I swore off summer music festivals in 2007. That year’s Virgin Festival was two days of persistent reminders that I’m uncomfortable standing for 10+ hours, don’t like crowds, and am quickly irritated by kids drunk on their first beer1. Add to that scorching, broiling, suffocating, torrid heat on Day 1, unseasonable chilliness and rain on Day 2, and the punch in the face that is the Smashing Pumpkins2. I had no qualms with pronouncing my festival days Over. Even seeing the Police and the Beastie Boys didn’t weight the scales.

The only festival that will get me out of the house is Coachella, which I manage to miss every year. Each year about this time I swear that NEXT year I’ll remember to get my act together. Then it vanishes from my mind until the following year’s too-late month. Is it possible for events to wear invisibility cloaks?

Then this presents itself:
All Tomorrow's Parties Asbury Park New Jersey 2011

Do you see that? It’s being curated. Curated! That sounds so fancy and civilized. Like I’ll be lying on silk cushions in the cool shade sipping white wine while being fanned with palm fronds, not jostled around by beer-soaked frat boys on the surface of the Sun.

And Portishead making a rare States-side appearance. And Jeff Magnum out of hiding. And Asbury Park! What other wonders will ATP pull out of their magic hat?

I’m keeping my eye on you, ATP.


1 I felt the same way at 22, so it’s less an “I’m old” thing and more an “I’m cranky” thing.
2 I mean, really. What happened, guys?! Gish was so perfect. Siamese Dream was solid. Then it all went pear-shaped. Billy should’ve never shaved his head.

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