The MOVE Music Festival in Albany will eventually fade to just a memory for the people who were there, but Barbara Morrow will have the event documented for posterity on her red jeans.
Armed with a Sharpie marker and a desire to have tangible proof of her concert experiences on Saturday, the 15-year-old Delaware County girl continued her recent practice and was having bands sign her pants following a performance. After standing front and center for about a 40-minute set by The Red Lions at the Bayou Café, one of 10 venues in downtown Albany hosting a total of 100 bands for the festival, Morrow asked the four members of the band to memorialize the event.
She explained that at a recent concert girls were getting their breasts and faces signed, but she opted for something that would last a little longer. With at least eight more hours of music after The Red Lions, Morrow was optimistic about getting a few more signatures before calling it a night.
This was the first year for the festival, created by Bernie Walters, president of Indian Ledge Music Group, who was hoping to expose regional talent to a larger audience.
The shows were mostly occurring between Clinton Avenue and State Street, with one venue on Lark Street.
Wearing yellow bracelets costing $12, concertgoers traveled along sparsely populated North Pearl Street, where most of the performances were, enjoyed a day of music, drinking and more new music.
Performers included solo acts and bands that covered everything from loud dance music to easy listening.
The last shows were set for midnight.
Timothy Reidy, 39, of Albany, was focused on seeing as many shows as possible in the short window of the festival. By 4 p.m., he had already seen five bands — the first show kicked off at 1 p.m. — and was impressed by all the performers that far.
This is relatively high praise coming from Reidy, who is well known in the local music scene for consuming a lot of local concerts, as evidenced by his T-shirt featuring the local band Sirsy and his ability to sing along with The Red Lions.
He had watched performances at Jillian’s, Legends and the Bayou Café.
Reidy said he was really enjoying the Bayou Café, but because it was still early in the day, he didn’t want to even guess where his favorite venue was and which was his favorite act.
“I’ll be at shows all night long,” he said. “I’m looking forward to seeing some new acts that I’ve never seen before.”
This exploratory mood was echoed by Ruth Huttner, 21, of Albany, who was enjoying the festival with her sister and a friend. “We love hearing music that we’ve never heard before,” she said.
The trio was at Jillian’s in the afternoon, when the front man from the band Ula Ruth encouraged the audience to dance to their original song, “Dance All Night.” The lively group of girls followed the advice, but the rest of the crowd in the noisy bar refrained. People couldn’t help but at least tap their feet to the beat, however.
Huttner was happy that a festival like this was occurring in Albany, noting that the city didn’t really have anything else that compared to this.
“This is bringing local music to light in Albany,” she said. “Albany has a music scene, it’s just unexposed.”