Sometimes the weather sets the tone, or actually makes the even more memorable as it did at Lollapalooza in 2011. I had been listening to the sunny sounds of Best Coast all week, excited I would see them perform Sunday evening at Grant Park. Just as I found my spot, center front at the proper stage, the sky turned dark and threatening. If the band were willing to play, I should be willing to stay. Best Coast took the stage, challenge the storm playing what seemed to be harder and edgier than the usualy happy beach pop. The clouds closed in and the rain came down and down and down, soaking every single thing. Best Coast played beautifully, with great enthusiasm, and the band leader spoke with such gratitude for the fans staying put. They continued their unforgettable show, steadfast with an edgy middle finger towards the sky, giving us their best California sunshine punk pop in bold defiance to the cold, hard Chicago summer downpour. We were all drenched, yet quite happy and satisfied. That performance was worth the wet. Thanks Best Coast! (Note to self: pack one of those thin pocket ponchos and bring a zip-lock baggy for belongings.)
Best Coast returns to Chicago Friday, August 19. I’ll be there. Hope you will be, too!
“The Sun Was High (so was I)”
“I Wish He Was My Boyfriend”
Dripping wet, that same night I walked to the far south end of the park to catch a song or two from the Icelandic Arctic Monkeys before heading home. Just as I stepped into the sunken area designated for concert-goers, the Arctic Monkeys hit the stage — under a full color-spectrum rainbow. That beautiful hopefilled rainbow went from one side of the field to the next, directly over the stage. It was spirit lifting and stunningly beautiful as the setting sun broke through the clouds and dried up all the rain. Did anyone else see this brilliant show?
In 2015, that same field on a perfect summer evening would be filled with thousands of dragonflies. From a distance they looked like little helicopters hovering while Sir Paul McCartney took the stage under a huge golden moon. Brittany Howard from Alabama Shakes helping out Paul with vocals.
I wonder what Mother Nature has in store for us this summer at Lollapalooza 2016. Looks like a fantastic array of bands, perhaps the best ever.