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Festival Review – Into The Great Wide Open 2012

23 september 2012

On Of The Amazing Stages

Name: Into The Great Wide Open * Edition: 4 * No. Of Days: 4 * Where: Vlieland – Netherlands * When: September 6-9, 2012 * Music Style: Indie, Singer-songwriter, Rock, Pop, Blues, Electro and much more   * Audience: Mostly 18-35 / young families (around 5000) * Food: All kinds of Vegetarian, Fish, Healthy Freshly made food * Weather: Perfect summer weather * Weird Fact: The festival is at an very small Island, so there are bands walking around everywhere and even staying at your own campsite * Overall Score: 9 out of 10

A Magical Place

Erlend Oye

Being on a small Island feels kind of special, but being there on a amazingly well organized festival with great music makes it even better. After being on the Island for a couple of days the festivals 4th edition started on Thursday night. There was a very intimate concert in the woods by Dutch singer-songwriters Kim Jansen, Tim Know and Maurits Westerik who all played some acoustic songs on guitar with their beautiful voices.

On the other side of the Island they’ve build a new stage near the lighthouse which looked amazing. Erlend Oye from ‘The Whitest Boy Alive / Kings Of Convenience. He gave us a lesson in the history of music and played songs from the seventies until now. It was so much fun to listen to all the familiar songs and he even played R. Kelly’s ‘Ignition’ which sounded so much different from the original. What a great first night of the festival.

Case Mayfield

My Favorite Day

The next day was my favorite because of the line-up. In the morning I found out that Case Mayfield (who played n my parents living room for my birthday) was doing a ‘3Voor12 session’ which was a acoustic session somewhere on the Island. He played somewhere next to the cranberry fields and it was so small and intimate. He sounded amazing. Check out the session here (I’m in the video at 3.00 min – in the yellow shirt) and see for yourself how talented and special his voice is.

James Vincent McMorrow

During the day I saw performances of ‘We Were Evergreen’ , which was very nice and sweet and also ‘Anne Soldaat’, ‘Will And The People’ and another performance with band of  ‘Case Mayfield’. My highlight of the day was ‘James Vincent McMorrow’s ‘ performance. I’ve seen him for the first time one year ago at this festival and became a big fan right that very moment. In the meanwhile I’ve seen him perform in a church, on a festival, in a concert hall and now again on the main stage at this festival. It’s his last show of the whole tour before he gets back  to recording and even without his drummer on stage he manages to give us a great show. He’s very nervous tonight because he has to play drums next to all the other instruments. But he convinces the audience of his talents and brings a great final show. Watch a part of his performance here.

Free Puke Concert All Night

Coins & Drinks

After his performance I wasn’t feeling very well so I left my boyfriend and my parents (who were there with me) at the festival and went back to the campsite. I found out I had food poisoning because I couldn’t stop throwing up. I had my own puke concert at my tent. A few hours later my parents also came back and they also had food poisoning. We continued our won puke concert for the rest of the whole night. It was awe full. Our neighbors at the campsite must have thought that we had to much to drink, but we didn’t drink at all.

OMG What A Day… *Puke*

Reggie Watts

The next day we all still felt terrible and while the festival continued with the busiest day we all were laying on the ground outside next to our tents because it was to hot to stay inside. That must have been a lovely sight for everyone walking by…When the night started I really had enough of all the ‘feeling-like-a-tablecloth-feeling’ and I’ve decided to go back to the festival site to see some more concerts. Me and my boyfriend saw the most funniest performance by ‘Reggie Watts’ which was hilarious and strange at the same time. After that we watched a great performance by ‘Of Monsters And Man’ which was very nice. Luckily we could sit in a big tower which overlooked nicely to the stage so I could sit while my stomach was still getting better. The last performance I saw was ‘Woodkid’ which I didn’t like at all. I could see that most of the audience agreed with me because they didn’t get any response from them.

After that Marco continued partying at his friend’s ‘DJ St. Paul’s ‘ party and I went back to bed.

Me @ The ‘Of Monsters & Men’ Performance

Happy Again

The next morning we all felt a lot better and were happy to get back to the festival site to see some more performances on the last day of the festival. We watched ‘Ryan Joseph Burns’ who sang beautifully, ‘Paul Thomas Saunders’ who didn’t seem to get to me and also a small part of a very special ‘3Voor12 Session’ with ‘Benjamin Francis Leftwich’ which you can watch here. (watch me at 7.28 min standing in my flower dress behind all the people) I couldn’t wait to check him out later that day.

Voices Of Angels

The Staves

Then we saw the amazingly talented sisters of  ‘The Staves’ . They played at this gorgeous location between the trees and sang so beautiful that they managed to get everyone so quiet and hypnotize us with their angelic voices. After their performance I thanked them for their beautiful music and bought one of their Ep’s . They were very nice girls and assured me that they wanted to come back next year. I already can’t wait!

Then it was time for ‘Benjamin Francis Leftwich’s ‘ performance. His raspy low voice sounded lovely between the trees of the Island and I truly loved every song he’d played. So magical and talented, I really want to see him again.

Giving Us Everything

Willis Earl Beal (& Me in the right corner)

Then we saw ‘Warpaint’ which I didn’t really like that much. After that we saw the weird but talented ‘Willis Earl Beal’ who was feeling sick but still managed to play like he was in front of a big arena filled with 65.000 people. I was sitting almost against the stage (because the rest of the place was packed already) and he surprised everyone with all the energy he put into his songs. It was the weirdest, but also the most convincing performance of the whole festival.

At the main stage ‘Django Django’ were closing the festival which was quite fun but definitely not the biggest highlight of the festival. After that we saw ‘JD McPherson’ perform a nice Rockabilly show and then the festival had come to an end.

All Good Things Come To An End

Beside the freaky horrible food poisoning I had a great time at this festival and I’m glad to have seen so many great artists perform at such beautiful locations. I can’t wait for the next edition!

If you want to see what I mean by how amazing this festival is, just watch this video:


All Photos Are Made By Marco Smeets

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