Earlier in June of this year, I was cruising facebook when my favorite rapper (Mac Lethal ) posted he would be joining 311, Slightly Stoopid, The Urge and Soja for the Summerdaze Festival 2012 in his hometown of Kansas City. Had I not seen that post, I would of never drove across the state lines for this show. In hind sight I am very glad I did. After seeing Mac Lethal in the spring and rocking his ” Irish Goodbye ” Cd all summer. I knew I had to go see this.
My girlfriend and I joined up with my friends Chris and Lindsay and made this road trip official. However the week of the show we were told we were going to have to leave late, which had me worried I would miss the one person I had wanted to see most this day. We ended up leaving St. Louis around 1 p.m for a 4 hour drive to Kansas City. Mac Lethal posted he would go on at 4:45, thanks to Chris’s gangster driving skills, and avoiding the extra state trooper presence on the highway. We showed up cold drinks in hand at 4:40.
While walking through the parking lot, it was obvious we were going to miss some of the party. In St. Louis the police ride around on golf carts and issue citations for open containers in the parking lot. In Kansas City, the police stood off to the side as a full fledged party was well under way, complete with beer pong tables, loud music and copious amounts of empty beer cans and liquor bottles littering the ground.
We walked in as soon as Mac Lethal stepped on stage, we missed one song as we walked to the front of the stage. There was a light mist in the air and many came in early to see the hometown rapper make KC proud once again.
When I think of Mac Lethal, I think of two things: Fun, and Progress. His shows are constantly more fun than the last, and he is constantly stepping it up and making every show his best show. He was joined on stage by his hype man extraordinaire Alvie, and they made the best of the 40 minute set time.
Rocking songs from the older albums and his new album ” Irish Goodbye “. The set was very enjoyable. Before leaving he did a live version of the youtube viral hit ” Pancake Rap ” which boast over 20 million views on youtube. He closed his set off the same way I started it, by pounding a beer. ” Pound That Beer ” was a great way to end the set and made me wish he got another 20 minutes.
The rain picked up in between sets, and my girlfriend and I sought out some refreshments and drier pastures. Soja rocked it though as if it was a beautiful, sunny, summer day and the crowd loved it. We came back for the end of their set and it was very enjoyable they had a lot of good energy. I would go see them again in a instant and they were a great addition to a already solid lineup.
That made it time for our hometown boys made good, The Urge. Hailing from St. Louis and recently reunited from a long hiatus as a band they are back and in a big way. Lot’s of STL hats and The Urge shirts filled the crowd. They came on stage and showed everyone else who was not in the know what time it was.
They were very tight as band and had the crowd eating it up. It was awesome to see our hometown band rock a out of state show to such a great reception. It was like they never broke up, the vocals, the guitars, the drums, everything was on point.
I had one question in my mind the whole ride down to Kansas City. One of the biggest Urge songs boast Nick Hexum on the chorus and seeing how both 311 and The Urge were on the bill, would we get a live version of ” Jump Right In”? Well, lets just say they didn’t disappoint, aside from some minor feedback, they rocked a flawless version of ” Jump Right In “. That in itself made the trip worth the 500 + miles of driving.
After The Urge the sky grew dark and large lingering clouds of potent marijuana filled the skies as California’s Slightly Stoopid took the stage. I have been going to see Slightly Stoopid way before their success in 2003, after 10 years of exhaustive touring and nonstop albums. They have finally made it on a very large scale, and I couldn’t be happier for them!
They were the reason quite a few of the people in the crowd were there, and have become quite the popular act. They played a very diverse set which is expected from them. Mixing up the old and new, classics, and covers.
After 60 minutes of stoney jams, and lit spliffs the set came to a end. I sought out a tasty cold beverage and retreated to the seats for some rest before 311 took the stage.
After a 30 minute intermission, the lights went black for the last time, and the crowd grew loud. 311 came out to ” Beautiful Disaster ” to start off their 21 song set. My friend Chris was hoping for ” Count Me In ” which he was lucky enough to get. He remarked they haven’t played that song much this tour, but KC got it.
They are notorious for having great career spanning set lists, and KC got a great one. Midway through they pulled out a Bad Brains cover and rocked ” Leaving Babylon “.
After 19 songs, they left the stage only to come back for two more. Omaha Stylee, and Creatures ended the 90+ minute set. It was a great time, and I couldn’t of enjoyed this show anymore than I did. Kansas City is a great time, always.
I can’t wait to be back, next summer I am sure to return, hopefully this festival does as well.
Till next time.