Most Important Shows of The Decade

Bonnaroo Music Festival | 06/21/02 - 06/23/02
Manchester, TN

Photo of Phil Lesh and Friends with Bob Weir at Bonnaroo 2002 by Dave Vann
Selling out 70,000 tickets in advance to an untried mega-festival in the Tennessee hills with roots in the jam scene would have been accomplishment enough, but the inaugural Bonnaroo had ripples far beyond great sales. In no small way, Bonnaroo put this subculture on the larger cultural map, joining Coachella and Lollapalooza as one of few festivals covered by MTV and other mainstream outlets. However, from the start Bonnaroo has embraced tradition and heritage artists AND cutting edge talent in a way no other super-sized fest had, putting the likes of Blind Boys of Alabama and the Del McCoury Band right next to Ween and Les Claypool. In going big from the get-go, Bonnaroo established itself overnight as a destination for music lovers worldwide. Using the abundant energy and vast subterranean network of live music loving jam fans, the organizers launched something part intrinsically "jam" that was also something much, much larger in scope and vision. While subsequent years have found the likes of Tool, Bruce Springsteen and Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers headlining, for some 'Roo vets there's perhaps no more enduring, moving set than Widespread Panic performing one of their final shows with Michael Houser this first year, a pulsating, powerhouse display that included "Testify" with Dottie Peoples, where Dave Schools says he looked out over the crowd and they were "levitating." In an age where small ideas and limited expectations prevail Bonnaroo actively reaches for grandeur and all those involved are encouraged to stretch beyond their normal limitations and ways of seeing. (Dennis Cook)

2002 Bonnaroo Artist Lineup: Widespread Panic * Trey Anastasio * Ben Harper * The String Cheese Incident * Phil Lesh and Friends (w/Bob Weir) * Bela Fleck & Edgar Meyer * Galactic with Trombone Shorty and Corey Henry * Gov't Mule * Jack Johnson * Norah Jones * Jurassic 5 * Karl Denson's Tiny Universe * Les Claypool * moe. * Ween * Keller Williams (WMD's) * Acoustic Syndicate * The Big Wu * Blind Boys of Alabama * Blackalicious * John Butler Trio * Campbell Brothers * Colonel Claypool's Bucket of Bernie Brains * Cut Chemist * The Del McCoury band * Dirty Dozen Brass Band * The Disco Biscuits * Gabe Dixon Band * Donna The Buffalo * Dottie Peoples * Drums & Tuba * Gran Torino * Col. Bruce Hampton & The Code Talkers * Corey Harris * Lil' Rascals Brass Band * Llama * DJ Logic * Mofro * North Mississippi Allstars * Old Crow Medicine Show * Particle * RANA * Soulive * Amon Tobin * Umphrey's McGee * Jim White * Vinroc * Z-Trip * Mark Eddie * Mike Birbiglia * Vic Henley

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