Every year on the third weekend in April, locals in Waverly, Alabama, a tiny rural town about sixty miles from Montgomery, get together to celebrate the day that State Highway 280 bypassed the town. They call the music and arts festival the Old 280 Boogie, because, yes, there was dancing in the street on that fateful day, as Scott Peek, one of the festival’s founders, remembers.
Hosted at Peek’s screen-printing shop-cum-event space, Standard Deluxe, the festival has hosted national acts like The Civil Wars and Alabama Shakes as well as locals like blues guitarist Mace Glasscock. This year, Texas alt-country vets Centro-Matic headlined the fest with direct support from recent Shakes tour-mates, Lee Bains III & the Glory Fire.
Filmmaker Joshua Shoemaker caught four artists in secluded settings during Saturday’s main event and Friday’s kickoff party (which also featured Jonny Corndawg and Shovels & Rope).
Nola country-folk outfit Hurray for the Riff Raff turn in a live version of their sophomore album’s title track, “Look Out Mama,” with Sam Doores of the Tumbleweeds on drums and Alynda Lee Segarra paying homage to Gillian Welch’s yodel on “My Morphine,” while Nashville’s Andrew Combs looks for forgiveness in the Texas dirge, “Month of Bad Habits.” Shoemaker also captured songs from festival performers Harvey Davidson and Duquette Johnston.
“It has become a great Southern festival and homecoming for folks around the South. We don’t have corporate sponsors. We keep it rural and fresh each year. It’s always a good time and everyone has a smile on their face. It’s really quite special,” Peek wrote via email.
Watch the videos below.