Friday, May 20, 2011

Thursday at Bonnaroo

By Jon Stone | @jwstone - June 11, 2010

After getting off to a rough start (unprecedented line wait in the car – mine ended up being exactly ten hours -- 8:30am-6:30pm), the sun eventually went down and Bonnaroo 2010 kicked off in earnest. Yesterday ended up being a bit of a wandering day for me, I sampled as much as I could and, after not sleeping the night before due to the all-night drive in from Champaign, I was in a bit of a daze anyway, so wander was about all I can do. (Another press guy just told me that I got pwnd by the cops by getting diverted into the main line. Apparently there was a press entrance. I don’t even want to think about it though. I had the experience of THE PEOPLE!)  Here is a quick rundown of what I saw yesterday:

7:00pm: Sarah Jarosz – I’ve said a lot about Sarah here on the blog before. I’m enchanted by her sweet poppy bluegrass and hearing her set after my horrible day in my non-air conditioned car was so sweet.  She played her way through a few of my favorites from the record, and threw covers from Patti Smith (“Long Black Limousines”) and Bob Dylan (“Ring them Bells”). I’m gonna see about an interview with Sarah here later today, so we’ll see how that goes.

7:30pm: Local Natives – I popped over to hear the Local Natives just in time to hear my favorite song on the record “Who Knows Who Cares.” It was my theme song of the day. Those harmonies were so sweet. I can’t wait to see them again soon.

8:00pm: me wandering around looking for food. Getting lost deep back stage, and almost inadvertently walked off site.

9:00pm: Dodos – I rocked these guys a bunch in the car in line. The large Bonnaroo stage seemed a bit much for these guys, though. Several times, the beat was lost, muddled, or just plain dropped by the drummer. They play frequently in Champaign, though, so I’ll look forward to that.

10:15pm: Blitzen Trapper – Man, these guys are good live. So pristine, with vocal harmonies so tight they are nearly crystalline. The set included favorites off of Furr as well as the great new record, Destroyer of the Void.

11:40pm: The xx – They left us waiting for about a half hour after set time, but The xx did finally emerge from the light. It was cool – yeah, heavy on the cool. As an aficionado of early records by the Cure, I should like this band more. But, meh. I’d much rather see this band again in a club. So, yes, meh for now. Plus, wow was I tired.
For the rest of the night, my brother and I wandered around the grounds, stopped in to hear a bit of Lotus, watched the ravers at the rave stage (whatever it’s called), and tried to see hip hop act WALE. But WALE was almost 30 minutes late starting, so we left and I slept.

Today is going to be amazing. I’ve got the Punch Brothers, Dr. Dog, the National, Dawes, Steve Martin, and the Black Keys on my list on bands not to miss. More tomorrow!

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