CAMBRIDGE, MA — This past weekend the city of Cambridge celebrated its 11th year of HonkFest, which is a three day festival of brass bands from around the U.S. performing in both Davis and Harvard Squares. The core of the festival is to bring the community together through music. As I witnessed the many different bands performing and interweaving through the crowds I could feel an increasing sense of unity. Everywhere you turned, those two social centers of Cambridge were pulsing with dancing, discussion, and music.
One of the bands that I caught was this rag tag collection of musicians from Seattle, Washington. At one point of their set they performed a cover of “Pink Elephants” from Dumbo. This set the crowd into a frenzy as the musicians began expanding into the crowd inches away from my face; the resulting adrenaline rush was palpable. The second group I was able to catch was on the last day of the festival in Harvard Square. This group was an all female band performing music with a feminist theme. As their set went on their high energy level was returned by the enthusiastic crowd. This illustrated one of music’s core benefits: to allow anyone to use music to convey a personal belief or idea. For more information about HonkFest visit their website honkfest.org.