Colorado Crew + Wook Patrol - Pool Deck, night 1
The first music I saw on Jam Cruise 8 was on the pool deck and was classic New Orleans funk delivered by Trombone Shorty. It was only appropriate, as it would set the stage for the super sized helping of funk I would consume during my time on the Boat.
At some point in the evening in the Zebra lounge I discovered I could trade LOST/Jam Cruise stickers and LOST Dharma patches for jokes, other random stickers/accessories, and most importantly - drinks.
I developed a pattern on the first night that I would continue throughout the week - See some music for 30 or 45 minutes > go to the bar/trade a sticker or two for a drink > run into a friend or 10 > wander somewhere on the boat > see more music. On the first evening my notes say:
Trombone Shorty > Zebra lounge > go to JT's to smoke > Dark Star Orchestra > chat w/Megan and Debra > Mother Hips > Maceo Parker in Theater > find Laurie and Ritzer > STS9 in Theater > technical difficulties> The Word on Pool Deck > Back to STS9 > Pretty Lights in Disco> wander to Jam room > pass out @4:30am
Its difficult to give an accurate accounting of all the music I heard, but I think you get the idea. Musically I really dug on Maceo ripping up James Brown Classics. I love The Word- I actually think I like The Word better than the other 3 bands that make up The Word. STS9 played a couple of my favorites - including Wika Chikana - but I could tell they were tired from playing NYE shows in Denver/Traveling and there was something going on on the Boat effecting the electrical system that forced a break in the middle of their set.
There is never a dull moment on the Boat. I am fortunate to be a person with many wonderful friends, and I found it easy to talk to anyone on the Boat. I was never alone, but I was also never tied down to trying to get the group to move. At a larger festival like Bonnaroo there is always the fear that if you leave the group without a designated time and spot to meet, you could end up standing next to strangers and wandering the grounds for hours without finding your friends. And at a Phish festival...if they play TTE - lets not get into that.
On the Jam Cruise boat I found it is always fun to wander by yourself or with your new best friend, because it is easy to run into people. There is no time other than "what music on now?" I never wore a watch on the Boat, and somewhere along the way I learned that where you are on the Boat is exactly where you are supposed to be on the Boat.
Night 1 had the least amount of weirdness among the passengers and musicians - this would come up starting on Night 2. Stay tuned for Day/Night 2 recap which includes one of the best STS9 shows ive ever seen and the weirdness and hilarity of the Superheroes and Villains theme night.