10 Mostly Random Observations from a LouFest First-Timer


  • Robert Rohe

LouFest can be a very strange, interesting place — pack thousands of people, dozens of bands and millions(?) of sponsors all into one Forest Park and that tends to happen. With that in mind, here are ten mostly random observations from a LouFest first-timer.

  1. I should’ve pitched a fashion story, because I am totally preoccupied by the sartorial decision-making on display today. A lot of you looked great, fellow St. Louisans, but some of you are out of your goddamn minds. Myriad hats both strange and floppy, print leggings louder than the music and enough bared midriffs to make a middle school principal lose his shit — you could chalk it up to the excesses of youth, but some of these people should definitely know better by now. I would like to see good statistics on the number of Wayfarer sunglasses in attendance today, broken down by Ray Ban-to-off brand ratio, as well as the purchased-to-shoplifted quotient. I guess torn leggings is a look now. I saw a puka shell necklace today for the first time this millennium. My therapist will be hearing about this.

  2. The Wantonly Sexual Teenage Couples of LouFest would've also been a solid pitch.

    These guys kept it classy. Not everyone did. - ROBERT ROHE
    • Robert Rohe
    • These guys kept it classy. Not everyone did.

    Or maybe Dance Moves of LouFest — for instance, the off-rhythm foot tap, the beer-wielding fist pump or the super-demonstrative freestyle gyration. All were in full effect.

  3. Cheers to R&R Portable Restrooms for their generally stink-free johns. The blue piss-and-chemical mixtures pulse with bass rhythms. Hot.

  4. Bring your wallet, because this is, in part, a soulless bacchanalia of commercialism.

    #66ReasonsToChargeYourCellPhone - ROBERT ROHE
    • Robert Rohe
    • #66ReasonsToChargeYourCellPhone

    This isn’t exactly news, but it bears repeating that branding has penetrated every aspect of festival-going. One centrally located booth was entirely dedicated to pushing some nightmare protein coffee drink from Starbucks, but it doesn’t stop there. Cell battery getting low? Head to the Phillips 66 Charging Station™. Thirsty? Try the Shock Top Beer Garden™ (which featured exclusively AB InBev products available at any bar festival-wide, and in no way lived up to its title). Here mainly for the selfie opportunities? Check out the Pearl Vodka Photo Opp Structure Thingy™.

    The local food vendors were on point, though, I’ll give them that. Mission Taco Joint, as usual, you were repping hard. Respect.

  5. Jessica Hernandez and the Deltas were the surprise hit of the fest. This is a music festival after all, so it’s worth noting that this band slayed. A Detroit-based soul and blues act with a terrific trombone player and killer vocals from the pint-sized but energetic Hernandez, clad in a black sleeveless pinstripe jumpsuit. Her best one-liner? “I’m not really a drug person, but I’m pretty fucked up from Midol and beer, so I’m feeling really excited!” The crowd ate it up.

  6. If you drove and arrived after 10 a.m., you fucked up. A river of brake lights. I felt genuine pity for these people. Here’s an idea: Metrolink. Park and ride, people. Park and ride.

  7. Let’s talk beer prices.

    • Robert Rohe

    $7 Bud Light. Your reaction to this may vary given your personal socioeconomic status, but I just can’t even… If the money isn’t going to support a division-leading baseball team, I just can't buy in at that price point.

    Speaking of intoxicants...

  8. When did they legalize pot in Missouri, because there is some dank going around. The scent was heavy in the air, even though this reporter witnessed very few joints a-blazing. Attribute that to the advent of stealthy handheld vaporizers, which have totally destroyed the time-honored festival etiquette of puff-puff-pass. Where has our collective sense of civility gone? Sharing is caring, everyone.

  9. Babes and bros of all stripes turned out for this thing. Hipsters, hippies, dirtbags, awkward teens, overexcited dorks, schlubs who don’t care, industry suits, Eurotrash, the young, the old (typically brandishing folding chairs), little kids streaking and dogs — everyone in St. Louis made it to LouFest. Well, actually, it was mostly just the white folks. Yup, lots of white folks. Speaking of...

  10. Was this the whitest crowd Ludacris has ever played to?

    Front row at the Ludacris show. - KELLY GLUECK
    • Kelly Glueck
    • Front row at the Ludacris show.

    Yes. Yes, it was.

See also: LouFest Trend Watch: 9 Floral Crowns — and a Mighty Floral Man Beard See also: The Biggest Names of LouFest (GALLERY) See also: 9 Times People Channeled Their Inner Dude at LouFest