Hialeah Fest 2012: "Bro, We Got Everything!"
Ferny Coipel answers the phone with an enthusiastic, "What's up, brother?!" that sounds like a cross between Cheech, Chong and Hulk Hogan.
Though we suspect the Humbert guitarist and Hialeah Fest coordinator is the kind of guy who is perpetually stoked on life, his enthusiasm may be partially attributed to his signature superlocal festival celebrating its 18th year.
For nearly two decades, the fest has "showcased talent somehow affiliated with Hialeah," managing to become one of the longest running music events in Miami.
When pressed to describe what Hialeah Fest is all about, Coipel declares with Miamian bombast, "Bro, we've got everything!"
Ferny explains that the two-day soiree's organizers -- he and Humbert bassist Tony Landa -- "don't try to make it diverse."
"We find that Hialeah has enough connections to enough talent that it just ends up being diverse. We've got indie-rock bands, regular rock bands, Motown stuff, rap bands. We got a comedian. We've had Spanish music. We've had Christian music."
Another key component to the Hialeah Fest equation is short set lengths.
"You got 15 minutes to rock and then you're done," Coipel explains. "If you takes you longer than that to say what you gotta say, you don't need to say it."
Hialeah Fest 2012: Day One
-Nag Champayons present Hialeah Selassie
-Stop the Presses
-Ricky Valido & the Hialeah Hillbillies
-Change Is Great
-Brand Name Punk
-The Bum Hips
Coipel says he doesn't have a favorite aspect of Hialeah, instead citing a more general "feeling."
He also reveals a bias toward the area's "East Side."
"[It] still feels like what Hialeah should be. There's not a lot of big commerce. You got mom and pop stores, the hardware store with the old guy who knows where the 60-year-old screws are. West Hialeah doesn't have that. West of the Palmetto doesn't have that."
Hialeah Fest 2012: Day Two
-I Don't Know
-Johnny Sex and the Flesh Rockets
-The Deadly Blank
-Phineas J Whoopie
-Beyond the Boundary
-Critics & Skeptics
-The Melograv Devices
Regardless of sub-regional allegiances, though, Ferny generally subscribes to a pan-Hialeah philosophy, the greatest demonstration of which is the Hialeah Kicks Ass Facebook community.
Because Hialeah Fest isn't about East vs. West. Its about coming together to celebrate Miami's wholly unique Cub(urb)an wonderland.
Hialeah Fest 2012. Friday, October 19, and Saturday, October 20. Churchill's Pub. 5501 NE Second Ave., Miami. Doors open at 8 p.m. Call 305-757-1807 or visit churchillspub.com
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