Tag Archives: Toms River

Blogaroo: Wednesday, June 8 and Thursday, June 9

15 Jun

Well, folks — I officially survived my fourth Bonnaroo, and between the company and the tunes, I have to say that it was the best yet.

Addam and I drove up and camped out with John and Tati, two friends we met shortly after moving to Miami. We packed a lot of stuff into the minivan John rented on Tuesday night, but we made sure to get an early start Wednesday morning. We were up and out by 4:45 a.m.

We didn’t stop much, but once we were an hour or two away we stopped at a Wal-Mart to stock up on munchables. We got a ton of food, I picked up some flip flops (I lost all of mine between Virginia and Chicago) and Addam (unsuccessfully) hunted for dry ice. After packing up the coolers we were back on our way.

Even though we got in line around 7:30 p.m., we didn’t see the gate until 3:30 a.m. This was the first year campers were allowed to set up on Wednesday night, so everyone was in a rush to get in and find a good stop. Luckily, Tati and I are extremely charming and managed to make friends during the wait.

By the time we made our way though security and set up camp, it was about 4:30 a.m. and already bright out. Addam ran to go tag up some walls while I took a quick nap before the day’s festivities.

After we were all (sort of) rested, John cooked up a quick breakfast on the grill our neighbors generously let us use throughout the weekend, and we headed out.

Centeroo opened at noon, but there weren’t any big bands scheduled until 4 p.m., leaving us plenty of time to explore. Addam and I got some food, sent out a few postcards at the Bonnaroo post office and headed to River City Extension — our first show of the day.

River City is a folk band from Toms River, NJ. Folk bands may sound lame, but this one really isn’t like the rest. It’s extremely upbeat and got me moving despite the heat. Addam hasn’t edited a video of the performance yet, but I found a pretty good one on YouTube.

After heading back to camp to meet up with John and Tati and grill up a quick lunch, we all headed to Centeroo.

Reverend Peyton’s Big Damn Band played at 8:30 p.m. Even though they’re amazing and a lot of people came out for the show, they were on a small stage, so it was easy to secure a good spot. The group hung out after the performance for a quick meet and greet, during which I got to tell each of them how much I appreciated their music. (Ok, I was a bit of a goober, but I was really excited.) Addam’s video is below.

Addam and I had an hour to kill between Rev. Peyton and Sleigh Bells, so we stood in line for tickets to the 420 Comedy Blaze featuring Cheech MarinThe WorkaholicsJay Pharoah and Ralphie May. Once securing our tickets, which oddly enough didn’t take very long, we headed over to the show.

The Sleigh Bells show was completely packed, and we couldn’t find a very good spot to photograph from. I don’t know if Addam’s going to make a video, but I wanted everyone to have an idea of just how high energy the performance, and the crowd, was.  I included a video shot from a fellow Rooer.

Sleigh Bells let out at 11:15 p.m., leaving us plenty of time to get to the comedy tent by 12:00.

Cheech was alright, but not nearly as funny as I expected. In fact, the entire show was looking like a let down, until Ralphie May took the stage. I remembered him from Last Comic Standing but had forgotten how funny he was. Addam’s not editing the footage we captured because YouTube has taken down a few of his other comedy videos and he doesn’t want to chance getting another strike against him. Fortunately, I found a clip from the show. Watch it quick, because I’m not sure how long it will be live.

It was pretty late by the time the show let out, and Addam and I had an early start and a long day. We headed back to camp for a little R and R before Friday’s performances.

All-in-all, it was a wonderful start to an even better weekend. Stay tuned.

“But an innovation, to grow organically from within, has to be based on an intact tradition, so our idea is to bring together musicians who represent all these traditions, in workshops, festivals and concerts, to see how we can connect with each other in music.” — Yo-Yo Ma, Chinese composer (b-1955).