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BMF launches $4000 Kickstarter for 2013

The world’s largest Human-Powered Music Festival is more ambitious this year. We need your help to cover increased permitting fees.

Entering our 7th year this June 22, Bicycle Music Festival has maintained its commitment to innovation, responsible growth, and community power since our first event. This year, the permitting process was much more intense than in previous years, mostly because we are moving our Night Venue to the heart of the Mission District. The level of scrutiny and the fees have gone way up. This is also the first year that we’ll have an official Police escort on the LiveOnBike ride, which should increase the safety (though we’ve been blessed with very few incidents in past years). All in all these steps are setting us up for an amazing day of music, fun, and inspiration. But we learned about the fees long after setting our budget and fundraising goals for this year.

In short, we are coming up short this year. Even if we sell a ton of Bike Blended Smoothies, BMF would be in the hole. So we are turning to you.

If the Kickstarter method is successful this year, we will consider it for future years. Our priorities are to keep the festival free on the day of, and not to clutter our visual space with logos of companies that have nothing to do with our actual Mission Statement.

A successful Kickstarter will also be a huge morale boost to our crew. If we raise more than our target we’ll put the money towards future budgets and long term dreams, like:

- Creating a West Coast Bicycle Music Festival tour where different cities who already have BMFs (like Seattle, Eugene, Chico) and new ones stagger their dates to allow fans and bands to tour by bike from one to the next.
- Increasing our documentation of the fest to allow more groups from other cities to put on events with increasing quality and at lower cost.

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• Wednesday, June 12th, 2013

Videos of years past

We have some excellent videos of the Bicycle Music Festival in recent years.  The 2011 video introduces the mobile stage:

The 2010 video has some interviews with Paul Freedman about the philosophy behind the festival:

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• Thursday, June 21st, 2012

BMF 2011 NEW VIDEO!

Power to the Pedal! SF Bicycle Music Festival 2010 from John Hamilton on Vimeo.

The mission of the Bicycle Music Festival is to promote sustainable culture in general and bicycle culture in particular, by physically engaging and immersing our community in the magic of bike culture, and cultivating and nurturing a network of local sustainable musicians, through our staging of free, community participatory, bicycle-based music events.

The Bicycle Music Festival is the largest 100% bicycle-powered music festival in the world. The free, all-day (and late into the night) event takes place annually in San Francisco, California on the Saturday closest to the summer solstice.

The Bicycle Music Festival features: a 2000 watt pedal-powered PA system, as many as 15 bands, multiple festival stops, outrageous Critical Mass-style bicycle party caravans between festival stops, and zero use of cars or trucks.

With its completely bike-haulable stage, the event is packed up and deployed numerous times: staged sequentially at different public parks and also on a moving “Live On Bike” stage which rolls down city streets.

Credit: John Hamilton

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• Thursday, January 20th, 2011

Bicycle Music Festival spreads to Southern California: Video Highlights of South Bay BMF

Event recap from John Silva of the South Bay Cruisers .

We couldn’t have picked a better day to celebrate the first ever Southbay Bicycle Music Festival, July 19th, 2008. On a warm sunny afternoon we met at Hermosa Pier, sang happy birthday to Cruiser of the week “Tony’, then we headed off towards the Esplanade cruisin’ to the Beatles ‘Magical Mystery Tour’. (What can I say, it felt like we were heading off to Woodstock so the mix was leaning a little towards the ’60′s for this ride)We had a few newbies and some returning youngsters like 2 year old Lola Martin and her 3 1/2 year old sister Sophia, who came with their dad Roger. (Sophia and Lola are former Southbay Cruisers of the Week’ as well.)

As we made our way to Valley Park we were greeted by Makena, one of our featured artists, all set and ready to perform for us thanks to help from ‘Amy ‘The Wonder Woman’ who missed the ride so that she could decorate the park with posters and banners and help the musicians set up. She was also helped by Mary Caldera-who along with Shawnee made two awesome posters just for this occasion. (See pics on www.southbaycruiser.com)

After settling down to a barbecue, Makena kicked off the evening’s performances which included some classic and orignal hawaiian music which inspired us to get up and dance. All the way from Hilo, Hawaii, Makena was awesome, feeding our souls with island tunes like ‘Ulupalakua’ and ‘Waikiki Hula’ It was sure nice to finish a ride in a park and be greeted by Hawaiian music. This duo has performed on MTV and around the world and it was awesome to have them kick things off! They even taught us a little about Hawaiian culture between sets.

As the evening set in we lit our bonfire and were mesmerized by Manhattan Beach’s Delfina. Although only 18 years old, and with only one year of guitar/singing behind her, you’d think she’d been playing since the day she was born. Filling up our souls with stirring original tunes like ‘April Eyes’, and ‘Ritmo Porteno’, this Argentian born rising star had us all on the edges of our rocks around the bonfire. Were it not for the fear that our shared battery powered amps might run dry, she could have performed for us all night long.

Next came The 3 Heads. Acoustic rock legends in their hometown of Eureka,CA, these four took our makeshift stage around the bonfire, and picked up on what Makena and Delfina had started. Belting out original tunes ‘Undertow’, ‘Holiday’, and their anthem ‘World Was Ours’, these guys really helped set an intimate mood around the campfire with their acoustic guitars, bass, and cajon. Their jokes between songs were even more entertaining. At one point they broke into a spur of the moment spontaneous ‘Southbay’ rap song at the end. We were even entertained to one encore performance although, we would have loved to heard them play a few more.

We finished off the night with some karaoke performances including a few from Victor and his son singing some classic Doors. It’s hard to follow up to acts like Makena, Delfina, and The 3 Heads, but we had to try, and we had fun doing it too.

Last but certainly not least, we helped benefit ‘A Window Between Worlds’, (www.awbw.com) a local Venice,CA based group that helps abused women and children get a second chance on life by providing then with safe housing and an art healing program. We brought them canned foods, art supplies, clothing, and $20 in cash donations.

We are looking forward to the next Southbay Bicycle Music Festival. A year seems a little long to wait, so we might have this become a semi annual or possibly even quarterly event.

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• Wednesday, July 23rd, 2008

BMF coverage by the Bay Guardian

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• Monday, June 30th, 2008

BMF musicians, roadies, and fans scaling a large hill

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• Tuesday, June 24th, 2008

Rolling with 88 weighted keys on the nighttime cruiser ride

Some interesting scenes from the workshop this week. The musical part starts at 3:05. It was awesome to see the expressions on our neighbors’ faces as we cruised around West Berkeley with Janaysa singing and playing.

Folk / Soul singer Janaysa came by the workshop on Tuesday to test-ride the piano mount on the Mundo. She was initially ‘concerned’ but left on a high after a good try out.

Come see Janaysa perform on Saturday as part of the cruiser ride! Don’t miss out on the night time festivities. Bring a bike to Dolores Park! Catch BLO, Stitchcraft, Ginger Ninjas, Manicato, La Malamana, and BMX flatlander Pete Brandt. And then join the BMF cruiser ride.

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• Friday, June 20th, 2008

How does it feel to pedal power live music?

Video from Rock the Bike’s Pedal Power stage at Maker Faire this year. The sound system we’ll be using at Saturday’s BMF is even better.

Nice clips of SHAKE YOUR PEACE! performing.

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• Thursday, June 19th, 2008