Equifunk, the all-inclusive, sleep-away music festival held annually in the Pocono Mountains, has managed to win over the hearts of many repeat attendees who come back for good funk, good times, and free beer. The first day put the machine into motion – the booze was flowing and the musicians gracing the stage made sure things got off to a hot start.

The Main Squeeze kicked off Friday evening’s festivities with painfully tight grooves spanning many originals and covers. Highlights included the band’s energetic performance of Stevie Wonder's “Higher Ground,” and lead singer Corey Frye’s soulful, funkadelic rendition of Zeppelin's “No Quarter.”

Following The Main Squeeze was one of the most anticipated acts of the day – JJ Grey & Mofro. Building on The Main Squeeze’s funky momentum, JJ and his army of musical friends raised the bar, picking from their classic (and vast) repertoire. After an outstanding version of “99 Shades of Crazy,” Grey grabbed the mic and noted that the group had arrived early that morning and played a little basketball. One aspect of Equifunk that sets it apart from other summer music festivals is the communal vibe. Performers are regularly seen hanging out with the audience before and after their sets, enjoying the other acts and unique amenities (like basketball and tennis courts and, of course, the swimming pool). It really is a one-of-a-kind experience.

The New Mastersounds took the stage after JJ Grey and the four-piece powerhouse from Leeds proved Brits know how to get down and dirty. Artist-at-large James Casey of the Shady Horns and Trey Anastasio Band joined the group to sprinkle some top-notch saxophone into the mix. Their set was simply the evening’s stand out, attracting the most enthusiastic crowd thus far.

Electronic duo Boombox closed out opening day of Equifunk 2013 with a late night set (2-3:30am) that took the eager audience in a different direction. Thumping bass lines tangled with clean-toned electric guitar consumed and entranced the crowd. The group's already intriguing light show was made even cooler by the fog that rolled through the surrounding skies.

As Boombox exited the stage the party was put on hold. But the next day of music is only hours away. –Tyler Curtis

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