Saturday, August 19, 2006


Gathering of the Vibes: August 19

It's a famous weekend in upstart New York. Thirty-seven years ago, a little event called Woodstock happened. It took place in Bethel, about 90 miles north of New York City on the Thruway and then west on Rt. 17. I flashed on this immortal event as I drove by signs for Bethel, Woodstock and Saugerties en route to Duanesberg - the site of the 11th Annual Gathering of the Vibes (GOTV).

It was this weekend 37 years ago when Woodstock occurred. And true to form, as it rained torrentially on August 16, 1969, causing a near catastophe and muddy conditions, there has been precipitation today at Day 2 of GOTV. Fortunately, the weather has mostly cooperated so far.

Now in its fifth year at Indian Lookout Country Club, GOTV is a seasoned event with quality entertainment. Yesterday's highlights included Assembly of Dust's "Woodstock" encore, versions of "Lovelight" by the North Mississippi Allstars and Martin Sexton, and night sets by longtime GOTV favored band Deep Banana Blackout and newcomers Tea leaf Green.

Right now, radio personality/singer David Gans is performing a Grateful Dead-inspired set on the second stage. Zen Tricksters opened the day with a rendition of the Beatles' "I Want to Tell You." They were joined by former Dead singer, Donna Jean Godchaux-MacKay. G. Love & Special Sauce just completed a funky set. Keller Williams and New Riders of the Purple Sage are next, to be followed by Hot Tuna, Mickey Hart and Bill Kreutzman's Rhythm Devils, and Bob Weir and Ratdog.

It's quite a day for Deadheads. Tomorrow's bill is more diverse, featuring Burning Spear, Rebirth Brass Band, Walter "Wolfman" Washington, Yonder Mountain String Band and Papa Mali.

GOTV SHOUT OUTS: Ken Hayes, for putting it all together; the VIP tent, for shelter, beer, food, once-a-day meals, cold showers, clean Portos and WiFi; Ed Bender and his Sundance Solar crew for having the most eco-friendly booth; anybody who was smart enough to bring a bicycle; the laid-back security; the bikers who run the place; John Driscoll, for shooting photos for High Times; hippie chicks; hula-hoops; the glow-stick war during AOD's set.

I'll be back with a review tomorrow...

Thanks for a great report...It must be great that they have WIFI and you can get the blog out from there...

Rock On,
Dopey Lopes
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