NEARFest 2005: Progressive Legends Showcase Event Program (Friday evening pre-show)
The Festival began as a Saturday/Sunday event (11am to about 11pm each day), but quickly expanded to Friday evening as well. In 2000, there was an “official pre-show” on the Friday evening prior to that NEARFest (see here), but not much detail about who organized it was given. It just seemed like a couple of bands booked the evening before the Festival and were then given the NEARFest imprimatur. The same thing seemed to occur in 2001 (see here and here). In 2002 and 2003 there was a Friday pre-show sponsored by The Laser’s Edge and Cuneiform Records, both of which are record companies which focus on prog rock (see here and here and here and here). From 2004 through 2007, Progressive Arts organized the NEARfest pre-show and, in 2005, I was able to snag an event program from the Friday show, photos of which are posted below. Starting in 2008 until the Festival’s conclusion, Friday evening simply became an official part of the Festival proper.