6 Cool Things Witnessed on Bonnaroo 2013 Friday
Friday was a landmark day for Manchester, Tennessee's Bonnaroo festival, because a little cult artist named Paul McCartney played. Perhaps you've heard of him? A full report on Macca's Beatlemaniacal extravaganza can be read here, but of course, many other fantastic acts — among them Grizzly Bear, the xx, Wu-Tang Clan, and Passion Pit — graced Bonnaroo's dozen stages on Friday.
Aside from Sir Paul, here are the other standout moments from day two of 'Roo:
ZZ Top Were Bonnaroo's Sharpest-Dressed Men
Let Jack Johnson wear cargo shorts and flippity-flops. That ain't Billy Gibbons and Dusty Hill's style. When the ZZ Top legends played a blistering blues-rock set in This Tent, they came dressed to impress, in matching Nudie-suit blazers, bowler hats, and beards so long and lush, they'd make Bon Iver weep with envy. Every girl (and guy) in the tent was crazy 'bout these sharp-dressed men. And when Billy and Dusty brought out their white furry guitars for "Legs," they clearly knew how to use them. I am almost positive that they hopped in their Eliminator car with a trio of leather-miniskirted MTV bimbettes immediately after they closed their show with "Tush." Now, I just have one question: Did their cool stage outfits have…wait for it...Velcro flies?
John Oates Dropped Some Mad Science
Daryl Hall's other half made his first of several scheduled Bonnaroo 2013 appearances on Friday afternoon, playing an intimate acoustic set and participating in a charmingly awkward "Actor's Studio"-style Q&A on the Solar Stage. "I'm going to play a bunch of new songs for you, if that's okay," he said — an announcement that was met with polite golf-claps, as spectators tried to hide their disappointment that they would not be hearing an unplugged version of "I Can't Go for That." (Apparently, John Oates no can do.) But then John offered a totally logical and highly scientific reason for not playing any Hall & Oates oldies. "I really do believe that the human brain has a capacity for how many times it can hear 'Maneater' before brain damage sets in," he explained. "You seem like nice people, so I don't want to do that to you." Fine, fair enough. John later announced that there'd be plenty of cool "surprises" at his allstar Superjam concert on Saturday night (booked the same time as conflicting sets by Weird Al Yankovic and Billy Idol…how cruel to '80s fans!). So maybe he'll dust off "Private Eyes" for that occasion. In the meantime, here's a new Oates tune:
DIIV Dove Into the Kurt Cobain Archives
Brooklyn's '90s-damaged shoegazers DIIV (pronounced "Dive") take their name from a Nirvana song, and frontman Zachary Cole Smith, with his grungy oversized clothes and peroxide-ravaged mop of hair, is somewhat Cobain-esque in appearance. So perhaps it was unsurprising that they chose to cover Kurt Cobain's old home demo, "Bambi Slaughter." What was surprising was how they managed to put their own psychedelic stamp on the track, as evidenced by the guitar-squalling yet still jangly version they played at Bonnaroo. In a nice touch, they dedicated the performance to music scribe Michael Azerrad, author of Come as You Are: The Story of Nirvana.