Thursday Seems a Century Away: NMF ’17 Comes to a Close< < Back to
Four days of music, standing, art, standing, friends (both new and old), standing, moshing, standing, standing and standing. I feel like that song “Zombie” by The Cranberries except instead of being about violence in Northern Ireland it’s about how tired I am.
That isn’t to say there wasn’t enjoyment to be had at Nelsonville Music Festival 2017’s fourth and final day, quite the opposite in fact. It’s my gumption to pack every second with as much of the irresistible atmosphere and endless performance that has brought me to this point of exhaustion.
My own action being my own demise. Classic Shakespearean stuff.
My Sunday funday has kicked off by Athens quartet The Crooked Spines, who chilled off the sunny crowd with light splashes of guitars equal parts misty and tangy. One of my lasting impressions of NMF 2017 is how much all of my fellow Athens comrades tore it down. A good handful of my favored acts came from my second hOUme (oh jeez can you believe that’s something I just typed?) and these Spines were able to get me up and gliding through the day.
I feel like that song “Zombie” by The Cranberries except instead of being about violence in Northern Ireland it’s about how tired I am.
Later on in the afternoon were Akron’s Wesley Bright & The Honeytones. Initially on the porch stage was just The Honeytones, a shrieking horn section bursting at the seems with positive energy. This was already entertaining on its own, but it begged the question, “Which one is Wesley Bright and why does his name get to be in the front?” Both these questions were answered as the band introduced, with the pageantry of a king, the titular front-man of the group. Bright is a throwback through-and-through, with his voice demanding the attention of everyone within a five-mile radius of the festival site. The group got the bodies bobbing up and down with high-energy and irresistible hits.
Playing the final set of the festival was the immortal Emmylou Harris. The Nashville song-weaver needs no introduction, laying the festival to rest gently but passionately. The seventy year old legend still strums with purpose, and her voice sticks itself in your ear-drums as much as ever. Her aura is warm and the crowd gathers fittingly in front of her in droves. I’m sure many people were as sore as I was at this point, but nothing was going to stop them from basking in the country star’s glow. It would be difficult to come up with a more fitting end to the NMF 2017 experience.
This is the end, isn’t it? It seems like weeks ago that we started together on Thursday. Time really does move slower on the Nelsonville grounds and this serves for serial escape artists find their canvas. It isn’t real life. For four days you step into a weird, nearly identical but not quite there world. An uncanny valley filled with a splatter of art and tunes and everything one could ask for.
I think the internet has killed nostalgia. How am I poetically waning over something that’s happened just four days ago? Jeez. I had such a blast and I’m just glad I could experience it. I hope you all have enjoyed taking in my first music festival with me. And hey, it’s not all goodbyes, here’s to NMF ’18!
-It took four days but I finally got my grubby mitts on a funnel cake. The doughy mound has been NMF 2017’s most elusive treat, with lines regularly hitting the twenty minute mark. My strategy was to snag one at noon, which leads to my final lesson of the weekend: funnel cake aren’t breakfast food.
-Best band shirts?
3. A Bruce Springsteen – Greetings for Asbury Park, N.J. shirt. Perhaps this is cheating as it was worn by fellow WOUB crew member Jacob Hock.
2. An LCD Soundsytem shirt. Maybe their next “last show” can be at Nelsonville?
1. A Best Coast/Seinfeld mash-up shirt. Two random things! And I don’t even really like Best Coast!
-The moment I really knew I made it: joining in this afternoon’s iteration of the semi-spooky parade. A funnel cake, mosh-pit and parade in a 24 hour period is what we like to call a Nelsonville Music Festival hat trick. Remember that for next year folks. 365 and counting.