This festival was the epitome of convenience. A giant, Bonaroo sized festival half a mile from my house, in GG park. How sweet it was.
Friday was the day when fences came down. It was the shortest day with the biggest headliner, people had to come in from work, and everyone arrived around the same time. Things got out of hand with crowd congestion, and I bet a lot of people had a negative experience. I didn’t. I sat with Stina on top of a hill and watched it all happen, greatly amused by crowd dynamics. We even magically ran into Angel and Thom while playing throw the bottle. I saw a little of the duo, a little of beck, and plenty of Radiohead. Then it was fun watching all these people spill into our neighborhood. All the local stores had a banner night.
Saturday was all about laying the tarp down in the main stage area, and staying put. It’s an approach that works well for me at a festy. I saw Dredg (meh), Galactic (always fun), Steve Winwood (still strong and spy for his age), Ben Harper (A-MAZING), and a little Primus (Les Claypool is a normal dude, I swear).
Sunday was ballz to the wallz. I’m trying to build up my Burning Man legs, and I gave a full 100 percent. We started with our first glimpse of sunshine that weekend with ALO, then Stars (bad sound), Andrew Bird (only interested when he’s playing the violin), Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings (she gave 120 percent, and they were totally smokin), Broken Social Scene (I love their albums, and they recreate those songs with a ten piece band – it was stellar), Rodrigo Y Gabriela (unbelieavable), Widespread Panic (finally a full jam band – Jimmy Herring kicks so much ass), and then finally Mike Gordan (Mike’s unique brand of jam band). Whew. I bounced from stage to stage all day long – and they were pretty far apart. I was so done after that.
We ran into all of our friends at one point or another, made a few new ones, and I officially started passing out my new CD. The festival was probably not the best thing for GG Park, but I sure had a BLAST. My top picks were Ben Harper, Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings, Rodrigo Y Gabriela, and Broken Social Scene – all bands I’d never seen before. The food was expensive (well, everything was expensive – but lax security helped make up for it), but super tasty selections from local merchants was a good idea. Actually, the whole thing was a good idea from my perspective – but I’m sure lots of residents feel differently.
I do have some pics, but the computer + internet seems to be cranky, so, boo to that. I leave for Burning Man in few hours. . . . .
Steve Kimock is probably my favorite guitar player alive. I sometimes ache inside when he’s in the zone – he’s that good. I experieced that ache several times during two nights of Kimock goodness – first the Zero tribute to Martin Fierro @ the fillmore, then with the Everyone Orchestra @ the GAMH the next night.
The Zero tribute was more touching then I expected. His seven year old daughter came out and sang a tune. The was a rotating cast of characters streaming through the stage, with great pictures of him through out his long career projected on the stage. I actually spoke with Martin a year or two ago at the SEVA foundation show – he was sitting right in front of me, with his daughter in his lap. He seemed like such a joyous, generous man. He was quite a sax player, at any rate. Man, he ripped.
The EO show was special since there were two general fuzz collaborators on stage, along with one to-be collaborater. I’ve now seen EO more then I ever thought I would – and I still really enjoy them. My respect for Matt Butler (conducter) has grown considerably – its not easy to manage 11 people on stage, give everyone time to shine, get the audience involved, and have everyone get down. It’s not without the occational trainwreck, but thats what makes it exciting. When he silenced everyone but Dan Lebowitz and Steve Kimock, I almost wet myself joy. Good thing I was wearing my “show pants.”
Climax of summer is approaching, and I can hardly wait. I’ve been hunkered down, prepping for the triple shot – Outside Lands music fest -> Burning Man -> General Fuzz album release. Good times on the horizon.
Jason Haber was largely responsible for organizing my fairly epic bachelor party, so it was a matter of principle coupled with revenge that I organize his. Many months back he vaguely requested having a red team vs. blue team type of thing, so I ran with that idea and themed it “Jason vs. Lars” as they are both engaged and have been good friends since middle school.
Twenty or so of us form two teams for a long afternoon of entertaining competitive events.
Events like monkey torture,
long distance loogie,
and nipple tweaking.
There were even judged events, with celebrity judges consisting of people of close proximity to 20 men in jump suits.
My favorite judged event was having Jason and Lars propose to each other.
By the end of afternoon, we were totally spent – except for Matt . . . .
Team Haber DOMINATED over team Lars. It was a total blowout.
After some manly downtime @ chez Krudden,
we rallied for round 2. We had assembled a list of 30 tasks for Haber and the group to accomplish, and we did shockingly well. Shockingly.
We got much of a muni car to sing “We are the world with us”,
while A-town did pullups.
Haber gave us a speech about “how it is”,
we got thousands of signatures from women pledging not to sleep with Haber (this guy translated our “contract” to Italian),
and Tony got kicked in the box.
So, yeah. It was a nice 13 hour party. The late night girls and boys met up @ chez Krudden the final blow out.
BIG UPS to TonyB for the killer pics.