Tuesday, November 9, 2010
#21-Fun Fun Fun Fest Recap
Fun Fun Fun fest invaded Waterloo park here in the great city of Austin this past weekend. I have to say that beyond a shadow of a doubt, this festival lived up to its' name. I'm pretty sure I remember telling someone, at some point over the weekend that it may have warranted 5 or 6 "funs" instead of 3. I was fortunate enough to claim a media pass for the fest so I was able to report from the front lines, as well as backstage. I got insanely close to Slick Rick and got to see some other fantastic MC's deliver and move the great crowd that graced the grass all weekend.
Sitting in the middle of the park/festival grounds, I could hear an amalgamation of everything and anything punk, metal, hip hop, rock and roll and more.....It was truly a sight to see (or hear) for an avid lover all of types/forms of music such as myself. The line-up (Hip-Hop notwithstanding) wrote like a who's who in all things independent music. This is the perfect environment for someone such as myself.
With a 3-stage set up, the Blue stage was reserved for MC's and DJ's as they say...and unlike the Beastie Boys, there were way more than 3. The first set I caught on Saturday was that of Houston MC Devin the Dude....this cat totally had a screwball, laid back feel, but I dug it. Definitely a southern MC, It's no wonder he cut his teeth on the Rap-A-Lot label alongside Scarface. The crowd was super in to Devin's flows, and oddly enough I think I caught a punk rock cat with a mohawk rocking to Devin's set!! That's one of the many aspects I loved about FFF Fest-A diverse crowd that didn't discriminate.
The next MC to grace the Blue Stage needed no introduction....the one and only SLICK RICK the ruler came on and performed The Adventures of.. in it's entirety. Yes, that's right; I got to see the man perform "Hey Young World", "Children's Story", "Teacher Teacher", and more prime Rick cuts all from the side of the stage. Amazing. I never, in my wildest dreams, thought I'd get to see Slick Rick play, let alone see him play as up-close and personal as I did.
As the weekend progressed, I caught sets from Jean Grae, Pharoae Monch, and P.O.S. , who all delivered . Jean Grae was especially good, and made me want to get into female MC's a lot more..it also made me realize that there's a slew of females who are making noise in the underground that I had no idea about. I knew of Jean on an uber-casual level, from Mr Lif's "Post Mordem" track, after checking her set, I'm definitely going to familiarize myself with her catalog in the near future, Jean is a cunning lyricist with an impeccable, straight-forward, no-nonsense rhyme style. I also got to catch Pharoae Monch's set, snuck over to the blue stage just in time to catch "Simon Says", this cat can still bring it too!! Makes me wish Rawkus Records kept on trucking and continued to make those great Soundbombing comps, that put MC's such as PM on the map.
As the sun set on Saturday night, P.O.S came through and brought his huuuuge sound to the stage and rocked the crowd hard-He played much of his set over the barricade and in the crowd-I knew he'd be great but I was super impressed with his showmanship. I talked to him for a minute after he got off stage, he said the show was a blast and loved to play festivals, but expressed how unique he thought FFF was in comparison to others. Very hard not to agree with him.
All things considered, FFF was an absolute blast-filled with beats, rhymes, old friends, new friends, and fantastic performances by some great independent musicians, sweeping many, many different genres. Given all the good things that came out of Fun Fun Fun, I'm looking forward to covering more festivals/shows: SXSW would be the next egg I'm teeming to crack, and with the hip hop acts featured for SX growing exponentially every year, the possibilities for content seem extremely fruitful.
Pics top to bottom: FFF Fest media lounge, Slick Rick, Jean Grae, P.O.S.