The Glen Bard

The student news site of Glenbard West High School

The Glen Bard

The Glen Bard

GBX Music Festival: A Good Idea With Great Potential

GBX Promotional Poster.

On March 15th, the 3rd annual GBX District Music Festival was held at Glenbard East, the event is intended to showcase student musicians. Guest indie alternative artist Sen Morimoto played for the crowd along with a number of student artists (and a very talented social worker!). 

The event was well organized with plenty of concessions available and a great stage set up. They had a student DJ (DJ Surge) who did a great job providing backing tracks for the artists who needed it, and the two student MCs did a great job keeping the energy going. 

A variety of genres from country to rap to rock were represented. Many of the students performed original songs, but some did covers. The opening (student) act, Mykala Faye with her friend Caden drumming, performed very well and Mykala had a beautiful voice. This is where I feel the need to mention the need for a set list, not knowing what artists were performing when was somewhat frustrating. By not having a set list, event organizers also made it harder for people who enjoyed these artists to go back and find them later. 

Several students such as Karli Marie and Taylor Kowallis performed vocal covers of other songs, both of them had amazing voices, though I would have preferred original songs.

The Burnouts were the only actual band, while this is not inherently a negative, but it was disappointing for me, as I was hoping for some real garage-band vibes. They performed a cover of “Bullet With Butterfly Wings” by Smashing Pumpkins (a favorite of mine), though I was hoping for an original song. Additionally, they had some sound mixing issues, which I will get into more later. 

However, all was not well. The turnout was extremely low with only around 30 people. Several more joined as the night went on, but not many. There was a basketball game going on at Glenbard South at the same time, which may be the cause for this low turnout.

There were also some serious tech issues. The most notable being when one artist’s mic simply did not work, and their set had to be interrupted to fix it. However, there was one tech issue which was even more of a problem for me, The Burnouts sound mixing. The drums and vocals were significantly louder than the bass and guitar during their set making it nearly impossible to hear them. Towards the end of Bullet With Butterfly Wings, they let the guitarist solo and he was amazing, a clearly talented musician and I just wish we could have heard him playing the whole time. 

I have a few suggestions for next year’s GBX. They should do a better job reaching out to student musicians in the area as I know for a fact there are more student bands, this way there could be a lot more variety. Holding auditions would also be a good idea in order to maintain consistency in the quality of the performances. Lastly, I would do a test-run and make sure that the volume levels are good on all the instruments. 

Overall, this effort to bring attention to up and coming Highschool musicians was valiant, but definitely needs some work.

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