Izz-Fest: The Dayglow Concert and Food Truck Festival was an Unforgettable Dance Party


Sloan Struble, lead singer, sings the band’s hit “Hot Rod.” Photo by Lillian Crane

Faith Cooper, Reporter

Students gathered at Seahorse Parking Lot for Izz-Fest, the concert and food truck festival featuring Dayglow.

Crowd of people outdoors
Students and concert attendees wait by the stage for the concert to begin. Photo by Lillian Crane


Same crowd cheering outdoors
The crowd cheers as Dayglow makes it to the stage. Photo by Lillian Crane

       Since the announcement months before, students had been anxiously anticipating the festival. When the fateful day finally arrived, several students had already lined up before the gates were scheduled to open at 5 pm. These were the biggest Dayglow fans, some of them wearing meet and greet passes that had been given away in a raffle. They immediately lined up at the barricade of the stage, eager to secure a spot right up front for their favorite artist. Surrounding the festival area were over fifteen food trucks, ready to satiate practically any craving: from fried Oreos to pasta in a cone, it was impossible to go hungry. Thomas Bryan Jr., the DJ for the event before Dayglow entered the stage, was grateful for Travelin’ Tom’s Coffee. “Thank you to Tom’s Coffee! Gives me a little pick me up!” he shouted over the microphone. 

Two girls in crowd at concert outdoors
Students laugh and record on their phones during the concert. Photo by Lillian Crane

       At about 7:20 p.m., after much anticipation, the crowd erupted in cheers as Dayglow took to the stage. After rocking the island with the hit “Hot Rod”, frontman Sloan Struble began introducing each band member: “Alright everyone, I guess I’m going to go ahead and introduce everyone here.” He gestured towards each member, prompting the crowd: “Ok, everyone say ‘hello’!” The band consists of bassist Gabe Drechsler, drummer Brady Knippa, keyboardist Norrie Swofford, and guitarist Colin Crawford. Second on the setlist was “Then It All Goes Away,” a less familiar track for people who weren’t regular listeners of Dayglow, but that simply meant instead of singing along, the crowd opted to jump and scream. Struble matched that energy, grooving around on stage with the rest of the band. He often looked out into the crowd, his eyes glittering as he smiled back at the audience. 

Dayglow performing on stage outdoors
Dayglow performs at the 2023 Izz-Fest concert. Photo by Lillian Crane


Struble smiling on stage outdoors
Sloan Struble, lead singer, sings the band’s hit “Hot Rod.” Photo by Lillian Crane


Dayglow band laughing on stage outdoors
Dayglow band members laugh as they jam out on stage. Photo by Lillian Crane

       The joy and catharsis the concert brought for Islanders comes just before finals, often the most stressful time of the semester. But in that moment, as Struble sang “Then it all goes away!,” it felt like the anxiety was melting away. The only thing students worried about were accidentally stepping on each other’s toes. In a matter of seconds, Dayglow transformed the Seahorse Parking Lot into a dance party. 

       The concert wasn’t without some fan interaction. During the band’s cover of “Funkytown” by Lipps Inc., a student held up a cowboy hat covered in blue and green feathers. “Pass it up!” Struble yelled. After wearing it for just a moment, he ran and placed it on bassist Gabe Drechsler’s head. Throughout the night, the hat made its way onto each band member’s head. 

Struble putting hat on student's head on stage
Sloan Struble puts a hat thrown from the crowd onto Colin Crawford’s head. Photo by Lillian Crane

       Closing out the setlist was the viral hit “Can I Call You Tonight?.” This was a crowd favorite. When the chorus arrived, the crowd echoed it back. After “Can I Call You Tonight?,” the band left the stage, much to students’ disappointment. In response, the crowd began to chant “Encore! Encore! Encore!” and just moments later, Dayglow returned to the stage. “Close to You”, the real final song of the night, sent the crowd into a frenzy. Jumping and screaming along, Islanders took in every second. When Dayglow finally left the stage for good this time, some students remained at the barricade as a technician handed out souvenirs in the form of setlists, guitar picks, and drum sticks. It was clear that this night was a dance party Islanders will never forget.

Struble talking on stage outdoors
Sloan Struble closes out the concert. Photo by Lillian Crane


Dayglow performing encore on stage outdoors
Dayglow performs an encore to end TAMU-CC’s Izz-Fest. Photo by Lillian Crane