After months of anticipation and palpable buzz from coast to coast, the long-awaited inaugural Sacred Rose will finally make its debut August 26th–28th, 2022 at SeatGeek Stadium, just outside Chicago, with a lineup headlined by Phil Lesh & Friends (with Jeff Tweedy, Nels Cline, and Karl Denson), Khruangbin, The War On Drugs, Joe Russo’s Almost Dead, Goose, Umphrey’s McGee, and many more. A blooming love letter to the sweet sounds of Americana, psych-rock, jam, indie, soul, funk, and bluegrass, the cross-pollinating fest will touch a wide swath of artistic flavors that are sure to satiate the eclectic tastes of late-summer festival-goers and music aficionados alike.

Produced by some of the same minds behind North Coast, Summer Camp Music Festival, and Suwannee Hulaween, Sacred Rose will present three genre-specific stages—The Dreamfield, The Vega, and The Canopy—each chock-full of the finest purveyors of its respective style. The newly remodeled space outside of SeatGeek Stadium features seven new astroturf fields and will be brimming with an assortment of interactive “big art” installations, as well as craft food and beverage vendors, merchandise, and other non-musical entertainment.

In addition to the headliners, the slate of top-flight artists set to perform at Sacred Rose 2022 includes STS9, Greensky Bluegrass, The Disco Biscuits, Kamasi Washington, St. Paul & The Broken Bones, Punch Brothers, Dawes, Animal Collective, The Wood Brothers, City and Colour, Yves Tumor, Lettuce, Moon Taxi, Cory Wong, Lotus, Sunsquabi with Kanika Moore (Doom Flamingo), and The Infamous Stringdusters featuring Molly Tuttle. Margo Price and Kanika Moore will serve as artists-at-large throughout the weekend. There will also be a Laserdome DJ tent that will feature the likes of Orchard Lounge and DJ Airworld, among others.

Sacred Rose 2022 Festival Preview With Karina Rykman

“In 2018 when we shifted North Coast from a multi-genre festival to a fully electronic music event, we started dreaming up Sacred Rose and what it could mean for fans of Americana, Psych-rock, Jam, Indie, Soul, Funk, and Bluegrass,” said Sacred Rose Founder Michael Berg. “Sacred Rose is the first festival of its kind in our area, and we’re so proud to deliver a special experience for our fans who have been patiently waiting for a lineup like this for a long time.”

Most of the performers on the Sacred Rose lineup card are well established, already renowned in the jam, indie, and Americana communities. The bill is one of the strongest collections of artists performing in one place in quite a long time—an assembly presented in a refreshingly unique fashion—but the festival leans a bit avant-garde, staying a ways ahead of both the curve and the norm for festival bookings of this kind. Instead of revisiting the familiar bold font names at the top of the poster, here’s a look at fave-five stalwart undercard artists to discover and enjoy at Sacred Rose 2022.


Gone Gone Beyond (Friday – 12:30 p.m. – The Dreamfield)

Gone Gone Beyond kicks off the entire event with their unicorn elixir. A masterful blend of future-folk with minimalist electronic flourishes; an ebullient display of emotionally resonant music, brimming with delicate muse, personalized poetry, and simple understandings of the human condition. Paeans to one’s past, present, and leaps into our future delivered by way of hopeful connection, remembrance, love, plus a subtle sense of loss and healing.

Gone Gone Beyond – Soul Land Music Series

Gone Gone Beyond offers a hopeful message for our planet that pays homage to folk and Americana traditions, blending together a barrage of influences from jazz, soul, electronic, and world music. Founded by The Human Experience (David Block) and Danny Musengo, the pair was later joined by longtime collaborators in Santa Cruz chaunteuse Kat Factor and Cuban multi-instrumentalist virtuoso Mel Seme. The group has been making waves with their majestic, iridescent four-part harmonies and mystical melodies, sounds, and energies, which coalesce with an inherent vulnerability that heads straight for the feels.

 

Yves Tumor (Friday – 5:45 p.m. – The Vega)

The Yves Tumor sound has shifted and mutated since Sean Bowie started releasing albums in 2015. A multi-instrumentalist from Miami who found themself making music in Germany, Yves Tumor has developed a catalog that is nothing if not diverse, and sometimes confrontational. Short, potent cuts are shrouded in ethereal electronic textures, indie-pop and smoked-out R&B doing a dark dalliance in the shadows.

Yves Tumor – “Secrecy Is Incredibly Important To The Both of Them” – Glastonbury 2022

A “glam-rock astral heartbreaker,” Yves Tumor sings songs rich in irony about matters of the heart, blending lo-fi beats with irresistible hooks and shoegaze psychedelia. Think Rivers Cuomo and the RZA sharing hookahs of DMT while remixing Sonic Youth. Surrealist ambient collages, haunting soul, colorful noise-rock, and beyond, Yves Tumor’s music travels through styles, spaces, and time in a perplexing yet intoxicating manner.

 

Hiatus Kaiyote (Sunday – 5:15 p.m. – The Vega)

Hiatus Kaiyote first broke internationally back in 2012 with debut LP Tawk Tomahawk. Immediately, they began to win ambassadors in high places, earning support from tastemakers including Taylor McFerrin, The RootsAhmir “Questlove” Thompson, Erykah Badu, and legendary British radio DJ Giles Peterson. Before long, everybody from Drake to Anderson .Paak to Robert Glasper was sending flowers for the bright Aussie upstarts, with 9th Wonder mining Kaiyote for samples for .Paak and Kendrick Lamar tracks.

Hiatus Kaiyote – “Sip Into Something Soft” / “Chivalry Is Not Dead” – The Set

Those co-signs are understandable. Hiatus Kaiyote wields a fresh yet familiar approach to groove music, ambitiously purveying soul, funk, R&B, and acid-jazz flavors with determination and seemingly effortless flow. Elements native to the work of James “J Dilla” Yancey inform the rhythms and compositions of Hiatus Kaiyote, be they by way of imagination, intention, or execution. Blending various styles rooted in Black music, spiced with their own brand of thunder from Down Under, the group is anchored by Nai Palm’s athletic, poetic voice, creating and deviating with angular, anxious, almost psychedelic colorways clouding the ether.

 

lespecial (Saturday – 2:15 p.m. – The Vega)

Hailing from Housatonic High School in Falls Village, CT, childhood friends and bandmates Luke Bemand (bass, samples), Rory Dolan (drums, samples), and Jonny G (guitar, keyboards, samples, vocals) raise the roof and the bar considerably on the latest full-length lespecial LP, Ancient Homies. Dolan and Bemand have been jamming since elementary school. After first dragging Jonny G to a Primus show and then enveloping him into their cryptic musical stew, lespecial was born way back in 2005 and has maintained the same OG lineup ever since.

lespecial – Hulaween 2021 (Full Set)

An absolutely stunning synthesis of slammin’ sludge riffage, shoegaze oscillations, breakbeat-meets-Brit pop, psychedelic dub, and brainiac polyriddims, all of it swimming in supersonic sound design, lespecial’s cataclysmic, post-rock ambitions are all that jazz, expertly embedded within emotive songcraft. The band’s deft, minimalist approach and exquisite instrumental storytelling make for thrilling expeditions in the live element.

 

Karina Rykman (Sunday – 1:15 p.m. – The Vega)

You may know Karina Rykman as firebrand bassist for Marco Benevento, but her eponymous solo band has been kicking ass and taking names. Whether she’s touring around the country holding it down with Benevento, jamming with Phish at an MSG soundcheck, or opening for Khruangbin with her own trio, you can always find Karina up in the middle of some super cool sh*t, and often stealing the show while she’s at it.

Karina Rykman – Sweetwater 420 Fest 2022 (Full Set)

A dynamic solo artist skilled on both bass and guitar, a lightning bolt of youthful exuberance, a dedicated metalhead, hip-hop enthusiast, Phish kid, podcaster, quintessential New Yorker, and all-around swag factory, Karina Rykman is riding a wave like few others in her orbit. Her meteoric ascent from Upper West Side music nerd towards near-total domination is already the stuff of legend. Rykman’s tremendous trio features Adam November on guitar (plus loopers and effects) and Chris Corsico on drums, and their bouyant blend of funky grooves, dance-pop and jam make for a jolly good time.


Festival founder and visionary Michael Berg shared some of the inspiration behind Sacred Rose’s monumental opening year by explaining what’s in the name and his motivation for throwing the event in his home region of Chicago.

“Sacred Rose is a two part homage: first to Grateful Dead’s iconic imagery, community & culture. But also a nod to my late Grandfather, Bert Rose who helped set me on a path & life in music at a very young age. The gift of time allowed us to grow very close, as he lived the longest of my four amazing grandparents. He would be super excited/proud about what Sacred Rose is and stands for… and probably flattered to have his name associated in any way.”

This weekend can’t come fast enough. We’ll see you this Friday at Seatgeek Stadium for the opening salvo at the inaugural Sacred Rose.

Words: B.Getz