Lollapalooza Day 1 – Friday, August 5, 2011
I had tried to get in a comprehensive write up of Lollapalooza in last week. I got pretty deep in to it one day after work – like 1500+ words in to it – and that only covered one and a half days. That’s a bit much, so here’s a shorter breakdown of how things went.
Day 1 – Friday, August 5, 2011
I entered the park through the main gate at about 12:30 and made my way to TAB the Band at the PlayStation stage. Being a gear junkie (and this being a blog about microphones), I immediately spied a line of SM58® on UHF-R® across the stage. It turned out that those were the house mics and they were used for almost every act at that spot. After TAB the Band wrapped up I stopped for a few minutes to listen to Young the Giant at the Bud Light main stage. I was quite a ways off, but could spy on the massive screen a Super 55 being used every so often. Always nice to hear the updated classic in action.
After a few songs I made my way to the the Kidz stage. Kidzapalooza is curated by one of the Shure family, endorsing producer and performer, Tor Hyams. Before running backstage to say “hello” I stopped in stage’s bazaar to visit the Hip Hop Workshop. This was a space where kids could come in and say a few lines in to a mic and, thanks to the talents of two DJs and an MC, end up on a real track made up on the fly. They were using a few sets of our headphones, the SRH750DJs, and had some pretty high praise for them. I have recently started using them myself around the office, and was happy to geek out with them over it. I wound my way back stage to meet up with our endorser.
After a quick catch-up I made my way back to PlayStation to catch new endorsers, Smith Westerns. I’d seen them earlier in the Spring at local venue, The Empty Bottle. They were good then and much tighter still now. We grabbed a quick word after their set and then it was off to explore the grounds.
The most noticeable expansion from years past was at Perry’s, the area showcasing electronic music and DJ culture. I ran past it several times over the weekend and each time it was either packed or really packed. The festival organizers have stated that this is where they see the most growth happening for Lollapalooza in the foreseeable future. Like it or not (and I do), electronic music is here to stay.
After an exploratory walk-about I ran backstage to see who I could see. Lolla draws a crowd from anywhere and everywhere. Back in the artist lounge I ran in to several touring guys and girls whom I’ve come to know in my years at this job. It is a great place to catch up and see who has been up to what. Some were working, some were just there to hang out. The latter is something I find fascinating about Lolla – you probably have a good festival if you’re getting people that eat, live, and breathe the music industry every day to go and just hang out in their off-time.
I ended my evening with Muse, which is never disappointing. After they tore it up it was time to head out for some late-night dining with some industry friends. Nothing too crazy – there were two more days to go!