Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Nicole Atkins + Speakers in Code | Bonnaroo or Bust

Well, friends, it's that time again. Time to drive to that farm in Manchester, TN, to wait a few hours in my car so I can then struggle to set up a tent in 90-something degree heat. It's time to leave the comforts of my home, my awesome dogs, and my laptop for four days so I can find some kind of peace with more than 80,000 people, sometimes shoulder-to-shoulder, other times alone in thought for just a few moments. It's time to wake up every morning at around 6:00 AM in a microwave, with my first thought being, "What the hell am I doing here?"

I'm really selling this, aren't I?

Well, last year was my first Bonnaroo, and I learned a few things. If you're going for the first time, I would consider the following:

--If you find yourself at a stage where you're really enjoying the music you're hearing, just stay. Don't worry about what you're missing, or where you need to be next. Enjoy the moment, because nothing is guaranteed at the next stage. Grab a hold of something you love and don't let go.

--When you want to take a break, do it at the comedy tent or the cinema tent. They're both air conditioned, and they're often easy to get into. Take an hour or so to cool down.

--Don't drink heavily during the day. If you want to enjoy yourself at night, when many of the greats sets are taking place, save your buzz for later when it's a bit cooler.

--Talk with your fellow campers. Sure, you'll find some d-bags here and there, but you'll be much better off if the people around you are ones you can talk to. Especially if you end up needing a favor.

--Bring your own breakfast, and eat it first thing when you wake. Take a vitamin. Drink water or Gatorade. Relax while your body wakes up. The music doesn't start until noon, so you have time. Remember, you're doing this for four days, not just one.

--If you're not receiving text messages, call your voice mail, let it connect, and then hang up. Worked for me.

Okay. That's enough from me. Let's talk about Nicole Atkins, the singer-songwriter from New Jersey who will be making her second appearance at Bonnaroo. She'll be performing her main set on Sunday at 1:30 at The Other Tent (click here for the Bonnaroo schedule), and while I'm secretly hoping she plays "Neptune City," chances are we'll get to hear almost every song off her latest awesome album, Mondo Amore, like this sweet jam:

Nicole Atkins - Cry Cry Cry

We recently asked Nicole to give us her "Top 10 reasons why she's excited about Bonnaroo." And you know what? Forget my G-rated guidelines above. Listen to Nicole. Her party is a lot cooler than mine.

1. Getting to see Buffalo Springfield!
2. The Ice Cream man!
3. Getting to play 3 sets in one day. HOLY HELL!
4. Being in the South with a bunch of party peoples.
5. Robert Fucking Plant
6. Mavis Staples and Loretta Lynn
7. Playing my song "The Tower," for a festival crowd.
8. Resting my dawgs at the comedy tent.
9. Campfires and psychedelics
10. Go carts!

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