Don’t miss the stripped-down, street-corner-style sets of bands and musicians playing for wooden nickels during the Downtown Long Beach Alliance’s closing event to its Summer and Music series.

On Saturday, August 19 from 5:00PM to 11:00PM, head over to downtown’s East Village where four stages will be set up at First Street and Linden Avenue to showcase some of Long Beach and Southern California’s best artists. The act that collects the most wooden nickels will be awarded a prize package worth $2,500 designed to help further their career.

“The layout for Buskerfest has always been important because we want attendees to be able to see as much music as possible—while at the same time hosting as many bands as possible in a relatively short program,” SAM co-founder Rand Foster said in a statement. “It’s a one-of-a-kind night filled with free live music, craft beer and great community.”

While it’s served as a launching pad for new artists, Buskerfest also has a rich history of popular performers including Rival Sons, Cold War Kids, Delta Spirit, Everest, Beachwood Sparks, Avi Buffalo, Tijuana Panthers, Chicano Batman, Sam Outlaw, and many others.


Buskerfest in 2014. File photo.

This year’s Buskerfest headliners include the indie pop quartet, Milo Greene, who are heading into the studio to record their third album; afrobeat/funk-inspired collective WARGIRL, founded by Buskerfest alum and producer of many a Cold War Kids album, Matt Wignall; Grammy winner Joachim Cooder, known for his work as drummer and percussionist in Ry Cooder’s band and, last but not least, an acoustic set by legendary punk musicians Bob Forrest and Mike Martt whose varied experiences both include time in Thelonious Monster.

But always the beating heart of Buskerfest are the local bands and musicians who will compete for the love of the audience and a career-boosting prize. Be sure to toss your wooden nickels in appreciation of Big Bad Rooster, Blind John Pope, Bootleg Orchestra, Bundy, Family Thief, Litronix, MoForro and Snake Oil Salesmen.

For more information about SAM, visit the website here.