It’s time for the 6th annual Mission Creek Oakland Arts & Music Festival! Here are 10 solid points on why you should head on out and catch one of the many events happening from September 4 to 13.

1. You want to check out multiple venues around town. This is a great opportunity to familiarize yourself with some of the smaller venues offering music in Oakland and beyond. The Legionnaire, The Uptown, The Stork Club, The Night Light, Awaken Café, Pacific Coast Brewery, and The Starry Plough are all holding shows.

2. You like having the option to see music in the day or at night. A long day of work, the kids’ bedtime getting in the way of night plans, or your job doesn’t start until others are ending their nine-to-fives? There’s music during the day and music during the night, sometimes moving from one to another. No matter what your time limitations, there’s a show for you.

3. You never know what times you have free. Starting on September 4 and stretching over a week, there are one, two, and sometimes three music events every day and night. So if you’re not free for a Monday night show, maybe you have time to check one out on Wednesday night or throughout the day Saturday.

4. You’re a bit broke, but love music. The music at MCO is all totally affordable. Many of the gigs are free, some are $5, some $7, some $10. If you think you might want to see lots of the shows, a better deal might be a VIP badge, which gets you admission to everything.

5. You wish you knew more about local, emerging musicians. Though not all the artists playing MCO are local, most are, from French Cassettes to Whiskerman. If you’ve ever wanted to be more in tune with the local music scene but didn’t know where to start, this would be a good place. The lineup is full of hand-selected awesome folks, so you can be sure to see someone great.

Bowery Ballroom, NYC; The Blank Tapes. (Photograph by Deidre Schoo)

The Blank Tapes add some L.A. psych rock to MCO. Photo by Deidre Schoo.

6. You don’t stick to one genre of music. The music at MCO includes experimental orchestral pop, folk, indie-pop, alternative, punk, world, and more. If you want to chill and sit while watching music, or jump around in a packed venue, MCO has you covered.

7. You’d like to forget that the Bay Area loses musicians. If you’re like me, you lament that the Bay Area loses many of our brightest musicians to the music lands down south, or east, or north. Well, with this festival, we can pretend for a moment that Bart Davenport is still Oakland-based as he serenades us from his hometown.

8. You like some dancing with your music. Whether it’s at the square dance, or dancing to Balkan music by Fanfare Zambaleta, there will be plenty of feet moving opportunities.

9. You think spoken word and poetry are pretty cool, too. Perhaps a night with writers, poets, and humorists is more your thing, or just also your thing. Then head to the Bohemian Revival Readings at SideQuest Gallery.

10. Music is your jam. A tautology maybe, but still: if you like music, then there will something for you to love at MCO.

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