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I should have gone. Damn I hate saying that.
That looks like it was a lot of fun, Cornmeal is tearing it up lately! I saw them at Hodi's in Ft. Collins last month, they tore it up! From good fun traditional bluegrass to a crazy awesome cover Pink Floyd's "Sheep", so much fun!
nice review & great pics. thanks.
i agree cornmeal is a great band. they have a set from moe.down in iclips right now, for anybody who's interested. tight bluegrassy jams down to spooky reggaeish stuff with bluegrass instruments, they're combining the old grass world with the future of what can be done on bluegrass instruments. i don't think i even have to mention the obvious appeal of the lovely Allie Kral, who is made only more smokin' by her ability to tear that fiddle a new one night after night. i really love tea leaf green as well, but i would like to see them expand their horizons a bit. i have a feeling they will only get more interesting as the years roll on, though. this fest looks like a blast.
Great Pics....everyone had a blast!!! The buildings were packed on Fri./Sat. with so much great energy...twice as good every year. I am little apprehensive for next year....the Rangers were more of a presence (especially for the wookies posting up for a week). I hope the wookies' lack of respect for all doesn't reflect on those who make this festival one of the best....It seems that law enforcement strives to stop these types of events. I cannot believe the amount of trash that some left in the forest. Saddening. Respect and consideration should be able to keep this event going for years to come!!! By the way, Wisebird was my "discovered" band for the weekend (didn't know about 'em)....they kick ass with soul.
Great review and pics. Always dig DC's write-ups.
P.S. That is Bobby from Delta Nove, not Underground Orchestra
HAVE YOU LOST YOUR TORTUGAS? Good! Onward to the land of!! Did you find a Lost tortilla? If you did, it was probably soggy....and not too intact....a little crumbled and found out....VIVA!!
Dennis Cook, I wish we could of met because your writing is close to my heart, always, and now more than ever! Big cheers and thanks for being here to write these kinds of words for what I think might be my favorite fest now as well.
High Sierra or Torts? BOTH....but being a big Blue Turtle fan that I am, there is something truly magical and fullfilling when I get to see one of my fave bands do it up 4 nights in a row, and this year VERY EXCELLENT....nice job BTS!! 'Tiache' on night one in the Tuolomne Hall was a highlight, as well as Roll 99 and Changing Lanes in the Big Top. I agree, Saturday night was their best set of the fest, and one of the top 3 I have ever seen them do. Sunday they closed the festival with miraculous sit ins with Hot Butterd Rum as they did Nat Keefe's "Honkey tonk Tequila". Allie from Cornmeal played fiddle for Ignition Remix as did Ken from Victor Barnes play his acoustic G, and Lebo and Zach Gill did a whoppin Turtle sit in for Stripper Song (gentlemans club) which peaked the fest as Zach sang in his Satanic Inferno "Lassss TortUUUGAAAAASSS!!!" In a melody that Christian announced we would have in our heads as we drove home tomorrow. Sure enough, Zach Gills devilish festivalllllll call rang in my head as I drove up 99 to sac the next day. Now that I think about it, maybe Zach is to Tortugas as Vince Herman is to High Sierra....laas torttUUUUGAAAAASSSS!!!
Cornmeal was awesome and it was so perfect to have their debut in CA be High Sierra and TOrtugas. I really felt their Salmonesque Cheesey grooves in the Tuolomne Hall set on saturday night. Their Paul Simon "50 Ways To Leave Your Lover" cover on Sunday got everyone in a New Era mode....
I know Dennis cant be everywhere, but its too bad he missed what I thought was the BEST part of the festival all the way around: Allie Kral of Cornmeal sitting in with Tea Leaf Green on Saturday night. WOW. TLG makes one sassy and dirty anyhow, the MOJO in the room was just on fiya in the TORRENTIAL RAIN, the sensual world was at its TOP PEAK, and Allie comes out and just gnarls it up so gracefully and magically, I knew it was to be my highlight. If I get to hear that on disc again someday I will be most grateful.
Underground Orchestra impressed me with some song they were singing "Remember...! Remember...!" all funked up.....while some of their music was a tad janky for my tastes, it all warmed up with a SWEEET cover of Nirvana's "In Bloom"
Montana Slim sported some super sexy bluegrass....I never really enjoyed Monophonics til this round and boy were they fun....classy stuff.
It was so great to see Butter again, Desert Rat waws another highlight for me, and Return Someday conjured up the spirit of Missy Baron RIP who is one of HBR's biggest fan, and came with me to the first Yosemite hallowen in 2005, HBR's "Harvest Meltdown". This ones for you, Missy. HBR's "Hugs not Handshakes" the next day envoked her full spirit as we know how much it wanted to be there in the flesh.
Although the rain dampened the usual Tortugas rituals of campfire pit jams and sol vista serenades, the toughness of one thing led to more of another. I saw much more music with the rain going than I normally do at this fest and there was a Krazy Koziness that unfurled in pitchfork fervor thruout the weekend that torked melencholy into the festyval spirit in a beautiful way.
My only complaint were the asshole ghetto lot wookies that made their way to the forests and kind of took a big dump on the usual comfort level I have at Evergreen. My friend had put her burger down on a picnic table and without even taking her eyes off it, some shit ball takes it and eats it. They also trashed the rec hall, making the staff have to take the internet away by Sunday. They left their kinds unattended: the usual suspects and crap you have to deal with when the gangsta hippies come in. Hopefully Vegoose or something else will be back next year to catch their attention.
One thing they did prove, was that we can have an amazing All Time High Festy full of strength in the community and Super Awesome Magic Luv Parade of Consciousness and Comaraderie out shine any tag along undesirable energy. Its hard to judge, but in this case, these people were the symbol of judgement and how sometimes you just cant help but to do so.
Back by the soundboard haystacks was a consistent Tortuga parade of friends and family, I met a guy named Joe, or was it Slash, or was it a Jehovah Witness? Whoever you are, I had an amazing time dancing with you all those nights and am sad I never got your contact info. Sometimes the moment outlives us all. To quote Morcheeba of what I chant to myself after Las Tortugas,
"With the moonlight to guide you
feel the joy of being alive
the day that you stop running
is the day that you arrive.
And the might that you got locked in
was the time you realized
Stop chasing shadows
just enjoy the ride"
Hope we can meet again soon and be friends!!
Nice photos, I especially love the one of Tistrya Hamilton as a Marilyn Monroe oh so classy!! Her spirit IS Tortugas and it wood not bee the same without her voice and song.
Big love to the festival promoters who are on the page in the process and feelin everyone and freakin their own free, sharing it with this community!
This one was probably my toughtest to come down from, I think due to rains and time change...Ive had it easier after Burning Man....hahaha but Tortugas took a solid WEEK to get over metally physically and spritually. My house finally seems normal.
From the air horns of LOUD CAMP to the tavern jigs, sweating in the Tuolomne, dancing in the drops and kickin rocks...Great friends and ponderosa blocks.....Emotions are advocated and people fested OUT of open heart and mind surgery, tequila flowed like water Sunday night, my dreams are forever agave'd.
AAAHHHHH THAT BOBOJEFFIE POST WAS FROM ME!!! now you all know my secret Jambase name. Wooops!
Anyways, I will take credit for that post!! (and now have to come up with a new secret jambase name....uh-oh)
"the Rangers were more of a presence (especially for the wookies posting up for a week). I hope the wookies' lack of respect for all doesn't reflect on those who make this festival one of the best....It seems that law enforcement strives to stop these types of events. I cannot believe the amount of trash that some left in the forest. Saddening. Respect and consideration should be able to keep this event going for years to come!!"
It is sad and something has got to be done. They were shooting off guns, thats dangerous and can really wreck a vibe. Somethings gotta get worked out for next year to not be like that....ugh
I knew it was a little wierd when I saw a rugged sing on the way in that said "Shakedown street" that there was going to be some problems. Wookies go away!!!!
Great writing, thanks! Really described the feel of the fest. What a great time, despite the weather.
That's funny, when I read "BoboJeffie"s review, I thought, hmm, this sounds like Red Heaven :):)
Agreed on the wookies, not too bad inside but walking down the road a few times - yikes!
There was really 1000 people there? Didn't seem like it, although the hall was waaay too packed every night. Also agreed on Cornmeal. They seriously rock it! Buncha show on archive.org, check it out!
Nice pic of LBunny :)
Yeah its great to see the pic of Lud Bunny, and also Jean, Brendan and Zeke inside the hoop! Great pics all around tho Im a bit dissapointed that a handful of them have the kitchen and storage room as a backdrop. WTF? Plenty of better places to take pics....like the one of the goofy couple by the haystacks, thats what I remember. I mean, a flourescent lit kitchen w/dish slats doesnt really give me the feel of Tortugas, ya know? Sorry I just have to be a little bit of a critic, I do enough gushing and stoking. ;)
~Bobo the Clown
I was so close to going to this...I'm so bummed I missed out. Definitely going next year...and I hope I get some of that !@#$ they had!!
Josh.....Amazing pictures man. Once again I believe to have capture the entire weekend, but not ever being there.
Heard it was a fantastic time this year! So glad my friends had a good time :-) Great writing, Dennis. You never disappoint!
HEY TORTOOGS: Post your pic links! Would love to see more, especially from this photographer if he so kindly has a website, I know theres a lot more to see.....I didnt bust my camera out til Sat eve!! More pics, please? And how about that Foto guy taking all of the promesque pics, hoping to get that email soon!
haha!! RedHeaven has a secret JamBase alias - don't we all?!
Great fest, tons of fun. ALO Saturday night was quite a late night reunion for the band, amazing tunes! Wookies really dampened the spirit out in the campgrounds and in the rec room. The fest needs more security if it will continue.
Such a cool festival. Hiking in Yosemite, awesome young bands, small easily accessible site, what's not to love? The rain was relentless, so I feel lucky to have been in a cabin. Not sure if it would have been as much fun in a tent, but it was a blast. And costumes every night! Halloween festivals are such a great idea. It was hard to not have a smile on your face the whole weekend.
one of the greatest music fests of my life. thanks hafty and crew! and thanks to dennis and josh for the review and pics!
Nice pics, Josh and a great review, Dennis. Las Tortugas is a really fun festival. Sorry I missed it this year.
LORD i need another festival!!!!!!
Thank you all so so much for your kind words and support! It is a true joy putting the event on for all of you. And rest assured that the issues in the forest will be corrected for next year.
such a fun time, i cant wait till next year!
Hi, I have added some videos on youtube from the festival... Thanks to all who assisted in putting this together and for all the great music throughout the weekend...
PS, my girl and I fell in love on this trip....