Eagle Rock Music Festival puts the “rock” in Eagle Rock with the support of Oxy Arts

Students from Eagle Rock High School perform at the 19th Annual Eagle Rock Music Festival in Los Angeles on Saturday, Oct. 6th, 2018 . Nancy Zhou/The Occidental

The 19th Annual Eagle Rock Music Festival transformed Colorado Boulevard into a hub of music, food, local art and vintage clothing Oct. 6. The event was presented by Councilmember Jose Huizar and produced by the Center of the Arts Eagle Rock. According to Matthew Himes, festival director and former director of events at the Center of the Arts Eagle Rock, approximately 50,000 people attended the event and 40 different acts performed at the festival, including Lily Waters and Super Lunch. The event had 120 sponsors, including Oxy Arts and Occidental College, according to the festival’s website.

Occidental’s Coordinator of Community Programs, Allegra Padilla, was one of the representatives at the Oxy Arts booth. She said it is important that Oxy Arts is at the Eagle Rock Music Festival to share with the community all the work Oxy Arts has been doing to support local art, while also supporting the performers and learning more about the arts opportunities in the area.

“I think that because Oxy is a part of an institution of higher education, there’s a lot of power and privilege that comes with that,” Padilla said. “It’s really important to make sure that, given the college mission and vision, we [Occidental College] support those who are really underrepresented. Especially when we live in Los Angeles, which is such an incredible and diverse place.”

Tom Kenny & The Hi-Seas, a Los Angeles-based RocknRoll/Soul/R&B band, prepare for their performance at the 19th Annual Eagle Rock Music Festival in Los Angeles on Saturday, Oct. 6th, 2018. Nancy Zhou/The Occidental

Padilla said that to the left of the Oxy Arts booth was the Eagle Rock High School booth, where Oxy Arts has continuously supported the school with its senior art exhibit. To the right of the Oxy Arts booth was Alexandra Gordon, marketing coordinator for Occidental’s Office of Marketing & Communications, who was selling her own artwork.

“It’s really important to make sure [Occidental] stays connected because it’s those relationships that are long-term and valuable,” Padilla said.

Padilla said she wants people to view the arts as an integral part of community health rather than a luxury. She said her background in community organizing and working for grassroots nonprofits inspires her to commit to the work and make sure that art is at the center of Eagle Rock’s community offerings.

Local artists also had the opportunity to showcase and sell their art. One of them was Victoria Barajas, the owner of Simply Artrageous, a jewelry, hair accessory and bowtie company. According to Barajas, it was her second year at The Eagle Rock Music Festival. She said that because she is local to Eagle Rock, it is always nice to find a fun place to sell her items.

Lily Water, a Soundcloud music artist, performs at the 19th Annual Eagle Rock Music Festival in Los Angeles on Saturday, Oct. 6th, 2018. Nancy Zhou/The Occidental

“My favorite part about being here is all the different people you see. You see little kids; you see people coming for the music; you see a lot of different people. I just love how it brings the whole community together: people from all parts of LA, especially Eagle Rock,” Barajas said.

People of all different ages attended the event, including Jackson Eddy (first year). He said that he thoroughly enjoyed the event because there was a large variety of bands playing. His favorite performance was Tom Kenny and the High Seas because the main singer was the voice actor from Spongebob. The performance was nostalgic for him because he grew up watching Spongebob, but at the same time, he enjoyed venturing out and seeing artists he had never heard of before.

“I thought it was interesting to see all the different bands in the area that I’ve never heard of, so I’ll be sure to look into those more in the future,” Eddy said.