The Coast News Group
The Sibarg Ensemble, a blend of Iranian and Western jazz, will highlight the Aug. 24-26 Carlsbad Music Festival. Photo via Facebook

Music fest lively way to wrap up summer

Thousands are expected to attend the 15th annual Carlsbad Music Festival to hear a variety of genres performed live.

Matt McBane, founder of the festival, said this year’s lineup includes 50 different acts with nearly three dozen free concerts over the three-day event, which runs Aug. 24 to Aug. 26 in Carlsbad Village. About 12 ticketed concerts will be held.

Spotlighted artists include singer and composer Julianna Barwick and the Sibarg Ensemble, offering  sounds of Iranian music and American jazz with Iranian and Western instruments, including the kamâncheh, târ, robâb, vocals, piano, double bass and drums.

St. Michael’s by-the-Sea Church is the hub, with four total venues, and several other locations including the Mission Church, Carlsbad Inn’s Village Terrace (above the Daily News Café) and one show at Carlsbad by the Sea retirement community.

“There’s nothing radically different this year,” McBane said. “Every year we have 50 new groups, that’s new of and in itself.”

The festival, as part of its core, is an adventure, McBane said, exposing people to an array of eclectic styles and artists.

“The music is adventurous, and where the spirit of the audience comes from,” McBane said. “They come to hear what they want to hear and to hear something they might not have otherwise.”

Much of the festival is centered on St. Michael’s lawn, which holds the main stage and will have continuous music for the three days. In addition, it will include a beer garden, food trucks, a kids playground and an artisan market. St. Michael’s also includes three indoor venues.

“It’s just a really great setup that we have there,” McBane said. For a schedule of the festival, visit