This Sunset Music Festival was one for the books. SMF for the first time, got rained out. Local Tampa authorities had to cancel the second day due to Tropical Storm Alberto and his outer bands touching down onto Tampa soil with thunder and lightning following closely behind. That didn’t stop local venues/promoters from keeping the party going.
Florida writer, Cici, and Houston photographer, Victoria, head into day one of the festival with eagerness and ponchos. We had the awesome opportunity to interview Loud Luxury and get to know more about them and their sounds.
After interviewing Loud Luxury, we walked around the festival grounds before the gates opened trying to find a dry spot since it was pouring rain! Luckily we found a dry spot with Disco Donnie, Destructo, and John Santoro. Victoria and I got to chat with DD for a few minutes, and even made some jokes about the rain.
Disco Donnie Destructo
(Sorry that your eyes are closed Donnie)
 I have been attending SMF for four years now. This one was different as it rained all day, but didn’t stop the fun! Everyone’s festival outfits were still on point. The vibes were all there and the stages were insane this year. Seeing some of my close friends play at this festival was an added bonus.
My favorite thing about SMF this year was the Corona Electric Beach tent. Walking through the igloo shaped dome, I felt like I was immediately transported to the islands with an ice-cold Corona in my hand. All the House vibes one could want were there. Definitely a sweet feature to be added this year. -Cici
Dillon Nathaniel
DillonNathaniel at the Corona Electric Beach stage; Photo by VikkiG
 For this being my first time at SMF, I thoroughly enjoyed the festival. I’ve always been a big fan of anything Disco Donnie has done. I’ve never traveled to a different state for a festival. I knew coming into this festival it was gonna be a completely different vibe than I’m used to. The vibes at SMF were amazing. Everyone was radiating with smiles through their wet rave clothes and ponchos. The rain couldn’t stop Floridians (and others from attending) for anything.
One of my favorite things about SMF was the stages and their designs. They were incredibly captivating and added to the ambiance that is SMF. -Vikki G



Sunset Stage
(Sunset stage/Main stage)
Corona Electric Beach Stage
Corona Electric Beach stage; Photo by VikkiG

Day 2 

The second day came upon us and the official announcement was made… all of Tampa went into a manic craze! Venues started making phone call after phone call, email after email got sent. Everyone wrangled up their staff to save the day/night.

Check Out These After Parties

Cici and I unfortunately couldn’t attend any of the after parties. We were so eager to jump in there and cover all of them but the venues couldn’t accommodate us. We saw how full every venue got and how eager all the attendees were seeing their favorite artist in a more intimate venue. Other artist were struck with grief as some of them couldn’t even attend/perform for the festival-goers. Some artists, such as Nitti Gritti, who wasn’t even on the SMF lineup, went as far as driving 3+ hours to Tampa JUST to put on a show for others not able to get tickets to the after parties. We salute you.

We hope that Disco Donnie and SMF representatives are ready to tackle next years festival and work out any and all kinks to ensure that incidents like this one don’t happen again. As always, no one ever has control of the weather and it’s best to keep EVERYONE safe rather than worrying about the inevitable.

Posted by:Victoria Garces

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