Over the weekend, my iPhone was blowing up with Twitter updates about the Outside Lands festival in San Francisco.  I’ve never been, but from numerous tweets I was getting from various people I follow, it sounded like it was a great close out to summer.  In San Francisco, summer comes twice a year for a couple of weeks (October and April), so to use of the term ”summer” is a misnomer since the weather in The City is often cold, foggy and windy.  But a little thing called weather doesn’t get in the way of people having a good time, and so it was the case with the number of music festivals around the country this year. Sure, the weather in S.F. was cold, but in other parts of the U.S., it was a swampy cocktail of humidity, blazing sun, and dehydration. Long live rock, eh?

Anyway, this week’s mix tries (in a small way) to capture the action on the main stage and on the smaller stages at music festivals.

”Revolution,” John Butler Trio (Download)

This Australian band played a number of dates in the U.S., but they also played Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival — which is now in its 10th year.  The John Butler Trio is one of those up and coming bands in the U.S. but they enjoy superstar status in their home country. From the sound of ”Revolution,” you probably couldn’t tell JBT are primarily a jam band, but maybe that’s owing to the fact that Butler has completely revamped the band with the result being more radio-friendly songs.

”1901,” Phoenix (Download)

The term ”Free Download” has less of an appeal to “the kids” these days. Apparently, only older folks are still enthralled with downloaded audio, and perhaps that’s why Phoenix has done well with twenty and thirtysomethings.  The free download of ”1901″  was offered through a number of magazines and it bolted to the top of the Billboard alternative charts. The band played this at the Outside Lands Music and Arts Festival on Sunday night and from the tweets I was getting, this song was a huge hit with the crowd.

”Got Nuffin,”  Spoon (Download)

Spoon almost closed out the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival in Indio, CA,  and ”Got Nuffin” was the second song in the set — which is a good choice since the song rocks, but it has a spare quality that can get a crowd going  Oh, and it’s one of my favorites from the band because it has such a raw quality to it.

”Forgotten Fields,” Echo & the Bunnymen (Download)

The overt pop goodness of The Fountain has been pleasing, but I wonder if Echo & the Bunnymen have sacrificed some of their alternative cred for a more mainstream sound.  And even if they have, do you think they really care? Probably not, and I’m sure the fans who attended the All Points West Music and Arts Festival at Liberty State Park in New Jersey in ’09 didn’t either.

”Marisol,” Lotus (Download)

Lotus is a rock/electronic band whose musical output is entirely instrumental. Some of their tunes have a jam band quality to them, while others (like ”Marisol”) are much more dreamy.  If you’re in the Vermont area, you might want to catch them at the Liberate Music and Arts Festival in Sheldon, VT.

”Sumthin,” Devo (Download)

Lollapalooza is one of the more famous music festivals, and this year Chicago hosted the three day event at Grant Park.  Devo played the same night as Lady Gaga, and I wonder who was able to create the bigger spectacle? Probably Gaga, but the spud boys have never sounded more political than they do on “Sumthin.”

About the Author

Ted Asregadoo

Writer & Editor

Ted Asregadoo has a last name that's proven to be difficult to pronounce for almost everyone on the Popdose staff, some telemarketers, and even his close friends. He lives in Walnut Creek, CA., and is also the host of the Planet LP podcast.

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