My second day in Chicago was my first day at Lollapalooza. I used to go to Lollapalooza in the early 90s when it was a traveling festival. Now it takes place in Grant Park in downtown Chicago. It is such a great festival – very organized and clean with lots of food and drink and of course music, lots and lots of music. I left the hotel at 11am, saw 9 bands, drank 3 sweet teas and 1 water, and ate 2 pieces of pizza before returning to the hotel just after 8:30pm – and I did not pee the entire day or get sunburned.
Just past Buckingham Fountain, I made my way to what was going to become my favorite stage, BMI stage. It’s completely shaded with trees.
I got to the BMI Stage just in time for These United States’ last song. They are kind of a folky, countryish, pop group from Lexington, KY.
Following These United States were The Ettes from Nashville, but they are not a country band. They rock out like Joan Jett.
I met up with Tasha and Roseann, and we went over to the Budweiser Stage to see Mavis Staples, a gospel legend and Chicago native. She was fantastic and 70 years old.
We caught the last song of American Bang’s set. They are also from Nashville, and they sound like an 80s hairband. I made my way over to the Kidzapalooza Stage to see Ed Kowalczyk from Live. While waiting for Ed, I watched the kids band Rocknoceros. They are not kids, but they play songs for kids. This is a great family stage where the little kids can enjoy Lollapalooza too. It’s a stage where independent artists play. Ed Kowalczyk used to be the lead singer for Live, but is now solo. Ed was great. He played just 3 songs – him and his guitar. He closed with ‘Lightening Crashes’!
I ran from Ed’s performance to make sure I did not miss Devo performing their 80s smash ‘Whip It.’ I got to the Parkways Stage in plenty of time. This is my least favorite stage – muddy, smelly and very crowded. Unfortunately, Soundgarden is playing there Sunday. I did not that close to Devo, so I watched them on the big screen. I did hear ‘Whip It’ though and that was fun.
Along with the great music, there are some great views at Lollapalooza.
I made my way across Grant Park back to the Budweiser Stage for The Black Keys. I love any band who puts its drummer up front!
After The Black Keys exciting drum driven set, we made our way back across Grant Park again to the dreaded Parkways stage to wait for Lady Gaga. And wait we did, for an hour. She finally came on and all I heard from her opening song was Madonna’s Vogue, but at least I gave her a chance. Still don’t know what all the hype is about. Sorry monsters.
I left Lady Gaga after 2 songs and went back to the hotel, where I promptly showered the day’s dirt off of me – and finally peed! It was a great and exhausting first day at Lollapalooza.
Please watch my videos of day 1 of Lollapalooza:
getting into Lollapalooza http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AakcrsauehI
These United States http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KBZ2PdVB06U
Mavis Staples http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_Gn8o4x9fJ8
Ed Kowalczyk http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uBMT_Ph9RZs
The Black Keys http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ifH-7didldw