Bonnaroo 2010 Preview

Sunday, June 13

1. Worst Conflict of the Week :: 4:00-6:30 pm :: What, Which, This, That & The Other Stages
It happens every year, and 2010 is no different, at one point there will be at least two, three, or even four, must-see acts playing at the same time, and this year there are FIVE! This weekend, the crossover occurs late Sunday afternoon. Creedence Clearwater Revival frontman/60s icon John Fogerty (What Stage :: 4:00-5:30 p.m.) has still got it, and his familiar voice still sounds like its beaming out of an AM radio. This year he'll be making his Bonnaroo debut on the main stage (he's also an extremely underrated guitar player). Also, from 5:00-6:30 p.m., Ween will be playing over on Which Stage. We don't have to tell you to at least stop in. The set which should perhaps spark the most curiosity out of this quintet would have to be aggressive Boston rockers Dropkick Murphys (This Tent :: 5:00- 6:15 p.m.), who have promised to scare off the hippies with their aggressive, bag-piping brand of punk rock. Should be interesting to see a band even try to get a dog-tired Bonnaroo crowd riled up on late Sunday afternoon. Next, the all-time great tunesmith Kris Kristofferson will be in That Tent from 4:30-6:00 p.m., and things will likely get legendary. Finally, you've got the campy, cheeky post-punk rockers They Might Be Giants over in The Other Tent from 4:30-5:45 p.m. to make the decision even tougher. Guess there could be worst choices to make.

2. Phoenix :: 7:15-8:45 pm :: Which Stage
One of better live acts currently touring, if there is one band that can bring back the crowd-surfing, sing- along, Glastonbury-type scene one last time before DMB closes it out it's these Versailles rockers who established themselves in 2009 as a force to be reckoned with in popular music with the release of the aptly- named Grammy-winning album Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix. Phoenix's brilliantly crafted rock songs are as catchy as they are sophisticated, and a lot of up-and-coming synth-y indie bands should take note of Phoenix's subdued usage of the synthesizer - just the right amount in just the right places without overdoing it.

3. Medeski Martin & Wood :: 6:15- 7:45 pm :: The Other Tent
Kinda weird, but also kinda nice to see MMW playing at the festival's smallest of the major venues. Those looking to get a head start on the traffic out before the Dave Matthews Band are gonna wanna stick around for one last blowout with these uber-talented jazz pioneers and who, along with Les Claypool, DJ Logic, Umphrey's McGee, John Butler Trio, Galactic, Ween and Norah Jones, make up the returning alumni from the Bonnaroo charter class of 2002.

No one lucky enough to attend the inaugural Bonnaroo Music & Arts Festival in 2002 could've foreseen the great transformation and amazing growth that the event has undergone in its first nine years. However, the seed for growth and constant evolution was planted in the early planning stages of the first edition of the festival. The early focus of the event was centered mostly on musically boundless genres, with programming largely revolving around improvisational jam bands, bluegrass, jazz, DJ's, funk and New Orleans music. The creators had a simple mission and that was to recreate the round-the-clock experience of Jazz Fest with the late night shows, food, and lagniappe, but instead of requiring hotels, the vision of Bonnaroo was to create a small, sustainable city for four days in the middle of nowhere in the dead of summer and invite the world's finest bands to master the ceremonies. The crazy thing is that thus far the wildly risky experiment has paid off in spades, producing some of the most indescribably enjoyable times most folks will ever have. Bring an open mind, see at least one act you've never heard of each day, and be kind to your camping neighbors and they'll do the same. Good luck and good times on the good road to Bonnaroo 2010!

Continue reading for Wesley Hodges' special Bonus Feature of Bonnaroo "A Timeline Through The Years"...

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