Over the weekend, I went to 4Knots Festival, an annual music festival in New York City which celebrates the heartbeat of emerging and authentic rock bands from all over the world. It was my second time attending as press, and for the first time, 4Knots was in a different location. This year, the indie rock music extravaganza was held at its new headquarters: Pier 84 in Hudson River Park, near the West Side Highway. It was 80 degrees, the wind blew from the Hudson River, the air smelled of festival food and freshwater river delightful-funk.
Independent vendors lined up alongside the venue, and around 4:30-4:45, a “jerky man” danced in the grass as random concertgoers yanked flavored jerky bags from his “suit” made from Perky Jerky product. For the most part, everyone looked relaxed and seemed to enjoy the music.
Upon my approximate 3:15 arrival, I stopped by the press check-in area to announce myself and I was immediately walked to the elaborate Hornblower yacht, which I frequented last Summer for several business-related reasons. It was there that I met, sat with and interviewed the new Music Editor of Village Voice, Hilary Hughes about her involvement in the festival, the venue change, which bands she was excited to see, and what’s next for the company.
What was your involvement in putting together the festival and what does 4Knots mean to you?
4Knots: This is my third year coming. I was a critic and a contributor to the Village Voice before coming onboard full-time so I’ve been able to come every year and it’s gotten better and better every single year that has passed, really. This is our fifth year and we’re really happy to be at Hudson River Park. So for me personally, I mean it’s great to see something grow that really celebrates great rock n roll and great indie music in New York City. We’re really thrilled to be here, especially with this year’s lineup and the expansion of it. We’re doing more music than we have in the past and it’s extending over a much longer period, here at Hudson River Park. We’re just really excited for everything happening here in 2015.
Why this venue?
Honestly, I think it was time to move on from the South Street. We loved having 4Knots there and it was great to have the peking ship but Hudson River Park is gorgeous and actually a portion of our ticket sales is going back to the park so we’re able to help out in that regard. We’re on the Hudson River, and Stephen Malkmus and the Jicks are going to be playing at sunset, with the sun setting over the Hudson on a beautiful day. In terms of my involvement, I was bit of a consultant. I offered up ideas for the lineup and stuff but our booker Stephen Dima did a fantastic job at assembling a really unique bill this year, that you’re not going to find at any other festival.
Hughes was stoked to see Screaming Females (an indie rock band from New Brunswick, New Jersey formed in 2006) that she wasn’t able to catch live until Saturday. She was also really excited to see Stephen Malkmus and the Jicks (an indie band from Portland, Oregon formed in 2000). She was also stoked to see Super Furry Animals, a Welsh rock band who she says hasn’t been in the states for about six years.
What’s next for the Village Voice?
We’re always covering nine million different things to cover at Village Voice. I’m going to be going to the Newport Film Festival myself in two weeks but in terms of events that we’re throwing I mean, we’re always trying to find new ways in New York City. We don’t have anything in the works right now but obviously we’re looking forward to 4Knots 2016 in the very distant future and we’ll have some stuff going on for you before then.
Even though I miss the old ship at South Street Seaport, you can’t beat the green grass and cool shade in the park.