Organizing a music festival takes a lot of work. For Adam Reczek, founder of the Music on the ‘Noosuc festival, it may have been more work than he expected. As we talk he’s driving to drop off posters for the event and wrangle signposts for sponsors’ banners. He rattles of a list of sponsors and banner sizes, mentally checking that all his supporters are covered. On July 8th, all of his efforts will culminate in Littleton’s new music and art festival.
Music on the ‘Noosuc is a free-to-the-public and family-friendly festival celebrating local art and music. The event takes place Saturday, July 8 on River Glen Lane behind the covered footbridge. The venue shares the space of the weekly farmer’s market in the heart of Littleton. The all-day affair will feature nine musical acts along with artist booths and food vendors.
Festival organizer Reczek – himself a musician – values the output of independent artists. “One of the frustrations I have as a musician is just being a ‘jukebox with a pulse,’ having everyone yell out ‘Free Bird’ or ‘Wagon Wheel,’” he laments. “With this festival I’m hoping to create a more artistically conducive environment that encourages more independent, local music.”
To that end, the festival’s lineup includes all-local, all-original North Country musicians and artists. “A lot of times when I’m out at a bar with a band I’ll ask if they have any originals,” says Reczek, explaining the background of the festival. “They’ll play a song and it’ll be the best one of the set because it’s theirs. They’re not doing their best impression of anything, they’re hanging up the original.” The goal of Music on the ‘Noosuc is to create a platform for these artists to showcase their work in front of the local community with the support of the community.
“The festival has come together entirely with the financial support of local businesses, and not just that but these businesses taking a chance on me and my goal,” states Reczek. For an event in its first year, a business owner taking a leap of faith on the event’s success was a big ask.
But Reczek affirms that reception to his vision was open. As he walked up and down Littleton’s Main Street he found support in a variety of forms. “Some business owners wrote me checks right there before I could even finish my spiel,” he says. “When they couldn’t support financially, they donated resources.” The venue, stages, electricity, and design and printing services were all donated to the effort. “It restored my faith in humanity,” Reczek laughs. “It made me happy to be a part of this community.”
Reczek looks at the small town of Littleton as a big reason for his ability to pull the event together. “Most of the businesses here on Main Street are purely local,” he explains. “As a result of that they have a stake in the community.” While setting up the festival involved considerably more work than he imagined, Reczek delighted in building the event from the ground up. “It’s fun to see the excitement that people have when you tell them about it,” he states. “That’s the same joy I have with it. I’m not just setting it up, I’m going to be there. I’m going to be watching, I’m playing at it.”
Though the inaugural event is just over a week away, Reczek already looks forward to the festival growing in the years to come. “In the early stages I didn’t even know if it was going to happen. Now with some momentum and publicity building for the event, people are reaching out to be a part of it,” he says. “It’s gotten to the point now where I’ve had to turn people away. It started out I didn’t have enough funding. Now I don’t have enough time in the day to have everyone play who wanted to play.”
Continuing the festival next year would be a great measure of success for the first-year festival. For Reczek, other successes are less tangible. “I hope this fosters a deeper appreciation for original musicians, for local, independent musicians who aren’t quite established yet,” he states. “I hope people come out and support it. I hope that people make a day of it, and if nothing else I hope there will be less requests for ‘Wagon Wheel’ or ‘Freebird’ in the North Country.”
Music on the ‘Noosuc
Saturday, July 8
11am – 10pm
River Glen Lane, Littleton