The final day of Pitchfork Music Festival 2009 presented everything from great feets of human determination and strength to gigantic floating bubbles.
Pharoahe Monch, The Walkmen, Blizten Trapper and The Flaming Lips all showed why they were in Pitchfork Festival’s elite when it comes to putting on a live show that can lift a crowd to higher ground and put on a performance that transcends the stage. I’ll expand more on why and how in my forthcoming music review on Ink19.
- The Great Feets of Live Music Fans
- An Upcoming Film With Jack White, Jimmy Paige and The Edge
- How I Got My Senses Licked By the Flaming Lips
Great Feets of Human Ability
Great performances weren’t only coming from the 3 stages at Pitchfork. Each day during the Festival Saucony shoes had a very deftly placed display of their own. It was the festival’s main metropolis for engaging fans in a mind and body challenge. From naming the most Michael Jackson songs in a minute (20) to the most double high-fives (319) in one minute, fans put themselves to the test in many ways. I was able to capture one attempt at greatness as two fans set out to complete the most double high-fives in one minute. It was a dramatic and tense moment so I apologize for the video’s (below) jerky and slightly shaky feel.
It Might Get Loud
Part of the fun of festivals is finding all the subplots flowing beneath the surface. There were many subplots on Sunday. So as I strolled around the grounds before the music started I saw three guys curiously blowing up beach balls. I thought this might be great way to show the before effects of one of live concerts: the beach ball. But I discovered much much more– and made a new friend.
Sam Peter from Cornerstone promotions informed me that the beach balls were part of promotion for a forthcoming film called It Might Get Loud due this fall featuring Jack White, Jimmy Paige and The Edge. Sam also told me that the film includes many live music moments. I scoped out the trailer and it looks like this film should be a good one for live music fans to check out.
My Senses Licked by The Flaming Lips
Last but certainly not least, I’d like to share with you the opening moments of the Flaming Lips set. It was a honor and a pleasure to have my Blackberry Storm be included in a sea of other fans holding up cellphones to capture the seven minutes of visual and sonic stimulation exploding from the stage.
The Flaming Lips spared no psychedelics as Wayne Coyne came out last from behind the giant video screen and squirted himself into in his signature gigantic bubble. He rolled himself of the stage and floated above the crowd as blasts of confetti and light towers lit up the crowd.
YouTube is full of these exact moments and I’ve seen the Flaming Lips live show before. But there is definitely something special about joining in with others to capture it all in video. It was a video communal experience that was new to me and I had a blast experiencing the Flaming Lips in a new more documentary concert experience.
Marveling at the Micro of the Magnificent
As I walked towards my car I noticed all the blasted confetti sprinkled on the sidewalk outside the venue. I picked up a single piece and thought about the little things again. I thought about how a single tiny piece of confetti can bring back the memories and emotionally represent such a massive and communal event. I smiled when I saw another group of fans walking home and swinging around one of the balloons that The Flaming Lips had released into the crowd. It was truly a magnificent event.
More Live Lips Coming Up…
This video below has not been edited. But in the days since the Flaming Lips show I’ve made notes about all the various sensory stimulations that occurred during the show. That said, I will be making various annotations and additions to this video with notes on how and why a Flaming Lips show impacts all our senses. If you were at the show, you’re welcome to add your own annotations to the video once I have shared it.
Whenever I see that floating bubble I wonder what’s it like to be beneath it. If you were or have ever been beneath the infamous Wayne Coyne bubble I’d like to get your perspective, too.
What were your favorite moments of Pitchfork 2009?