I have to come clean with you: I hate music festivals. They’re hot. They’re crowded. They’re expensive. And perhaps most importantly: they’re full of “festival people.”
At the risk of sounding like a music snob, I’ll explain. There are “show people” and “festival people.” Show people are into music, and they get excited about seeing their favorite bands live. Festival people are into getting high and/or day drunk and they scream incoherently at band they’ve never heard of.
So…. I don’t go to a lot of music festivals. As a life choice, this works out 99% of the time, but it does mean missing those uncommon collaborations that tend to happen there. This past weekend, us non-festival people missed out on seeing Mavis Staples (of the Staple Singers) performing “The Weight” with Arcade Fire‘s Win Butler at San Francisco’s Outside Lands Festival. Thankfully, the internet exists, so we can see the action without spending $5 on a bottle of water.
This performance makes me smile because its everything that a musical collaboration should be. The musicians trade verses, showing off their own sound, but then everyone joins in together for the chorus. Perfect for a song about carrying the load for someone else.