Friday, February 5, 2010

Derek Erdman's Music Fest Anthropology

Posted By on 02.05.10 at 03:55 PM

When he's not providing the Reader with controversial covers, local artist Derek Erdman paints things like portraits of Prince or fictional scenes of, say, all the former members of the Fall showing up to Mark E. Smith's annual disbursement of royalty checks.* He's also one of the only people to have attended both the Pitchfork Music Festival and the Gathering of the Juggalos. Now he's contributed a post to the MTV blog in which he compares the crowds at both festivals. Spoiler alert: He digs the juggalos a little more.

I kind of get Erdman's point. Indie rockers tend to be at least a little snobbish and prone to social anxiety, while the juggalos, temporarily isolated from non-rap-clown society on a campground in Cave-In-Rock, Illinois, establish a music-tribe utopia where people go out of their way to make sure their fellow festivalgoers are having a good time. I only have two real issues with his argument.

One, it's a new decade and I feel like it's time to stop bringing up this mythical "trust fund hipster" when talking about white would-be counterculturalists. How many people not in NYC or LA live off trust funds? In a decade of hanging out with Chicago hipsters, I've barely met enough actual jobless rich-kid bohemians to fill a booth at Big Star.

Two, while juggalos are living in their own face-painted heaven on earth, they're probably a blast to hang out with. In the real world, not so much.

(via the Daily Swarm)

*By the way, if you haven't checked out David Simpson's The Fallen: Searching for the Missing Members of the Fall, you should, even if you're not a Fall fan. The group's story alone will probably be enough to make you one.

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