Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Free Range Office

I'm working outside today. I have a bunch orders to process, but its just too nice in Chicago to be cooped up in the office. Today's employees are as effective as ever inside the office or out. So I'm workin' hard, bustin' ass and gettin' some sun!

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Thursday, June 16, 2005

Big Bad Ass Bonnaroo Birthday Bash!

The big bad ass Bonnaroo birthday bash started as Missy and I jumped in the convertable to Bonnarroo 2005 and hit the open road... everything was irie da whole weekend long! I've been to Bonnaroo before and I knew what to expect or at least I thought I did. Thoughts of missing campers were running through my mind as I drive the entire way. I'm going to miss Franklin, Seth, Konkol, Tom, Kennedy, TBone & all, Ausman, Moona, et all but there's no way to get y'all to same place at the same time anymore with out hiring any number of logisitics coordinators. So, who will I see this weekend who doesn't know its my birthday everyone except Axtel, Tammer, Missy, Bronko, and maybe Nathan who I'm not sure I'll actually see, but gone clear across the world and wound up in Manchester for the weekend too, so I'll keep an eye open for him. I've met a ton of people at Bonnaroo. You never know who you're gonna be standing next to in the crowd and you never know what friends you'll make there.

Its hard for me not to glow too bright for Bonnaroo... but it starts off normally enough. It starts off with the long drive, decent rest, big traffic line, followed by a second trip in the car to a better campsite than the one the parkin' kids sent us too and setting up camp. The weather was really decent. We finally set up on First St between Second and Third Avenues which is very similiar to where we were last year and a bit closer to the What Stage than we were the year I camped with Virg Slim, TBone, FTown, the Pencil Grip & Sweet Bippy. I was pretty particular where I set up the screened in porch in relation to our tents to maximize shade in the morning and reduce the possibility of rain entering our chill space. Strangely enough there was a tropical depression heading towards us, which we were prepared for, and a northern wind that blew the rain in the wrong direction.
Bonnaroo has made a bunch of improvements to the campgrounds. Roads that were initially dirt are now gravel. Woodchip paths are now boardwalks and mud areas are now grassy pastures. The degrading hills toward the stage have been graded to help drainage and sand has been put in close to the stages which means no giant mudfest! They learned from years before and took care of the grounds. I am suprised an impressed by the work. Inside the music area there were a battery of new cafe stages, a comedy tent and some new vendors.
The staff was on the ball with the bathrooms too! I didn't walk into a bathroom without TP, or a mountain of poop cresting out the toilet. If I were to ask for any improvements to Bonnaroo for next year it would be for a few more water stations. Its still a bit of a hike to get ice too, but all in all they get brownie points for the off season work they've done.
There were a host of great shows that should be available for download or purchase any moment for your listening pleasure. I rallied out with a bunch of different friends & their crews to see artists. When I couldn't find someone I knew I just turned to the guy next to me and say "Hey, whatcha checkin' out after this?" The great thing about Bonnaroo is you really can't make a wrong choice and if the band is off in any way its just a lil walk to the next gig.
Here are the highlights:
Signal Path played a hot Thursday set. Though I didn't get to see the Duo that night, I heard they brought it too! STS9 played throughout the night and into the morning, then they encored! I rocked out to J5 whose DJ's B-day it was! Umphrey's McGee never ceases to amaze me. They make it new every time I see 'em. The Mars Volta was superb, but I missed some of it to make it to STS9. I was in the perfect vibe to see Yonder Mountain when they played. Peter Rowan made me feel irie just before seein' Yonder. My Morning Jacket covered Prince (thanks Marc for the info). It was good! I always wanted to see the Word, and now that I have I can finally say Holy SH&T what a GREAT FUKCIN' COMBO?
The big suprise was Herbie Hancock...
Herbie Hancock is my idol on keys! Its a hard thing when brought face to face with a legend. I first saw Herbie when Richard Davis gave me his tix for the Madison Civic Center show in '97... but I had no idea the day would honor me with meeting him on, of all days, my birthday!

Thank you for all the B-Day songs, wishes, text messages, hugs and friends! I chilled a bunch with Bronko, Axtel, & Tammer. I even found Nathan (my personal Where's Waldo game) at the Sonic Stage. I met a bunch of incredibly cool folks from ChiTown I hope to hang with now and again.
I left ~8pm (skipped Widespread) and hit the road back home. On the way I thought about all the people I met this year and hung with and I'm amazed again. Thanks everyone for your part in the party. I appreciate your time and effort. I hope to keep in contact w/ ya! Cheers for Bonnaroo! Way to go!

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Tuesday, June 07, 2005

I just saw Franklin on TV

Dude I just saw Franklin in the audience at the Conan O'Brien show. It was just after Cedric The Entertainer was interviewed and a sketch that included prerecorded dialogue, a Santa Clause outfit and a supposed shemale. Franklin was wearing a red and white shirt and has grown in a lil bit of a beard right before the comercials rolled! Franklin, if you're readin' this, lookin' good brotha! I would have loved to have been there, even though the music guest could have been better. Michael Palin was there... speaking of Monty Python stuff, I hear Spamalot has made its way to Broadway. They polished it up in ChiTown before takin' it to the Big Apple. I wanted to see it here, but maybe I can get some tix for my next trip there.
~G.

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