Bonnaroo 2009!

Phish, Bruce, Phish (Trey and Bruce played 3 songs together), three amazing days of fantastic music.

Thursday was long and borderline grumpy - Caleb's flight was delayed a full day, I waited in traffic solo for about 7 hours, but some folks had to wait 13 hours!! Pitched the tent on the cusp of a thunderstorm at 1:30 am, by then the ground was soaked and all roads muddy, but managed to stay dry enough to sleep well.

All worth it once the sun rose Friday morning - camping is some VIP (not us), some tent only (not us) and most camp with your car (us and most of the rest of the 100,000 people). HUGE farm and venue - 5 stages with music on all all the time - noon to 3, 4 am or later. Plus comedy, film and other side shows that I never even looked for or noticed. Ben Harper's show STARTED at 1:30 am. 20+ minute walk from our dry, breezy site under the oak on the hill to Centaroo; lots of vendors and mud in between.

The music was great - able to get almost as close as we wanted to every act. Surprisingly mellow crowd (more pot than hard alcohol I guess). Friday night for Phish we stayed in the back (pretty exhausted by then) but Saturday for Bruce and Sunday for Phish we were on the rail on "the pit". Phish put on two great shows, and Bruce is an amazing rock star.

In order, starting Friday mid-day and finishing after midnight Sunday, we enjoyed Vieux Farka Toure, Grace Potter (local girl go VT!), Yeah Yeah Yeahs (amazing performer, I'm hooked), TV on the Radio (mind blowing wall of sound), Beastie Boys (whatever), Phish, Alejandro Escovedo, Booker T and the DBTs, Rodrigo y Gabriela (stunning), Gov't Mule, Elvis Costello (amazing), Bruce Springsteen (I'm in awe, 3.5 hours non stop energy and music), Ben Harper (all new, rockin lead/bass/drums band), Robert Earl Keen, Merle Haggard (classic), Neko Case (special) and Phish (excellent, no set break!). Also slices of Lucinda Williams (AC DC cover), David Byrne, Heartless Bastards, St Vincent and MOE.

Bonus was camping next to Richard and daughter Ellie - from Atlanta but Richard was a bartender bum in Burlington and Stowe from 1970 - 1987 or so - kind of like being at a festival with a long lost drinking uncle. Really enjoyed sharing stories, history and sun tarp.

I'd definitely go again - especially now that I have some idea of how it works and how to prepare. Some couples were there with young kids - I would NOT bring mine.