by Pietro Truba
The two biggest acts from Detroit took the main What Stage yesterday back to back as Jack White’s The Dead Weather’s set was fueled by lead singer Alison Mosshart’s animalistic antics, but Stevie Wonder would easily prove to be the show of the entire weekend, lifting all witnesses a higher ground.
Stevie started things off with some funky keytar as he sauntered on stage grinning ear to ear. Then he dove into classics such as “Uptight Alright,” and “Higher Ground” before delivering a bouncy interlude via “Heard It Through The Grapevine,” and “Signed, Sealed, Delivered.” For the most part, Wonder would mostly stick with his “classics,” as he ran a singing clinic (literally at points) with a line by line instructional sing-a-long of “Living For The City.” For the final two songs of his roughly two-hour set, Wonder's 13-piece band ballooned to over 40, as a 16 person choir and nine tribal percussionists joined he and his band on stage to the delight of the crowd (tribal percussion is some sort of Bonnaroo aphrodisiac, you know?).
Awful heat and humidity made for early mornings, but daytime sets with reggae legend Jimmy Cliff made the heat a bit easier to bear.
Other acts delivering top notch sets were Americana torch bearer John Prine, comedian Conan O’Brien (responsible for a 12-hour wait at the Comedy Tent), Weezer, and Jeff Beck. Raucous late night shows from Jay-Z, Gwar, Deadmau5 and Thievery Corporation brought night into day, and an early sunrise performance with The Disco Biscuits, who took the stage at 6 a.m. recycled the insanity.
With the closing of another Bonnaroo, we say goodbye to another weekend of drug addled psychedelia and impromptu nakedness. We were all treated to more bare Gwar butt than anyone ever should see, and we can’t unsee it.
Comedian Jeff Ross said Friday, “There’s some amazing choices at Bonnaroo, for instance, I don’t know if I’m going to see Dave Matthews Band
or take an Ambien.”
On tap for Detroit bands on the final day of the festival are Jessica Hernandez & The Deltas, who takes to the Ford Fiesta Tent once more, and Southfield native Mike Posner, who finds himself at Café Where.
Look for pictures from The Dead Weather from fellow photographer Ben Slayter, along with Hernandez and Posner’s sets and some post festival ruminations sometime tomorrow, after the acid wears of...