Daaayaaamn, Folkfest folks! You hippies shonuf know how to THROW DOWN! This post is brought to you by capital letters and by the punctuation Exclamation Point!
Dusty and I got to Gallagher Park around 4:30 pm yesterday for the last evening of Folkfest. I love Edmonton's summer festivals for their multikulti hippie activities; Dusty loves them for their extensive beer gardens. There's something for everyone! After a wee nip of courage and a Fat Frank's hot dog, we met up with KPAX and his friend Jamie on the hill for Buck 65's short set. We all enjoyed his quirky electronica/spoken word jams. I think my October iTunes download will include bits of his new album. If only to hear him say again, in his 1970s Mustachioed Cop Voice: "Spread 'em, Sweetcheeks! Widerrr!"
Then it was back to the beer garden to get our drink on before Ozomatli. There is lots to do under the booze tents besides drink up, Johnny. It's a fantastic venue for people-watching. (Oh Brown-Shirted Cutiegirl, why did you mar your pretty face with that labret? You look like you have a metallic zit on your chin.) It's the perfect place to meet up with friends old and new. (Thanks again for the tricks, Magic Dave!) Best of all, it's where you find beautiful boys.
Awww yeahhh! Ladies, you may commence fighting over the cutielicious bachelor in the green shirt. His name is Keith and he is that yummy in real life. Rowr! Trust me, girls, once you get to know this man, you're gonna want to hug him and squeeze him and kiss him and love him and call him honeykins. He is seriously that adorable. What? Oh no, no, no. Hunny in the blue shirt is mine. Back off, bitches.
As soon as we finished our drinks, we headed up the hill to drop our stuff off at our hard-won tarp. Ozomatli was about to take the stage, so it was time to grab my girl Laurel and GET OUR DANCE ON!
When Ozomatli first started playing, there were still some folks sitting on their lawn chairs, old-school hippies who weren't quite sure what to make of this Latin reggae world beat hip-hop business. One of the band members told the crowd that Ozomatli is the Aztec god of DANCE and they are, in fact, playing his music. "So get up and DANCE!" Heh. Soon enough, the spirit of the beat took hold and everyone was on their feet, movin', groovin'.
"And if the time and the day is right / The revolution will begin / Dip, dive, socialize." We dipped, we dived, we socialized. We were in constant motion for the entire set. The band exited the stage like Pied Pipers, beating on the drum and jamming on the trumpet, leading a parade of little kids straight down the center of the crowd. How awesome is that?! If you said SO FUCKIN' AWESOME, you are correct!
We had but a moment's rest before Michael Franti and Spearhead jumped onstage. Michael Franti is from San Francisco, but he lived here for a year in his teens. He pulled the "Rock on, Springfield!" move, calling out Edmonton every chance he got. The crowd went nuts when he dropped the name of his high school. But Dusty and I got HELLA loud when he called out San Francisco. NoCal in the hizz!
By the time Spearhead played the song that lends its name to this post, the entire hillside was one body -- pulsing, dancing, jumping! The energy was AMAZING! I didn't take any photos during the set; I wanted to be completely lost in the moment, just another wave in the undulating sea of humanity. Can't stop to hold a camera when everybody's ona move! Lalala!
One last call for alcohol...
Salut! To Ozomatli for ROCKIN' OUT! Cheers! To Michael Franti and Spearhead for getting the entire hillside to jump! Ganbei! To KPAX for insisting that we check out Buck 65's show! Yamas! To Laurel for doing the 6 a.m. tarp run every year! Prost! To next year's Folkfest! Let's see you top this one!