River’s Edge (What I Realized, Wayne Coyne & Salvador Dali Part 2)

As someone who’s been to Lolla and SXSW I’ve realized I always end up thinking four distinct things at music festivals

  1. People should seriously start drinking water BEFORE they pass out.
  2. When you’re my height (5’1 or 5’2) you don’t have to fight as hard to get close to the stage.
  3. The only time you remember to put sunscreen on your feet is when they’re already burning.
  4. The best music festivals always ruin your shoes

A few days ago I wrote about the crazy turn of events that led me to the land of the business majors. Obviously when things first went down I wasn’t very happy about it. And I went through a brief period where listening to Pink Floyd or Sublime pissed me off because it reminded me of my past relationship too much. However, my Type 7 personality helped me quickly overcome my spell of depression. Being sad was just too boring. Regardless of my major I am always looking for a new creative challenge.

Rock the Cause provided what I was looking for when I joined their organization last February as a social media intern during their 2012 SXSW campaign.  Since then I’ve started learning my way around the Twittersphere, met some great people and been around a lot of great music.

Last weekend (thanks to Rock the Cause) I was able to attend the city’s River’s Edge Musical Festival.  I saw performances by Motion City Soundtrack, Quietdrive, Tool, Blaqstarr, AWOLNATION and Rye Rye all while sweating it out at a beautiful park location.

As with most summer memories the sights and smells are already starting to run together. There are only a few things that really still stick out in my mind.  The saltiness of my cheese curds, the smell of beer in my hair (thanks to the extremely drunk girl who fell on the person next to me) and how seeing AWOLNATION live was kind of a letdown. The one part of my River’s Edge experience that is immune to the dulling of time however is meeting the one and only Wayne Coyne.

As someone who recently broke Jay-Z’s record for most shows in 24 hours with the Flaming Lips you think he’d have a full-blown rockstar ego. Having watched him in action with his fans (teaching them the proper way to hug and discussing haunted toilets) I know this can’t be further from the truth. Wayne Coyne is the kind of guy you can’t help but love.  When an unfortunate mix up made him miss a scheduled meet and greet with fans at the Rock the Cause table, he didn’t just ignore the supporters who’d practically melted in the sun waiting for him. He (with the help of Live Nation) set up a VIP autograph session after the show.

He autographed everything from a SpongeBob costume to a stuffed animal. He even designed a tattoo for a guy who was determined to get inked later that night.

He wasn’t caught off guard at all when a girl at a loss for anything else asked him to sign a copy of Salvador Dali’s biography. Instead with a twinkle in his eye he talked about his admiration for the artist saying something along the lines of how people “think too much” nowadays and the key to Dali’s success was he “just painted”.

I might’ve heard the song “Yonkers” a few hundred times but the phrase “actions speak louder then words, let me try this shit” never really resonated with me until that night.

Even though it’s been six months since my life took a new direction, my career path is still really unclear.  But thanks to some inspiration from Salvador Dali (and the fact that I was still in a good mood after seeing Sublime w/Rome) I see no other choice but to keep going. Even if it’s just in hope that I get another smile from the musician with voluminous hair and trippy socks named Wayne.


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