While there were a few shows that we wanted to catch on Saturday morning, there were so many artists that we wanted to see later in the day that Addam and I decided to rest up and soak up some shade while we had the chance.
The first act that we ended up catching was Black Uhuru. They were playing at the same time Zach Braff was having a Q and A on Garden State, but I just couldn’t miss the performance. And I’m glad I didn’t. While it was 2 p.m. and the midday sun was pounding down on me, making it nearly impossible to dance and truly vibe out to the performance, these guys are reggae legends. I wouldn’t have been able to forgive myself if I missed out.
Addam didn’t get any photos and he has yet to edit a video, but check out the ones I found on the Web for a better idea of what they’re all about. If you like rootsy reggae, you should love Black Uhuru.
After the show Addam and I hung around Centeroo for about an hour before heading back to camp for lunch.
We ended up coming across what at first sight I thought was a food truck, but ended up being a hub for Jack White’s record label, Third Man Records. While I could have spent six months worth of paychecks in about 2.5 minutes, everything was really expensive. After making sure that Mr. White was nowhere in sight, Addam and I bought a sticker and headed home through the dusty crowds.
Addam and I met up with John and Tati back at the campsite for a quick lunch before heading out to Mumford & Sons, who were amazing but way too popular. They were playing on the second biggest stage, so we couldn’t get close at all. Definitely disappointing considering how much I wanted to see them.
Still, the sound systems at Bonnaroo are pretty banging. We could hear the band fine from wherever we happened to wander. It was our first time seeing them, so it was a good time.
While we could not get very close for Mumford & Sons, Addam and I had front row seats for Sallie Ford & The Sound Outside, whom we didn’t even think we’d get the opportunity to see given all the big names playing over the weekend. Thank God we did! Out of all the artists I saw at Bonnaroo this year, she, by far, surprised me the most.
Addam and I had a hard time finding her stuff in the weeks leading up to Roo, but we’ll never have that problem again. We bought her CD and listen to it in our every waking moment.
We even got to meet the band after the show. Once they were finished performing, we got Ford’s autograph and stole a picture with her guitarist. (Addam’s parents just checked out the band in Athens, Ohio, per our request, and were equally as impressed. Do yourself a favor and check out the video Addam edited of the show.)
After Sallie Ford, Addam and I headed over to The Black Keys, who were more incredible live than I ever could have imagined. While I’ve always been impressed by the voice and musical stylings of guitarist and frontman Dan Auerbach, I had no idea that I’d spend so much time watching drummer and producer Patrick Carney. They both seem to put their entire hearts into performances, which makes them so captivating to watch. I included a video Addam shot and edited so the naysayers could see for themselves.
While it’s not included in the video — I’d have to say that the highlight of the performance was when a giant disco ball appeared overtop the band during Everlasting Light. It’s one of my favorite songs of theirs, and no one expected the added touch. Not to mention that fact that there was a disco ball hanging from the arch that leads into Bonnaroo, which made me appreciate it even more.
After The Black Keys finished their set, Addam and I headed over to Buffalo Springfield. The heavens must have known that the band is legendary, because the only rain we got throughout the entire weekend happened during their set. Which sounds terrible but was actually a relief given how hot it got throughout the day. While the slow drizzle only lasted for about 10 minutes, the lightening the storm produced was incredible and matched any artificial light coming from the stage.
While the band performed such hits as Mr. Soul, Burned and Rockin’ in the Free World, there was something off with the stage’s sound system. Addam and I were close and could hear them fine, but I heard reports that most of the crowd couldn’t hear much of their set. I guess that just makes us that much luckier.
Addam and I left Buffalo Springfield a little early to secure a good spot for Eminem. Addam has been waiting half his life to see him, so it was pivotal that we got close for the performance.
Mr. Mathers did all his classics, and nearly ever song he performed was a hit. While I could list every song in his set list, Stan, Lose Yourself and The Way I Am were among my personal faves. While I wish I could do him justice, there is really no way to describe what finally seeing Eminem meant to Addam and me. We never thought we’d actually have the opportunity to see him live, especially once he “retired” in 2005. We’ll definitely take his performance with us wherever we go.
After a very elaboarte and exciting fireworks show, we headed out to enjoy the rest of the night.
Addam and I were pretty pumped after Eminem, but it had been a long day and our adrenaline didn’t last as long as we’d hoped. The String Cheese Incident opened with Tennessee Jed, which was absolutely epic, but it wasn’t long before we were searching for a clear spot to lay down for a few minutes.
While we ended up napping for a lot longer than we intended to, we were awake long enough to catch the bundle of balloons that were being passed across the crowd. I’m a sucker for flare, so I definitely got a kick out of it. Now, if only I had been awake for the supposed jet-packer who was flying over the crowd a little later in the set…
Now. I’m not going to lie. I absolutely LOVE Girl Talk and had made it a goal to get on stage with him during this year’s performance. And I failed miserably.
Not only did I spend the show toward the back of the crowd, Addam and I peaced out after the first 20 minutes of his set. Addam really wanted to see Gogol Bordello, and since I had never seen them before I thought that it would make more sense to check them out than watch someone I’ve seen about three or four times.
Still — I haaaated leaving. If Addam wasn’t there I would have stayed for the entire show. We didn’t see much, but I included his clip.
Regardless of my love for Girl Talk, I have to admit that Gogol Bordello was a REALLY good show. I don’t know how Eugene Hütz does it, but dude has some energy! He was bobbing higher at 3:30 in the morning than I’ve ever jumped in my entire life! Not to mention, I love some good gypsy punk rock!
Tatiana got to meet Hütz earlier in the day, as he was attending various shows throughout Bonnaroo. The lucky biotch also got to meet Ron Jeremy, who was vibing out to some Gogol himself. What can I say — the group unites all kinds. I’m a new fan, but I’ve definitely checked out a lot more of their tunes post-Roo.
Gogol played late, so by the time Addam and I headed back to camp we were completely exhausted. After I grabbed some pad thai we headed to bed and were asleep as soon as our heads hit our pillows — resting up for our final day at Bonnaroo 2011.
“Music washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life.” – Berthold Auerbach, German poet and author (1812-1882).