This was the year I finally got to experience the VOODOO MUSIC + ART EXPERIENCE.
Voodoo Music + Arts Experience is one of the major music festivals in the state, held for the past 16 years on Halloween weekend in City Park in New Orleans. Mix great musical acts + crazy halloween costumes + the New Orleans (partying) state of mind, and you’ve got a recipe for an epic weekend.
Voodoo consists of 4 stages:
1. Flambeau. This is the smallest of the 4 stages. Mostly smaller, local acts played here, with the exception of a few stand outs such as Manchester Orchestra and Lauryn Hill (only because she was rescheduled after being 45 minutes late to her set at the main stage).
3. Le Plur. This stage was strictly EDM. The party didn’t stop all day here. And with being tucked in the back corner of the grounds, walking into the Le Plur area was like walking into a whole other world. My friend and I made a list of things that are #SoLePlur that I would like to share:
- Hula hoop girls
- Any item of clothing that says “YOLO”
- Mermaid and unicorn costumes
- Anyone in excessive amount of neon
- Butterfly wings
- Frat bros
- Metallic leggings
- Glow sticks (at all hours)
- Animal hats
- Body glitter
- Furry leg warmers
- Exposed butt cheeks
- High schoolers with large “lemonade” cups
4. Ritual. The largest stage which housed the biggest names of the weekend such as Twenty-One Pilots, Outkast, Trombone Shorty and the Orleans Avenue, Thirty Seconds to Mars, Foo Fighters, Arctic Monkeys, etc etc.
I was lucky enough to be able to enjoy the weekend with one of my close friends who lives near the festival grounds, and who has gone to Voodoo for the past 4 years. She knew the tricks to find free, nearby parking and was the best partner in crime for the weekend. We spent a lot of time sitting on a blanket, watching the acts from a distance. The weather was absolutely beautiful during the daytime, so we enjoyed from afar with refreshing craft beers and good conversation. Other times, however, we were up close on the action. When the sun would set and the temperature would drop, the main acts and headliners would come on to a huddled crowd. We scored amazing spots for Outkast and Arctic Monkeys and although it was crowded, we didn’t mind because it helped us stay warm.
Overall I had a fantastic weekend. I’m so glad I finally got to experience Voodoo, since its such a nearby festival that I hadn’t gotten a chance to attend yet. I discovered lots of local acts that I love and that I hope to catch playing around me very soon! Was it the best music festival I’ve been to? Probably not. But it being on Halloween weekend in the fall versus the usual summer music fest offered a different vibe and a unique experience, not to mention great weather. Some artists even came out dressed in costume! It was both super relaxing and super crazy, and the best way to spend my Halloween weekend.
- Outkast. When the first festival lineups of 2014 started being released early this year and I saw that Outkast was hitting the festival scene hard with a reunion tour, I knew that I had to see at least one show. Outkast being on the Voodoo lineup was a huge reason I even bought a ticket. And they did not disappoint! They opened with the high-energy “B.O.B” and the fun didn’t stop until the very end. I was slightly bummed that they didn’t do anything special or crazy since it was the last show of their tour. Check out their discography on Spotify here.
- Arctic Monkeys. Obviously. They’re my favorite band so of course they were a highlight of my weekend. My only complaint is that they should have played longer! Outkast played for about 2 hours and Foo Fighters played for 2 and a half hours….and Arctic Monkeys only played for about 1 hr 20 mins. And with 5 albums under their belt, they could’ve definitely pulled out some old songs and played longer. Regardless, they rocked out and frontman Alex Turner was as suave as ever. Definitely worth the wait and having to sit through a 45-minutes-late Lauryn Hill and the rock-cliche-filled Thirty Seconds to Mars show to get a spot in the 3rd row. Listen to all their awesome tunez here.
- Flow Tribe. This is a local band that I’ve heard of, but hadn’t ever actually seen. And after seeing them at Voodoo, I’m definitely going to try to catch them again around town. They just looked like they were having so much fun performing. And not only that, but I laughed aloud on multiple occasions. They would do these stupid dance moves and make fools of themselves. It was great. And their funk/rap/blues music was great too! Check it here.
- Foo Fighters. Or better yet, Dave Grohl and the banter between him and drummer Taylor Hawkins. I don’t consider myself a huge fan of Foo Fighters (sure, I know their popular hits) but after seeing them live I definitely like them more. They ROCKED OUT for 2 and a half hours. And Dave Grohl is just such a cool dude.
I could go on and on about highlights, but you get the gist. Check out some pictures from my weekend! If you like whatcha see, consider attending Voodoo Fest next year! Weekend passes for 2015 are on sale now at a great price. Check out the Voodoo Fest Website!