The Rinaldis fire up a ‘Big November Chill’
The Rinaldis will host the Big November Chill festival on Nov. 9 at the Dirt Farm in Greensboro.
Part house show, part vendor fair, part canned-food drive, the event will feature performers, vendors and a massage therapist, all in the name of chilling-out, connecting artists and collecting food before the hustle of the holidays hit.
“My hope is for this to be a very chill and inclusive get together for artists and friends to network and just enjoy each other’s company and gifts,” said organizer and performer Stacey Rinaldi.
Officially a full Rinaldi endeavor, this particular event is “very much a Stacey project.” The family band is known for big-top events, usually ring-led by Joe Rinaldi (who headed the Jabberwalk concert and comedy series at the Carolina Theatre in 2016). “This is the first time I’ve produced a show on my own, and definitely the first time we’ve mixed with local vendors,” she explained of the event, which will be the last for the group in 2019. “We do this thing where we get really motivated, get a lot done, and then crash right before the holidays and never want to see each other again until next year.”
They’ll be taking time to write and record, reflective of their latest sonic direction. “It’s a little less loungey,” Rinaldi noted, “a little more raw, with me yelling.”
And Stacey Rinaldi isn’t scared to yell. “I’ve become more outspoken, androgynous and witchy every year—and I won’t stop until I’m as loud and blunt and as queer as possible,” she insisted. “These are my life goals,” she said with a warning for attendees to be respectful (lest they face the wrath of her megaphone).
Rinaldi sees the Big Chill as a chance to make good on that pursuit. “This event isn’t exclusive or themed; I’m just eager to immerse myself into more art created by femme and LGBTQ artists. I want to listen and learn more,” she noted of her inspiration and vendor preference. “Women, people of color and those of the queer community have been shushed and hidden and kept in the corners and on the sidelines for a long, long time.” She’s not charging vendor fees; the money spent by attendees goes directly to the artists.
For Rinaldi, “women and LGBTQ artists are the realest, funniest, strongest, smartest, craftiest, most authentic people I know,” so their selection as vendors and performers came naturally.
“I’m just at a point where if there’s no women, or gay people, or people of color, or non-gender conforming humans in a project—or on a show lineup—I just want to shake those responsible, and shout: ‘WHAT ARE YOU EVEN DOING?!’”
As for performers, Rinaldi hopes to create points of connection and community by booking bands she’s yet to play with, including Greensboro songwriter Ashley Virginia, Charlotte rockers Pullover, and “hometown hero” Matty Sheets and the Nervy Bees, who Rinaldi considers an “angel and friend to all, who’s never not making music and I love him for it.”
That love extends to Triad artists in general. “They work so hard behind the scenes just to get to the stage,” Rinaldi noted, “spending hours at day jobs and then melting their brains to find the time and energy to also pursue and promote their passion, and bare their souls.” Her hope for the Big Chill is to present an opportunity for folks to “just be cool and present and listen and check out the gifts these makers have to offer.”
“These are the original artists of your lifetime,” Rinaldi insisted, “don’t miss them and don’t underestimate them.”
Vendors include Rinaldi’s own Party Muffin line of upcycled gifts. Vintage outlets include Holy Water Vintage, Rainbowland Vintage, Reaper Vintage, and Trenzie Palz. There will be handmade goods from artists James Bee, Katelyn Kelly, Gypsy Lounge, Tambra Parsons, and Angelina Rodriguez. Visual artist Jay Squid will also be live painting during the event.
Admission involves a donation of canned goods for the Urban Ministry, and a suggested $5 for bands. “Dress appropriately for the weather,” Rinaldi cautioned of the outdoors event. “This is very much a backyard, garage sale aesthetic,” she added. “Bring a chair if you think you may need one.”
A part house-show, part food drive, part vendor fair sounds like a solid way to roll into November and the impending holiday season: a time for thanks and gathering and goodwill, before losing your mind with eggnog. In the name of just that, the Rinaldis present the Big November Chill on Nov. 9 at the Dirt Farm (near Elam and Spring Garden) in Greensboro.
Katei Cranford is a Triad music nerd who hosts the Tuesday Tour Report on WUAG 103.1 FM.