Will the 1st Annual So-Cal Hoedown Pick Up Where the Hootenanny Left Off?

Anyone who’s taken a peek at this year’s summer festival guide knows there’s a glut of day drinking, outdoor mosh pits and sun tanned selfies coming our way. That includes the inaugural So-Cal Hoedown in Downtown  Santa Ana on August 13. It’s one of several big events presented by OC-based Sellout Productions in partnership with the Yost.

With one mini festival already under their belt (last month’s Totally ’80s Fest), the partners say they’re more than ready to host the next big rockabilly event in OC. While having another new festival is always nice, the Hoedown’s real value is its attempt at reviving the spirit of defunct local staples like the Hootenanny and Ink-n-Iron. The Hoedown’s got a tried and true format that really needs no explanation. After all, stand up bass solos, stand up pompadours, hot rods and hot pinup girls are a combination of things OC does best.

Centered amongst several neighboring venues in Downtown Santa Ana’s East End, the Hoedown is headlined by Shooter Jennings and Waymore’s Outlaws (Waylon Jennings’ Band), Wanda Jackson and the Necromantix. The Blasters, Supersuckers, Cadillac Tramps, the recently reunited Throwrag and two dozen more local and national acts are also on tap from noon to 10 p.m.

Though the festival itself ain’t exactly reinventing the wheel, Sellout Production’s CEO Scott Tucker, says the point is to help bring a new crowd to DTSA’s ever-expanding East End. 

“The Downtown [Santa Ana] area is great and up and coming area, but people still don’t realize half the things that are down there,” Tucker says. “Just like Long Beach five years ago, we’re trying to bring some awareness of what’s going on down there and incorporate the neighboring businesses.”

And when it comes to festivals of the rockabilly variety, Tucker’s prior experience working with Horton’s Hayride in San Pedro certainly comes in handy. Though unlike the Hayride or other events like Music Tastes Good in Long Beach, the Hoedown will include more beloved local acts on the bill than both of those events combined in addition to their big names. The $25 entry fee makes it worth lacing up your creepers to come check it out (kids 10 and under get in free).

Venues for the event include four stages—an outdoor Main Stage, a side stage inside the Yost, a lowbrow  inspired art exhibit and stage in the Underground DTSA and a bluegrass stage/indoor dining area in the Festival Hall. 

“If you want to escape the sun and get a burger with your family in the Festival Hall, you can do that, or if you’re looking for a Jack and Coke swigging outdoor Hootenanny vibe, we have that as well,” Tucker says. “You’ve got one owner of multiple venues, all within eyesight as well as the street being shut down. It’s a little city almost.” If that’s the case, the East End might want to consider renaming itself when the Hoedown comes to town…”Greaserville” has a nice ring to it. 

For full details on the So-Cal Hoedown, including tickets, set times, vendors and other events, visit the festival’s website here.

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