Hoochi Coochi | photo by Ellen Miller for WXPN
Hoochi Coochi kicks off XPoNential 2021 at the Marina Stage
“We’re the first band, on the first stage, on the first day. We love that,” said Danielle Johnson, frontperson of Hoochi Coochi at the start of XPoNential Festival 2021. As the hill in front of the Marina Stage started to fill up with blankets, folding chairs, and friendly faces, Hoochi Coochi, a five-piece R&B / funk group from Wilmington, took the stage for a heartfelt and energizing kickoff to the festival.
Hoochi Coochi warmed up the stage with their song “Rocket Ship Blues,” which led into “The Flesh,” a favorite at XPN. In fact, “The Flesh” was playing on XPN in Hoochi Coochi’s car radio as they arrived at the gig. “We pulled up to the festival [to ask for parking directions] and the XPN volunteer goes, ‘Oh, is that you?’” said drummer Chelsea Grant. The rest of their six-song set flew by, ending appropriately with showstopper “The Hits.”
Frontperson Danielle Johnson knows how to entertain a crowd, and she brought her A-game to XPoNential. At times, the whole crowd was flashing peace signs, and many attendees were up front dancing by the end of the set. “If you love yourself, you don’t need nobody else,” Johnson said as she swung a stage rag over her head and danced.
Positive vibes abound at the Marina Stage this afternoon for Hoochi Coochi. Johnson blessed the stage and the whole weekend with a message: “I want to leave every show with a little love and positivity.”
Check The Key for updates on artists’ sets all weekend, and tune in to Instagram for live stories and impressions from the festival. You can listen to an archive of Hoochi Coochi’s performance below and watch full sets from the festival live here.
Rocket Ship Blues
Big Bad Wolf