I’m sure by now you have seen the initial line up for Summer Camp 2014 (which, by the way, features just a FRACTION of the over 75 bands that will play). For me, just knowing moe. and Umphrey’s will be there every year is enough, but let’s take a closer look at all of the other awesome artists that will be raging into Three Sisters Park this May!
I will never forget the first time I saw Bassnectar live. It was an experience for sure. The craziest part of seeing him that night; it was right after Furthur played. So after seeing Furthur’s epic performance, going into something like Bassnectar literally blew people away. I remember going into a Porta Potty right next to the stage and it was literally moving with the bass. I have seen Bassnectar (Lorin Ashton ) countless times since and I had a blast every single time.
Lorin’s stage energy is great and his production set up is always top notch. Bassnectar for me is one of those acts that are meant for a festival. Sure, he’s fun in a club setting, but raging with thousands of people at Summer Camp is going to be a night to remember.
Check out when Bassnectar killed it at Summer Camp in 2010:
Bassnectar fun fact: When starting out, Lorin’s stage name was DJ Lorin. He released his first album in 2001, and it wasn’t until 2002 that he founded his stage name, Bassnectar.
Trey Anastasio Band
If you were at Summer Camp 2013, I’m sure Trey Anastasio Band was on your wish list to return this year! I don’t like letting the weather ruin my fun, so I still (along mannnny others) got down to Trey on Sunday of Summer Camp 2013, and i’m sure he’ll pick up right where he left off this last year! I’m so extremely excited! For those that don’t know, Trey Anastasio is Phish’s lead guitarist and vocalist.
Trey Anastasio’s Band is made up of Russ Lawton on drums, Tony Markellis on bass, Cyro Baptista on percussion, Ray Paczkowski on keys, Jennifer Hartswick on trumpet and vocals, Natalie Cressman on trombone and vocals, and of course, Trey Anastasio on guitar and vocals! One of my personal favorite songs is “Architect”. This team of amazing musicians is one not to be missed.
Trey Anastasio Band fun fact: Trey Anastasio Band first made their debut in 1998. What started off with only 3 members has grown into the wide range sounds of what TAB ( Trey Anastasio Band for short ) is today.
Primus is one of the most unique acts of any band I have seen. Part of that for me is the vocals and talent of bassist / vocalist Les Claypool. The rest of Primus is made up of guitarist Larry LaLonde and drummer Tim Alexander.
Although I have been listening to Primus for a long time, it wasn’t until 2010 that I had my first chance to catch them live. When the lights dimmed and the mysterious intro music started, I grinned a large smile and I knew I was in for a treat. What I actually saw throughout their whole set was something I have never seen before in a live act. Les Claypool is a very interactive vocalist. In between many of their songs, he goes on a hysterical banter with his interesting voice. Normally I can do without artists talking in between songs, but I actually embrace it! Many people that witnessed Primus at Summer Camp in 2012 claim it to be one of the most epic sets. Well, they are ready to party it back up at Summer Camp this year, and I for one am smiling ear to ear once again!
Check out Primus live when Bob Weir sat in from Summer Camp 2012:
Primus fun fact: Primus has a catchphrase, being “Primus sucks!”. When fans say this, it often confuses new listeners. In 2011, Les did say that he got tired of fans saying it.
Yonder Mountain String Band
YEEEEHAAAWWWW! Yonder Mountain String Band. YONDER MOUNTAIN STRING BAND! Seriously, I NEVER get tired of seeing these guys live. They are what got me into bluegrass. It’s hard to explain to people that aren’t familiar with these guys, or bluegrass in general, how hard they rage live. Their foot stomping fun is comprised of Jeff Austin on mandolin and vocals, Ben Kaufmann on bass and vocals, Dave Johnston on banjo and vocals, and Adam Aijala on guitar and vocals. I’m not sure if it’s because of the lack of drums in the band (and I don’t say that in a negative way, I love it), but the way the audience dances at a Yonder show is awesome. It’s almost as if everyone dances as the drummer keeping the beat.
Seeing Yonder this past year at Summer Camp two times was a very cool. My favorite of the two was their barn set. If you were one of the lucky ones to see them perform in the barn Friday night, you know how special it was. Especially late night ( although seeing them around 6 PM with a full sun is awesome ). I can’t wait to see what the guys bring to the stage this year at Summer Camp.
Check out this video of Yonder late night in the Red Barn at Summer Camp 2013:
Yonder Mountain String Band fun fact: When Dave Johnston and Jeff Austin first met, Dave asked Jeff to join and sing in his band, The Bluegrassholes. It was then that Jeff revealed he had a mandolin, and Dave said bring it along; “just play it fast and loud!”
Lotus. LOTUS. LOTTTTUSSSS! I’m pretty sure that’s what muttered out of my mouth when I saw they were on this years line up. Lotus has and always will hold a special place in my heart. I have seen these guys so many times I have lost count, and I have never seen a bad set by them!
Lotus is made up of Mike Rempel on guitar, Jesse Miller on bass and sampler, Mike Greenfield on drums, Luke Miller on guitar and keyboards, and Chuck Morris on percussion.
I think what I love most about Lotus is the way that they build up their sets until your face is officially melted off. I’m not kidding either. When they get into their epic jams, I loose my mind. The whole audience is connected into the band, and the band into the audience and everyone is just feeding off each others energy. Not only are these guys amazing musicians, but if you ever get the chance to speak with these guys, they are very down to earth. For me personally, Lotus at Summer Camp is what’s on my mind. I will be seeing them perform multiple times in between then, but nothing is better then Lotus raging Summer Camp!
Check out this video of Lotus playing “Backlight Sunflare” at Summer Camp 2011:
Lotus fun fact: Jesse and Luke Miller are brothers. Also, Lotus has done many themed shows. On October 31, 2008 at the TLA in Philadelphia the show was billed as “Live Fast Die Young: the 27 Conspiracy”. Each of the 5 members dressed as a rock star who died at the age of 27 (Kurt Cobain, Jimi Hendrix, Brian Jones, Pigpen, and Jim Morrison) and the show featured covers by each of the respective bands.
Comprised of String Cheese Incidents Michael Travis and Jason Hann, these dudes know how to bring the energy! What really sets EOTO apart from other electronic artists is their music is created without prerecorded loops! It’s all improv, and all loops are created right then and there! Onstage, they use Abelton live as their primary software for looping. Every time I have seen EOTO has been a much different.. not in bad way! Their stage set up is called the Lotus Flower and utilized 3D mapping to project really cool art work on to the set up.
EOTO fun fact: EOTO originally started out as End Of Time Observatory, with the members often calling themselves EOTO. Many Japanese fans explained EOTO means “good sound” in Japanese, and the band decided to officially stick with the name EOTO instead.
Keller Williams is a “one man jam band” hailing from Fredericksburg, Virginia. Using loop recording, his live shows mimic a full four piece act on stage. If you close your eyes at one of his shows, you often forget there is only one guy up there making music. It takes a lot of talent to do what he does, and he does it very well at that!
Keller uniquely blends bluegrass, folk, rock, reggae, electronica, jazz, and funk all together into an epic dance party. Keller often plays Grateful Dead songs which is always a plus in my book! I was able to catch a couple songs when he played as Keller Williams with More Than a Little right before Umphrey’s on Friday Night this past Summer Camp. It was so good!
Keller Williams fun fact: Keller Williams never took any lessons. He is a self taught musician!
The funkiest group returns to Summer Camp! If you have seen them perform before, then I know how happy you are that they are returning on the line up! They were so amazing at Summer Camp this past year as they funkified the Moonshine stage! About half way into their set, it started raining pretty good, but it felt so right in that moment and time! Everyone got crazier and really started dancing around like wild animals!
Lettuce is made up of Eric Krasno on guitar, Adam Smirnoff on guitar, Neal Evans on keys, Adam Deitch on drums, Erick Coomes on bass, Sam Kininger on sax, Ryan Zoidis on sax, and Nigel Hall on vocals. All of these guys are so talented! They have all found success in other acts as well, all touring in different groups around the world when not playing with Lettuce. They are an act to NOT miss when Summer Camp arrives!
Lettuce fun fact: In the fall of 1994, the band reconvened as undergrads at Berklee and attempted to play at various Boston jazz clubs, walking in and asking the club owners and other musicians if they would “let us play”, giving birth to the name Lettuce.
Beats Antique is an American experimental world fusion and electronic music group. They were formed in California in 2007. I like to heavily emphasize the world fusion part… If you have seen them or at least even heard their music, you understand what I’m referring to. Their shows are so outrageously unique! Made up of David Satori, Zoe Jakes, and Tommy Cappel, Beats Antique is another act I recommend checking out! Their shows somehow remind me of a Cirque de soleil show. They feature belly dancing and many different characters/costumes dancing about.
Beats Antique fun fact:
Zoe Jakes began belly dancing in 2000, but is a lifelong dancer, having 10 years of jazz and ballet dance experience under her belt. Her belly dancing is a blend of traditional belly dance with tango, popping, and indian dance.
Hailing from Chicago, Future Rock combines elements of Electronica, Progressive House, and dance rock. The band consists of Felix Moreno on bass guitar and synthesizer, Mickey Kellerman on keyboards and synthesizers, and Darren Heitz on drums and synthesizer. Future Rock was so cool in the Red Barn this past year. They brought the heat in there!
Check out this video of Future Rock late night from the Red Barn at Summer Camp 2013:
Future Rock fun fact: They once performed as Aphex Rock, performing a full set of music by Aphex Twin.
Other Summer Camp 2014 Artists
The other acts announced in the first round are Bro Safari, Wick-it the Instigator, Family Groove Company, This Must Be the Band, The Floozies, Henhouse Prowlers, DJ SOLO, Manic Focus, The Delta Saints, IndigoSun, Robotic Pirate Monkey, DUGASMUSIC, Sun Stereo, The Black Cadillacs, Old Shoe, Chicago Farmer’s New Feat with Old Shoe, Positive Vibr8ions, Caroline Rose, Brainchild, and Bone Jugs N Harmony. And there are many more to come – over 75 bands on 7 stages!
All I can say is WOW! Summer Camp always finds a way to keep making adding fun to the party year after year! Get your tickets now! You don’t want to miss this!
If you happened to miss the official video announcing this first round of artits, make sure to check it out below:
Give our announcement video a watch, or learn about each artist here. And stay tuned on Facebook and Twitter as May approaches, because we aren’t done! More artists will be announced – over 75 bands on 7 stages!
Virtuoso bassist Les Claypool is a musical shape shifter. He often leaves the comfy confines of Primus to venture out on some melodious adventure. I’ve seen his many projects and they vary from full-fledged percussive groups focused on instrumental composition to an assemblage of a reptilian task force for all sorts of mayhem. His most recent project is a stripped down situation that goes by the name of Duo De Twang. He has had a number of solo sets over the years at Summer Camp and most recently played with all of Primus in 2012.
Duo De Twang was originally formed with Marc Haggard from San Francisco alt-rock group M.I.R.V. This tour featured Bryan Kehoe on guitar also from M.I.R.V. They invited the Reformed Whores on the road with them for the duration of their tour. These two ladies have no issue discussing all manner of bodily function and otherwise unspeakable points of view through the wonder and beauty of song. In fact if you weren’t paying attention to the lyrics it would easily sound like the background music at a church picnic.
As I arrived the Reformed Whores were already on stage spreading their brand of irreverent humor. Their delivery was pure deadpan and chocked full of a humorous sanguinity. As performers they utilized the bare minimum of instrumentation, with just a ukulele and an accordion the Reformed Whores weave rich and delightful musical tapestries. Singing about the necessity for women to move their bowels, taint waxing, and about the importance of birth control are all par for the course. Really they sing public service announcements. They closed their set with “Girls Poop Too.”
I can only describe the fans in the front few rows as dedicated. Some were parked there hours prior to the start of the opener. It was finally time for the main event. Claypool and Kehoe officially took the stage soon after the Reformed Whores. Their modest setup was complete with a small electric bonfire and a couple of chairs. Claypool had stated that this was going to be a low-key affair with lots of booze laced tangents and random stories for the eager crowd. Claypool is playing on a resonator bass that he has taken to calling the “dobro bass,” which makes sense in both sound and feel. Kehoe stuck to the guitar alternating between slide and flat-picking. They played one long set that was spiced with a good amount of fan interaction. They opened with a truly twang-y “Booneville Stomp.” After their first song Kehoe let out a note like a Tuvan throat singer and Claypool said this about him.
“We call him the mighty throat of doom and sodomy.” –Les Claypool
It was this type of silly banter that Claypool seemed to thrive on between sips and songs at the Aggie. Classic Primus tunes like “Wynona’s Big Brown Beaver” and “Jerry Was A Race Car Driver” dotted the set to the glee of the audience. By this point the room was borderline sold out with people taking up every nook and cranny. I found myself in the back and to the right along the wall after I was done taking photos. Musically it was just fun. It was like watching Claypool on MTV Unplugged. At one point the audience began chanting ‘Primus Sucks’ and Claypool commented, “I didn’t think there were be a lot of Primus fans here tonight.” Towards the end Claypool invited a local guitarist named Robert up to stage to play with the Duo De Twang. First of all that’s awesome, Claypool inviting any musician onstage to perform with him would undoubtedly be a high point in their life. Robert was no Jimi Hendrix, but he did fine and Claypool used a few stops to play the bandleader and crack a few jokes. So it was okay for the crowd, but obviously awesome for Robert. After a very quick ninety minutes their set was over and they both stepped off the stage before quickly returning for their encore. They nailed a stringed version of “Staying Alive” that seemed to really pump up the energy in the crowd.
“That’s not a Bee Gees song, I wrote that fucking tune.” –Les Claypool
They closed the show with Johnny Cash’s “Cocaine Blues” that featured a small “Tommy The Cat” tease. This was just a great night to have a drink with Mr. Claypool. The relaxed vibe focused on interaction and imbibing more than shredding and face melting. That’s not to say anything was lacking musically. Quite the contrary, the combination of Claypool and Kehoe is magical. They create a wall of sound with just a handful of strings. I would highly recommend if the Duo De Twang comes to your town, go have a drink with the Colonel.
Nominated: Christian Hannon
“After I graduated high school and left my hometown, I wouldn’t have imagined keeping in touch with Christian Hannon for years to come. We were teenagers set on different paths and fair-weather friends. We would see each other via mutual friends on weekends, occasionally exchanging conversations about electronic and improvisational music. I expected him to vanish from my life after I left home for college.
Four years later, I was a college graduate and Christian and I had maintained constant contact, despite going to schools a thousand miles apart. We had attended at least one music festival together every summer following my leave from home for school. The people we surrounded ourselves with for each trip varied, but Christian and I remained constant friends and travel partners. We decided to make the dreaded 18-hour drive from Charleston, SC to the Three Sisters Park in Chillicothe, IL for the second time, since we attended SCamp in 2011 and had so much fun. The results of that decision were the best road trip and music festival of our lives.
We left Charleston at 6pm on Wednesday with three friends in a completely packed Suburban SUV. Christian and I each drove six hours while the others, who excused themselves saying they couldn’t drive the extra-large vehicle, slept and read. The sun set as I drove northbound through South Carolina. As I drove, Christian sat in the passenger seat keeping me awake and entertained with conversation, and I did the same for him. We sang along to Michael Jackson and grooved to Break Science and Pretty Lights until the sun came up over the vast Indiana cornfields. We arrived at the festival at noon the next day, completely exhausted from having driven all night, sleeping only 3 hours in the morning.
6 hours and many heavily burdened car trips later, we sat down in a campsite that was better than any of us had hoped for. We managed to find a spot in the woods, making cooling off especially easy under the natural canopy of branches and vines. I was so excited to be at our destination, I took off and bought the group a set of tiny hats from a vendor. Nobody had moved when I returned, let alone Christian.
We listened and watched in complete awe as Umphrey’s McGee, Primus, and Lotus made Friday night the best night of live music I’ve ever seen. We never separated from each other, although when one of us wandered too far in the crowd, it was easy for Christian to spot my 6’6” red-haired, tiny-hat wearing head. When we returned to the campsite, Christian had been robbed of $300. He was completely broke for the rest of the weekend. Knowing that he would find a way of making the money back, I lent him $500 in good faith. The next day, Christian came up to me and handed all of the money I had lent to him back. He had met a couple fellow artists and sold their pins and t-shirts for 4 hours before doubling the money I had given him. We made our way over to see our favorite band, Umphrey’s McGee. As we walked up to the stage, Christian bought me a delicious beer and gave me a giant hug. I wish I could relive those five minutes. We laughed at our great luck all night and enjoyed a night of music just as good as Friday, which I had never experienced at any music festival before.
Christian and I live on opposite ends of the east coast now, and we don’t get to see each other often. When we do see each other, the experience we had for the past two years in Chillicothe, IL is always brought up at some point. My Christmas gift to him this year will be an early bird ticket to Summer Camp, because last year turned out to be the trip of my life. I think about how much fun another Summer Camp with Christian will be all the time.”
Hey Summer Camp!
I cannot even begin to tell you that how much I wish I could start my Memorial Day weekend over and go back to Summer Camp. I had such a FANTASTIC-LY-GLORIOUS-ROCKIN-JAMMIN-BLUEGRASS-GYPSY-PUNKIN-GOOD-TIME at Scamp. There were a few acts that I missed and wished I had time to see at Scamp, but at the same time, I saw so many amazing acts and had so many great memories that will last a lifetime.
The highlights of my weekend include the following:
- Yoga yoga yoga yoga…and some more yoga
- Celebrating my birthday at Scamp on Thursday
- Thursday sound check of Umphrey’s McGee at the Sunshine Stage
- Cornmeal covering Ted Nugent
- Meeting and hanging out with fellow Scampers, friends and awesome neighbors (I seriously met someone everywhere I went!)
- Water water and more water!
- My fellow co-workers (the CITs and Camp Counselor)
- Making artwork out of my broken shade canopy
- Camping right by the Moonshine Stage
- Keller Williams playing “Freaker By the Speaker”
- Every minute of Gogol Bordello
- Primus playing “American Life” & “Tommy the Cat”
- Primus having 3 members of Gogol Bordello come out and play with them during their set! (truly a dream come true…) And Primus bringing out and playing with Bob Weir
- Seeing live at Scamp 2 songs that I put in my contest video for the Summer Camp Counselor position (CRAZY!)
- Wearing costumes!
- Umphrey’s Umphrey’s Umphrey’s Umphrey’s Umphrey’s
- Being a part of Yellow Team in the Field Day events (and winning MVP for Yellow Team)
- Hanging out with the founder of Food Patriot and volunteering my time with them by collecting signatures for their organization
- Friday and Saturday late night
- Someone singing to me the Attack of the Killer Tomatoes theme song when I was wearing my killer tomato costume (awesome!)
- Rockin’ out to some bluuues muuuzac with G. Love
- A streaker taking a morning jog through my campsite on Sunday
- Havin’ a bluegrass stompin good ol’ time with The Devil Makes Three
- Michael Franti’s incredible and touching set
- Rubblebucket’s dance party!
- Camp Counselor Maria’s campsite show with members of moe. and Greensky Bluegrass
- Jane’s Addiction’s amazing performance and Perry’s silly comments
- Ending summer camp with some of the best homemade ice cream I have ever had from one of the vendors at Scamp
- And of course, being your Counselor in Training at Summer Camp Music Festival 2012
The last day at Scamp of the Lone Pink Fuzzy Moustache…
These were only some of the highlights of what was an INCREDIBLE weekend. May our memories of Summer Camp 2012 live on forever…can’t wait to see everyone next year!
Now my challenge to YOU, the Scamper, is to see who can keep their Summer Camp 2012 braclet on the longest. I used to do this ALL the time with my friends after going to other music festivals. So far I’ve got a week down, but I have a feeling I’m going to have to take it off soon because of work, but I’ll try my best and you should too! Good luck!
P.S. Don’t forget to check back for my journey and reviews of shows in the St. Louis area throughout the rest of 2012 and into 2013! (If the world doesn’t end……hah, jk!)
Love, hugs, and thugs,
Your girl, Mo
Summer Camp implemented a lot of new technology this year including RFID chips in the bracelets. This is an entirely current advance that helps with security and well as tracking the crowds. In the future it could aid in finding your friends on your smart phone, but I think we are still a few years away from that. I woke up early as the sun bled into my tent. It was the first time in years that I didn’t camp in the woods, which meant that I was up by 9 AM each day to get going on my coverage. I tossed some fresh ice in the cooler and grabbed a shower all of which were conveniently located in the VIP area. By 11 AM I had eaten and was ready for some fun. I opted to save my strength for moe.’s opening set.
I remember being very nervous last year waiting to introduce moe. Maria was calm and collected as she fired up the crowd for an early set by the boys from New York. It was a great kickoff to the official festival; they opened with a fiery “Not Coming Down.”
SET I: Not Coming Down> Wormwood> Downward Facing Dog, Queen Of Everything> Timmy Tucker, All Roads Lead To Home, Crab Eyes, Spine Of A Dog> Buster, Okayalright
You can listen to the set on Archive at http://archive.org/details/moe2012-05-25.mk41.sonosax.m10.flac16 – Thanks to Bean for posting.
moe. came out of the chute with all guns blazing. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, when a band has an unbroken streak like they have, there is nothing they can’t accomplish. The three part rhythm section of Vinnie, Jim, and Rob rips like a well-oiled machine giving Al and Chuck plenty of room to soar. I continue to be impressed by them at every turn and they are my main reason for coming to Summer Camp. This set featured a massive “Timmy Tucker” that just seemed to go on and on. Their segues were crispy especially the transition from “Spine Of A Dog” into a rowdy “Buster.” They closed their too quick set with a brief “Okayalright.”
I took the opportunity to go charge my batteries at The Church and check in with the crew. Holly had assembled a great group to help everyone. Matt, Danny, and Graham all pitched in to make the weekend run smoothly and I really appreciated their help. After a few posts online and a bottle of water it was back to the main stage for Keller Williams. He emerged from the backstage already strumming guitar like a rascally bard donning a black handkerchief covering his face ala the cover of Thief. He opened with, “I Feel Love” into “Breathe.”
SET I: I Feel Love> Breathe> Turtle In The Front Row> Acoustic Jam> Looping and Intro> Breathe> Freeker By The Speaker> Dragon Attack, I Told You I Was Freaky> Ain’t No Rest For The Wicked, Floatin’ On The Freshies, Doobie In My Pocket, Loop Jam> Born To Be Wild*
*with Al Schnier
You can listen to the show on Archive at – http://archive.org/details/kw2012-05-25.mk4_16bit – thanks to tonedeaf for posting.
Keller is another one of those artists that is an intrinsic part of the lineup. It would feel weird if he wasn’t there. Even though he had to travel across the country for a performance at Delfest the same weekend he made it point to give us a great afternoon set. The massive “Breathe” was simply stunning showcasing everything Keller brings to the table from acoustic picking to his looping. The “Freeker” got the whole audience in synch and segued into Queen’s “Dragon Attack”. And without missing a beat he went into The Flight of The Concords’ “I Told You I Was Freaky.” I mean who on earth but Keller would string those songs together? Seeing him play is like a random flow of consciousness, which is why I love watching him perform so much. My one request this year was to see Leftover Salmon on the bill so I had to leave during “Doobie In My Pocket” so as not to miss a note. Unfortunately that meant I missed Al’s sit-in on a transcendental “Born To Be Wild.” The nice thing is I can always go back and listen to the recording, which you should do too if you didn’t catch it.
Leftover Salmon is fresh off their incredible performance on the streets of Denver, and I have been sharing my excitement about their resurgence with anyone who will listen. You can read about their show on Santa Fe on the Summer Camp Blog.
SET I: Gulf of Mexico, Just Keep Driving, Liza, Midnight Blues, Aquatic Hitchhiker, Sing Up To The Moon, Highway Song, Better, Light Behind The Rain, Bend In The River
They began with a trio of tunes off of their new release Aquatic Hitchhiker, showing they were ready to set the afternoon on fire. Andy Thorn has truly reinvigorated the band in a big way, adding both his banjo and his vocals to the mix. Salmon has come full circle and I foresee big things for them in the near future. The highlight of their set was a Drew Emmitt lead “Highway Song” that basically melted face.
“I don’t always drink beer, but when I do I drink it at Summer Camp.” – Drew Emmitt
Drew was referencing at totem that featured the spokesman from Dos Equ+is hovering about the crowd. I feel it’s moments like this that also show the playful nature they all have onstage now. They closed their hour long set with a classic “Bend In The River.”
After a quick trip to post and grab a battery at The Church I was back in the pit for Weir Robinson Green Acoustic Trio at The Sunshine Stage. As they walked out in front of the crowd I quietly checked photographing Bobby off of my life to-do list. They opened with an audience pleasing “Truckin.”
SET I: Truckin’> New Speedway Boogie, Ain’t Broke, Iko Iko, Deep River Blues, West LA Fadeaway, Deep Elem Blues> Dark Hollow, East Virginia Blues, When I Paint My Masterpiece, Uncle John’s Band, Hey Mona, Not Fade Away
I found their mellow flow and musical camaraderie to be quite inviting. Bobby gave both Jackie and Chris ample opportunities to harmonize as well take a few numbers on their own. “West LA Fadeaway” made everyone stand at attention. The “Deep Elem Blues” into “Dark Hollow” was mesmerizing. Amy and I found a spot in the shade and danced away the afternoon. They ended their set with a perfect, “Not Fade Away.” I was ecstatic as I headed to Cornmeal at The Moonshine stage.
For the second time in two days I was seeing Chicago jamgrass monsters Cornmeal. They have come so far in the last few years, tying up all loose ends musically and coming together as one amazing musical unit. The turnout for this set was a little lax but all those who made it down for the set were dancing up a dust storm. I make it a point to see them whenever they make it to the Front Range and seeing them two days in a row at Summer Camp is just one more cherry on the massive sundae that is this festival. The highlight of the set may have been the down tempo “Old Virginia,” which always seems to melt my heart whenever I get the chance to see it live. We stayed until just after 7:00 PM and skedaddled back Sunshine for the Umph.
Following the same formula as last year, with moe. during the day and Umphrey’s headlining the night, Friday belongs to the McGee.
SET I: Gurgle> 2nd Shelf, Pay The Snucka> Miami Virtue> Glory, 2×2, Ringo, Loose Ends> Puppet String
SET II: Jekyll & Hyde> Ocean Billy> Mulche’s Odyssey, Bright Lights, Big City> Dump City> Ocean Billy, 40’s Theme, Forty Six & 2, Day Nurse> Pay The Snucka
The full show is up on Archive at http://archive.org/details/um2012-05-25.mk4_24bit – Thanks again to tonedeaf for posting.
Now there was a Gogol Bordello show between these two sets, but I’ll get to that. With three full hours of stage time Umphrey’s took us on a musical journey that ran the gambit of what they are capable of. The most striking thing about UM is how incredibly tight they are, they’ve been called an ADD band because of their predilection to stop on a dime and rip off in another direction. I would go so far as to say they can stop on a dime, do a cartwheel, leave seven cents change, pickpocket your sister, and shake your hand at the same time.
Summer Camp, it is so good to be back. Hands down my favorite fuckin’ festival. – Ryan Stasik
Their Friday show as a whole exemplifies why Umphrey’s is perhaps the last great jamband slashing tunes that spanned progressive to death metal and everything in between. The “Pay The Snucka,” which is arguably my favorite song of theirs, went keyboard trance before breaking down into “Miami Virtue.” I cannot stress how good they are, and just when I think they have peaked I see a show like Friday at Summer Camp. They continue to build and build adding new tricks to their repertoire. The “Ringo” was yet another high point in the show before they ended their first set with “Loose Ends” into “Puppet String.”
The second set started on the darkest of tones with “Jekyll & Hyde” and began their back and forth with a massive “Ocean Billy” sandwich. The meat of that sandwich was a brain-shattering “Mulche’s Odyssey” and an 80’s sounding “Bright Lights, Big City” into “Dump City.” They finished their show by going back into “Snucka.” It was simply put a solid outing by the boys from Chicago.
During setbreak I high-tailed it over to see Gogol Bordello. Having never seen them live before I knew they were high energy, but little could have prepared me for the gypsy punk explosion I witnessed. Passing vocals around the stage like a hot potato with members of the band seeming to appear out of nowhere to take a turn at the microphone. The instrumentation alone was enough to make my head spin. They are most definitely a band I will see again.
After UM I ran over to catch Primus. They opened with their standard “Those Damn Blue-Collar Tweekers.” Primus just sounds amazing right now. They are on point and were a great addition to the Summer Camp lineup. By all accounts they stole the weekend with both a Gogol Bordello sit-in as well a version “The Other One” with Bob Weir. However I have to honestly say I left about halfway through the show in order to regroup at camp before late night in the barn. I’ve always known that you can’t see it all, and with a few overlapping sets, some hard decisions have to be made. It’s that way at every festival and Summer Camp is no exception. An old friend of mine who I reconnected with at SCamp this year said it best.
“A music festival isn’t about who you choose to see, it’s about who you choose to miss.” – Concert Joe
We headed back to camp midway through Primus to recharge and get ready for late night. Suddenly I remembered that Floodwood was playing a midnight set at the VIP bar. We headed over as they were sound checking and getting ready to play. This show ended up being one of my highlights of the entire weekend. It gave me a chance to focus on them with a much smaller audience than the night before. And it also became a big social event with Ian, BC, and Shane from Fort Collins, making it down. It really felt like a family affair. They invited Kris Norwak up on stage to close out their hour and suddenly it was time to head back up to the barn.
As we arrived we saw Cornmeal tuning up on stage. They were joined by all of Elephant Revival for a massive clusterpluck for the lucky crowd. It was yet another gigantic jam breaking out at Summer Camp for anyone who happens to pass by. Are we seeing a theme? We hung out until Elephant Revival left the stage to hit the road that night for another festival, and headed into the Red Barn for a much-anticipated set of Ha Ha The Moose.
Amy and I had been talking about this show since we say that it was on the line up. We knew we would be up late on Friday for the festive occasion. For those that don’t know Ha Ha features Dr. Guano, Jeff Von Kickass, and Sludge from Christmas Island. It was a bizarro show with the three of them donning bright orange prison jumpsuits, luchador masks, and giant moose ears like that of some odd fraternal organization. As they strutted out to the stage, fans began booing and cursing the band. I found myself grinning from ear to ear as I had stumbled upon something utterly silly like a master’s degree art project gone awry. After some back and forth between the audience and the band they opened with Poison’s, “Talk Dirty To Me.”
SET I: Talk Dirty To Me, 20lbs of Shit in a 2lb Bag, Ha Ha The Moose, Sexy And I Know It, Mr. Her, Looking Down The Barrel of A Gun> Apostrophe , 10 Things Vin’s Likely To Say, Thirsty Carbunckle, Rednecks Are Everywhere, In The Name of Freedom, Devil Toad, Fuck This Shit!
You can listen to this show, and you should, on Archive. http://archive.org/details/HHtM2012-05-26 – Thanks to jesse d scott for posting.
“This is the worst crowd I’ve ever seen in my life… I want to thank the Illinois Regional Correctional Facility for letting us out for the night.” – Dr. Guano
This was just a wild ride, and musically as you might expect it was top notch. However, I felt utterly compelled to boo. It was that type of blatantly silly experience and even though the hour was very late, I was dancing wildly. Their version of LMFAO’s “Sexy And I Know It,” had me in stitches as Guano belted out, “Wiggle Wiggle Wiggle.” Commander Nad joined them on “10 Things Vin’s Most Likely To Say.” Perhaps the most hilarious song they preformed was “In The Name Of Freedom,” where Dr. Guano actually got off the stage and asked members of the crowd what they would do in the name of freedom.
Guano -“Barry my friend what would you do for freedom?”
Barry – “Obviously listen to this crap at four o’clock in the morning.”
Guano – “This is a god damn waste of time.”
So to sum it up this was a complete and utter waste of a Red Barn show and I can’t believe I stayed up all night to see this horrible excuse for a band. But seriously go see Ha Ha The Moose if you don’t value your time. We managed to get to bed after the set that stretched to 4 AM, content with the thought that we had two more days of Summer Camp ahead of us, and Ha Ha The Moose behind us.
Well folks, we did it. And as a Summer Camp veteran, I’m going to go out on a limb and say this was possibly the best Summer Camp yet! Here are the top 10 things I loved about this year….
1. Nobody’s set got rained out this year. Whew!
2. The collective screams of approval when Umprey’s McGee started playing Tom Sawyer.
3. Moe. and Umphrey’s light shows. Duh. I mean, you can be stone cold sober looking at those things and still be in a total trance.
4. The look of joy on some guy’s face when I told him he could have my extra Saturday late-night wristband for free.
5. The dude taking a dump in a bucket right underneath the Moonshine stage arch. (Hey, I didn’t say these were pleasant memories, but that will surely not be forgotten!)
6. A dog named Akimbo. I have no idea what his owner’s name was, but I ran into Akimbo easily 6 times this festival and he always was having fun!
7. Water guns. Everywhere, all the time, all shapes and sizes.
8. Sunrise kickball with Ryan Stasik.
9. Warren Haynes sit-in with G. Love & Bob Weir sit-in with Primus. Absolutely fantastic.
10. When I got back into Chicago, I saw 3 separate groups of Scampers within 5 blocks of my house. That’s the thing about Summer Camp – you take it home with you.
Until next year, loves.
So yesterday was amazing! I was running around all day trying to catch all the awesome music but there is just too much and I had to miss out on some great sets. However, I did manage to see quite a few; and get some interviews!
Kinetix JAMMED hard; they were so energetic and pulled out some great covers, such as “With a Little Help from My Friends” by the Beatles, and “Crazy Train” by Ozzy. Marcus Rezak from Digital Tape Machine made an appearance and added some killer riffs to the performance. After the show the band was up for an interview and we asked them a few questions - watch the video. They were all really cool people and if you still haven’t checked out their music what are you waiting for?
After that interview I was able to catch the end of Cornmeal and they put on such a great show (as always). The way they play is so alive; it didn’t matter that the sun was mean, every single person was dancing their feet sore. Especially the CornStalkers; a wonderful group of dedicated fans. Afterwards I had a chance to sit down with Wavy Dave and ask him a few questions; check out that video too!
Primus brought they’re usual madness to the stage and had a great light show. Lotus followed suit and put on a great performance, also with some killer lights. They are serioulsy the masters of transitions…they flawlessly flow from one rythm to another and one song to another.and then bring it all together for one final groove down.
As I had mentioned before, Summer Camp isn’t just about the music but also about having fun with your friends and just enjoying the experience of being at camp. This weekend is our yearly reunion with all my friends from college and catching up and story telling at our campsite took us past the late nights, so unfortunately I wasn’t able to see Les Claypool and the Dead Kenny G’s or Haha the Moose, but based on the reviews I heard around - both put on great sets.
Can’t wait for tomorrow. As always, this weekend is going by way too fast.
I started off my day with some yoga in the Soulshine tent at 10am with yoga instructor Tammy. She’s a fantastic lady! It was really packed, but luckily everyone was able to fit under the tent.
Once I was rejuvenated, I went back to camp and got ready for the day. I ended up back at the Soulshine tent to peek at the Umphrey’s McGee Golden Ticket event and picked up my Umphrey’s Street Team flyers and goodies. Then I hit up some Keller Williams at the Moonshine stage in the heat of the day. It’s always fantastic to see his smiling face and I was ecstatic to hear him play one of my favorite tunes Freaker by the Speaker.
After catching a break in the shade from the brutal sun, the clouds thankfully rolled in giving everyone a much needed break from the sun. Then I caught some Kinetix at the Campfire stage. Everyone in the crowd was dancin’ their booties off. They even played a cover of Crazy Train by Ozzy Osbourne. Then I headed over to the Moonshine stage early to get a good spot for one of my favorite bands, Gogol Bordello. I’ve seen this band several times, and I’ve never seen a crowd for one of their shows with as much energy as my fellow Scampers had. It was simply amazing, every single person wasn shakin’ their hips or stompin’ their feet. Some of the songs that they played were Immigrant Punk, Pala Tute, Immigraniada, Wonders Lust King, Not a Crime, and When Universes Collide.
Once Gogol was done, I hung around and got a front row spot for Primus. I’ve seen Primus and Les Claypool over 6 times, so it’s refreshing to see Les, especially when he comes out with his infamous pig mask on. About halfway through the set, I was in total shock when Eugene Hutz, Sergey Ryabtsev, and Yuri Lemeshev from Gogol Bordello came on stage and played a song with Primus! It was simply amazing and a dream come true. A few songs later, Primus even had Bob Weir come out! Things like this would of course only happen at Summer Camp!
Then I stopped back at camp to put on my Attack of the Killer Tomatoes costume and checked out Les Claypool and the Dead Kenny G’s at late night. They were fantastic! I think I filled my Les Claypool void for the weekend.
Love, hugs, and thugs,
On Friday at Summer Camp Music Festival things really begin to pick up. For me the day started off writing my blog from Thursday and going to the press area to upload all my photos. One of the coolest thins about being a CIT is that you get a peek at the inner workings of a music festival, and you get to see just how much hard work is put into making Summer Camp run smoothly year after year. Friday I had a busy day checking out music and spent little time at our campsite. My crew and I were able to catch:
Les Claypool and the Dead Kenny G’s
Indigo Sun at Grassroots tent late night
I want to go over some of the high points in the day for me musically. First Keller Played an amazing set including “Tweaker by the Speaker” and “Doobie in my Pocket.” Things got kicked up a notch when Al Schnier of Moe came out and played guitar on “Born to be Wild” by Steppenwolf. The feel good sound of Keller is the perfect music for a mid afternoon set at Summer Camp.
Preservation Hall Jazz Band played a great show at the Campfire Stage between Umphrey’s sets. Anyone who was lucky enough to catch them would not disagree that the tuxedo sporting band has been the sharpest looking band at the festival so far. The band’s name coms from the legendary New Orleans venue, Preservation Hall. Anyone who likes New Orleans Jazz will love this band.
My favorite set at the festival has so far has been Primus. They busted out some of my favorites off their new album like “Moron TV” and “Eyes of the Squirrel.” What made the set so memorable was when Bob Weir came out to perform “The Other One” by the Grateful Dead. This jam lasted for 10+ minutes and was full of energy and passion. Any time you can see a member of the Dead perform you know you are in for a treat.
Lotus was another highlight. Their performance last year in the Red Barn was one of my favorite at the festival. This year I feel the headliner spot on the Sunshine stage was well deserved. They did not disappoint playing songs like “It’s All so Clear to Me” and “Greet the Mind.” We stayed in the back for this set and chilled. There was a lot of space, and I felt like dancing so I got my groove on and enjoyed the show.
We are camped in section B like we always do. This is my favorite spot to camp because you get the Camping Stage right there to provide you with good music all day long. I am really digging the new location and size of the camping stage this year. It was always one of the smallest venues on the festival grounds even though it has consistently provided some of the best up-and-coming bands on the festival scene. It is the perfect place to stop by if you are always on the prowl for new music.
Besides music I have been lucky enough to catch up with several friends I haven’t seen in a long time. I also am meeting new people every time I wander off from my friends, and it made me realize that at Summer Camp you are never alone cause we are all a big family. It was also cool to talk to Adam Alexander, a great photographer covering Summer Camp again this year. I owe him one because he is the one who took the photo of my in my chicken hat last year that was used as the camp caption challenge contest, and all my profile photos. Check out his photos, he rocks.
Make sure you check out my photos from the festival on the Summer Camp Flikr page
Follow @chickenheadfan on Twitter to stay updated on where I am at the fest.