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The 41st New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival

A Russ Agdern Perspective: Part I

Mr. Russ Agdern

Mr. Russ Agdern

What a week!  My third trip to the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival (Jazz Fest) was nothing short of incredible.  The surprises were many, the disappointments were few, the food was awesome, and when you get to hear some of the best music in the world in one the most important musical towns in the world, you’re in for a good time.

2010 New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival

2010 New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival

New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival takes place over the last weekend of April and first weekend in May at the New Orleans Fairgrounds, but, like most parties in this town, can’t be contained in one venue, so Fest spills out in the clubs, halls, restaurants, bars, record stores, boats, coffee houses, laundromats, Carnival float warehouses, street corners and empty lots of the Crescent City.  Two things set Jazz Fest apart from other festivals in my mind – the musical diversity and the food.

Who Dat Ville

Photo by Marisa Harford

While heavy metal, pop, opera, classical aren’t there, and quality hip hop is not so represented (The Roots and Chali 2na were both here in 2008, haven’t seen a hip hop group I like since at the fairgrounds), some of the very best in Jazz, Funk, Blues, Gospel, Zydeco, Cajun, Folk, Rock are all over the place at the fairgrounds and in the venues around town.  Ani DiFranco and Gift of Gab played club shows, members of REM sat in with Bonerama, Pearl Jam, Elvis Costello, Simon and Garfunkel, Van Morrison all played at the fairgrounds, so don’t be fooled into thinking this is solely a Jazz festival, because it ain’t.  Sure, there are 3 different jazz stages at the fairgrounds (one for general jazz, one for traditional New Orleans Dixieland Jazz, and one split between brass bands and Mardi Gras Indians) but there are also two main stages, a gospel and blues tents, a zydeco/Cajun stage… you get the idea.

Prejean's pheasant, quail and andouille gumbo (Photo by Prejean's Restaurant)

Prejean's pheasant, quail and andouille gumbo (Photo by Prejean's Restaurant)

The food at the fairgrounds is tremendous.  It is freaking delicious and goes way beyond “best festival food you’ll have” into some of the best you’ll ever have…period.  I wait all year for Prejeans Pheasant, Duck, and Andouille Gumbo.  Their Fried Chicken and Jambalaya combo is one of the best ways to spend $8.  And I’m not even talking about all the things most folks seem to like, like the crawfish monica, the shrimp po boys, the cochon de lait sandwiches, the mango freezes… trust me when I say you should budget yourself 20 bucks per day for food at the fairgrounds. You’ll thank me.

Photo By Lynn Lesh 2010

Photo By Lynn Lesh

This being my third Jazz Fest, I tend to have a rhythm I like to follow, things I like to do.  Some of my favorite moments of Fest have happened during the in between days or extra days, so I tend to do second weekend with an extra day or two on either end of the weekend.  This gives me time to actually see the city, something I don’t really do as much while the music is in full swing.  This also gives me a chance to catch additional great music at various places, including the Louisiana Music Factory which hosts many in store sets during the days surrounding Fest.  I think this review works best chronologically, so let’s start at the beginning, shall we?

Welcome to NOLA

Welcome to NOLA

Wednesday: April 28, 2010: Day One

Arrive at airport, no traffic on Bronx/Queens Expressway and breeze through security line… only to find a gate full of ANGRY people.  Why so serious?  You see, the airlines don’t apparently know that it is Jazz Fest, even if millions of people do.  So they oversell flights, and are shocked when they need 5 volunteers to go later, but folks already have reservations and concert tickets.  I considered getting bumped, but wanted to get to town.

House of Blues, New Orleans

House of Blues, New Orleans

I don’t normally do House of Blues shows, would rather support local clubs.  But today, they had Kermit Ruffins of the Barbecue Swingers, doing a “Treme House Party” on stage with Walter Wolfman Washington, Dr. Michael White, Henry Butler, and Troy “Trombone Shorty” Andrews.  This sounded awesome.  Plus, Fesshead Krewe (represented by a metal bust of Professor Longhair) was hosting a party in an empty lot, with The  Rebirth Brass Band and an all star band of Neville-related project alums (Band called “Never Was Brothers”), which sounded great.  So no flight credit for me. Really excited about this House of Blues‘ show.  So excited that I call after I land to see if I should get tickets early or just walk up.  The box office suggested coming early so I head right from my host’s place towards The French Quarter.  On the way, pass by Fesshead Fest, and never have a received a look of utter betrayal like the one I got from the man waiving people in to Fesshead Fest.  The guy was shocked that I kept driving, how could I do this to him?!  But I stopped long enough to hear The  Rebirth Brass Band rock out one tune and was it hot!

Café Du Monde beignets

Café Du Monde's Beignets (Photo by Marisa Harford)

Park on Decatur, run to the box office, snag a ticket, stop by Café Du Monde for some beignets (French donuts with powdered sugar) and some Café Au Lait (coffee with milk).  Great couple musicians jamming on some folk and soul music out front, a sister with dreads on guitar, a youngish guy on guitar, a drummer… another guitarist walks up and joins them, as does a singer, who starts singin’ the hell out of some Bill Withers.  I love Bill Withers.  Hey, apparently, so does Cyril Neville, who’s suddenly standing five feet from me, also checking them out.  I decide not to say anything to him, even though he’s an amazing musician who’s done some amazing stuff, most recently touring with Galactic and burning down The Brooklyn Bowl after The Saints won the Super Bowl.  Another woman walks up and starts singing Aretha Franklin‘s “Chain of Fools” and is fantastic.  This is gonna be a good week.

Go hang with my host for a few moments before I head over the House of Blues, he’s an old friend through social justice work and is a good dude trying to good work in a city that needs it.  Off to HOB!

Photo by Matt Cornell

Kermit's Poster (Photo by Matt Cornell)

Show review:

This show had all the makings of an epic, but some things worried me – like why call it a “Treme House Party” when people can go see Kermit Ruffins playing in the Treme tomorrow night?  It’s Jazz Fest.  My guess is that lineup doesn’t need to piggy back off the show, even if it is popular.  Great opening act, singer and a guitarist accompanying.  Great voice, insane Mariah Carey-like upper range.  But the main event was a disappointment, for a few reasons:

1)      The curtain opened and we were watching a ‘Treme House Party’.  The stage was set with couches, chairs, a bar, and random non musicians hangin’ out, having drinks.  Weird.  The House of Blues brings you a fake version of something that exists for real a couple miles away tomorrow.

Trombone Shorty @ Kermit's Show

Trombone Shorty @ Kermit's Show (Photo by Matt Cornell)

2)      I had hoped there would be some real interaction between the guests, with each other, with Kermit.  But the show was a lot more of Kermit plays one song, special guest X leads The Barbeque Swingers for a few numbers, maybe Kermit joins on one, then special guest X leaves.  LAME.  Don’t get me wrong, this wasn’t actually lame, the musicianship was fantastic, but the vibe was off, and Kermit having a drink on stage, trumpet in hand, while someone else leads his band and doesn’t get in on it?  Weird stuff.

3)      Because of 1 and 2, things were low energy for the first half, which is a shame b/c Walter Wolfman Washington and Dr. Michael White were great.  But Henry Butler really kicked things up a notch with his cover of “Mustang Sally.”  Then Trombone Shorty’s mini set was also great and he brought his brother James Andrews out to do “Skokie” and “Oop Oop A Doo.”

Treme on HBO

Treme on HBO

4)      I’m sure Treme is awesome.  I can’t wait to see the series, actually.  And I very much dig John Boutte, the guy who wrote the song that became the theme.  Still, it sounds a lot like the beginning to “Do Whatcha Wanna“, and I got very excited the four times I heard it this weekend, only to be disappointed.  My guess is musicians in NOLA will be as tired of that song as they are of “The Saints” very soon.

I know folks say that bad sex and pizza, even when they’re bad, are pretty good.  But whoever said those things must clearly not know good pizza and good sex, because pretty good doesn’t freaking cut it when it could be mind blowing.  While pretty good, and probably great for folks who didn’t know they could expect more, this show was probably the disappointment of the weekend.  It could have been one of those crazy moments of synergy when brilliant musicians make something happen, but instead it was a weird, gimmicky thing that was more like an all-star review than the party I had hoped for.

Irvin Mayfield and the NOJO Jam

Irvin Mayfield and the NOJO Jam

Next up, I stopped by the Jam Session at Irvin Mayfield’s new place, called a “head cutting session.”  For y’all don’t know, cutting heads is not just jamming, but is actually competitive combat.  Kinda how a poetry slam is to spoken word and performance poetry.  So, to hear it billed like that, I was hoping for some folks spitting fiyo.  What was going down there was a bunch of younger cats playing some charts together.

Megalomaniac's Ball - Garage A Trois (Photo by Jon Weber)

Megalomaniac's Ball - Garage A Trois (Photo by Jon Weber)

It was great to see them finding their feet, but again, not quite what I expected.  Still, the players was solid, lotsa horn players getting their groove on to “Straight“, “No Chaser” and whatnot.    Good times.  Caught several songs then felt my energy start to flag a lil bit.  While I was enjoying the jamming, it wasn’t worth starting the week off sleep deprived.  It was too late to hit The Megalomaniac’s Ball, featuring Garage A Trois, Stanton Moore Trio, Dead Kenny G’s, Mike Dillon and Earl Harvin Duo, at The Howlin’ Wolf, so I decided to head back towards the rental car.  A good but not great start to the week, was starting to feel a little bummed.  Thing is, some of the best shows I’ve seen at Fest have been the night before, so expectations were great and not met.

So…it’s 2am and I’m driving down Elysian Fields and about to turn onto my friend’s street…when I hear a brass band.  I immediately park.  Last year there were brass band battles on Frenchman, a block away.  I head towards Frenchman and sure enough there are two small groups going at it, with a frenzied group of dancers between them.  More and more players join up, including Clarence ‘Trixzey’ Slaughter, formerly of Trombone Shorty’s band.  It’s getting crazy.  The crowd is getting larger.  For the second time today, Cyril Neville bumps into me.  I decide again not to say anything.  A guy shows up with a baritone (smaller version of a tuba) and another guy with weird saxophones.  A shorter Latina woman is dancing like crazy.  Cyril bumps into me again and I thank him for such a great Super Bowl show at The Brooklyn Bowl with Galactic.

Cyril: Aww, thank you man.  You know, that night… we were Doin Work! You know?

Me: Yeah you right. And brother, you sure were.

Troy “Trombone Shorty” Andrews has now shown up and though half the crowd is spraining eyeballs trying to notice it is him without staring, he’s unarmed and just there to watch.  The band is taking it up and up.  Two drunk dudes are doing their best to ruin it by stumbling into the band but thankfully not succeeding.  Clarence ‘Trixzey’ Slaughter is KILLING on his horn.  Hell yeah! Finally, the band busts out “Saints” for a while, then second line and it’s a wrap.  Instead of bed by 2am, it’s more like 4:30am now.  And while still a little disappointed about the first show, I went to sleep real happy.  Seen some great musicianship and showmanship, and Jazz Fest hadn’t even restarted.  This was gonna be an awesome week.

~ Article by: Russ Agdern ~

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LET THE FESTIVAL SEASON BEGIN…

(or as I like to call it: On Your Marks, Get Set, RAAAAAAAGE!!!)

Hudson Valley Resort and Spa

Hudson Valley Resort and Spa

Rock The Resort II.  What a mess of a success!  Where does one begin?  I was slated to leave my apartment at 10:30am to meet my buddies at the end of the 4 train in Woodlawn.  I was up at 7am wide awake after falling asleep only 5 hours earlier. It was like Christmas, too excited to sleep.  At the same time around the East Coast in Upstate NY, Vermont and Philadelphia, I knew my kindred spirits in music were waking up and beginning their own trips toward their Rock the Resort II adventures.  This made me smile.

Driving with Eric and Tony @ Rock The Resort II

"Listen, we are listening to nothing but New Riders on the way up."

When Eric picked me up from the train station, his first words when I got in the car were “You’re excited aren’t you?  I could see your smile from a couple blocks away.”  Indeed, I was geeking out at this point!!!  After a much needed chill session in Woodlawn, Eric, T, and I piled our gear into the car and set off for the 2 hours trip to Kerhonkson, New York.  Half an hour into the ride, I felt I wasn’t in the city anymore and I loved it.  The trees were turning green and signs of Spring were everywhere.  The rolling hills threw me back to The Valley in Virginia and I fiercely missed home at that moment.  With the roof top open, the smells of Spring were welcoming unlike in parts of Manhattan where I believe we should all wear gas masks.

Fatty McRage

Fatty McRage ~ He was my fav 🙂

Arriving at the Hudson Valley Resort and Spa, it was immediately clear that the place had seen some better days.  Run down and tired, there were stains all over the carpet, holes in our closet door, bottle openers attached to the back of our bathroom doors…the list goes on.  Don’t get me wrong, the Resort totally served it’s purpose that weekend but the place was by no means classy!  And it is just as well because the majority of wookies attending this festival were not the kind to take their time and put their trash in the trashcan or their cigarette out in the ashtrays.  I mean, as soon as we entered the lobby, we saw a dog take a leak right on the carpet.  Dayum!  Apparently, the resort was animal friendly so dogs were allowed in the venue and even in the stage areas.  At times, it was very captivating to turn and see a dog resting his head on his paws, watching the show with you.  I just wish they they not be allowed on the dance floor.  That made for a lot of jerked leashes and frightened dogs.  And above you, Fatty McRage.  I deemed him so as the poor thing was, as the talented Jeffery Lockhart would later say, “To fat to even bark!”

View from 1707
View from 1707 ~ I can dig it!

Everyone arrived just about the same time.   Parting ways from Eric and T in the check-in line, I joined up with Aaron, my roommate for the weekend and a fabulous cat I met on Jamcruise 8!!  The sign-in process was a mess.  There was no organization and the staff had little to no knowledge on what was going on.  After trying to gather information from the website in the weeks  prior and recognizing it’s lack of organization, I knew we were in for a little mess.  We managed to get through the line a lot faster then most and went to check out our room.   All the way at the end of the hall, with a king bed and a large windowed view of the lake and Willow trees,  it was a nice place to face plant when the time would come.  I immediately jumped all over the bed when I entered the room.  I suggest you always jump on the bed in the hotels!  I do it every single time!

Murry, Trance & J-Man @ Rock The Resort II
Murray, Trance & J-Man wookin out the lobby

When we got settled in I set off to meet up with some friends, old and new.  My boys who drove me were right across the hall, Woot!  Justin, a fellow blogger and friend who maintains the Music Marauders website, was apparently kickin’ it in the Jacuzzi suite that weekend.  Seriously, he and Murray were raging in what turned out to be the nicest suite at the resort.  Apparently, the room had been booked months prior through Murray but it had been high-jacked for an “After Party” room of sorts so it was stocked with tons of mini fridges and what not.  Aside from the jacuzzi, there were plush leather couches and pretty bar near the front door and tons of space for wookies to pass out, which is just what happened.  We After-partied and Pre-partied the SHIT out of that room and ironically, numerous artists raged in the room as well, so really, all was as it was meant to be in reality.

Jaden and her fan!
Jaden @ Rock The Resort II

There was music at this thing right?  Got to be honest, it was nice not having a jam packed lineup of amazing music.  This festival is perfect for hanging out with friends, chillin with the artists, networking, and just going full face melt.  I had a friggen blast.  I never felt I was truly missing anything if I was not in front of the stage.  There were, of course, those few bands I HAD to see this weekend, but if I were at Wanee or Jam Cruise, I wouldn’t have moved from the stage and ended up speaking to no one.  So, bare with me because by the time I checked out my first show, my handwritten notes had already become illegible.  At 7pm the music was set to begin; Jaden on the Empire Stage and Roots of Creation on the Manhattan Stage.  Both acts I had never seen.  Both venues were located side by side so you could just walk 55 feet and be in front of the other stage.  The wall dividing them was a wall of windows sometimes covered by curtains…or not.

Jaden @ Rock The Resort II
Jaden @ Rock The Resort II

The first act I caught was Jaden.  I had heard so much about this little lady that I had to check her out.  Wow.  The talent that child has playing the guitar is going to grow and I can’t WAIT to see her in like 10 years.  Hell, I can’t wait to see her in five.  I only checked out a song or two, both of which were covers; Bob Marley’s Mellow Moon and Pink Floyd’s Wish You Were Here.  Both of which she played consistently on point. When she starts taking liberties with her solos I have a feeling she is going to spit fire.  She has quite a way to go with her voice but she has talent in those fingers at the age of 8 that some won’t have when they are 80.  And how sweet was it to see that Jaden had a posse of about 8 tweens who were there fanning it up!

Roots Of Creation @ Rock The Resort II
Roots Of Creation @ Rock The Resort II

After a few songs I walked over to watch Roots of Creation’s set. I had heard good things.  There were maybe 15 people in the theater.  I sat in one of the rolling chairs on the first tier of the theater and propped my feet up for the rest of their set.  My understanding was that they were reggae but the first few songs I heard were groovy and full of trippy jam.  I remember feeling that it was too slow for the moment but I didn’t move. I was locked in my chair and my arms were to heavy to write.  I turned in my chair and saw a golden retriever, head resting on it’s paws, laying serenely on the table, straight up smiling.  Yeah, I guess they did kinda rock!

Soulive @ Rock The Resort II
Soulive @ Rock The Resort II

At this point I peeled myself out of the chair and made my way up to the Jacuzzi suite and a few other friends rooms, missing Sellassie & Alchemy Unit.  My hall had become Shakedown Street within the first hour so I stayed away from that floor most of the night.  I was able to kick it with Nigel Hall while he got ready for his set.  We talked music and wardrobe.  He was lookin’ forward to the show and going to see his son the following day!  We headed to the lobby by way of the elevator where we ran into Justin, Trance and the rest of the guys making their way down for the Soulive set.  See, the very FEW of us who were there to see live music knew when to get their our asses out of our rooms.  Soulive was one of the shows NOT to miss this weekend.

Skerik and Nigel Hall @ Rock The Resort II
Skerik and Nigel Hall @ Rock The Resort II

They completely kicked it off hard.  This was the first time all day that the theater had more then 30 people in it!! It was the first time all day I actually heard a CHEER from a CROWD.  But that is exactly what I expected. When Soulive plays, people go see them.  And they planted it hard.  The trio kicked it off with a few throw backs from their older discs and a few from their new Rubber Soulive album. Eleanor Rigby made it’s way in as it always does.  Nigel Hall was brought on stage as he always is.  The moment I was really waiting for was coming.  Skerik..Skerik…Skerik with Soulive.  Two of my favorites…together.  This is why I had bought my ticket.

Al Evans @ Rock The Resort II
Al Evans @ Rock The Resort II

When Skerik came out, the stage decided to fight back. The microphone that had been set up for Skerik was not working.  This was incredibly frustrating but the only thing you can do is hope the artist bend and that is what they did.  Nigel went from singing into the mic to planting it in Skerik’s horn so we could hear him solo.  The exchange went on  for a few songs and the mic never never did get fixed even after an extensive attempt.  But that was the charm of it all, no?  Skerik left Nigel with the microphone and exited the stage.  Soulive, with Nigel raging his vocals, belted out a few more songs before ending the set.  It was time to go play with friends again.  At this point the elevator rides were getting longer and more animated as they both decided to just pick and choose which floor they would stop on only after going between the basement and lobby three times.  Reminding me of Jam Cruise, they had a formula; the formula was fun.  The elevators are crucial to the experience!

Particle @ Rock The Resort II

Particle @ Rock The Resort II

After running around the resort again, it was time for more music.  Particle was playing next and I had not seen them in YEARS!!  I made my way down to the theater and set myself up.  The people packed the theater for this group as well.  I am not sure if they played numerous songs or if it was one long song but I felt like they didn’t stop for a very long time once they started.  I liked what I heard.  It was consistent and rockin’ pretty hard when I decided to use the restroom.  THANK GOD for a tiny bladder because in the Lobby was Nigel Hall, Soulive and a grand piano that was about to Rock the Resort hard!  I am not even sure if this was on the schedule to be honest.  Everything was so disorganized and there were none available to us.  But scheduled or not, this was magic in the making.

Soulive watching Nigel Hall and Skerik @ Rock The Resort II

Soulive watching Nigel Hall and Skerik @ Rock The Resort II

As I walk over, Eric tells me to put my boa on Nigel.  Apparently he needs a little pick me up!  Ha!  It wasn’t long before the boa was off and the music was on!!!   At first it was Neal and Nigel on the Grand, Eric on the congas and Alan smiling widely behind them; just playing around and feelin’ things out.  Then Eric and Alan stepped away as the microphone was handed to Nigel.  He sang a lovely rendition of Donnie Hathaway’s “Singing this Song to You,” while Neal played the keys.  Skerik shows up at this point and his horn case was laid down besides him.  The word was out!  It was funny because you could see Skerik itching to jump in.  He bites his lower lip.  MMMM!!!   It was Nigel’s turn to take the lobby over for himself.  Just him, his voice, and his keys. It was beautiful, as it always is.  Skerik can’t handle it anymore and he pulls up a chair beside Nigel as they play a beautiful, slow melodic tune with a soft horn and simple keys.

Soulive, Nigel Hall & Skerik @ Rock The Resort II

Soulive, Nigel Hall & Skerik @ Rock The Resort II

The lobby was slowly filling up with people as they had heard a completely different sound then what was coming from the theater.  At one point someone ran out of the theater and screamed, “Particle is playing live right over here!!”  The lobby responded by not moving and sticking around to see what was definitely the most special of moments for those who knew what they were witnessing.  Improvisation and musical freedom at its best.  Talent mixing at its best.  The artists themselves were having a BLAST at that moment.  Kraz’s smile never faded.  After the slow tune it was on.  Nigel and Skerik are both out of their seats and Neal is back down on the keys, Alan is on the congas and into “I’ll Never Know” with Kraz helpin’ out on the chorus!  Such a family affair!!

There is a mix of players all over the instruments.  At one point we had Nigel Hall and Neal Evans on the Grand.  Alan Evans on the congas and Skerik on the horn. Then Eric had his guitar.  The wookies were picking up the percussion instruments and the lobby was on fire!!!  Particle apparently played a great set and it was a shame that I was unable to truly give them a listen before running into the magic land.  But I truly enjoyed the hell out of the lobby performance.  Those are the moments that make it all worth it.

Break Science @ Rock The Resort II

Break Science @ Rock The Resort II

After that awesome musical adventure, we had tons tons of time to kill before Break Science would make their way to the stage.  I was able to kick it with the boys from Soulive for a while before I started wanting familiar faces.  During that time, Kraz is on the phone asking Adam Deitch when he plans on getting here as his set was meant to happen 20 minutes ago and he was still 2 hours away in Brooklyn.   That is how things went at this festival.  And it was ok, because like I said, it was so much fun getting to hang with your friends without feeling like you were missing great music.  And half the people never left their rooms anyway.  The lulls and downtime allowed for some rather rad adventures that otherwise wouldn’t have happened if things had happened on schedule.  I headed up to the 8th floor where the Jacuzzi suite entertained me until Break Science finally arrived!!

Borahm Lee @ Rock The Resort II

Borahm Lee @ Rock The Resort II

Meant to go on Saturday night, Break Science was moved to replace Segway that night as Deicth had an engagement in Australia that he need to attend.  I arrived at the theater a little early so I wandered into the Empire stage.  The window wall had the curtains opened so as I listened to a rather funky band, who I have no idea of their name, as  I watched Break Science set up.  What an interesting perspective.  I could hear Break Science’s sound in my head as they set up but my actual music backdrop was the jam happening on the stage behind me.  Finally, I saw Deitch sit down at the drums.  It was time to walk through the window…

Adam Deitch @ Rock The Resort II

Adam Deitch @ Rock The Resort II

I swear Adam Detich’s bones are made of drum sticks.  Seriously, he is amazing.  And Borham Lee, I would like to get inside his brain.  With grimy dubstep and hiphop beats flaring, we danced our asses off until 6am I believe. I had completely and utterly lost track of time at that place hours ago.  The highlight of the show was the Drums vs. Beat battle between Adam Deitch and Radioactive.  Scheduled to battler earlier that day, they ended the day with an assault on the senses.  Radio would beat box a gnarly beat and Deitch would rock it back through his drums and visa versa.  It takes a talented ear to do what they did and it really was awesome.  After a heavy session of dance beats and a battle like that, the night of music was finally over.

At the end of the Break Science set,  everyone headed off to their various rooms for a raging night of various mixed adventures with their friends; the cracked out elevator stopping to open on every thrashed floor.  Heading to the eight floor, everyone exited the packed elevator aside from myself, Skerik and RadioActive.  I mention that Radio’s shirt is off the hook as it looks like a ribcage made of microphones.  Radio jokes that he is thinking of having it tattooed on his chest as Skerik sees it and gets wide eyed. “Yeah man, that’s really cool,” says Skerik as he opens Radio’s hoodie to get a better look.  No, chillin’ in the elevator with Skerik and Radio was cool 🙂  The shirt pattern was a bonus!   We all exited the elevator and headed to the room of our fancy.   I spent the rest of the night/morning, chillin’ with my favorite wookies in the Jacuzzi suite.  Ben from Particle, among others, raged with us and we all talked music, listetend to music and made music.  Eventually, the sun came up which meant it was time for us to lay down.  We had another day of fun coming up in a few hours.

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