Bottoms Up: Imagine Music Festival

Imagine Music Festival always boasts a diverse lineup, and this year is no different. The 2017 lineup features multiple genres of music by artists from around the globe. While some of these artists are the biggest names in music (and on the lineup), others are on the brink of greatness (and just a bit further down). Here are five up-and-coming artists that you cannot miss, or maybe you did until we looked at the lineup from the bottom, up!


Nugz Bunny

Atlanta-based Nugz Bunny acquired a following through his original productions and remixes. His popularity increased after placing runner up in the Pretty Lights remix contest a few years ago. Since then, Pretty Lights has dropped Nugz Bunny’s remix in Atlanta and cities around the world. Nugz Bunny has been voted Atlanta’’s best DJ for over two years, so this is a show you for sure should not miss!


With elements of live guitar and drums, Lyftd produces electro-funk that is sure to get your grooving. The Denver-based duo has played many notable festivals, including Electric Forest in Michigan and Summer Camp Music Festival in Illinois.

Stranger Candy

As one of Atlanta’s forerunners in dance music, Stranger Candy has stayed true to an Electro and Progressive House. Despite coming onto the scene when heavier bass genres were popular, Stranger Candy’s dedication to perfecting his sound has allowed him to play some Atlanta’s hottest clubs, which includes a residency at The Iris.

Nora En Pure

Nora En Pure has proven to be a force in the electronic music scene after her club-ready hits like, “Come with Me,” “Saltwater” and “U Got My Body.” By flawlessly combining aspects of indie dance music with deep house, Nora En Pure has earned spots at some of the biggest festivals, including Coachella, Elements Festival and Tomorrowland, where she played the main stage for three hours.

Boogie T

With Boogie T’s infectious dubstep sound, it is impossible to stay still. Recently, Boogie T has a feature on GRiZ’sGood Will Continue,” which is a collection of remixes of tracks on his 2016 album, “Good Will Prevail.” Imagine Music Festival is just a stop on a current tour, which includes stops and festivals all over the United States, so catch him while you can.

GRiZ Prevails With ‘Good Will Continue’, A Remix Album

The ascension of GRiZ from blog fodder to a main stage festival stage closer has been one of the most enjoyable to watch.  Besides handling the success with grace and love for all, GRiZ once again showed a deepening focus on songwriting and blues/funk/soul music as the once EDM/bass music producer has blossomed into electronic music’s funkiest flower with the late 2016 release of his album ‘Good Will Prevail‘.

Fast forward to 2017 and an incredible cast of characters have come together to breathe new life into each song from the album. Highlights include Barclay Crenshaw’s remix of Gotta Push On, which has been cooked up into a banger of a hip-hop beat with thundering distorted 808s. Jenaux also caught my attention by building I Don’t Mind into one of the most main stage worthy remix with wailing solos, crunchy bass and synth stabs, the drums to set any crowd into motion.

There’s plenty for the bass loving like Rowland Evans‘ wompy remix of Feelin Fine, the funky Opiuo big horned edit of PS GFY, bass house from Dusty Bits, EPHWURD, AC Slater and oh so much more.  Be sure to stream/buy Good Will Prevail below!


GRiZ Spearheads New Age Funk Revolution

This summer you won’t hear suburban hood-rats bumping Wild Cherry, James Brown, or Rick James in daddy’s Jeep, but don’t fret, funk didn’t die with bell-bottoms and black lights. It’s alive and well.

The prevalence and popularity of EDM (electronic dance music) has initiated a resurgence of funk. New technologies and innovative artists have exponentially diversified electronic music. The coevolution is unprecedented, and it’s rapidly changing our perception and definition of “music.”

Now, EDM has more sub-genres than jelly bellies have flavors, and, like those godforsaken things, most new genres are equally indistinguishable in their mediocrity. It’s gotten to the point that categorizing music solely as EDM is inconsequential. Currently, there’s house, trance, glitch, drum and bass, dubstep, brostep, breakstep, and 100 other steps that no one gives two shits about. If you can name more than ten off-hand, congrats! It’s time to check into rehab.

But I’m not here to tell you about Swedish bubblegum techno, I’m here to tell you about a burgeoning new genre referred to by the hipster masses as “New Age Funk,” or “Future Funk,” and even though you’ve “probably never heard of it,” it makes for some groovy dance music.

Funky white boy Grant Kwiecinski, better known by his stage name GRiZ, spearheads the euphonious revolution. The Michigan native electronically emancipated funk music in 2012 when he released Mad Liberation. The sax-studded album is hip-hop oriented, yet manages to blend funky breaks with ambitious drops, eccentric beats, and obscure vocals. With the contemporary drift towards trap culture, GRiZ’s sound is refreshing to say the least. The entire album is polished, however, the Notorious “Better Than I’ve Ever Been” lives up to its name in the fullest.

On March 31st GRiZ smashed the funk once again with Say it Loud, a nominal homage to James Brown’s 1969 release Say It Loud — I’m Black and I’m Proud. The innovative album is more adventurous than its predecessor and features: The Floozies, Manic Focus, Mike Avery, Talib Kweli, Jessie Arlen, Sunsquabi, Orlando Napier, and iDA HAWK.

Whether it’s The Floozies’ funky guitar licks and high energy percussion in “Need This,” or Talib Kweli’s smooth flow in “For The Love,” each feature adds a lil’ somethin’ extra to the GRiZ sound, yet the electronic mastermind never strays too far from his funky niche. Grant kicks off the album with “The Anthem” — a soulful, feel-good track with James Brown vocals and children’s chorus reminiscent of the Jackson 5. “The Anthem” will grab you by the hips and drag you onto the floor; the rest is guaranteed to keep you there till dawn.