Photo by Ben Brown

Ten bands over two days will mark the return of Carolina Indie Fest, now organized by downtown Sanford’s Hugger Mugger Brewing.

The “eclectic, multi-day, all original music festival” will be held downtown on Sept. 23 and 24, according to Tim Emmert of Hugger Mugger.

“This is a free music festival open to all,” said Emmert. “We’re rocking out to independent artists performing original music from a variety of genres including pop, folk, punk, jazz and road house style country music. You will be amazed at these artists and their ability to blend styles and create that tough-to-describe music style known as ‘Americana.'”

Sanford’s own Cliff Wheeler Band and national recording artist Paleface (pictured above) will return from the inaugural event to perform this year. They’ll be joined by Crystal Bright and the Silver Hands (self-described as “If Enya woke up in a vaudevillian nightmare wonderland”), rockabilly artists The Phantom Playboys, space punk protagonists Oort Patrol (Sanford’s own), folk/country artist David Childers and the Serpents, up-and-coming band Whoop of Raleigh (a fusion of indie, jazz, rock, reggae and hip-hop), rock/reggae North Carolina quartet Big Break, indie legend Mike Dillon & Punkadelic and Durham family rock trio Secret Monkey Weekend.

The music will run from 5-10 p.m. on Sept. 23 (Friday) and 3-10 on Sept. 24 on a single stage in the lot behind Hugger Mugger. In addition to the music there will be several food trucks, crafty vendors and beer (including a special festival beer release).

The second iteration of Carolina Indie Fest carries the mantle of the original two-day festival put on by Indie on Air, which filed for bankruptcy this year in the days leading up to the scheduled Wampus Cat Music Festival, which was promoted to feature 90-plus bands at Gross Farms II near Sanford (including big names like Everclear, Lit and Thompson Square).

More information: