Category Archives: Music

Holla fo’ Lolla!!!

I wanted to go to Lollapalooza so bad after seeing the line-up; but 3-day passes sold out quick and I wasn’t about to drop up to $250 on a single day ticket from some stranger on Craigslist. So, I left going to the music festival up to fate, and what do you know…I made it to 2 of the 3 days – for free!

lollapalooza lineup

On Friday night I went with a co-worker with VIP passes from our boss. After finally finding the entrance (I swear we walked around the entire outside perimeter before we came across a gate we could go through) we made it in time for Flux Pavilion. Then we headed to the ‘Lolla Lounge’ for some free drinks (beats spending $8 bucks on a can of Bud Light) and watched the beginning of The Killers from the sky deck overlooking the grounds. After a bit, we headed back to the first stage to see Steve Aoki finish off the first night.

Flux Pavilion - Lolla (4)

Flux Pavilion - Lolla (3)

Flux Pavilion - Lolla (2)

Flux Pavilion - Lolla (1)   Lollapalooza Overview (1)

Lollapalooza & CityScape

me at killers

Lollapalooza Overview (3)

Steve Aoki - Lolla (1)

Steve Aoki - Lolla (2)

On Sunday I snagged a couple 3-day wristbands from a co-worker whose friends weren’t going that day and met up with some of my friends that were already there. I safety pinned one of the wristbands around my wrist and ended up selling the other one on the street after my friend couldn’t go at the last minute. (So, I guess that means I actually made money on Lolla!) Once I finally found my friends among the 100,000 other attendees expected to be there that day (which was a nightmare with such a large layout & patchy cell phone service). We started out as a group of 10 but by the end of the night, dwindled down to just 3. It’s inevitable that some people are going to get lost along the way – between the bathroom breaks (which take for-ev-ver!), people wanting to see different sets, and somebody getting separated in the crowd while snaking our way to the front. We floated between the 8 stages spread throughout Grant Park (which was much easier to navigate the 2nd time around) and saw Alt-J, Vampire Weekend, Major Lazer, The Cure and Knife Party.

Lolla Group   Lollapalooza Friends

Alt-J - Lolla

Vampire Weekend - Lolla

Lolla Overview - Sunday (1)

Knife Party

The Cure - Lolla

knife party (1)

Then, following Lolla, we continued the festivities and went to the Mid to see Diplo DJ.

Diplo

It was a long day…and long night, but all-in-all I had a lotta fun at Lolla! In terms of music festivals Lollapalooza is a little too large and too commercialized for my personal preferences, but I think it’s definitely something everyone should experience at some point in their life.

So what were my fashion choices for this festival? Well…

All-Saints Twisted Fringe Top & Cut-Offs On Friday night I wore my twisted fringe cotton top from All Saints Spitalfields and a pair of cut-offs.

IMG_3304On Sunday I wore my “friendly face” cotton tank from Urban Outfitters, denim cut-offs, and a fuchsia velvet fanny pack.

Purple SneaksOh, and of course, my purple sneakers :)

I guess you could say I looked like the quintessential festival-goer in these two outfits. I certainly felt some stares coming from people sitting on the patios of Gibson’s and Tavern on Rush while walking through my neighborhood. My mix of fringe, fuzzy fanny-pack, and purple sneakers undoubtedly stuck out from their regular civilian clothing…but once I got to Grant Park, I fit right in!

So far I’m 4-for-4 when it comes to music festivals this summer (Spring Awakening, Wavefront, Pitchfork, & Lollapalooza); with North Coast Music Festival coming up this weekend I almost have to buy a ticket to go so I can complete my 5-for-5 clean sweep of summer festivals. Even though I’m not entirely impressed with the line-up this year, it is ‘summers last stand’ for outdoor music festivals…so I suppose I’ll go.

North Coast Music Festival 2013 Lineup

Who’s up for a little Wu-Tang Clan this weekend!? Ehh, why not! :)

Finally Made it to my First Full Moon Jam!

I found out about the Full Moon Jams up at Foster Beach two years ago and I finally make it to my first jam last Monday! It’s not entirely my fault; it seems that every time I tried to go in the past I’ve either had to work or it’s been cancelled due to poor weather conditions (including twice so far this year).

The jam began back in 2004 by a group of friends looking to get together and has grown to become a celebration that brings together a assorted mix of performers, musicians and spectators. Once a month, on a day nearest to the full moon, people gather to watch fire spinners perform to music by local percussionists.

I can’t even begin to explain my excitement leading up to the jam – I honestly had butterflies in my stomach and when I saw the fire from a distance I was about ready to jump out of the car! I made one of my co-workers come check it out with me and he was equally as intrigued to see what we were getting into – and what we were getting into was a completely different subculture! Who knew there were this many hippies hangin out in Chicago?!

As the sun set and the full moon rose, dozens of fire dancers ignited their fans, poles, pois, & hula-hoops and performed to the crowd of onlookers gathered around. They burned to the beat of the nearby drum circle made-up of local musicians (and when I say ‘musicians’ I really mean ‘anyone who brought a drum along with them’). Everyone was welcome to join in on creating the shared rhythm or they could jump inside the circle and dance with no inhibition – freedom of self-expression at its finest! There were drums of all sizes, maracas, raddles, people howling and even a tuba. A 7-year-old stood next to a 70-year-old, both with grins going from ear-to-ear. For two hours, I watched in amazement, as they twisted-and-twirled their flaming props, crack a fiery whip and breathed giant puffs of blazing fire into the sky. Here are some snapshots from the jam…

Full Moon Jam

Drum Circle

Fire Spinner

Fire Spinning & the City Scape

Fire Breather

Hooping with Fire

Fire & the Full Moon!!!

Closing out the Jam

A mesmerizing Monday – if I must say so myself! I’m already looking forward to next month’s Full Moon Jam…and looking for drum as well :)

Would you jump inside a drum circle and dance like no one’s watching?

Sunday Funday at Pitchfork Music Festival

Last week was a busy week for me and once again, I’ve got a lot to catch you guys up on! I’ll start with Pitchfork Music Festival in this first post. Thank you to everyone who voted on which outfit you thought I should wear to the festival last Sunday. The outfit that received the most votes was this one…

Anthropologie Chevron Suit, Dad's Plaid & Cut-Offs (3)

Although I love this look, I didn’t go with this outfit for the festival. The strapless top is perfect for during the day when the sun’s out (no awkward tan lines!) and my father’s blue plaid button-down is great to cover-up with after the sun sets. The only issue is that, if you recall, the chevron top is actually a one-piece swimsuit. In reference to the restroom factor when choosing the best festival fashion, this ensemble would be a nightmare – there’s just way too many things going on! If you undress it, you’d have to untie & take of the button-down top (and find some place to set it), drop the denim cut-offs, and shimmy out of the one-piece suit in the port-a-potty. That’s a lot of fussing around with your fashion in not a lot of space; and there’s no way you’re going to do all that in one breathe!

So what did I wear? I opted for this outfit…

IMG_3316

I’ve had this vintage floral-motif top from Free People for a while. The print is playful & fun, the sheer material is breezy, and as the high-low hemline trend is starting to taper, I figured I wear it while I still can. The olive wool hat from Topshop shielded me from the sun (and the rain) and the fuchsia allowed me to be hands-free, while also adding other pops of color & texture to the outfit.

I had a relaxing day sitting in the grass listening to the live music. There were also vintage resale, accessories, and artwork vendors to browse through if you wanted to get away from the stage and tons of food options to choose from. I’ve been to a few festivals at Union Park so I’m pretty familiar with the layout of the grounds. I strategically set myself in between the two main stages so I could toggle back and forth between sets and still be near the front. I was really looking forward to seeing MIA perform. I was a bit disappointed because they were having a lot of sound issues. The mic cut in and out & speakers screeched – but she still put on a good show. R. Kelly closed out the night and also put on a good performance. He played through a string of his hit songs and adlibbed some pretty funny songs in the off time. Here are some of my pics from the festival…

Festival Vendors

Food Vendors

Art Vendors

Pitchfork Performer

MIA Performance

MIA (1)

CrowdSo many people!

MIA Put Your Hands Up

R. Kelly Performance

R. Kelly

View from up closeWhile it’s fun to get up close to the stage…you’re usually left staring at the back of someone’s head.

Stage & Skyscraper!Sometimes it’s better view from a bit farther back. The stage & the skyscraper – such a pretty sight!

HoopDancers.jpgOne day I will be this good!

The aftermathThe Aftermath

Fallen FlopThe fallen flop. I bet this guy wished he would’ve worn different shoes!

Flood of People Leaving PitchforkFollowing the festival – the sea of people waiting for CTA

If you voted for one of the other outfits, here are my thoughts on some of those…

All-Saints Twisted Fringe Top & Cut-Offs (2)

This was the runner-up outfit for the festival. I love this look because the cotton top & cut-offs are comfy and casual, while the twisted trim & fringe are a fun, playful touch.

Free People Wildcard Tank Top & Cut-Offs (2)

I love this look as well (I suppose shouldn’t say that for all of them…but I really do :) Again, the cotton graphic top and denim shorts are a simply styled go-to. I’ve already worn this outfit to two festivals this summer, so I went with something else.

IMG_3304

Say ‘Hello’ to my fashion friend! Yet again, with the easy-going cotton graphic & cut-offs. The strand of stone brings out the green in her eyes while the fuchsia fanny pack picks up on the tone throughout the top.

IMG_3325

I like the muted hues & mix of patterns throughout this ensemble, but an ivory maxi skirt at a music festival = huge mistake. There’s no shot I would’ve made it through the day without someone stepping on it & ripping it or staining the skirt!

Urban Outfitters antique-motif kimono with band graphic tee and cut-off denim shorts (2)

Another great look and popular pick! I don’t really know what else to say…other that I love it!

Urban Outfitters red floral tank with navajo shorts (1)

This is my schizophrenic styled outfit. The red, vintage-motif top and black & white Navajo-print shorts are complete opposites…but for some reason, I think look stylish when worn together. I wore this to WaveFront so I went with something else.

Gold Maxi Dress &  Navajo-Print Scarf

IMG_3346

A maxi dress with a scarf has been my standard outfit this summer. It’s simple & stylish, soft & still sexy. Something great about this outfit is that you have the option to take the scarf off and use it as a blanket. Simply unwrap it from around your neck and set the fabric swatch from Free People on the ground to sit on…it’s so big, you can even invite a friend to join you!

Urban Outfitters black & ivory navajo print jumper (1)

I said it in my initial post…rompers in regards to restrooms at a music festival are not a good idea. Enough said.

Now that you know what outfit I wore…which of these would you have worn to Pitchfork if you could pick one? Send me a comment with your choice and why!

Help me pick the perfect outfit for Pitchfork!

Pitchfork Music Festival kicked off yesterday over at Union Park. The three day summer music festival focuses on artists & bands from alternative rock, rap, hip-hop & electronica, with a little punk, jazz, and experimental thrown in the mix as well. This may be my favorite festival of them all because there’s such a variety in the line-up that there’s something for everyone. Sick of one sound?…just move on to the next stage and listen to a different set! Whether you plant yourself in the grass for a musical escape & drift off into an audible daydream or commit to going deep the pit, you’re bound to have a memorable musical experience; and with the likes of Bjork, Belle & Sebastian, MIA, and R. Kelly headlining this year’s line-up, that’s a definite guarantee.

I’m only going tomorrow and since it’s my only day, I intend on spending the whole day in the musical array. The second best thing at festivals, following the music, is the fashion!  I want to pick out something that’s stylish, but still comfortable since I’ll be there all day long. There are many factors to take into consideration when it comes to picking out what you’re going to wear, such as…

  • The Weather & Elements– With every outdoor activity you run the risk of inclement weather. Hot or cold, rain or shine, the fate of the festival is up to Mother Nature. I looked ahead at the forecast for tomorrow and it’s calling for mostly cloudy skies with a high of 78°. That sounds like the perfect day to me! Considering the recent string up upper-90° hot, humid days we’ve had here in Chicago (and everywhere else in the country) this little cool-down is welcomed. Since Union Park has very few trees shade is a scarcity; so I’ll rely on mostly cloudy skies to shield me from the sweltering sun. Something lightweight and breezy is the best choice for this kind of forecast. When rain shows up on the radar that’s another story!
  • An All-day Affair – Attending an outdoor festival is often an all-day affair. You must make sure to wear something that’s keeps you cool and comfortable under the afternoon’s blazing sun…but warm enough when the sun is long gone. The gates open at Noon, first artists hit the stage around 1:00pm, the headliner goes on around 8:30 and the festival finishes up around 10pm. That’s a long day! With no re-entry allowed, once you cross that gate you only have what you brought with to work with.
  • Your Surroundings – Pitchfork is located in Union Park on the Near West Side of Chicago. I’ve been to a few festivals at UP (North Coast Music Festival is also held in this park) and it’s my #1 choice for a concert site. It’s a wide-open grassy plot; you can pretty much plop yourself down once you pick the perfect spot, you don’t even need to bring a blanket! Two weeks ago I went to WaveFront which was up at Montrose Beach; the set-up in the sand was a first for me and while it was fun, being surrounded by all that sand got a little annoying after a while. The little granules were everywhere – in my hair, pockets, shoes, drink; there was no way of avoiding it. :/
  • Style vs. Sentimental ValueHow much do you care about what you’re planning to wear? Are you willing to risk wrecking it? It’s pretty much a given that whatever you wear is going to get dirty, maybe even destroyed. Its dusty, maxis drag on the ground, layers get lost or left behind, tops get torn when things get rowdy – just keep in mind that whatever you wear may need some maintenance repairs when you get home or even thrown away entirely. I made the mistake of wearing one of my favorite scarves to a DeadMau5 concert at Congress Theatre. I lost it somewhere in the crowd at some point during the set…I have no idea when, where, or how (I made sure it was tied!)…but when the lights went up, it was no longer around my neck. I loved my silky snake-motif scarf & lost it…I’ll never make that mistake again! Another bad idea – flip-flops! If someone steps on your heel and rips it off your foot you’re stuck with only one shoe…and that would suck. I have my special pair of purple lace-up sneakers that I wear everywhere. They’re secured to my feet, won’t break, and protect my little piggies from being crushed in the crowd…the only down-fall: tan lines – but that’s the least of my worries.
  • The Bathroom Situation – You might find this to be a funny thing to factor in, but hear me out. Any fest-vet will say it’s important to 1. Locate all the lavatories so you know exactly where to go when you have to go, because there’s bound to be a long line when you get there. 2. Think fast – wasting time in line just to go to the bathroom sucks, especially when you’re trying to go in between music sets. Wear something that’s quick & easy to take on and off. If you can make it out of a port-a-potty without setting anything down (gross) and without having to take a breath that’s usually the best! And I’m pretty sure the person behind you will appreciate your speedy pee as well. 3. BYOTP – Bring. Your. Own. Toilet. Paper. (Kleenex, napkin, paper towel, heck, leaves for all I care). It’s almost a guarantee that they’ll run out of TP by the time the festival finishes, so remember your own resources. Rompers probably aren’t the best in regards to the restrooms. Do you really want to have to pull down your entire outfit in the port-a-potty??

I’m sure there are a few factors that I’m forgetting, but oh well; I’ll add those to my next pre-festival post. Keeping these points in mind, I need to pick out the perfect outfit for Pitchfork, add I’d like you to help! Here are a couple of my choices…

All-Saints Twisted Fringe Top & Cut-Offs (2)

1. My All-Saint’s charcoal fringe cotton top & cut-offs

Anthropologie Chevron Suit, Dad's Plaid & Cut-Offs (3)

2. A chevron-print one-piece swimsuit underneath cut-offs & my dad’s blue plaid button-down, with my brown suede cross-body bag

Free People Wildcard Tank Top & Cut-Offs (2)

3. My Free People ‘WILDCARD’ cut-off tank top and J.Crew rolled shorts, with my Free People brown leather hip belt.

IMG_3304

4. An Urban Outfitters tank top and cut-offs, with my fuchsia velvet fanny pack

IMG_3306

5. My Free People floral print high-low silk top and cut-offs, with my Top Shop olive wool hat & fuchsia velvet fanny pack

IMG_3325

6. A purple vintage floral-motif tank top and Arden B. ivory maxi skirt, with a plaid fedora & my brown suede cross-body bag

Urban Outfitters antique-motif kimono with band graphic tee and cut-off denim shorts (2)

7. A Joy Division graphic tee underneath my Urban Outfitters antique-motif fringe wrap with denim cut-offs

Urban Outfitters red floral tank with navajo shorts (1)8. A vintage floral-motif tank top with my Navajo-print shorts

Gold Maxi Dress &  Navajo-Print Scarf9. My Alternative Apparel golden maxi dress with a Navajo- print scarf

Urban Outfitters black & ivory navajo print jumper (1)10. My Urban Outfitters Navajo-print harem jumper with a southwestern carpet belt.

Vote now on what you think I should wear tomorrow!…

It May Still be Winter…but I’m Looking Forward to Wavefront!

3-day passes to Wavefront Music Festival popped up on Groupon a couple days ago for a mere $99.00 (regularly $189.99); after thinking about it for a couple days, I ultimately caved in and charged my card with only 2 hours of the sale left to spare. It may be my nonexistent social life that instigated my impulse buy…or my lack of live music lately…or possibly Tuesday’s never-ending snowfall. Regardless, in the midst of walking through the slush & snow, I made up my mind – I want nothing more than sun on my shoulders, sand between my toes, and the sound of music ringing in my ears!

As Wavefront Music Festival takes over the Windy City for the second year, me & the masses will migrate to Montrose Beach where, for three straights days, electronic music will wash ashore Lake Michigan. Surviving the last few weeks of winter seems a little bit easier knowing that come July, I’ve got the DJ beats by Caspa and Rusko in the air, sand in my sneaks, and lights in the sky to look forward to…

Wavefront Music Festival, Chicago, Illinois

Wavefront Music Festival, Chicago, Illinois

Wavefront Music Festival, Chicago, Illinois

Wavefront Music Festival, Chicago, Illinois

Wavefront Music Festival, Chicago, Illinois

With my first festival tickets purchased (and no-doubt more to come!), I’ve already started picking out what I’m going to wear to concerts come this summer. Here are a few festival looks on my line-up so far…

Anthropologie Chevron One-Piece Suit & Denim Cut-Offs

Anthropologie Chevron One-Piece Suit & Denim Cut-Offs

Anthropologie Chevron Suit, Dad's Plaid Shirt & Denim Cut-Offs

An obvious 1st choice for a beach-front festival – my swimsuit! My ivory & beige chevron one-piece suit from Anthropologie doubles as a halter top when worn with a pair of cut-off jean shorts. When I get hot – I can just take them off and go for a dip in the lake. And when I get cold – I can cover up with my father’s old blue flannel, perfect for when the sun goes down & the fireworks light up the sky.

All-Saints Twisted Fringe Top & Denim Cut-Offs

All-Saints Twisted Fringe Top & Denim Cut-Offs

With a bikini on beneath, a little bit of my belly peaks out from underneath my All-Saints Spitalfields twisted fringe top; worn with another pair of denim cut-offs.

Free People "Wildcard" Tank Top & Denim Cut-Offs

Free People "Wildcard" Tank Top & Denim Cut-Offs

And again with the cut-offs! I’ve paired my Free People “Wildcard” graphic tank top with light denim stripe shorts from J. Crew. The muscle tank has dropped arm holes, so I think I’ll invest in a mustard yellow lace bandeau that will show underneath.

Free People Gold Lace Bandeau

I think it’s also about time to invest in another pair of cotton sneakers.

Purple Sneakers

My purple lace-ups have endured a lot, but I don’t think they’ll survive another summer full of concerts!

What plans have you put on your calendar that you have to look forward too?