Pan Caliente: Viva! Pomona

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Summers in LA are some of the best months for live music. You have outdoor venues, free shows all over town, and even great peripheral events in the suburbs.

Shift your attention East… way past Sawtelle, and La Brea and Vermont… go further. All the way into the San Gabriel Valley, where Viva! Pomona, the small-scaled festival that could, once again boasts an impeccably solid and eclectic lineup.

The two-day festival (August 5th & 6th) Viva! returns for it’s 6th year to offer an affordable refuge for kids in the Inland Empire and SGV that don’t have the means to trek all the way out to LA to see the same bands in trendy venues. While at the same time retaining its focus of showcasing local, touring, and international artists that make music in both English & Spanish.

“The show’s purpose is to break the stereotypes of what people think about Hispanic music. We embrace that heritage and we also demonstrate how American culture has influenced it. We also like to focus on highlighting the unique culture of cities that lie within Los Angeles County; and in turn give back an affordable multi-day festival to these communities,” mentioned festival organizer Rene Contreras.

Check out some of the up & coming artists performing this weekend in this playlist:

Some of my current favs include: Sudan Archives, Cuco, Tall Juan, and Sneaks.

As someone who grew up in Baldwin Park (in the SGV), The Glasshouse in Pomona (which is partly responsible for the music festival), was one of the first and only all ages venues I could go to when I was under age. So knowing that there is a fervent local movement fostering the promotion of music for kids in the SGV and IE makes me incredibly optimistic.

Also, having just spent about a month’s rent on pizza and booze at FYF, it makes me happy that Viva!’s price point is incredibly accessible.