Monday, August 6, 2012

Festival Review: Big Valley Jamboree 2012

I have arrived home safe and only somewhat battered after my first go at the gong show they call the Big Valley Jamboree.

Before I went I was thrilled to see the headliners Blake Shelton, Toby Keith and Rascal Flatts. After night one I realized that this was going to be less about the music and more about the alcohol consumption as the field had a more fierce version of the Calgary Folk Festival Tarpies...only these people had chairs. I saw Blake Shelton as a speck in the distance. Talk about disappointment.

Night two was a little bit of a different story. The headliner this time was Toby Keith. He had some people join him on stage named rain and hail. Now we all know I am not one to brave the elements, but when we got out of our group huddle to take off some of the blow of the hail the place had half cleared out....we were finally going to get up close to the stage! I couldn't resist it. We got up as far as we could go (the whole effing front section is for VIPs...I know other festivals do this, but I don't like them either)...and we waited, hoping that Toby hadn't gotten on his leer jet and went back to the Red White and Blue. Lucky for us he came back out...a little more f-cked up than before.

Rascal Flatts closed out the festival with an unfortunate lackluster performance. I have seen these guys before and they usually knock it out of the park. Maybe they just didn't give a rats ass about a festival that sounds like something The Gathers should be playing at ( change needed).

First of all...they didn't even know where they were. Gary LaVox kept screaming out "What's up Edmonton!" "We love you Edmonton!" ...and the festival was in Camrose. You think he would have clued in when the crowd was not supportive of his statements. About 15 minutes before their set was over he comes out and says "How y'all doing Camrose?!" Then he kind of laughs like, clearly I don't care about you people at all.

They also played way to much new music. Festival need to play hits so people, who didn't come to see you specifically, know the songs. They took requests from the audience and played snippets of people's favorites. But all in all...I was not thrilled. I would actually have to say I am less of a fan now.

After all of that I realized I paid around $300 to go camping. It was kind of a piss-off since I hate camping, tents, the outdoors, dirt, porta-potties and sleeping in a storm where you wake up out of fear of death. I am grateful to have survived the weekend with only a possible broken thumb (not sure about this's huge and I am not really down with seeking medical attention), a sunburn, and a massive pile of dirt build up in my hair that will take me weeks to get rid of.

Next year is the big anniversary of the Festival and they announced two of the headliners this weekend: Alan Jackson and Lady Antebellum. They talked up their big announcement so much I was thinking that it was going to be a Johnny Cash hologram, but these about anti-climactic.

There is a silver lining to any situation. The stage didn't collapse this year. The Jamboree did one thing right. High fives all around.


1 comment:

  1. Anti climactic? Agreed w lady a, they're new but Alan Jackson?! Classic country gentleman right there. We also have learned about tenting. Either tent next to trailers that will take you in when it's wet or find a way to bring a trailer. That's the only way of not being an unhappy camper!


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