Pink Sizzling Chili Peppers & Kendrick Lamar in Clark, Pampanga 2014
7107 Worldwide Music Pageant & Claustrophobia
I awakened on a Sunday morning with an ache in my coronary heart. It dawned on me that I missed the primary day of the two-day music pageant occurring three hours away from Manila. It was the morning of the day when Pink Sizzling Chili Peppers are set to carry out for the primary time within the Philippines. In a few hours, I’d’ve missed the largest occasion of my life.
Then my Blackberry rang and it was my equally melancholic school pal, perhaps calling as a result of distress loves firm, proper?
“Harry, tara sa Clark (Harry, let’s go to Pampanga),” Bernard stated with a lot enthusiasm.
To which I may need replied, “Tangina mo, ‘wag mo kong ginagago. (Fuck you, don’t fuck with me. [Not the direct translation because what it really means is much more offensive.])”
However he was rattling critical. Because it seems, God despatched us an angel within the type of one other school pal who had passes to essentially the most prestigious music fest ever in our archipelago. It was 10ish within the morning, I showered rapidly and inside thirty minutes I shouted to anybody who may hear, “I’m going to Pampanga!”
Neither of us had vehicles however Bernard was a super-street-smart who knew easy methods to get to nearly wherever. (Or perhaps as a result of he’s a journey agent.) I’m fairly positive we didn’t speak your entire commute, afraid that if we communicate, we’d awake to comprehend we’re solely dreaming. However we weren’t as a result of at round 4 PM we arrived at this large open discipline the place plain vitality, that may solely emanate from music, reverberates.
Upon arrival, we witnessed stunning individuals streaming into the venue – most of them trying recent, most likely booked in resorts close by. As compared, Bernard and I have been a complete mess, stuffed with grit from the three-hour commute. 7107 Worldwide Music Pageant is the primary and final Philippine pageant to showcase native, worldwide, and two main worldwide artists. Plural. How the organizers afforded each RHCP and Kendrick Lamar in a single evening, I’d by no means know. 7107 as a result of the Philippines consists of seven thousand and 100 seven islands. There’s a trivia for you.
We skipped the native bands as a result of we may at all times catch them in Manila. As a substitute, we ate sandwiches, savored the magnificent view, and listened to dwell music from a distance.
Bernard had a plan. After we eat, we’d very slowly make our approach close to the stage in order that when it’s RHCP’s time, we’d be at heaven’s gate. Nevertheless it appeared like everybody else’s plan, too, so we managed to get solely fairly shut.
So shut that it was unimaginable to exit. It all of the sudden hit me that I used to be trapped in a throng of sweaty individuals and my claustrophobia made my coronary heart race at worrying velocity. I attempted my greatest to disregard the feeling and give attention to the stage. Deep breaths, boy, regardless of how a lot individuals’s sweat stinks. Nevertheless, perhaps due to the velocity of my coronary heart’s pumping, even earlier than Kendrick began, I felt extraordinarily thirsty. And I had no water. To get water, I must pressure my approach out of the multitude. No, no, don’t consider the nice variety of individuals. You aren’t trapped. There’s no ginormous ball threatening to suffocate you extra.
Kendrick started and the temper shifted and I may really feel the collective vitality as if it’s concrete. I wasn’t an enormous fan of Mr. Lamar however due to this occasion, I transformed. I used to be dense, you already know. In 2014, I nonetheless needed to be the man who’s loyal to rock-and-roll. Then got here Kendrick and it was like an anointing. This is music.
There was an extended wait earlier than RHCP began as a result of their group needed to redo the stage. We guessed that they needed to carpet it as a result of we all know how funky the band can get. The useless air jogged my memory of the thirst I used to be feeling, this time it was extra intense. My throat was by no means this dry. I couldn’t get water as a result of if I managed to get out of the herd, there’s no approach of getting again in, that means watching Pink Sizzling from a display. And no, don’t consider the herd. You aren’t trapped.
This time I needed to actually focus as a result of there was no distraction. I attempted deep breaths however once I by chance breathed in by way of my mouth, the air burned my mega-dry throat. Nostril — breathe by way of the nostril, fool. Be very aware now, boy. I could not dare speak to Bernard as a result of no quantity of air ought to graze to my throat.
I used to be near fainting.
They are saying that you simply’d naturally be taught to swim for those who’re thrown out to the water as a result of your survival instincts would make you. Conversely, I discovered to meditate to dwell by way of my rising thirst and claustrophobia.
After a pair extra minutes, which felt like hours, the members of the band got here to the stage. Vividly, I keep in mind Flea coming into on a handstand. Then instantly, the enduring intro to “Can’t Stop” started. Oh. My. God. Tune after track, the group sang in unison. There was oneness. The awe in my face certainly mirrored onto the faces of the viewers. Oh, man, it was a magical evening the place music saved me alive (and aware). I couldn’t sing alongside as a result of it harm my ultra-mega-dry throat. Nevertheless, there was no concern of any type of entrapment. Listening to the classics like “Dani California,” “Snow,” and “Otherside” is essentially the most tangible therapeutic I felt in my life.
In distinction to feeling imprisoned, dwell music is liberating. I felt like I used to be buddies with all people within the viewers. However no, I by no means felt like I used to be buddies with Anthony, Flea, Chad, or Josh. No approach. What I skilled was past funk. It was artwork. The artists, the viewers, the music, the open discipline, are all parts of a transcendental work.
After the encore, no one left till we have been sure that the band was by no means returning to the stage. In the event that they promised to be again the following day, I swear we’d all keep motionless, ready.
When my floating soul went again to my physique, I felt the murderous thirst. I purchased a bottle of water 5 occasions its unique value. I can not consider I survived. However what’s extra surreal is the epic musical expertise. It was price all of the panic.
We’re again in Manila at 4 AM, a Monday, and I reported to the workplace at eight for an essential assembly. Life is that superior.
Reside music is life, man.