It was a sell-out crowd at the third edition of the Bacardi NH7 Weekender in Meghalaya on Saturday. As the ‘happiest music festival’ returned to the picturesque Northeast state, the stages were set to witness some of the best acts as fans poured in numbers.
American guitarist, composer, singer, songwriter, and producer Steve Vai headlined on Day 2 with thousands of music lovers driving to the newly set-up festival venue at Thadlaskein in Jaintia Hills, Meghalaya.
It was a dream come true for many as the guitarist took the stage for the very first time in India. “I grew up playing to his tunes. The feeling is amazing to listen to him live here,” said Ankur Gohain, a music lover from Guwahati.
“The on-ground sales were closed at around 7:15pm itself as the festival witnessed unprecedented footfall. A lot of people were trying to enter the festival ground even after Steve Vai started his performance,” said Gaurav Jain, a music lover who travelled from Guwahati along with his friends for the festival.
Speaking about the venue, Vijay Nair, CEO of Only Much Louder, the organisers of the festival, had said in a Facebook post prior to the event that it would be one of the best venue for the multi-genre music festival.
“For years now we have been hustling all over the country trying to put together music festivals. We have managed to convert empty warehouses, parking lots, residential parks, unused real estate (!) and every bit of available land into a festival hub. But nowhere else except Meghalaya lets us produce a festival the way it’s meant to be… in a venue that will probably outshine the festival itself,” he wrote.
Commenting on the third successful season at Meghalaya, Nair said that they are already planning on how to make the festival bigger next year. “Every year, fans from the Northeast justify our decision to set up a festival in Meghalaya. If the 2015 edition was an experiment and the 2016 edition was the confirmation that things could be here to stay, this year’s edition will be remembered as the year where the Meghalaya edition will be cemented into our calendar. We’ve tried to take things up a notch this year – with the artist lineup, the spectacular new venue, and more. And we were rewarded with some of the most passionate fans in the country. While this year’s edition was successful, we are already starting to think about how we can make 2018 special for fans,” Nair said in a statement released by OML.
(The story was updated to include official comment from Vijay Nair.)