The annual Mo Pop Festival is coming to downtown Detroit this weekend, running Saturday, July 27th and Sunday, July 28th. In addition to the music, attendees will also get to experience food trucks, local art, and interactive activities!
Mo Pop is located at West Riverfront Park, located along West Jefferson Avenue between Rosa Parks Boulevard and Joe Louis Arena. The festival is open to people of all ages, check out more event details and ticket information here!
We had the opportunity to sit down with a couple Detroit artists performing at the 2019 Mo Pop festival, including The Messenger Birds and The Doozers. Here’s what they had to say about the upcoming event:
How excited are you to join the line-up of the 2019 Mo Pop Festival? What is your favorite aspect of the festival?
The Messenger Birds: We are extremely excited to be a part of this year’s lineup. We had the opportunity to play two years ago as a last minute replacement for FIDLAR, but we were unable to take it. So we are grateful to get the chance to do it for real this time and to play with so many incredible artists like Tame Impala, Vampire Weekend, Lizzo, etc.
The Doozers: We are beyond stoked to be a part of this year’s lineup. We have been to the festival multiple years in the past and it remains one of our favorite parts of the summer. We always look forward to seeing who is scheduled to play and have never been disappointed, as many of the bands who perform are favorites and big inspirations of ours. This year is no exception and we are absolutely elated that we have the opportunity to share the stage with such amazing acts. We all agree that the best part of the festival transcends the great music and stands as the community and the atmosphere. Between the four of us, we have attended many music festivals, yet Mo Pop always leaves us beaming- perhaps it’s the dancing, communal activities, smiles, excessive glitter, or just something about the spirit of Detroit as a whole.
What are you most looking forward to at Saturday’s event?
The Messenger Birds: I think we are most looking forward to just playing the festival in general. It is our hometown crowd, so that makes it special in itself, but we also get to play a bunch of new music for the first time, so we are anxious to get it out in the open.
The Doozers: Of all the things we have to look forward to, at the top of our list is being able to share our music with all the new people. Not only do we get the chance to watch and meet the bands we have looked up to, but also to participate in what we love the most alongside them. In addition, we cannot wait to share what we work so hard on with all the lovely goers of Mo Pop and hopefully dance together to it!
Mo Pop has been described as having a “boutique and niche” ambiance. What do you think separates Mo Pop from other festivals?
The Messenger Birds: Mo Pop does a lot of things really well that other festivals don’t always do. For one, they set up set times over two stages so there is no Artist overlap. That’s a huge deal. You can see everyone you want to see without missing anything. They also tend to book artists (outside of the headliners) that are just starting to break out but haven’t really broken in Michigan yet, so you’re getting a very well curated line up each year. Aside from that, it’s the partnerships with Metro Detroit businesses, restaurants, bars, etc., that separate Mo Pop from the pack. You really get a taste of some of the outstanding food, drinks, and culture in Metro Detroit.
The Doozers: We think that what truly separates Mo Pop from other festivals is the character of Detroit. Everything there, from the food to the shops to the local artists to the crowd has the home-grown self-made passionate feel of the city. Everyone is there to share their hard, heart-filled work with people who are excited to receive it. The positive flow of creativity and appreciation thereof is unparalleled and we can’t wait to contribute to it.
Is there anything else you would like people to know?
The Messenger Birds: We are from the suburbs of Detroit. We met 14 years ago at a Catholic high school, St. Mary’s Preparatory, that we attended together. The two of us were weight training partners at a summer hockey conditioning camp, and we quickly found out we were both musicians and had a lot of the same tastes, so we started jamming and recording music onto cassette tapes on a little karaoke machine. Flash forward a bit — The Messenger Birds didn’t become a band until late 2014, but it really started out of the desire for the two of us to get in a room and make music together again after not having done so in a couple years. The main goal was always just to create something that we liked and had fun playing, and the more people latched on to the music we were making, the more serious it became. It’s just grown from there.
What do you think sets Detroit apart from other cities like Chicago or New York, as far as the music scene is concerned?
The Messenger Birds: Chicago, New York, and other cities have awesome music scenes, but artists from here all seem to have this character to them that is uniquely Detroit. No matter the genre, there is definitely a rugged, gritty, underground vibe that comes out of the music. And Detroit being a smaller city, artists have more of a fighting chance to thrive and grow. It’s a community of people that, for the most part, all know each other and are all working towards the same thing.
The Doozers: The music scene in Detroit seems to us vastly different from those in other cities because of the tight-knit supportive feel throughout. It is a very do-it-yourself kind of city and it shows in the music and the shows around the area. The musicians of the Detroit scene are always putting together new ways to share spaces, experiences, music, and even art. Everyone seems to not only know everyone and their music, but also promote, support, and give opportunities to each other. It is a wonderful thing to be a part of.
Special thank you to all of the bands and artists that took the time to answer questions. See you this weekend!