Summer Camp was a raging good time this year, despite a bit of mud. After buying tickets for four years and volunteering there last year, Sasha was welcomed on the Camp Counselor team to document the festival experience. Here are some highlights from the first two days as seen through his lens, plus a little write-up from my perspective.
We arrived at SCamp nice and early and got set up in the woods. The first band of the weekend – Bad Dagger – raged the Camping Stage and got things off to a rocking start. Getting into SCamp is tiring so I took a nice long nap before the pre-party really kicked off. Then we headed out to catch some of Twiddle. They’ve come quite a long way since their first performances on the Campfire Stage!
Next up was Spafford, one of the new up-and-coming jambands we’ve heard so much about this past year. Unfortunately, I fainted from dehydration shortly into their first or second song. I was ok, I just had to enjoy the rest of their set from a seated position. Remember to always drink lots and lots of water kids! I guess I was so excited to get set up and start dancing that I just forgot to hydrate. As Bayliss always says, “Hydration is happiness!”
While I went back to the campsite to try and recover a bit, Sasha caught the end of the Wyllys set in the bus. Then he stuck around for some of Sun Stereo at the Camping Stage. It was great having our tent right by these two stages, because even when we were back at camp we could rock out.
It was so cold Thursday night that I was ready to just curl up under all my blankets. But rather than do that we went to the Soulshine Tent and saw grooved on the couch to JJ & Dre. Their soulful sound kept me dancing and warmed my bones a bit. After their set, we had to call it a night. We would have loved to have seen Crosseyed and Phishless but these old folks couldn’t make it that late. We had big plans for Friday!
Friday ended up being a huge day of music even though we got a late start. Sasha was supposed to introduce moe. with all the other Camp Counselors but unfortunately Mother Nature had other plans. Just as they were supposed to come on, a massive storm approached. Rather than an introduction, they told us to take cover away from anything metal. I made it back to our campsite just before the sky opened up. It was one of the craziest storms I’ve ever seen. Lightning even struck a tree that was only 20 feet from our campsite. It was so close we could feel the electricity.
When it finally cleared up, the music resumed but the grounds were turned to massive mud pits. For the rest of the evening, you had to earn your live music by trekking through the muck to get to the other stages. The first notes of music that day for us were from none other than Mike Gordon. We spent the rest of the evening trudging through the mud to go between the Moonshine and Sunshine stages as we had to see as much of Les Claypool as we could.
After Mike Gordon, we saw The Claypool Lennon Delirium for the first time. We had been dying to see them ever since they emerged on the scene last year, but just barely missed them when we were in Portland last summer. Their set did not disappoint, and it was a great way to get the night going. Next up was the first set of Umphrey’s McGee, which was turned into even more of a rock show than usual thanks to the added element of a mud pit. Keep an eye out in the video for the dude we’ve dubbed as “Mud Man” and you’ll see what I mean!
We had to leave the UM set a bit early to ensure we didn’t miss a note of Primus. They don’t play a whole lot of festies these days, so we wanted to make sure we caught the entire show. Naturally, they played “My Name is Mud” – a fitting choice since we were knee-deep in it. Their set was a psychedelic mind-f*ck if there ever was one, leaving many people scrambling to pick up pieces of their melted brains. We still managed to make it back for the second set of UM, which was full of heavy hitters and ended with a sick Pink Floyd encore.
Without tickets for the late night in the Red Barn, we caught a tribute to Green Day’s “Dookie” by members of UM and Aqueous. It was Sasha’s first rock show way back in ’94, so this one was extra nostalgic for him. It was a wild singalong party and a great way to spend the hours of 2-4 AM. We thought that sunrise kickball was going on, so we even stayed up for Desctructo‘s “Sunrise Sermon” set. Sadly the kickball game was cancelled due to the act of God we all experienced that day. Around 6AM, we finally crawled into our tent to wind down the first half of SCamp ’17.
We’ll have Part Two up in a few days, so stay tuned for that!
Were you at SCamp? What were your favorite sets from the first few days? Let us know in the comments!