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BONFIRE Music Festival - Garden Bay, BC - 08/22-24/08


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Okay... I've finally had the time to breathe, relax & decompress from a WHIRLWIND month! First off, I'd like to thank EVERYBODY that made it out to Bonfire this year... bands, ambience crew, volunteers, vendors, the Pender Harbour Lions Club, security, first aid, green team, my friends, family & all the random freaks I first met who were kind enough to join us this year. This was my favourite Bonfire to date for so many reasons, but mostly because ALL OF YOU made it that way! Things could not have run more smoothly, the KINDVIBES that were running through every inch of the site could not have been felt more strongly... and I could feel the LOVE through every note, every personal encounter, every fire pit flame, every bang of the ceremonial fire gong, every conversation, every meeting of eyes, every exchange of smiles, every hug and every ripping dance move... all week long.

I'll tell you what... THAT was FUN!!!!!!! To be completely honest, I've never felt happier in all my life than the way I felt at Bonfire this year... from start to finish. For me that was Utopia, Christmas & the feeling of falling in love for the first time all wrapped up into one sweet little package. It didn't hurt that I fell in love with a beautiful & amazing woman at Bonfire this year either! I'm sure many of you noticed the MASSIVE grin I had from ear to ear every minute of every day!

So... where do we stand now? Where does this thing of ours go. You'll all be happy to know that after this year's success it is onward & upward for Bonfire. The planning stages for Bonfire 2009 are already in the works... we're learning as we go along and as such are going to strike while the iron is still hot. We'll be starting to move into the next phase by securing some sponsors for next year within the months of September through December, as it has become clear that although we were successful this year with our new scaled down formula, we could still use the financial help of sponsors to alleviate some of the burden we've shouldered ourselves the first 4 years... and also to help take Bonfire into a not necessarily bigger, but definitely better realm of production possibilities.

Highlights for me were far too numerous to list here, so I'll just throw down a few that REALLY stood out. If I missed anyone or anything, it's only because I was off doing something else at the time. I was actually WORKING there... believe it or not!

- MooseBroccoli busting out Brickhouse's "Love in the Room" on Saturday night after Themasses finally ended their 4 hour marathon. I sang it to Commitment at the top of my lungs, embraced in a huge hug... right in the middle of the concert amphitheatre. Thanks Brucey... beautiful assist! I love you brother!

- Rab 5 ripping their 2nd set with 'a fungus among us' and taking things to a level I'd never seen them reach before. Having Flowmotion's Josh Clauson sit in most of the set also added a nice layer of groove to an already smoking show.

- My first time seeing the Couchmen do their thing, and do it well. Also, the renaming & rebranding of South Jackton & New South Jackton to "South Central Couchton". Classic as always... and my favourite spot for late-night revelry.

- Flowmotion's entire set. These guys are my new favourite band, and IMO are on the verge of GREAT things. It felt great to have them back up to Canada following their Meltdown Festival, and to give them a place full of beautiful smiling people whom they could simply PLAY FOR... without the stress of managing their own festival on top of performing. Trust me when I say they REALLY felt the love from everybody & will DEFINITELY be back in 2009!

- Spicy Bloody Mary's that my cutie made me for my post-breakfast beverage every morning! LOL

- Don Alder. That's all that needs to be said. Don Alder.

- Velvet & Kuba Oms taking things up a notch and initially igniting the fire on the Saturday night dance party. That was a sweet, soulful, funky & super dance heavy set!

- Freeflow doing their thing. It was LOUD, but man was the dance floor hopping. I could feel the GROUND bouncing us all up & down by the middle of their set!

- Themasses. Wow. BEST THEMASSES SHOW EVER!!!!!! I went to spend some time with Commitment in the chill tent during 2nd set as it was actually empty for the first time all weekend, everyone was boogying their asses off on the 'dance floor'... and I could have sworn I was at a Phish show for parts of that set... not just during Hood. The electro-funk grooves reminded of '97... thick, heady, groovy and driving. That was a funktronica marathon, and from the looks of the crowd at the end of their set... almost eveyone made it to the finish line!

- Kindvibes & friends stepping up to the plate and filling Sunday's Main Stage opening spot that had been vacated due to unforeseen circumstances. I only caught a bit of the set, but regardless... you're all champs! I guess you all got quite a bit of rehearsal time leading up to it though, eh?

- Blackberry Wood and their fun carnival atmosphere. I really think it helped tip the scales for some of the folks who were on the fence about leaving Sunday. I saw a lot of "Hmmmm... I guess this IS gonna be another day of sweet music, people & dance party fun!!" spreading around.

- The Tuques and their unique blend of rock & bluegrass. That was a ripping set! Pickers n'a Strummers!!!

- I missed Baked Potato's set, but camping right beside Spudly, Joe & the BP Clan is always a memorable & uplifting experience. What started at "Daddy-Daughter Meltdown" just continued at Bonfire. I love you guys. Let's do it all over again next year, eh?

- Canadian Beauty... for us old farts that actually got to go on Dead tour 'back in tha day', this set really felt like coming home again. The guys were ripping it up so sweetly, and you could tell they put A LOT of work into rehearsing for this performance. I found myself dancing with Bruce, Dean Schutz, Jason & Jen Goodman, MedMan and a few other friends of days gone by that have since resurfaced in the Bonfire community, and I couldn't help but smile & literally laugh out loud... I was SO HAPPY!!! Wait till you all hear the discs... that Slipknot! jam was equal to any I saw the Dead pull off in 30+ shows over 8 years. Come on... Help > Slipknot > Deal > St. Stephen > Saturday Night? Eyes of the world > Spanish Jam > Shakedown Street? That shit was OFF THE HOOK!!! The Let It Grow was a personal request too, their first Bobby song ever and they didn't disappoint... so that was just icing on the sweet & rich cake I'd been eating all weekend!

Sunday night's post-music festivities were my favourite all weekend too... cause we were finally done after 12 months of hard work trying to bring our little festival back from the brink of death... and succeeding in spades. You might have noticed all of us cutting a rug a little harder than the previous nights... like during our liquor-induced 'production golf cart bumper car sessions!'

I'd like to thank the denizens of South Central Couchton for refraining from coming to steamroll me on Saturday night, even though I know you would have, had my girl not shut 'er down. I finally had someone taking care of me, and I love her even more for it. I was REALLY tired by the end of Saturday night, and someone like Sean Sullivan might have caught ANOTHER elbow to the nose... which wouldn't have been any good for anybody, except everyone who managed to get out of the way of waking the sleeping Keither! However, you did manage to starfish me on Sunday night and get out without any serious injuries. This will not be forgotten. I have taken numbers and payback will come when you least expect it. Keep your heads up.

Okay... I think I'm done for now, but for one final note.

Keep your ears to the ground and expect an announcement on a very special early bird ticket package that will be coming in the next couple of months. We're gonna offer an awesome, discounted, super earlybird package VERY SOON that will include your 2009 weekend camping pass, parking pass, a 2009 Bonfire t-shirt, a 2008 Bonfire compilation CD and most importantly - early arrival to the campgrounds on Thursday of next year... before everyone else arrives, so you can dial up the best camp/party grounds for what we hope will be an even better year than this was!

Thank you all SO MUCH!!!!!!!

Big love & huge hugs


Photos - http://sensitive-light.smugmug.com/gall ... 9301_ZuefS

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