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The Meadows Music and Arts Festival 2017

Olivia Mathon

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From September 15-17 The Meadows Music and Arts Festival was held at Citi Field, with artists like the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Weezer, CRX, and more, everyone was rocking out and having a great time. Loud music, people, food trucks, drugs, lights, rockstars, sounds like a perfect mix of music and company to enjoy the day. Similarly to a Woodstock music festival, was what the vibe was continuously throughout the event.

Sunday was the designated day of rock, fitting since Sunday is the holy day and rock was considered sinners music. The day started at 11:45 and lasted until 10:00, with there being no chairs, I made the executive decision to arrive closer to 2:00. Early enough to discover new bands, but late enough so that my feet didn’t feel like they were going to fall off.

Pulling in to the parking lot, I was ecstatic. I was going to discover new bands, eat good food, and have a great time. We walk in, and I was amazed by the sheer size of this whole event, 4 stages, food trucks everywhere, and promotions. I walked in at the beginning of CRX. A band that is still getting their feet wet in the music industry, but definitely worth a look, think Red Hot Chili Peppers crossed with Jane’s Addiction. It’s different and I really enjoyed it. The vocals and guitar was well done by lead singer Nick Valensi along with the whole vibe given off from the other band members.

After their set was over, next was St. Paul and the Broken Bones. Their set was country rock, soul full set that balanced out all of the alternate rock that was there. I was not expecting to enjoy them as much as I did, but the on stage persona that their lead singer Paul Janeway had was amazing. After a few songs from them, we decided to explore what other festivities they offered.

Walking around there was food trucks, upon food trucks, set up right next to pop-up bar, which were always packed. There was also the occasional merchandise booth, from which I bought my concert shirt. Throughout the setup, there was graffiti art which actually looked like something for once, instead of just tags that you see on the side of a building. Overall the atmosphere and venue of the festival was a really cool, different way to enjoy good music.     

With each different band, there was no other music expect for their band which I appreciated. There was no sound bleed. We were immersed in a cloud of smoke, music, and a good time.   

Next was the band, Foster the People. They had that one hit song, Pumped Up Kicks, that was different than the rest of the music being produced, and that was the last we heard of them. Well, they were here and tried some new music to introduce themselves back into the industry. Some of the songs they played were pretty good, and then when they tried to do something more techno, everyone left. I stayed because it wasn’t half bad, not my style, but I wanted it to work for them. The lead singer/guitarist, Mark Foster was a bit more focused on giving a show performance than putting out the right music on key. Other than that, they had a pretty good show, in which they re-sparked my interest in some of their new stuff.

After their show, it was time for dinner. We had a variety of choices ranging from burgers, mexican, cuban, breakfast and more. We decided on a cuban sandwich, which is pork, ham, a pickle, and mustard all on a long piece of seasoned bread. It was delicious, huge, and messy. So not a low-calorie option but it was worth it. With no seats, sitting while eating deemed to be a difficult task, but we were luck, we found the corner of this odd shaped box to it on while we enjoyed our food. This was the only time we would be able to sit for the night, so we made it last. By this time it was around 5:45 and we still had a long ways to go.

Next up, Weezer. At first they had some technical difficulties but other than that, their showing was amazing. I had a good spot, no personal space, but a good spot regardless. I knew more songs by Weezer than I thought I did, so as I was dancing around, I started adding some words and what do you know, I did’t care what anyone else thought because they were all doing it too. Everyone enjoyed themselves during Weezer. They are the perfect mix of old, new, rock, alternative, nerdy (in a good way), and fun. With Rivers Cuomo as their front man, I would expect nothing less from them. I will definitely be exploring and expanding my knowledge with Weezer in the near future.

After their set was over, it was time. The Red Hot Chili Peppers would be playing next. But to get to that point, we had to wait about 90 minutes before they came on. During that time we could have seen another band and have a bad spot for watching the Peppers, or find a good spot now, and wait there for the time being. We chose the latter choice. After wait for a least an hour, we heard the beginnings of an amazing show, filled with Flea, Anthony Kiedis, Chad Smith, and Josh Klinghoffer.

When their set began, it started with hit songs from past albums, along with hits from their new albums. It was a great mix of the new and the old, not just from one album, but from every album they had produced. The energy they had was amazing, the crowd was hype form them, and then Anthony Kiedis took off his shirt. The crowd went wild, fans new and old all screaming for the same reason. It was a great thing to be a part of, finding a place where there was no fighting, no violence, everyone was getting along and enjoying one another’s company and bonding over music.

As I was reading other reviews of the Red Hot Chili Peppers, I read that their energy was a little dulled compared to past shows. When I saw what I was amazed, because I don’t think they could have been any more energized. They came out guitars on fire, Chad Smith banging away on drums, and Flea jumping around with his bass guitar.

Overall the show of RHCP was absolutely amazing, and I wouldn’t change it. The banter between Kiedis and Flea was hilarious as always, and the song choice was great. Overall the entire music festival was a big hit. I had a great time, it was an amazing vibe, that I could enjoy again. These people didn’t care, didn’t judge, everyone was there for the same reason, good music. I had a great experience.  

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The Meadows Music and Arts Festival 2017