It started in 2012 as a moderate gathering of about 500 young people at Ada in the Greater Accra Region meeting to enjoy some sun, sand and different shades of Ghanaian music but the Tidal Rave Festival has survived despite all odds and celebrated its 10th anniversary with a big bash on November 4 at the La Palm Royal Beach Hotel in Accra.
For patrons at the event, there couldn’t have been a more entertaining atmosphere than raving to the music of heavyweight acts such as Sarkodie, Stonebwoy, Joey B, KiDi, Efya, R2Bees, King Promise, Kwesi Arthur, Gyakie and La Meme Gang.
The key aim of the Tidal Rave Festival is to stimulate youth culture across Africa and to export Ghanaian musical culture beyond our shores. Apart from music, the festival over the years has also been keen on displaying relevant lifestyle elements such as fashion, dance and games to ensure that all Ravers have a reason to be at the festival.
So welcoming a little over 20,000 Ravers to its 10th edition was a big deal and EchoHouse Ghana Limited, curators of the event, are definitely looking forward to even more exciting times as the Tidal Rave Festival has now established itself as the most anticipated beach event among young Ghanaians and Ravers from across the continent.
After the Ada ‘initiation’ in 2012, the festival headed to Krokrobite where it held eight other editions, constantly growing the number of Ravers each year. The Tidal Rave Festival held its first out-of-Ghana event in Liberia in 2019. The festival has now built a community of young, adventurous Liberians who now call themselves Ravers and look forward to the festival every December.
This year’s festival in Accra happened after EchoHouse Ghana Limited held broad-based consultations with leading players in the entertainment industry, including the Inspector General of Police, Dr George Akuffo Dampare.
The goal for partnering with the Ghana Police Service was to ensure that the Ravers felt secure to enjoy themselves to the utmost. The task force set up by the IGP ensured that adequate security was available at both the festival grounds at La Palm and the Trade Fair, where ticketing was done as a control measure to manage crowds of patrons.
The heavyweight artistes’ lineup truly defined the celebration of Ghanaian music expertise that Tidal Rave has been championing for years. Apart from the performers who took to the stage, DJ Vyrusky and Kojo Manuel also delivered electrifying DJ/MC performance sets to make the biggest beach festival in Africa an unforgettable music experience.
To improve convenience and accessibility for Ravers, the Tidal Rave team, in collaboration with Absa Bank, developed the Absa Bank Ignition Vendor Market. The vendor market was a totally cashless endeavour, which followed through from the cashless ticketing system and purchases which were all part of efforts to create a digital-first event that could be enjoyed by all.
Beyond the vendor market, and before the Rave concert and beach festival feel, there was a whole world of experience zones created to make the festival more exciting. There were exciting photo-ops at the Rave Runway and the Creators Cove was a haven for all content creators.
From the Surf and Step Zone for dance lovers to the Surfside Stage for back-to-back DJ sets and the Beach Play Zone, this year’s Tidal Rave Festival showcased an entertaining day-to-night lifestyle event filled with something for everyone across the ages, while staying true to its ‘young and raving’ theme and roots.
The Tidal Rave Album was introduced as part of The New Rave campaign that served as a theme for this year’s festival. The Tidal Rave Album is meant to support young, emerging musical talents.
A selected number of young talents whose music will be featured on the Tidal Rave Album set to be released next year also got the opportunity to perform on the main stage. This was the biggest stage yet in their respective growing music careers.
The Tidal Rave Festival also provided a unique opportunity for brands to engage their consumers away from everyday selling and promotional messaging. For example, the new brand, Captain Morgan Rum, got the benefit of introducing the brand to thousands of Ravers by engaging them at its own purpose-built ship deck.
It is, however, incomplete to tell the story of the Tidal Rave Festival without mentioning the campus team members. At the heart of the Tidal Rave Festival are the Echo Campus Team Members.
These groups of students from more than 22 tertiary institutions have been the soul of the festival.
Each year, they are responsible for defining the festival while EchoHouse brings together the mechanism to achieve their definition of the festival for that year.
What’s next? Tidal Rave will continue to grow bigger and bigger, with its next stop in Liberia this December. And then on to Nigeria in 2024