Rites of Spring 2014—Who Might Be Coming?

Image courtesy of Consequence of Sound

In 2011, I predicted that Kid Cudi would headline Rites of Spring, based on the similar success he and Drake were having at the time and Drake’s performance the previous year.  In 2012, I predicted Wiz Khalifa would headline, again based on his break-through hip-hop success that was similar to Drake and Cudi.  I further predicted that MUTEMATH would be coming that year, albeit not as the Friday-night headliner they ended up being, based on their fall, winter, and spring tours all circumventing Nashville while traveling through the southeast (they had to come here sometime).  On the other hand, I failed marvelously at predicting what the 2013 Rites lineup might look like, following my previous trend of looking at breakthrough rap success to peg Kendrick Lamar, who ended up coming for Quake this past fall.  In short, over my four years at Vandy, making Rites artist predictions has become a hobby of mine, much in the same way that people make predictions for Coachella, Bonnaroo, Lollapalooza, and so many others of the festivals that have become so popular throughout the country.

Of course, all of these predictions and guesses were made in the relative comfort of my friendgroup, where no one would give me too much grief if I was wildly offbase and drinks would be had in my honor if I happened to be correct.  They’re much more forgiving than the scores that swim the internet waters, but this year I decided to up the stakes by sharing my predictions in a public forum.  Please note that I hold no affiliation with the Music Group or any other arm of the Vanderbilt Programming Board, and that I have no sources for my predictions other than the reasoning presented in my own words to you.  These are a couple of my personal hopes, dreams, and deductions presented to a wide audience, for glory or for shame. [Read more...]

Fly Free Festival 2013

Adams, TN is a brief town: home to barely 600 people and a few miles of softly rolling fields, glinting golden in the husky glow of the late autumn sun. Signs for corn mazes and freshly harvested clover honey adorn the narrowly winding US 41–leading a silver Chevy, stereo blasting James Blake’s “Retrograde,” to the Red River Campground, where the one rule of the weekend is to fly free.

This past weekend hosted the inaugural Fly Free Festival, a festival aiming to de-Roo the middle Tennessee music & arts community. Bonnaroo, though it is a world of magic, has grown to such incredible proportions that it has lost the intimacy and mindfulness of the original festival mission–it is, essentially, a temporary urbanity. Fly Free was the type of festival where an unlocked car did not mean property theft and falling asleep under the stars did not pose an invitation for violence.

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