ACL 2017 was amazing! Each year, just gets better. If you’ve never attended a festival, you may not realize how much work it is to make the best of your experience. Booking rentals, hotels, purchasing tickets, finding the line-up, and performance dates/times is just the entry work.
Once you actually make it to the city, you’re plowing through traffic just to make it to a bus and walk multiple miles to the festival. Even if you choose not to take the bus and drive to it- there isn’t much difference. Fall weather should make this easier to enjoy but not when you live in Texas. It was still close to 90 degrees and could likely get colder than expected once the sun goes down. You have to think ahead of the game, pack for the entire day, and use a different map for the city and festival. Most people get exhausted just thinking about it. That’s why I know anyone that has a higher level of an appreciation for music, you’ll likely find here- more than once.
I woke up early that day, early enough to wake everyone else in order to make it on time. The first performance I wanted to see started before noon and I wasn’t missing a thing. The lineup included Jay Z, Glass Animals, Thundercat, Red Hot Chili Peppers, A$AP Ferg, Martin Garrix, Solange, Foster The People, Chance the Rapper, Killer Mike, Danny Brown + more.
Xavier Omar’s performance was the reason I actually purchased ACL tickets. Nick introduced Xavier’s music to me and I had been listening to it a few years wondering when he would have a show in Texas. Knowing he was from San Antonio I figured he would – eventually. His music brought out a creative side that I didn’t realize even existed within myself. What I enjoy most about festivals is comparing lineups from the year before. I took notice of how local artist landed a set, each year gradually moved up the list and put in major work to finally headline. Even if your desired career isn’t in music, it was the perfect example of how hard work paid off. It was very reassuring and every time Nick and I came back from a show we were inspired.
Xavier opened up in his Stone Cold Steve Austin fit and took his audience all the way back with a cover of the Pokémon’s theme song. That alone brought a new crowd out to witness his way of working the stage. Even through the heat he kept us drawn in with his classics. I rode to Austin with my friend, along with her friend, and then another friend met us in Austin that night-all for Xavier. Not all of them were familiar with his music but heard enough to attend. So after the show, during the meet and greet they suggested I should probably be the one up on stage to meet him. I typically stray away from this sort of thing but clearly, I was already hype. I appreciate any opportunity to pick their brain a bit. When I meet an artist I always make sure I express how influential their music is and what it’s done for me- personally. We ended up just having casual conversation about breakups, his next performances and specific songs I wanted to hear live. I mentioned how proud he should be that the first listen of his music brought out new fans, willing to drive from Dallas just to get the full experience. Imagine, working towards your dream, in your parents basement, through self-doubt and everyone judging you. Then hearing a fan say something like that, that’s totally worth it! It’s just confirmation to walk in your purpose; you never know who’s going to need what you have to offer the world.
One of the best parts about this trip was making memories exploring ATX, how easily music bring people together & the amount of energy I had compared to the last festival.
"Music brings people together like no other. It allows us to experience the same emotions. People everywhere are the same in heart & spirit. Some of us have known each other for years. Others we may have met that night just dancing down 6th street. But no matter what language we speak, what background we come from, the form of our politics or the expression of our love & our faith, music proves we are all the same. We didnt realize we were making memories, we were just having fun." #acl2017 #johndenverwithatwist #aclfestival #xavieromar @xvromar #chancetherapper #rhcp #tovelo #musicforthesoulonly #goodtimes