Lollapalooza 2011 Starts Now
Lollapalooza is upon once again, Chicago. Traffic is a mess downtown, there’s an after party every few feet, and “you got any extra tix” takes on a whole new meaning. This is definitely my favorite part of the summer, as Lollapalooza crams as much music as possible into 3 straight days, and we all live in a fantasy bubble of free drinks, interesting conversations with random strangers, free tattoos, and the classic, “let’s talk after Lollapalooza”. As I sit here now typing, I feel like a kid rushing to finish his homework before the last bus to school leaves. So without further ado, hit the jump to see some bands that I’m looking forward to checking out as well as some after parties for after the festival ends.
I always start the festival off by hitting The Hard Rock Hotel. Located just a few blocks from Grant Park, The Hard Rock is the place to be between bands. Free drinks, free food, gifting suites, intimate performances, and free tattoos are a staple of The Hard Rock’s Lollapalooza activities. This year should be no different with the Express Yourself Oasis featuring all that plus music from the likes of DJ Shadow, Rockie Fresh, Kidz In The Hall, and many more.
After taking in the Hard Rock, I plan to hit Lollapalooza around 1PM, just in time to catch Young The Giant at the Bud Light Stage. This time slot also has sets from The Vaccines, and Tennis, a band I’ve heard a lot of good things about, but confuse them with other bands with sports names. Next on my custom schedule is Ana Tijoux at 1:45 at Perry’s stage. While sets from Delta Spirit and Foster The People have found their way into my schedule, I’m really looking forward to the 4:15 set from Kids These Days. We talked to the band on Wednesday before they hit the stage at Lincoln Hall, where they talked about their close bond and the seriousness they all share regarding the band. They are followed by another dope rising band in Cults, who I saw earlier this year at the Empty Bottle. Needless to say this is quite a difference. Coldplay is tonight’s headliner, with rumors going around that Jay-Z might pop out during their set. There’s also a rumor that there is a Watch The Throne Listening Party today at Grossinger Autoplex. We’ll see what goes down.
After Lollapalooza the party is at Reggie’s, where we are hosting a concert with The Cool Kids, also featuring GLC, The O’Mys, and RTC.
While I always tell myself that I’ll get up early and make it out to catch the opening acts, it just doesn’t happen. In an act of honesty, I have my schedule starting proper The Black Lips’ performance at 3:00 at The Playstation Stage, followed by a lot of bouncing around trying to catch sets from Mayer Hawthorne, The Drums, and Ellie Goulding. I caught Ween at the first Lollapalooza in Grant Park, and am looking forward to seeing them again. I remember buying their 1994 album Chocolate and Cheese because of the front cover. Cee-Lo’s hour long set at the Music Unlimited Stage maybe one of the festival’s best, and is a perfect table setter for Eminem’s headlining performance. In between, Atmosphere takes Sony Stage, Beats Antique hits the Playstation Stage, and Lykke Li is at the Google+ stage. All should be dope. People saying this year’s lineup is weak, are not seeing the same schedule I am.
Also on Saturday, the Foo Fighters will play an intimate set at The Metro. And you can also cool down at the Belve Lounge at the W Hotel.
Sunday is always a weird day. It starts out kind of sluggish, and the crew/security really don’t want to be there anymore. While the early hours are filled with, ‘can’t this just be over’ thoughts, those usually go away pretty quick and the afternoon and evening turn into the last day of summer camp. If you’re there early, catch Kyle Lucas and Captain Midnite at 1:00 at Perry’s stage. The UK’s Deluka hits the BMI stage at 1:45, while Noah and The Whale take Bud Light stage at 2:30. I hope to catch some of all three, then hit The Cool Kids set at 3:00 PM at the Perry Stage. The Cars are back together, and they’re playing at 4:00 at the Music Unlimited Stage. If you have the chance to catch this band, do it. 12th Planet is a must see on the DJ/producer side of things, and I plan to catch his set at 5:00 at Perry’s Stage. Cage The Elephant is a band I’ve been rocking with for a while, making their set at 5:15 a no-brainer. Followed by some Best Coast, Kid Cudi, and the final set by The Foo Fighters.
Look for Lolla updates and footage all weekend.