There are few things Baton Rouge has to offer that New Orleans doesn’t. There are even fewer things worth making that 70-mile drive (and a world away) for, but Bayou Country Super Fest is definitely one of them (Tsunami Sushi is another, in case you were wondering).
Although it is put on by the same company (Festival Productions LLC) that brings us Jazz Fest every year, don’t expect the experience to be anything similar. It’s still Louisiana, so don’t expect it to be perfect either.
I attend Jazz Fest for the people watching, the food, and the music … in that order. Bayou Country Super Fest isn’t drawing the eccentric crowd the Fair Grounds attracts, unless you find human cloning worth watching. The food is the kind that makes you wish you had snuck a couple of granola bars in your purse alongside your flask. But the music — ah, the music –makes suffering through suburbia all worth it.
I don’t want to do some esoteric piece about the acoustics and bathroom lines (which are big improvements over anything happening here). I had fun.
The kind of fun that you don’t remember, but you know you loved every single second of it.
The kind of fun when the old man sitting next to you is your new best friend.
The kind of fun that, when your cell phone dies, you are too in the moment to even care that you won’t be able to update your Facebook and twitter pages until after the show.
While it kills me to say this (as a proud University of Tennessee alum): They know how to tailgate at Tiger Stadium. Jaryd Lane and The Parish rocked it out at Fan Fest beforehand, while I drank my weight in $10 Bud Lights, and those without tickets to the show could enjoy a little lagniappe.
As much as I enjoy the general admission nature of the festivals here, there is something to be said about not having to fight a 12-year-old or someone’s grandma for your spot. There’s also something to be said for not ruining your cowboy boots in the mud (horse manure); although, that does sound a lot more country.
Bayou Country Super Fest has been confirmed for its fifth year, next Memorial Day weekend, and you are cordially invited to Crash My Party on May 24-25, 2014.
Rachel Kostelec writes about New Orleans and beyond for NolaVie.