Monday, March 19, 2007

Langerado, Part II

We met Pablo and Chris at Denny's on Friday morning for a pre-show breakfast, and adjourned to their hotel room (conveniently located next to the Denny's) to rip bong hits. Pablo and Chris had trucked a 2 foot tall glass piece 300+ miles down I-75 in their gray Honda, and man was it worth it. Nothing better than to start a festival day with than an All-American slam and some ice bong hits of White Widow.

We had our shit together on that first day . Traffic was light and we got to the festival grounds just as the first acts were starting After a quick twirl around the parking lot to check out the scene, we headed in. Security was a joke and, as usual, hiding the pipe in my bra worked. I slathered my pale arms and legs in SPF 45.

The grounds were set up as most of these festivals are. There was a main stage, a mid-size stage, and a small stage enclosed in an open-sided "tent." The first band we caught was Lotus, and they performed in the tent. I'd seen them before at Knit Ball in L.A. and were the pleasant surprise of that night. Here, it was no different and they gave our day a light, groovy start. Lotus plays traditonal instruments (guitar, keys, drums, bass) but replicates an electronica sound-- sorta like Particle, but with a lighter, trippier sound. We caught the first half of their set before heading over to the main stage to catch one of Pauly's favorite new jam bands, Tea Leaf Green.

As we sat in the grass and took in Tea Leaf Green, my eyes wandered and landed on the green-and white patterned halter a girl wore about ten feet away. Her long auburn hair could have used a washing and brushing, but was nowhere near dreadlock territory. She wore beads, but not a hemp necklace and flip-flops, not Birkenstocks or rope sandals. I recognized the green and white pattern of her dress because I had tried it on myself at Old Navy 2 weeks ago. She was an Old Navy hippie. A vacation hippie. A weekend hippie. There are hundreds of Old Navy hippies at these festivals, and they can instantly be recognized (at least by me) by their familiar, mass-produced dress patterns. I can't tell you how many girls I saw at Bonnaroo in those purple paisley sundresses Old Navy put out last year. This girl's choice in fashion set off a whole weekend of me recognizing Old Navy dresses in the concert crowds.

After Tea Leaf Green wrapped up their set, we crossed the field to the second stage, where Pauly wanted to check out New Monsoon. I heard a banjo (too much twang and this Hollyweird blonde heads for the hills) and decided instead to check out the vendors with the Joker (and saw two girls in the brown and white Old Navy babydoll top). I got a delcious corn cake and mozarella sandwich, and we stopped at the media tent to chat with some of Joker's friends from Boulder. One of them had a golf cart. Joker asked if he could ride around the festival in it, but we were denied. In the distance, I heard New Monsoon playing a Zeppelin cover and had a twinge of regret.

Our next stop was back at the main stage for the North Mississippi All-Stars and then back to the second stage for Galactic. I've seen Galactic about half a dozen times this year at the House of Blues in L.A. and on festival stages across America and these guys never disappoint me. Stanton Moore is a marvel to watch on drums, leaping out of his seat at a song's climax. Highlights included "FEMA," "Shibuya," and a cover of Led Zeppelin's "Immigrant Song." (You know that one... awww ahhhhh aaaaaa.....aaaaa!! Now imagine the lead line on sax.)

We chilled out in the grass during Bela Fleck & the Flecktones' set, and stayed afterwards to ensure a great spot for Trey Anastasio Band. We landed a perfect location in front of the soundboard that had a special bonus of being easy to locate by virtue of our "neighbor's" bright yellow "Don't Tread on Me" flag that flew ten feet above our heads. We were all speculating at what Trey might have been "saving" for his Langerado set, as his set the night before at Revolution had included more of his recent stuff and only one Phish tune.

Trey came on at 8 and was scheduled to play for 2 hours. About 30 seconds into the opener, I nudged Pauly.

"Dude... is this 'Shine' again?"

Pauly nodded. I gave the thumbs-down. Not my favorite Trey song.

Most of the set was a repeat from the night before. "Mr. Completely," "Tuesday," "Push on 'Til the Day." That shitty song "Ice and Snow" from Bar 17. He did bust out with "First Tube" to close and that made me happy, but the Joker and Pauly weren't as impressed-- they'd heard Phish play that song 100 times live... and better. So kind of an "eh" set.

We piled into the Jeep and headed into Ft. Lauderdale. The Joker had tickets to the Disco Biscuits night show back at Revolution, but Pauly and I decided to sit that one out. After dropping the Joker off, we headed back to the hotel awaiting a call from Sweet Sweet Pablo. We had planned to possibly meet up with him and Chris later in the night, but those two decided to hit the lot scene after the festival and ended up scoring some geltabs from some sketchy hippie. As more time passed between our arrival back at the hotel and Pablo's call, the odds on us actually making it out again that night declined rapidly.

And at some point, around 1:30 in the morning, I fell asleep in my clothes.

Photos of the crew:


The Joker in his birthday crown

Sweet Sweet Pablo!

For photos and an extensive interview with Professional Keno Player Neil Fontenot, check out the Tao of Poker.

To be continued...

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