February 1, 2011

In the fine print they tell me what's wrong and what's right.

This past weekend was the Ann Arbor Folk Festival. Each year, the festival is put on by a local concert venue to raise money. This was the second time I've gone. My work is a sponsor, so two years ago, I was able to snag a few free tickets and my and my dad went togther. It was really great! The seats were super close and we saw a lot of great bands that year (Old Crow Medicine Show, Carolina Chocolate Drops, Joe Pug, The Ragbirds, Ryan Montbleau Band, Katie Herzig, and Jeff Tweedy with Jim Lauderdale acting as MC).

I didn't get to go last year, but this year, a volunteer opportunity was offered and I was able to see the show for free. I had to help set up for the intermission, which wasn't too hard at all, and in return I got to hang out backstage and watch the show! Lucky me!

I had to be there around 6:15, so I left my house super early so I could get gas and some cash but the line at the ATM was hella long, so I skipped it. Big mistake! Of course, every parking structure downtown was "Cash Only" and it's next to impossible to find street parking on a good night in downtown Ann Arbor, let alone a Friday night. Long story short, I pulled into my parking space by the library, which is on the other side of downtown, at 6:09. I booked it to the auditorium and made it on time (which was nothing short of a miracle) but then went in the wrong door and got lost *inside* the auditorium! Only me, I swear haha I was supposed to be back stage and could not for the life of me figure out how to get back there! Luckily, a security guard helped me out and I made it back there only a few minutes late...phew!

We didn't have anything to do right away, so I was able to stand by the stage doors and watch the first half of the show, which included Theo Katzman and his band The Love Massive, Anais Mitchell, The Paper Raincoat, The Spring Standards, and Vienna Teng with Alex Wong. I use the word "watch" loosley, since, because of all the people and my lack of height, I wasn't able to see much. But I was able to hear everything and it was really great. I was definitely standing at the back of everyone, dancing by myself haha

After setting up and cleaning up intermission, we were able to stay and watch the rest of the bands. By then the back stage area had cleared out a bit so I had a little better view of everything :-)

I was amazed that out of the 7 or 8 people who were volunteering only 1 or 2 of us stayed till the end. I mean, how could you pass up free music to begin with, but great music that also happened to be free!?!?! Just plain craziness...

After intermission, Citizen Cope came out and did a solo set. I really, really like him. He has more of a hip hop vibe to him when he has his band, which I love and I was really stoked to see him do the acoustic set. A lot of people I talked to didn't like it as much, but I think maybe he was geared toward the younger people at the show. But for what it's worth, I was totally backstage singing (and dancing, of course hehe) along :-)

After that, the headlines came out. My dad had wanted to come and see them but didn't end up buying tickets in time. The Avett Brothers were *amazing*! They rocked the entire time-had so much energy, looked like they were having so much fun up there and played damn good music while doing so. If they come back to town, I would love to see them do a whole set.

I also had a few obersvations I made while there...
Folk Fest 34 observations
  • Sweating profusely is never a good luck (see my sprint across downtown A2)
  • Boys with guitars are cute.
  • Boys with drumsticks are cute.
  • Boys who wear hats are cute. (seeing a trend? hehe)
  • If you are opening a Tunisian resturant, don't wear a harissa shirt.
  • You and your friend can't wear the same dress, even if it's in two different colors. People can still tell, and it looks weird.
  • I'm probably too judgemental for my own good.
After they finished up, I headed back home and it was back to the grind up Saturday morning. I was a little bummed I could only go to Friday night-Mavis Staples was headlining the next night. I saw her a few years back at a local music fest and I still remember it, probably 10 years later-it was just that good.

As far an my normal life, it's been a pretty average week at work and with school so that's good.

Everyone is gearing up for "Snow-pocolypse 2011" tonight. I've heard predictions with anywhere from 10-24 inches between now and tomorrow, but considering it's almost 6 and I'm nto seeing any snow, I'm starting to doubt the likelyhood of that. Also, the winds are supposed to be 20-30mph and the term "blizzard conditions" has been thrown around a lot today. Apparently, it's supposed to start around 7, pick up around 10pm and do the bulk of the snowing between 10pm tonight and 10am tomorrow morning. I'm staying at my parents so I can use my jeep to bulldoze through everything tomorrow morning, so it would be really helpful if the county/city would stay on top of the salting/plowing tonight, althought I seriously doubt that will happen.

But hey, I can hope, can't I? :-)

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