by Dan Wall and Jeb Wright, photos by Brad Neville and Alan Morrow of Classic Rock Revisited
It is difficult, year after year, to describe the power of the Moondance Jam. I don’t want to repeat myself and I certainly don’t want to become cliché. The truth is, however, that the Moondance Jam simply contains a magical element that makes it the most beloved festival in the United States. People who come to Moondance once, come back time and time again. In fact, during Day II, I spoke with a couple that said it was their first Jam. They both smiled and said in unison, “We’re addicted.” I smiled and gave them a look back as if to say, “I, too, am under the Moondance spell.” One wonders if scientists took soil samples at Moondance what they would find. The place is like a homing device for true music fans. The Moondance Jam calls people to it. Once your MD virginity is gone you don’t simply attend Moondance, you are called back to it, day after day, year after year. You dream about Moondance and you obsessively wait for the website to announce the bands for the next year. This is no ordinary concert. [full article]
by Andy Nathan of Get Ready to Rock
While we congratulate ourselves in the UK at the emergence of new rock festivals such as High Voltage and Sonisphere, the classic rock festival is a tradition in the American heartland as familiar as barbecued ribs, Budweiser and wide open highways.
Moondance Jam, set among woods and lakes in the Northern Minnesota countryside, is now in its nineteenth year and broke all attendance records with apparently an 18,000 sell out all weekend.
With a choice of standing in a sandpit at the front, going for a VIP section or sitting in a lawn chair on a hill, generous set times of an hour and ten minutes minimum for each of the five daily bands, and two covered bars with local bands playing in between sets, not to mention the best of American customer service, the Moondance concert experience is a very agreeable one. [full article]
by Dan Wall and Jeb Wright, photos by Brad "Phil Collins" Neville of Classic Rock Revisited
Stepping onto the grass at the Moondance Jam is like stepping onto hollowed ground. This truly is where the magic happens. I looked around knowing that for the next three nights I would be interviewing bands, watching them perform and hanging out with people just like me. Who would have thought that four hours from Minneapolis, in the middle of nowhere, a rock n’ roll heaven could exist? The odds are staggering that this thing should never have happened; yet here we are getting ready to celebrate the Jam’s eighteenth birthday. Long live rock n’ roll. [full article]
by Matthew Becker of Melodic Rock Concerts
Moondance has done it again. The Minnesota rock festival is a long-running summer escape that aims to please its attendees by providing a fun and safe atmosphere to experience live performances by some of the best bands in the world. With an opening night that offered Journey, Sheryl Crow, Kansas, Foghat, and Shooting Star all on the same stage, who could turn down a trip to Walker even if the weather was less than inviting.
by Publisher Robert Tuozzo
22nd Century Rock's Fall 2009 issue contains extensive Moondance Jam Rockin' 18 coverage. Check out interviews with Peter Stroud of Sheryl Crow, Bumblefoot, Bruce Kulick & Thunderstruck. There is also a color page and a daily onsite review of the Jam.
by Andy Nathan of Get Ready to Rock
...this was a thoroughly enjoyable festival with a relaxed friendly atmosphere, well organised, and with some memorable performances including bands who rarely if ever play the UK. [full article]
by Andrew Olson of Reader Weekly & Fountainheads.com
...the festival felt extremely accessible and left one feeling like they were a part of a larger family. Bill Bieloh, the man who runs the large event, as well as a similar country music festival, was very approachable and was often surrounded by well wishers and satisfied customers. Many concertgoers had tales from Moondance’s past, while others like me were marveling at their first exposure. [full article]
by Chris Murphy for Classic Rock Revisited
For the fourth year in a row, my wife and I made the 9 ½ hour trek north to Moondance Jam in Walker, MN. What started in 1992 featuring regional bands over two nights has blossomed into the premier classic rock festival in the US that takes place during four nights in July every year. While other festivals have come and gone and still others have changed their format to draw in younger fans, Moondance Jam has stuck to its guns and has continued to bring the best classic rock to northern Minnesota... As soon as you enter the jam site, you can tell your experience will be different than just a rock concert. The staff is extremely friendly and it is easy to tell they enjoy their job... The next thing to notice is row after row of campers all enjoying themselves, some sitting around talking while others are playing games... The camping area now has over 300 electrical campsites and over 1800 primitive campsites. The one thing everyone has in common is a smile on their face... [read the entire review]
by Marty Moffatt
by Jeb Wright of Classic Rock Revisited
I believe in what I call Moondance Magic. The Jam is a place where you can be the real you and not the person the world has forced you to become. Remember the movie Field of Dreams? Moondance Magic works along the same lines. There is a scene in Field of Dreams where Shoeless Joe Jackson looks around at the baseball field built in the middle of a cornfield and then up to the starlit sky and asks Kevin Costner, "Is this heaven?" To which Costner smiles and replies, "No, this is Iowa." While Shoeless Joe may have been in Iowa, I knew that I was not in Walker, Minnesota. That may be the name of the town on the highway sign but I knew where I was during those magical four days in July. I was in heaven. [read the entire review]
Publisher Robert Tuozzo
Moondance Jam this year was another great classic rock festival in America. Celebrating it's sweet 16 the owners had A list bands all 4 days and nights. Including Tesla, Jackyl, Def Leppard, The New Cars and more. We go backstage and in the dressing rooms of the hottest rock groups in the world...
by Marty Moffatt
We’ve been to many festivals over the years, including the first 9 Donnington Monsters of Rock Festivals in the UK in the 1980’s, but I have to say that Moondance Jam was far and away the best organised and most enjoyable festival we’ve ever attended. [read the entire review] [enjoy the photos]