Skip to content

Organizers vow to bring back three-day Northern Alberta music fest

Crowds weren’t as big as they would have liked, but organizers are promising Music Mash 2023 will be "bigger and better."
WES - Music Mash IMG_2700
The inaugural Music Mash festival took over the Westlock Agricultural Society Fairgounds Sept. 2-4 as 11 bands, ranging from rock to country, hit the stage. Saturday’s lineup included the Edmonton-based rock band Powerhouse — pictured are lead singer Doug Robb (left) and bassist Bob Lallier belting out a tune during their 90-minute set.

WESTLOCK, Alta. – Although crowds weren’t as big as they would have liked, organizers are hailing the inaugural three-day Music Mash 2022 festival a success and are promising it’ll return “bigger and better” in 2023.

The brainchild of Dennis Ryan and Kim Landry under the moniker of KimDen Productions, the Sept. 2-4 event that ran at the Westlock Ag Society Fair Grounds featured 11 bands ranging from rock, to jazz, blues and country — artists of note included Samantha King, the Steve McQueen Band, Powerhouse, The Johnny Cash Experience and Flat Broke.

Blessed with great weather all weekend long, Ryan thanked the volunteers, concert-goers and all-important platinum, gold and silver sponsors for making their dream a reality.

“For our first year I thought it ran great. The execution from the sound production guys and stage production was excellent, and the bands were super thrilled to be able to come up and play for everybody,” said Ryan Sept. 7. “We knew being our first year we wouldn’t get a massive turnout like we were hoping for, but everyone I spoke to told me they had a great time and that this is one of the best festivals they’ve ever gone to in Westlock.

“Next year we’re looking to go bigger and better.”

Ryan said they basically did all the planning and organizing in 90 days, which ultimately wasn’t enough time to properly promote it. He also admitted that they had “some pretty tough competition” that weekend as Alberta country star Brett Kissel held a free concert at the Legislature Grounds in Edmonton Sept. 3, while the following day Commonwealth Stadium was sold out for the one-day show by rock royalty Def Leppard, Motley Crue, Poison and Joan Jett and The Blackhearts — bands that have combined to sell roughly 250 million albums worldwide.

“All-in-all for the first year and getting all the kinks worked out, it went well. Really, putting it all together in the time we had was a huge undertaking — most festivals would have a team of 10 people taking care of contracts and things like that,” he said. “But definitely we’ll do a little more research to make sure we’re not in conflict with other big shows.”

Ryan said that they’re still going over their final receipts “to get an accurate tally” as a portion of the funds raised were slated to go to non-profit organizations including Westlock’s Soul Sisters Memorial Foundation, the Stollery Children’s Hospital Foundation and Bullying Enns — they had initially hoped to raise $7,500 for each.

Ryan added that another positive coming is that KimDen Productions has been hired to do a fundraiser for the Barrhead Animal Rescue Society on Feb. 11, 2023 — more details will be available closer to the event.

George Blais,

push icon
Be the first to read breaking stories. Enable push notifications on your device. Disable anytime.
No thanks