This weekend, the first High & Mighty Festival will take place in Garden Grove at Village Green Park. The brainchild of co-headliners Sublime with Rome and the Dirty Heads, the two-day event will feature a slew of live music from the world’s of reggae, hip hop and rock. The overarching theme celebrates the marijuana culture of which the bands embraced and comprise their audience as a whole.
Ahead of the inaugural event, we caught up with Dirty Heads singer Jared Watson. He filled us in on the planning of the festival, what inspired it and why marijuana is the overarching them that ties everything together.
How long were you talking about putting on an event before it came to fruition?
Jared Watson: It came about after we played our last show at Irvine Meadows last year. We were like, “What do we do now?” We wanted to figure out what was our Orange County play now. Rather than just doing a normal show, we wanted to do something special this is home. We started reaching out to friends, people we met on the road, and people we knew in the industry to put on this two-day thing. We wanted to do something special for Orange County.
How did you come up with the theme?
JW: That’s pretty easy. We picked what acts would fit with us and the whole culture that comes with our style of music, and the legalization of marijuana. We believe in it as medicine, as recreational, and we wanted to base it around that whole world, which we’re already in. There’s always festivals, so how do we make this different and what do we really like? We like good music, we like food, we like weed. Let’s get all of our three favorite things and do something super special in Orange County.
Was it easier than expected to execute once you got into the planning stages?
JW: We’ve never thrown a festival, even after playing numerous shows. That’s more where our manager Mike and his team had success when it came to festivals and knew what they were doing. We weren’t going to jump in blind. We wanted to have someone we knew and were confident in who could help us see our way through.
What are some of the other activities besides music going on?
JW: There’s going to be a bunch of shit that comes to the cannabis culture with a lot of vendors there. I think it’s really crucial because even though it’s legal — or medically legal — I think people still have a stigma to it, which is hilarious because alcohol destroys lives and kills so many people. It’s like this drug that’s curing numerous ailments like little girls stop having seizures, helping skin cancer and so many things.
Yes, we’re in a band and we’re in the weed culture and we talk about it as part of our lives. Everyone knows that and it’s a gimmick. But for me, to do something like this and expose these companies that are not only good products, but making products that help people and get rid of that stigma.
You could have the best festival and have 50 breweries go out there and no one bats an eye. If you put weed out there, people are going to think it’s for stoners. We want that wall to be broken down and that’s why I think the vendors we have there are going to be cool. The food is going to be bonkers, there’s going to be rides and a bunch of shit to do. If there’s a band you’re not feeling, there’s a lot of other things to do when they’re on.
High and Mighty Festival featuring Sublime with Rome, the Dirty Heads, Soja and many more will take place at Village Green Park in Garden Grove, CA. August 5-6, 2017. Tickets from $49+.