Hey all, This will be my very first Bonnaroo. And my first camping festival, for that matter. So I'm trying to get an idea of what to expect. I'll be traveling with a couple vets and a number of other first-timers. What I'd like to know from anyone at the past 2 years is: What is your single most vivid Bonnaroo memory? This could be a particular show, set, or song, your secret toilet spot, someone you met, something you ate... Whatever sticks out most in your mind when remembering the 'roo. Lay em on me.
Sorry, I don't think I could possibly narrow it down to one.
From 2002: -15 hours in traffic; wandering too far from the car just as it was waved into a new lane and whisked into the site; walking the final two miles into the site at high noon with no sunblock, no hat, cheap new shoes that gave me blisters in about five minutes, and no ticket until two friends brought it back to me from the car; the whole experience only made the weekend feel a little more epic and well-earned (although slightly painful)
-bouncing between a Kellar Williams Incident and Karl Denson's Tiny Universe about 12 hours later totally oblivious to my exhaustion, severe sunburn and bloody feet
-Moe's Saturday midnight set - my favorite of the weekend
-being about 20 people from the stage for Trey's weekend closing set.
From 2003: - Antibalas kicking off the weekend in perfect style
-The incredible diversity of hearing snippets of Tortoise, Joshua Redman, Sonic Youth, Kellar Williams, Bela Fleck and Ben Harper's incendiary set within the span of about two hours
-walking into the venue on Saturday with the Wailers as background music (their set was pretty tame but it made for great theme music)
-The Flaming Lips' Wayne Coyne mercilessly toying with my fragile mind
Probably my favorite Bonnaroo moment from both years(I guess technically this was all you asked for):
I was wandering around between Galactic and James Brown, and stumbled into the tent where Vusi Mahlasela of Amandala was playing. It was the smallest crowd I had ever seen for a Bonnaroo performance (not counting the fifth tent), about 20-40 people I would guess. He was singing beautifully and was obviously a vibrant, amazing performer. As I walked closer to the stage I realized that Medeski and Chris Wood were in his backing band! The few people that were there were having a blast and it felt like a little secret we discovered. Amazing. From there I checked out Spearhead for the first time and was thrilled to hear some political energy on stage in some of the best songs I heard all weekend (I'm now a big fan).
Morals of the story: -be sure your shoes are broken in/ start wearing sunblock while in traffic -save some energy for the late night sets -make some time to check out the stuff that is unknown to you -Just relax and enjoy the Flaming Lips
Post by phunkyphresh on Mar 24, 2004 13:23:37 GMT -5
most memorable was getting back to the site at six in the morning and being so excited about the shows starting in only six hours and getting a total of propbably 5 hours of sleep in 3 nights, and seeing bands youve never heard of and becoming huge fans after just one show p&love
Post by paulgermain on Mar 24, 2004 15:10:55 GMT -5
most memorable from the 1st bonnaroo was seeing bela fleck. the weekend was increadibly hot and as he picked on the banjo it suddenly started to rain and as he sped up it rained harder. the breif rain was quiet the relief.
from last year has to be the lips set. also running into liz phair while watching the polyphonic spree.
Post by mtnsummer05 on Mar 24, 2004 15:20:51 GMT -5
Most vivid yet not music related.
Poor guy during the Particle show (which was amazing) wearing only short and falling down in the mud. He then came over to our group and started talking (nothing we could understand) and then actually fell asleep standing up. He then walked up front a bit, pulled out a bag of mushrooms and proceeded to dump them all over the ground. Would have loved to have offered the guy some help but just couldnt get through....
I liked the "rubber mud" last year, does anyone remember that? The mud throughout the venue had dried and had this bouncyness to it, almost like a balloon was under the ground, really fascinating.... I thought it was just me/drugs at first, then at the Wailers show early Saturday afternoon, I saw lots of people bouncing around on what appeared to be just dirt, haha.... Pat
Post by beepaphone on Mar 24, 2004 19:36:39 GMT -5
I was going to mention the mud when i saw the subject of the thread but you beat me to it =) such a cool thing. i think what happened was they put a layer of sand on top of the mud in order to solidify the ground some and soak up the excess water. this layer dried pretty durn quick in the sun while below it the squishiness remained...making for *bouncy*bouncy* ;D
spearhead last year was also a highlight for me. they are such a positive and high energy band with the most beautiful message. franti had that whole tent hanging on his every word and all sharing the same emotions. so beautiful!!!
Wow, so many great memories. To be honest, I guess mine was last year when I tried to set up my shade tent without directions. It was a Wal-Mart job, and after about three hours of work (and finding a similar tent nearby that I could look at as an example), I finally got the damned thing up.
An hour later I was unpacking supplies and found the directions that I had carefully packed away....
The heavy rainstorm at the MMW show last year was one of my favorites. I had a first-time camping buddy with me. We were a bit spun when we left for the show and forgot to bring rain gear. We had one the those "Neat Sheets" to sit on outside the tent, but when it started to pour, we held it over our heads. They really are mostly waterproof!
My buddy leans over and says "Why is everyone staying out in the rain?"
I replied "It's a 20 minute walk back to camp. Surely it will stop soon. If we leave now, I'm sure it will stop"
The feeling of the rain and the energy coming from the MMW tent (and the annoying thump from the arcade - not that I don't like DJ's - I do - but the sound bled over very badly) was very uplifting.
Post by BonnarooPaul on Mar 25, 2004 13:27:58 GMT -5
watching Neil Young play through bean eyes. Looking over at my dad who had been a bit down dancing and loving life. Not too shabby. The bouncy mud was cool. What a strange substance.
One moment i liked was I was in the playground on shrooms with a friend who was on them for the first time. Three guys walked up and offered water(we had left money at the campground and were thirsty). Come to find out they were on shrooms also and it was one guy's first time also. Was just a real cool moment.
the macho guy in the yellow sun dress at Neil Young yelling "It doesn't get any better than this boys!" walking into a tent to listen to a sax player that was awesome,,still haven't figured out who he was..Help?!right after Yonder MT. Love going from Bluegrass to jazz to Dj's to rock and roll and on and on! building on the twig tree the first year. the bouncy mud the ticks (Yuck) and the chigger bites (double yuck) I'm using bug repellant this year..
Post by mtnsummer05 on Mar 25, 2004 18:53:33 GMT -5
Does anyone remember the kick ball team?
I think it was Thursday night - on our walk to the venue - a full on team with matching sporty shirts was playing a game of kick ball. I then saw them outside one of the smaller tents and one was still holding the ball!
For me it would have to be that for those three days the hardest decision in life was which amazing band to see instead of another, or could I reach two or three in the same hour running back and forth?
Ben Harper into Keller Williams into Bela Fleck; and that was just the morning/afternoon.
The huge djembe/bongo/percussion jam after The Dead concert last year was crazy, and seemed to be everlasting. The mud was trippy. I would sink down a couple inches, then shift my body weight to another spot, then sink down again. But I worked with it. I do remember, during The Wailers concert, the ground shaking (from all of the people dancing), that was very fascinating. It was like there was air in the mud, and it was smelly. Don't even get me started on the portapotties....HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA
Late on Saturday night the mud at Centeroo was pretty bad in some places and I happened to walk about ankle deep into it. Well in my "state of mind", I became obsessed with the mud on my feet and the need to wash it off. I thought it would be a brilliant idea to go over to the mushroom fountain and rinse off. Instead of just rinsing my feet, I decided I needed to just take a shower. I spent the rest of the night soaking wet. Not a big problem until the next day when I noticed that the water coming out of the mushroom fountain was anything but clear. I don't think I even want to know what was coming out of the fountain. All I know is it resembled dark brown sludge.
2nd vivid memory-
By Sunday, a huge mud puddle had formed by one of the wash stations. I will never forget the naked man and his naked family sitting in the mud puddle sloshing around in it, running and sliding belly first in it, and throwing it at each other. Mud up my crotch is not my idea of fun, but they were having the time of their lives. You really could not help but admire and appreciate their sense of freedom.
Post by robert071259 on Mar 30, 2004 17:11:19 GMT -5
BRoo 1 Hoping to avoid the one person from work that I knew would be at Bonnaroo. I tried to maintain a professional boundary, don't ya know. Anyway this client wanted to ride with me, camp with me, be fed by me, etc. I basically lied to him at the last minute and told him I wasn't going. I figured the chances of running into the 1 person in 90,000?? that I didn't want to see were pretty good odds in my favor. He came noodle dancing into my campsite maybe 10 minutes after I set up and bummed a cigarette and a beer. He told me he was glad I had made it after all and danced off. We touched base a couple more times that weekend, and i was looking forward to seeing him again professionally to take part of our hour to discuss the weekend, but he never showed again, and I found out some months later he had passed away. I learned that weekend that boundaries are for nations not for people. I think I am a better mental health counselor for this life lesson. BRoo 2 Coming out of the Neil Young show last year and people were really bottlenecking because of the bouncy/trippy mud. Someone started mooing like a cow, then bleating like a sheep, and oinking like a pig. Next thing you know about 500 people are laughing and sounding like a barnyard full of tuned in and turned on farm animals!!!
Post by deadheadteach on Mar 30, 2004 18:57:19 GMT -5
I have so many memories of the last two years it's insane. Last year was the most memorable becuase I met a group of really awesome people who I've stayed in touch with and plan on seeing once again for this year's Bonnaroo. My most memorable show moments are when Galactic sang, "all the freaky people make up the beauty of the world...." During Neil Young's set with that crazy marijuania leaf guitar strap. Nickel Creek's set which was amazing even though I had like 8 shots of Crown. The Dead when they encored with Attics of My Life (it brings a tear to my eye). My most memorable 'roo moments are during Panic there was this really deep mudhole that people could not see and kept falling into it. I just sat there and laughed and laughed. There was nothing you could do and people were losing their shoes. Another one is the disco ball. Does anyone remember that? I'd be coming back late night and feel like I was going to fall down (it didn't have anything to do with being twisted at all ). Also, the guy who was selling bears 2 for....I still don't know how much he was charging and neither does he probably. I can't wait to make more memories this year. BONNNNNNNAAAAAARRRROOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!
As far as the music goes there are to many memories to mention!! But something I thought was very cool happened in line last year. It was very hot as most will remember!!! We had been in line for about 2 1/2 hours when the RV in front of us broke down. Instantly, myself and 4 or 5 other people jumped out of our cars and helped push the RV for about 2 miles. The point is nobody complained or bitched, we were just glad to help out, I think that is the essence of [glow=red,2,300]TEXT[/glow]. Of course we did not expect anything in return but they paid us with a few cold ones!!!!
Post by nature boy on Apr 15, 2004 13:01:43 GMT -5
It was about 5:30am Saturday morning when I decided to go home and get some rest. As I began my dazed walk home, I asked a passing fellow if I could bum a light for my cig. He said sure. Afterwards I said thanks and continued walking. He indirectly followed me. By the time we passed the two campsites on the left and right sides of the road further down New Bushy Branch, he was still with me. It was then when I asked him where he was headed. "How do I get to the Econo-Lodge?" he asked. He had five miles to walk and didn't know which way to go. I asked him if he'd like a ride, and he said sure. After making it home, hoped in the pickup and drove him to his hotel. He blew glass for a living and was kind enough to give me a piece that he'd made. After seeing an amazing line-up the first day, it was nice to finish it up like that.
Post by lunaladybug on Apr 15, 2004 13:43:55 GMT -5
Coming out of the Neil Young show last year and people were really bottlenecking because of the bouncy/trippy mud. Someone started mooing like a cow, then bleating like a sheep, and oinking like a pig. Next thing you know about 500 people are laughing and sounding like a barnyard full of tuned in and turned on farm animals!!!
I've been witness to this many times, and it just never stops being funny! ;D
There are several moments that I doubt I'll ever forget.
The first being during Nickel Creek, when they played "The Lighthouse Tale" and it began to rain. I really like the song and it starting to rain fit the song.
Finding the Spree. We were walking to see someone and walked past the tent and see 25 people dressed in white and rocking out. Stopped and watched. Still one of the best shows I've seen yet.
Spearhead's set. He did a song called "Never too Late" but before the song he told of the people he'd lost the year before. His dad and Radioactive's dad had passed. My friend had lost his dad two years before and I know it touched him and myself. The song just kinda resonated with me. Reminds me my ex-fiancee. Sad but will still remind me of my friends and everything they've done for me.
Post by fluffhead720 on Apr 16, 2004 15:22:06 GMT -5
My memory comes Monday after we got out of the nasty traffic to get out. We had cheifed down one to many in line and decided to go and fillup before we hit the road.
This proves to be one of my biggest mistakes.
As we were leaving this gas station/fireworks store I kinda didn't see that I was taking a turn to hard and dropped my car into a ditch. I bent the frame, cracked the radiator, and broke one of my fans. One of the workers offered to pull my car out of the ditch with a giant backhoe that was luckly sitting behind the gas station. We then ran into a series of locals that proves to be one of the funniest things I have ever experienced....
A guy will call Bill came up to us and talked to us about our car and told us about his best friend who was a local mechanic. Bill was your typical country folk, he had oil stained hands and his left eye was looking at his nose. We talked to him while we waited for his friend and learned that he and almost everyone in the town was a pothead. This ended up working to our advantage.
When Jim, Bill's friend, got there he agreed to help us out for cheap if we kicked them down a little "Brain Medicine" as they called it. They ended up fixing everything and replacing the radiator $175 about a dime of chronic and a little kief. We of course didn't have that much. Between 3 of us we $95. We finally got ahold of someone to wire us the money, however, the nearest place was twenty minutes. So I went with Bill, and on the way to get the money he made a deal of his own. We got the money and blazed one on the way back. It was a crazy time.
Post by JayFromRochester on Apr 16, 2004 15:59:52 GMT -5
The fireworks, man. Hundreds of 'em. Everywhere.
Every night there'd be a few as it got dark. It was a fun kick-off to the evening. But the last night, after The Dead...un-friggin-real!
(You've got to keep in mind that I'm from New York. They don't let common citizens like yer ol' pal Jay have fireworks--to say nothing about being able to buy them at warehouses at every exit on the interstate. Combined with the fact that you can still smoke in diners, this makes Tennessee among the most enlightened states in the union, in my humble opinion.)
The helicopters that had been flying overhead all weekend were suddenly about twice as high as they had been, in an effort to avoid inadvertant 'anti-aircraft' fire.
Then when everyone had about petered out and there were just a few stray bottle rockets zinging around I looked out over the campsite and the whole world had this...gray haze over everything. A thick billowy cloud. The big flood lights they had on lit it all up and the light bounced around in weird ways, off the underside of the cloud, and it was suddenly surprisingly bright, for all that it was the middle of the night. Sort of like being in the city lights during a huge snowstorm. Then add people leaving, so there were headlights and taillights adding to the mix. Surreal.
...leaving Connecticut at 10PM wednesday night, taking turns driving in 4 hour shifts, then arriving to find rediculous traffic...which we somehow managed to navigate in about 2 hours.
...RJD2 playing a whacked out "moon river" on Friday the 13th, with a huge blood-orange moon rising, right before Neil Young's set.
...Sound Tribe Sector Nine just blowing minds, putting on a monumental show.
...Liz Phair hinting that the Lips were going to do some Dark Side of the Moon
...standing in the blistering sun, to get a front row spot for the Roots, and then witnessing them tear the fucking roof off, watching them cover "Pass the Courvasier" and seeing thousands of hippies jumping like their shoes were on fire
...alligator-on-a-stick. Nuff said.
...skipping the entire second half of Panic's set to get a good spot for the Lips, watching them come out early and do a rediculous soundcheck, then getting to be 4 rows back for the madness that was their midnight set
...the Lips ending early, at 2:30, then heading over to MMW to witness the craziness that was occuring onstage with Antibalas.
...Particle till sunrise
...Warren Haynes playing one of the best solo sets I've ever seen.
...Moe with John Popper, and 10,000 people wishing their fathers "happy fathers day" at the same time.
...laying far back on the lawn, watching the Dead and sipping a beer, knowing that it really didn't get much better than that.
Post by paulgermain on Apr 20, 2004 14:09:40 GMT -5
yeah i ran into someone who told us that liz phair had said the lips were going to play dark side. so i drunkenly tried to recruit every single person on shakedown street and told them to go see the flaming lips. i told them how it would be the best show they seen all festival. then while waiting to meet up with friends after the show a few diffrent people came up to me and thanked me for recommending the lips set.
Post by xjenNjuicex on Apr 20, 2004 23:37:18 GMT -5
I have SOOOO many great memories! I'll stick to last year though. I definately remember the springy mud and the disco ball! That disco ball tripped me out every night! Also, on Saturday, we spent the whole day seeing great bands. I was front row for The Polyphonic Spree. It was my first time to ever even hear them and I had a blast! Then we went and saw the Panic show. While we were there some poor guy was really messed up and was trying to dance but he couldn't get his body to move so he was just kinda jerking around...it was really funny! All the people who were sitting around him, including us, were cracking up and clapping for him. Then it started raining and we got to dance around in the rain. Later that night the Flaming Lips were great and they did the whole Wizard of Oz thing....CRAZY! Finally when the sun came up we met these guys and me, my two friends and one of the guys ended up stealing one of the little golf cart things that the people who work there ride in. (We got it to crank up w/ the guy's car key!) The people in the watch tower thing finally spotted us and started yelling and we had to bail out and abandon the golf cart. We ended up hiding out with some really cool people. Then we decided to go back to the tent but first we stopped by "The Bonnaroo Bar"(does anyone else remember those guys?) We had SOOO much fun that night/morning! Oh yeah! Does anyone else remember the guy that stood in the same spot all weekend and just yelled out "Get drunk and f*ck yourself!" everytime anyone walked by him? I could write forever, but I won't. See ya'll there! BONNAROOOOOOOO!!!!!