Over two dozen local and nationally touring bands will perform for Valley music-goers Tuesday, March 15 in Pharr as part of the MPM Festival, or Moderately Priced Music Festival. The festival’s title gently pokes fun at the much larger festival happening 20 minutes away in Mission.
The festival is a celebration of local music. On the event’s Facebook page, Sam Goodbar, MPM’s curator, writes proudly, “This is actually a sneaky way to get you all to see these awesome local acts, because to me all acts are local: from Toro y Moi to Colour Revolt, to White Zebra to Nite Jewel. They’re all local heroes from their own towns and cities, so pay respect to our local heroes.”
The daylong MPM Festival differentiates itself from normal multi-stage festivals by being designed so each band has a consecutive slot. This is done to fix a very typical and frustrating festival problem.
“I didn’t want to get too many acts because I didn’t want to make people choose which acts to listen to,” Goodbar said.
The event will begin at 3:30 p.m. and continue until the last band performs, roughly around 1 a.m.
“I chose all these acts because I liked their music and wanted to see them live,” Goodbar said. “I set out with a couple names I wanted to bring down and it worked out and snowballed after that.”
Despite good intentions, the festival was not without problems. MPM’s original venue, Ambiente in downtown McAllen, was closed and the festival was homeless for a period of time.
“I had to move the event to Jagz in Pharr,” Goodbar said. “So it became a slightly bigger venture than I planned.”
When it comes to music promotion and local shows, Goodbar is a veteran and claims he just wants to keep the scene alive.
“I’m not trying to make this the next SXSW or Coachella,” Goodbar said. “I’m just trying bring more attention to our local acts and pick out a handful of really good acts I want to see, no matter how ‘big’ or ‘small’ they are.”