And so came the final day of Bonnaroo 2012, a sad day in the lives of tens of thousands when reality forces them to return. But, the stages at Centeroo prevailed, giving us an abundance of music to ease us before our departure on this very cool, overcast day.
We headed to Which Stage to watch the always-awesome glory of Delta Spirit, who did not disappoint. The frenzied crowd was quick to get into the band’s performance, as the weather was just too good to sit still, and the tunes were too good to do anything but dance. Delta Spirit’s stage presence was hugely animated and fun, proving to the crowd that entertaining thousands is what they were meant to do.
The day was full of great music action, including performances by Here We Go Magic with their super abstract derangement of the senses at That Tent, The Beach Boys carrying their timeless tunes at What Stage, an incredible set from The Antlers, a seminar on this-is-how-you-fucking-shred by Gary Clark Jr., and performances by many, many others.
With their second album held in a tremendous light of respect, Bon Iver brought their luscious act to What Stage in the early evening, brushing the huge field of ears with their gentle and substantial kindnesses.
Then we found ourselves back at Which Stage in anticipation of the joyful Americana indie rock icons, The Shins, whose performance a decade’s worth of fulfillment. Among a plethora of other flake-fashioned tunes, the band controlled the crowd with a passionate rendition of “Kissing the Lipless,” taking us back to their sophomore extravanganza, Chutes Too Narrow.
And then came one of the most paramount leaders of the noodling Wookie nation, the one and only, Phish. Among many of the traditional Phish delicacies, the two epic sets included a few amazing tricks, such as an appearance by the great singer/songwriter, Kenny Rogers, who came out to help perform “Gambler.”
And to add to the list, the second set kicked off with a cover of TV on the Radio’s “Golden Age,” and a bit later Phish stroked the heart-chords of the audience by performing a cover of the famous Tennessee standard, “Rocky Top.”
Ultimately, this year’s Bonnaroo was a funky, loud, hot, cold, bright, dark, and hopeful mess of fun. As we packed up our bags and prepared to make the trip homeward, we took one last indulgent look at the festivities of Centeroo and the massive, rolling waves of Tent City, and made sure to ourselves that next year we’ll be back, for each day one spends at Bonnaroo, he’ll crave like mad another ten.
Thanks to Billy Morgan for the photos!