Coolest northforker stories of 2015: FOLD Festival draws big-name acts to North Fork

The crowd at the 2015 FOLD Festival. (Credit: Katharine Schroeder)

The crowd at the 2015 FOLD Festival. (Credit: Katharine Schroeder)

We’re counting down the top coolest stories of 2015 on We will publish one story on our list per day, every day, until Jan. 1.

Coming in at number 1 is the FOLD Festival at Martha Clara Vineyards.

Beck, Keith Urban, Pharrell Williams, Chaka Khan and Duran Duran.

What do these superstar music acts have in common?

They all performed in Riverhead this past summer during Nile Rodgers Productions’ FOLD (Freak Out Let’s Dance) Festival at Martha Clara Vineyards Aug. 4 and 5.

It was a testament to the hitmaking producer’s influence and sway in the music industry that he was able to draw the stars to a first-time festival at a North Fork vineyard better known for hosting weddings than extravagant concerts.

But one of the stars drove home just how important Rodgers has been for many an artist’s career when he declared that he would do nearly anything for the Chic guitarist.


“It’s an honor to be on a song with you,” Williams told Rodgers following a three-song set that included the megahit “Get Lucky,” which Rodgers produced and co-wrote. “Anything you need from me in the future, you don’t have to ask, you just tell.”

Highlights of the concerts included a nearly 10-minute guitar jam session with Urban and Rodgers as well as Beck performing his new single “Dreams” for the first time live.

The event drew an estimated 3,300 people the first night and about 2,500 the second — considerably less than the crowd of 10,000 organizers expected.

Still, Rodgers has said he plans to make the festival an annual event that will expand to a three-day weekend next year and will also feature local acts. He even hinted at a possible lineup, dropping names like Daft Punk, which, along with Williams, won the Album of the Year Grammy for the Rodgers-produced “Random Access Memories.”