Monday, June 17, 2013

New Orleans jazzfest

I always get giddy when I go to jazzfest! Sure, it's my 6th time going, but it's such an incredible experience it's worth the excitement!  In a nutshell, New Orleans jazzfest is 2 weekends  when people from all over the U.S. and world hang out at the fairground and enjoy incredible music and amazing food.  I have never encountered rude people, and if/when you bring chairs you simply put them down by all the chairs at a stage and walk around without worries.  Yup, because when you come back, your chairs are still there.  Usually people are in your chairs, but they say thanks and kindly move.  Everyone sings and dances together because let's be honest, music joins us all together.

Our weekend started off really rough.  Carlo's mom got sick so we stayed in Lafayette longer than anticipated to check on her then headed out.  By the time we got to where we were staying, his mom was much worse and no one was there to help her.  So...we let Audrey stay over night with my family and drove back 2.5 hours to Lafayette; we didn't get in until 11:30pm after picking up medicine and fluids to drop off.  It turns out she caught a stomach bug which both Carlo and I caught Tuesday evening. I caught the worst of it and Audrey didn't even catch it at all thankfully.  Carlo and I got up and out for 8am Sunday morning to head to New Orleans.  The weather was AWFUL! We passed a major thunderstorm on the way in and waited in the car when we got to where we park to get to the fairgrounds.  By the way, the best parking is on Paris Ave right by the intersection of Paris Ave and St. Bernard Ave.  It's roughly 5 or 6 blocks away and FREE!  Anyway, as we parked the car, the awful weather arrived.  Carlo thought we should go in, but I knew better. If we went in we were stuck. Once you leave, you can't get back in unless you buy the Big Chief pass, I think.  So...we waited.  I made some Daisy and Donald duck magnetic paper dolls and we listened to Dave.  The music stopped when the lightening came and by then it was almost lunch time.  We decided to wait it out and grab some lunch.  I called up my dad for some good vegetarian recommendations.  He recommended Lebanon's on Carrollton Ave.; we were NOT disappointed. We split Musaha, Faul, and the Sauteed Vegetable Plate and had PLENTY for leftovers.  We were smart to pack an ice chest so we were ale to eat dinner once we got to the car.   After lunch the rain had stopped and we headed into the fairgrounds.  We parked it at the Acura stage since that's where Dave Matthews was playing.  That band was the whole reason we went.  We LOVE Dave Matthews. We own nearly all of the CD's, I have seen them 3 times, Carlo 2 times and yeah...they are Ah-Maaaazing!!  Oh, and Audrey knows when Dave is on because she let's out a "DAVE!!" with a big grin as I say "That's my girl!!"  She even sings a couple of songs from the new CD! haha  I digress, so we got there in time to see Better Than Ezra, another awesome fun band. They are local.  I have seen them once before 10 years ago and have a CD signed by them.  They're really fun!!  The Nevilles were on next but it was the Neville brothers minus Aaron and honestly the vibe was so weird so we walked around instead.  We got some gelato, bought some real Maracas for Audrey, and ate something else...can't remember what now but it was good I can promise you that!  Dave was incredible as always.  The best thing was when Don't Drink the Water came on, the rain started pouring.  Any good jazzfest goer knows to pack a poncho because New Orleans weather is crazy!  It could be 20 % chance of rain and it will rain, it could be 80% chance of rain and it doesn't rain.  So...the ponchos went on and the energy level with the crowd went way up!!  Everyone sang and danced.  I was thrilled to hear You and Me.  It's kind of a new "song" if you will for Carlo and I.  I fell in love with it when I heard it at a Dave Concert in 2009 before the release of Groo Grux King.  They played through the rain and boy did it rain.  It poured and if I remember right as the last song of the set finished,Two Step, we heard a big clash of thunder and saw lightening and honestly everyone just yelled.  Not a scared yell but a celebratory one.  We even hung around for a moment more to see if they would come back out but all they did was come out and wave to everyone as if to say "the show is over"   It was a great day and the rain made it really stick out. Nothing like dancing around in the mud with your best friend and thousands of strangers!  As soon as we got in the car the shoes came off, we put Dave on, and chowed down on leftover Lebanese food while we drove back to Slidell. Yes indeed, it was a great day to jazzfest!!

before the rain. Enjoying the sun

right when Don't Drink the Water came on

jamming to Shake it Like a Monkey!

near the end of the set


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