Friday, February 6, 2009

Bands Not-to-Miss at Bonnaroo 2009 and Why

Bruce Springsteen & the E Street Band
If you are one of the 130 millions or so who watched last week's Super Bowl Halftime Show, then you witnessed the man and the band with the top billing for this year's Bonnaroo Music Festival. Most of the reactions I've heard about that show aren't very good. I've heard the word terrible used a lot, however, no one cares enough to explain why they were terrible. I've heard a few people say that it was amazing, as well as the best halftime show in years. Personally, I thought Bruce sliding on stage, as well as serenading the cameras, was just way too cheesy, and that's not something I think of when I think of his music. As for the music, and ONLY the music, I thought they were great, and still sound great. My favorite song from the night was the new, "Working On A Dream."

Here are some thoughts. You can't compare the Super Bowl to Bonnaroo. I mean, Bonnaroo may be the Super Bowl of festivals, but these are two different shows that the band, has to approach in different ways. With the Super Bowl, you essentially have to pack a greatest hits type of show into a fifteen minute time frame, but not only that, it has to be something that caters to 130 million pop culturally educated viewers - people that know the Boss and his music.

The good thing about Springsteen and company headlining Bonnaroo is, they just have to get up there and rock, and they can do so for about as long as they want. My guess is that they'll play for somewhere between two and three hours. That'll be plenty of time for greatest hits, new material, some rare gems, as well as some covers.

So I say to you, before you see the Boss at Bonnaroo, try to keep those halftime show thoughts out of your head. There won't be any cheesiness at Bonnaroo. Bruce and the E Street Band will play along to the good vibes that the Bonnaroo crowd will offer.

For the past several years, it may have appeared to the viewer that the jamband scene was living a slow and brutal death. All of a sudden the masses of indie rock bands took over at festivals not just around the country, but the world.

Phish are returning after five years, which has seen successful projects by each members' solo projects. We have also heard about the good things that have come, stemming from Trey's arrest.

When it comes to playing the music, the Phish of 2009 will be very much the same Phish of the early 00's. But as people, the Phish of 2009 will be a much more maturer and sober Phish.

The members have become a little bit older, but a lot more wiser over the past several years, and I'm curious as to see what direction they'll be taking the band in the future.

But more than anything, it'll be a return to the fond memories of summertime and festivals for the Phish heads.

Phish will be performing two shows this year at Bonnaroo: a regular headline slot around 8 pm, as well as a latenight show, both on the What Stage on seperate days.

I can't wait to see Phish for the first time this summer, and I'm curious to see what they'll squeeze into two shows. Either way we'll be given countless hours for Phish's debut at Bonnaroo. You won't want to miss it!

Beastie Boys
Nine Inch Nails
David Byrne
Elvis Costello
Relentless 7
Paul Oakenfold
Band of Horses
Mars Volta
TV on the Radio
Girl Talk
Rodrigo y Gabriela
Bon Iver
Gov't Mule
Erykah Badu
Snoop Dogg

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