Some of you may have read my post on the Almost Famous Halloween, if not, check it out…What you don’t know about that show is that I created an electric light guitar suit to wear there.
This lead me to a dream, a dream of Scampers of all lights and colors! Where Blue Lights, and Yellow Lights, and Red Lights, and Purple Lights can glow together!
I challenge you Scampers, to light up Scamp 2012…Let’s see what you got! Check out the video below and LET THERE BE LIGHT!!!
By Saturday Morning I was into my routine at Summer Camp 2011. I planned to rendezvous with my P-Town friends at Yoga around 10 AM This meant that I only got about five hours of rough sleep, which was intermittently, interrupted by the DJ at the next campsite. I will say that he played on tiny speakers so it was actually fairly enjoyable despite the fact that I kept waking up to it. I rose around 9 a.m. and let Amy sleep in while I got cleaned up at the Barn. I headed over to the Soulshine Tent around 10 a.m. and started taking some photos. There was actually a decent-sized crowd in attendance. The instructor talked about balance and structure with your body’s dance and movements. I tried to take that to heart for the rest of the weekend. I met up with Joe and Angie and headed to their RV to charge my Flip Camera.
Afterwards I made my way over to Ben and Erin’s Bus to copy off my cards and clear up some space. They graciously let me borrow their macbook so I could get that accomplished. Thanks guys. I hit up the press meeting around 12:30 and took the extra time to upload my content to Holly. It was only Saturday morning and I had already taken over 2000 photos and a ton of video.
I found out later in the day that Amy went and caught Gaelic Storm; she let me know they were a very interesting act. While doing research I learned that this is the same band that is featured in the Titantic steerage party scene. In addition to coving Paul Simon’s Cecilia they combined elements of traditional Irish/Celtic music with elements of rock, pop, and world I will definitely have to catch them next time they come to Colorado.
I ended up hanging out with the CITs for a few minutes before heading over to the Field Day activities going on at the 312 Vibe Tent. Red Team was definitely in attendance. I met up with my Purple brethren that included Chief, Will, and our captain Mike among others. I will say that purple was a small presence and I was not too happy about that. Obviously events were spread out through the day and some logistical issues caused some of the competitons to be rescheduled, but overall I was very impressed with this element of Summer Camp and how it was run. It was a fun distraction from the festival and a good way to get a little exercise. I arrived as they were getting set for Capture The Flag. They were a man short so I jumped in, I was tagged out in the first round but Purple won and moved onto the finals. We faced the Red Team but by trying to out maneuver and patiently wait for our spot we forced a sudden death. Will grabbed the flag and ran it over the line for the win. It was literally a millisecond before the Red player, but it was enough for the victory. I got set for tug-o-war next. I was the anchor but having lost a few pounds I guess I was not the giant stone that I once was. We were simply shredded by the Yellow team. It was a good time and with a record of 1-1 for the Field Day I made my way over to Euforquestra’s set.
Heis, Euforquestra’s manager and long time Summer Camp coordinator and I conspired to have me introduce the boys from Iowa for their 3rd time playing the festival. You can see that video here.
It was definitely cool but not nearly as intimidating as giving the intro for moe. the day prior. As the video points out I have a little biased towards Euforquestra having been in school at U of I while they were there as well. I was just lucky enough that the band decided to make a move to Colorado so I get to see them a ton and it’s always a great show. Within the last couple years they have revamped their rhythm section moving Grasso to drums and putting Ben Soltau on bass. It took them a second but they are playing so tight now it’s disgusting. They are a great foundation on which the rest of the band blends blues, reggae, funk, Afro-Cuban, and world music. They opened with a sick Cause A Reaction as soon as I finished my introduction. A massive version the Zalatel penned Free into their now classic ode to grandma’s cooking; Soup. Throw in a little Talking Heads and we have a pretty great set of music. Thanks Euforquesta.
I walked by Wiz Khalifa on my way to Slightly Stoopid. The kids seemed be having fun but I was looking for a different brand of hip-hop infused goodness. I have listened to a number of Stoopid recordings and just never really got it, well I have to say that SS is best ingested in a live setting. They have a serious ability to interact with the crowd and as the sun poked out for minute I got a chance to see them shine. It was a bouncy set with elements of punk, hip-hop, and straight rock. You can see a recording I did of Baby I Like It, here.
After Slightly Stoopid we walked towards Girl Talk and noticed a ton of people on stage and what looked like rolls of toilet paper spewing into the photo pit and onto the crowd. I headed to the camp and listened from there. We went back to the Moonshine Stage for Kdubalicious featuring Keller Williams.
Keller is a Summer Camp veteran if there ever was one. Having performed at 9 out of the 11 total, for me he will always be indelibly linked to this Midwest festival. This year was special in the sense that he was playing with his newly formed band Kdubalicions with Keller on bass, Jay Starling on keyboards, and Mark D on drums. I thought it was interesting to have Keller on bass which added an almost lounge-y feel so some of his classic songs. From the Feel Like a Stranger Kdubalicion played with Al to the Tell Me Something Good with Chuck Garvey, they began to feel more like a house band with rotating guitarists than their own entity. You can see the video I caught of Freeker into Golden Road into Freeker here.
I found the funky reggae-infused stylings of Kdubalicious to be exactly what my Saturday evening needed. I ended at the top of the hill between Keller and Umphrey’s watching for them to take the stage.
On the docket was a double-decker moe. and Umprhey’s sandwich that I was ready to take a big bite out of. Umphrey’s came out with Jazz Odyssey and given the fact that they kept going back into it throughout the entire weekend it almost felt like their theme song at Summer Camp 2011. That Jazz Odyssey really tied the room together did it not? … I digress. Here is the setlist from Phantasy Tour.
SET I: Jazz Odyssey> 40’s Theme, Conduit> Jimmy Stewart> Conduit, Divisions, Go To Hell, Puppet String*, JaJunk
SET II: Jazz Odyssey> Bridgeless> No Comment> Bridgeless, Forks*, Plunger> Glory> Hajimemashite> Plunger, Hurt Bird
ENCORE: Booth Love**, Live and Let Die***
*First Time Played (Original)
**with Mad Dog’s Filthy Little Secret Horns
***First Time Played (Paul McCartney & Wings)
You can hear the audience recording from Archive.
Thanks to tonedeaf for the post.
The two sets Umprhey’s McGee played on Saturday night were high water marks for the weekend. The musicianship of these guys never ceases to amaze me. They are perhaps the most technically proficient jamband touring today. They can stop on a dime and pick it up and put it in the meter. Jake got gritty on 40’s Theme and a busted Conduit with Jimmy Stewart in the middle was my highlight of the first set. Divisions was just too big, clocking in at over twenty minutes and Bayliss’s prog was showing. It’s songs like Go To Hell when I feel that the Death Metal moniker for UM is appropriate. I mean sure it’s laced with delicate playing as well but that song gets scary. You can see what Kris Myers had to say about that question here.
I was just getting used to the Flip so it’s a little shaky but the questions are still good. Moving on.
So as not to confuse subjects I will stick to my UM review then get to moe. Second set on from UM on Saturday was just exceptional. Once again Jazz Odyssey reared its head to open but went for an extended journey through Bridgeless to Not Comment and back into Bridgeless again. Showing their musical dexterity in that run the No Comment was just plain sick. Forks was a new song and it was okay, I feel like this song needs some more road testing before it really will blow the crowd away. The Plunger bookended Glory into Hajimemashite was the peak of the show as far as I’m concerned. Hurt Bird closed the second set nicely.
They encored with an unbelievable Booth Love featuring Mad Dog’s Filthy Little Secret Horns and the brass meshed with this song incredibly well. They rounded out their show with a cover of Paul McCartney & Wings’ Live And Let Die. This just was a giant punctuation mark to the night. I was totally happy with how UM handled their second night at Summer Camp. Well played gentlemen.
Rewinding to moe. The first set of on Saturday was my second of three onstage sets. So I got to watch from the side of the stage with the rest of the moe.ron elite. The boys came out and gently eased everyone in by opening with Wind It Up. I thought that was an appropriate opener, here is the rest of the setlist from PT.
SET I: Wind It Up, Tubing The River Styx> The Pit, Understand, Smoke*, Sensory Deprivation Bank, Waiting For The Punchline> Haze
SET II: Crab Eyes**, Buster, Skrunk> Lazarus> McBain> Recreation Chemistry
You can download the audience recording on Archive.
Thanks to Bean again, for posting.
The Pit was huge with a solid extended jam to begin with, and Understand was pretty straight. You can watch it from the stage and synced up the audience recording here.
Smoke was a new song debuted at Summer Camp and I have to say I liked it quite a bit. It has a carnival-inspired springiness, but the juxtaposition of the referentially serious lyrics with the music is pretty powerful. Nice work Al. Sensory Deprivation was my highlight of set one mainly because of Rob’s funky bass. They finished up with Punchline into Haze, which pumped up the crowd before they exited.
For their second set all five members of moe. came back onstage to small music stands and stood at the front . I was baffled as to what was happening but when the first notes of Crab Eyes floated out over the crowd it was obvious that moe. was making a statement. I like to think it’s a little nod to the other electronic acts almost as if to say, “See we can play on computers too.” The most eye-opening aspect of this is that on the recording other than a few slower transitions the Crab Eyes is spot on. They went into a fantastic Buster that lasted almost 15 minutes. I love this song and every time I hear “Pig Can Fly” I smile. The Skrunk> Lazarus> McBain> Recreation Chemistry section is the reason I see moe. It was jaw-dropping; I caught the beginning of that run on video from the crowd, which you can watch here.
That Lazarus was sublime but the Rec Chem was absolutely enormous. moe. came back to encore with a crowd-rumbling Captain America. Great choice and I remember the two brahs behind me arguing whether the encore would be Plane Crash or Captain America. Brah number one was correct.
After catching moe. late night in the barn on Friday I was pretty sleepy so I handed off my pass to CIT Jeff Greenswag, who went in to see Big Gigantic and Lotus at the Red Barn. Keep on eye on his posts for some detailed electronic coverage. I watched a bit of Cornmeal on the Campfire Stage before heading back down the trail to my tent. I had one more day as the first ever Summer Camp Counselor and Sunday would prove to be a non-stop adventure. Stay tuned.
You can see all of my photos from Saturday at Summer Camp here.
You must sleep in the forest, I can’t imagine being anywhere else. Every year that I have gone to Summer Camp I’ve somehow managed to have a camping spot in the woods (mostly I have awesome friends). Anyway if you sleep in the forest there is abundant shade and it stays cool and you can sleep in as late as you need to, and that is just what I did.
I made my home in an Insta-Clip that my friends brought with them. It was where we stored our food as well as where I slept. So I woke up to eggs being cooked right next to me. This was perfect. I move slowly in the morning (let’s be honest, I always move pretty slow) and so I didn’t make it out of the campsite until moe.’s first set. And they played my favorite song, St. Augustine. God, I love that song, just makes me feel good about the world.
After moe. my peoples and I went to the 312 tent to participate in field day and get our red bandanas. One of our teammates had made shirts and so I think me and my friends bought about 20 of them and stayed together throughout most of the day. So if you heard people screaming “Red Team Rage!” Well, that was our fault. And we would unapologetically do it again. Overall Field Day was a success and was a good time. There are a lot of kinks to be worked out, but it was fun as hell, especially if you’re rolling with a really competitive group of people who love yelling.
We made it to De La Soul that afternoon and I can now say that I’m really not a big fan of hip-hop, I keep trying though. There was a lot of energy and we had a good time – I think I just don’t like hip-hop much, so sue me. Anyway, my buddy Max had a Pee-Wee Herman doll on a stick and it made quite the impression on the De La Soul crew, Red Team had raged once again.
We then ate some CeVapCiCi, which you should have also done. They made
beef-lamb-pork sausages, put it in a pita, covered it onions and you added a red-pepper eggplant sauce. It was seriously amazing. And the people were kick-ass as well. So here’s to you CeVapCiCi Man, I love you.
We caught Yonder, and 7 Walkers, which were both amazing, but the show that blew me away was Greensky Bluegrass – they were awesome. I’d never really listened to them before, despite having been to festivals where they had played and they really just rocked the house, or amphitheatre, or hill by the barn… whatever. And you know what, they also got down with Pee-Wee, making Pee-Wee on a stick the word of the day. And they shared with us some of their wisdom, “The first year you come to Summer Camp, you’re like an owl pellet. And the second year you’re like a chipmunk, some of you out there are like badgers…” Thank you Greensky Bluegrass – this badger is going to bed.
Counselor In Training
When I woke up on Saturday morning I was excited. Of course I was excited about all the great music to come that day, but I was excited about field day. I was a part of Team Blue where our mascot was Cookie Monster and our slogan was “You’re My Boy Blue!” I was signed up to play twister which I have been known to win a championship or two because of my agile limbs and freakish strength. I thought for sure I would represent Team Blue right. I arrived at the 312 Beer Tent and immediately started stretching while simultaneously getting teased by my opponents in particular the extremely spirited Red Team…and they were a force to be reckoned with their matching red t-shirts. The Red Team definitely brought the team spirit and their A game which is why they deserved to win field day. Ok…let’s get back to my twister experience. At first twister was very simple and no one was getting out. They decided to make it harder by not letting us put our right hands down. That made the game much more difficult. The other teams were trying to bring my spirit down by accusing me of cheating and telling me that my muscles were shaking and that I should give up. My muscles were totally shaking, but I didn’t let on that I was struggling big time. That is when they decided to make the game even harder by telling us we couldn’t put our right foot on the ground. Yikes! If you could see some of the positions I got myself into you would have been impressed. Let me say that I was thankful for my years as a professional cheerleader and dancer and I was even more thankful I decided to wear shorts under my dress. Soon one man started falling down after another and then just like that I came crashing down onto my booty. Thank goodness I have a padded booty or else that would have hurt. The Yellow Team prevailed that event and they deserved it. Twister is no joke yo!
I walked back to my campsite with legs that felt like jello from the twister workout I just received to check on my friends. I always knew how to find my campsite because my friend Allison had hung up a gold Santa in a tree. He was our beautiful gold mascot. My friends were inspired by gold Santa and were painting each other and getting sparkly . I jumped right into the festivities. We set out as a team with gold Santa to rock out all shiny to one awesome band after another. We saw Future Rock, Girl Talk, Keller Williams, Umphrey’s, moe., more Umphrey’s, more moe.. followed by some late night Lotus. Do you get the picture of how lucky the Summer Camp tribe is?!?! We get to see so much music and these are just the bands I personally chose to see. Sometimes I wish I could clone myself just so I could see more music…but then that could be weird because what would happen if my clone did something out of character like drink a lot of whiskey…oh wait that is what I did.
Counselor In Training
Saturday was a little rainy…I geared up to prevent getting wet physically, although I was in for a day of getting wet mentally, and I didn’t even know it. Things started out for me at the Camping Stage. Savvy was putting forth their brand of Strange Funk which kept me dancing in the early hours of the day. On the way to the daily CIT meeting I stopped to see Truth & Salvage, Co. Personally, I think it is a shame that bands like this aren’t more popular. Great southern rock, almost a honky tonk vibe. With 2 players on keys there was a lot of sound coming from that stage, but it translated into some great songs that I was happy to get a chance to catch.
Right after some nice music to start the day I stopped by the 312 Vibes tent for some Field Day Ping Pong. I got to play a couple games and it was so much fun. I don’t know about you but I love ping pong. I learned everything I know about it from Espn 2 at 4am and Wikipedia but it sure is fun to play. I think now that people have an idea of what Field Day is going to be about we will see some increased participation next year. Also, based on the farmer’s almanac, we should have about 3 or 4 years straight without torrential down pours muddying up the fest. This should make it possible to play some more games and get some more people involved. If you didn’t get a chance to play this year, make sure you check it out next year.
The rest of my afternoon was pretty relaxing. Chilled in the wolf den, had some drinks, played some guitar, great afternoon in the trees. We got geared up and set for the night and made our way out to see some Girl Talk. What a bevy on stage, huh? You got to love seeing a bunch of girls shakin’ what their mommas gave em…thanks Girl Talk, if that is your real name. The music was pretty good to. Mashups of oldschool and newschool kept me and my crew dancing throughout the set. Honestly though, we were all just there to see the next band on the stage.
Umphrey’s McGee…If I haven’t explained it enough then you just won’t get it…these guys are the best. All in all these two sets really did it for me. Highlights included the opening 40s Theme, and Conduit, we got a debut of “Puppet Strings” a kind of floaty tune with lots of textures in the beginning that turns into a pretty hard charging rock tune. I really like the tapping riffs Stasik was employing to open up the bass line. Second set I’m pretty sure everyone enjoyed the plunger haji glory, super epic, but for me, what took the cake was the cover of Live and Let Die by Paul McCartney, with horns. So much energy. A song with great juxtaposition of feelings, a love ballad, proggy guitar riffs, and reggae grooves, that is one you should definitely download. Between and after the UM sets we caught Moe. Always a treat. Great light show this year, and spirited performances. They looked a lot cooler than last year in the blazing sun and their suits.
The highlight of the night, however, was yet to come. With an hour or so to kill we headed to the VIP tent. By this time we had busted out or laser swords and were intensely battling near the DJ table. Shortly after we arrived, several buckets of ice and beer were brought out into the tent. Yes, that’s right…if you are wondering where the beer taken from you goes, well, some of it ended up inside of me…Get a VIP pass and party in the tent on your own beer! Anyway, most of my crew had a wristband for Big Gigantic in the barn so we headed over there after the VIP Tent. I was blown away. There was so much power and energy coming from the stage that I almost couldn’t contain myself. With great beats and drumming the saxophone over the top was so full and rich it was like the music was coating my insides with rainbows. Sorry, that was a little outlandish, but you catch my drift. If you ever get the opportunity to see Big Gigantic, especially in an intimate setting like the red barn, do not miss your opportunity. After Big Gigantic we headed back to the 312 Vibes tent for Mimosa. To say the least, it was dance party of monstrous proportions. The sun would soon come up and send me back to my site. Thank god for ear plugs. I’d sleep like a baby.
Counselor In Training
I am extremely honored to be a Counselor in Training and I have all of the fans of Summer Camp to thank for that. I am so grateful for all of you and I can’t wait to party down Memorial Day Weekend with some of the coolest people
in the world. For my first blog, I was asked to share what why I am excited for Summer Camp, so I decided to make a top ten list. Here it is!!! Woohoo!
10. It is Courtney’s (my Summer Camp date) birthday on Friday and I’m
excited I get to celebrate with her at Summer Camp!
9. The Thursday night pre-party
8. Participate in some of the workshops and learn something new
7. Late night shows
6. I love meeting new people and making new friends. I know I’ll make some
life time friends with this group
5. Huey Lewis!!! He is one of my all time favorites and I can’t wait to
rock out to the *I Want a New Drug!*
4. To kick butt on the Blue Team for field day
3. The music
2. Learn all about all of the cool things Summer Camp does to be more green
1. I’ve never been to Summer Camp and I can’t wait to experience it
Seriously! How lucky are we to attend the most fabulous, rockin, special camp in the world.
See you there!!!!
Summer Camp Counselor In Training (CIT)