After coming from 98+ degree weather in DC, the cool 80s of Illinois farmland were quite welcome to wake up to. By the end of the week, the organizers were claiming it was the best weather they’ve enjoyed in 25+ years. I was quite willing to take it–especially with so many dirty hippies nearby.
We had to go into Bushnell to find some propane for the stove graciously lent to us. It was the kind of place where the store clerks called down the aisles to ask customers where was the best place for us to go…”You at that festival?” the young lady at the farming supply store five miles outside of town (past two houses, left on the paved road–not the stone one, and then you go around a long curve…) asked me. “Yep. You ever been?” She shook her head, a smile on her face. “Nope.”
The conversations we participated in during the week were, to say the least, thought provoking: “Prophetic Activism” to “Ecoterrorism,” “Understanding the Middle East” to “Songwriting…” We stumbled into this particular talk about “Reimagining Church” during our lunch hour with two crazy guys, Peter and Brad, who overtly express a commitment to social justice and community building in some unusual ways. It ended up being one our favorite discussions.
Speaking of unusual characters, Jim Fitz was an anabaptist farmer who decided to become a peacemaker. As in a human shield. In the midst of military conflict. Needless to say, he had my attention.
Because twenty some stages wasn’t enough…
Shooting some skateboarders doing tricks behind a wire fence…
mewithoutYou was as engrossing as ever, with a great selection from their discography. Aaron was as awkward as ever, but his twitch always comes across as one of humility–and his recent attempts to plumb the works of both the Sufi mystics of his youth and Christian beliefs of today and arrive at some sort of conclusion has my full sympathy. Alas, the next day would show not everyone shared my perspective, in the only truly awkward moment of the week…
The Lost Dogs put on a rollicking good show, full of their Traveling Wilburys -esque sensibilities. All of the members had been on and off the stage the rest of the day, supporting each other’s solo acts. Which was a repeated trend we saw at Cornerstone, one that I’ve never seen at a festival before. Bands/labels/music scenes sort of adopted each stage and just hung out there all day, helping out everyone who came on. It felt almost more like a musical residency, at times, than an agenda-packed festival. And that was a good thing. Anyway, the, umm, rather more mature audience around me was quite appreciative of the Lost Dogs’ (much bantered about) reliance on reading both old and new lyrics from music stands strategically sprinkled around the stage.
The band from my childhood that sealed our decision to come to Cstone was up next–but that’s a post unto itself.
Dirty hippy #1. Many more were ahead, freshly invigorated from cooking their roadkill finds and braiding their armpit hair.
Spotted @ MacD’s.
Reminds me of a song I once heard…”oh, cheese…cheese and children…” If you know it, it’s now stuck in your head, too.
We saw a ton of these traveling the roads.
Fifteen hours is a long time in the car. How to be a cool older brother tip #95: bring comics.
Southern Illinois is beautiful.