With a less impressive lineup Sunday afternoon, most of my day was reserved for exploring the vendors and oddball happenings throughout Bonnaroo, which is part of what makes the festival really special.
There were artists from all over the world exhibiting their work, and I could have spent the entire weekend talking with them. But Bonnaroo is above all a music festival, and John Fogerty, Ween, and Phoenix were on hand to keep the day rocking.
Fogerty played pretty much everything you would expect, and essentially revived Credence Clearwater. At 65, Fogerty can still rock out and command a stage, and his music was perfect for the Bonnaroo attendees, who happily did the hippie jig to every last song he played.
The smiles and good vibes continued for Ween, who seemed like the happiest guys on Earth. The brothers have been at it for a long time, but it doesn’t look like they’ve lost a step. The crowd was completely into it and you could feel that excitement roll into anticipation for the next act, a little band called Phoenix.
The band took the stage and tore through their set, mostly playing songs from Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix. Their infectious, electro-tinged rock had the entire crowd dancing and singing along. Midway through the set, Phoenix unleashed hundreds of balloons into the crowd and it became an all-out party. The highlight of the set had to be “1901,” which had 50,000 people singing along to the chorus. By the end of Sunday night, the band’s coronation was complete — they are officially one of the biggest and coolest bands going right now.
It was a great end to a terrific weekend. Bonnaroo tested the limits of minds and bodies but ultimately left the attendees enriched in ways that are hard to explain. 80,000 people gathering peacefully in the name of good music and togetherness. That’s Bonnaroo in a nutshell.