varying musical tastes and similar passions together to become what they are today.
The band has lived together for some quite large chunks of time, one of those instances being on a mountainside in Virginia for six months. “I spent some time traveling, and in Costa Rica, I was introduced to a woman who owns 300 acres in Virginia,” Savo explains. “We were basically living in our tents. We grew a really big garden and were cooking all our meals over an open fire.”
Not only did living this way feed their passion for sustainable living and gardening, it brought them together as a band and helped them fully commit. “When we moved to the mountain, we actually did decide for about a week that the band was over and then we decided that we had to finish our album,” Savo says. But it was just the beginning for Out of the Beardspace. “Once we decided it was over, we started thinking that we weren’t so sure we really wanted to be over and became a lot more serious.”
All six of these men are obviously very passionate about what they do. Before moving to Virginia last year, they held their first annual Beardfest. “It was very spur of the moment. We started organizing it about a month before it happened,” Savo reminisces. But it was still pretty impressive, with fifteen bands and a campout held on the property of a band member’s parents.
This year’s Beardfest, though, is going far above and beyond what happened previously. There will be over twenty local and national bands including Au5 and Sexoffice, camping, yoga, visual and performance arts, and workshops on gardening, building earth ships, guitar building and flow arts.
On the big differences in just one year, Savo says “The progression seemed natural, we had just gotten back from Virginia when we started to plan and it made sense to do it really big like this. A lot has been leading up to this.” The event is sponsored by Whole Foods, Peavey and Spring Garden Produce, amongst others.
When asked about his hopes and expectations for this year, Savo knew just what he wanted. “If someone finds one of our workshops exciting, they can go get involved with the organization that sponsored it. I want people to have a great time and be able to party a little bit but also become inspired and make new connections.”
So, check out Beardfest 2013 this weekend in Waterford Works, NJ and bring the family because kids under ten are free! You can expect great music and some new skills to bring home.