Camp Bisco Eleven

I arrived at Camp Bisco Eleven at 9:30 PM on Wednesday,  July 11, well prepared to have the greatest experience of my life. You know how they say that if you have low expectations you will never be disappointed? Well, in the case of Bisco, my extremely high expectations were more then exceeded.

I drove up with C.J. and Denice, two friends of a friend who needed a ride up. The three of us were sharing a tent, but for the most part, I was riding solo this Bisco. Lucky for us, we ended up in the best camping lot, due to the fact that we arrived so early [the gates opened at 9:00 PM]. We set up camp, befriended some neighbors, and then Denice and I went to explore the grounds, stopping by a booth to say hello to Phil, a friend I met at The Come Up Music Festival. Walking the grounds was a bit overwhelming, passing a sea of people, islands of campsites, and shops anchored along a strip referred to as Shakedown Street. 

I keep telling my best friend, Ally, that I don’t know what to write here, that the experience was beyond description, that at the same time there was so much, and so little, happening that I cannot possibly put the events into words. The days were spent listening to the melodic tones of The Disco Biscuts, and nights were spent raging to Kill the Noise and Atmosphere, unwinding at Silent Disco to some stellar D.J.s, such as ConnetICON and DVS.

The most special part of this festival for me were all the beautiful souls I met. People who were so willing to give, so willing to share, and asked nothing in return. They were the true embodiment of peace, love, unity, and respect, who adopted me as one of their own. Traveling solo, I was scared I would be lonely at times during the weekend, and feared that I would be imposing on my new friends, however, whenever I expressed these concerns my new friends assured me that they loved having me hang out with them.

Camp Bisco was truly a life changing experience filled with great music, incredible friends, philosophical discussions, and one of the greatest senses of community I have ever felt. I wish I could do justice to this event, but it’s simply something one must experience for themselves.

Well, it’s time to leave for Gathering of the Vibes! Keep checking back for more on my music festival filled summer vacation!

PLUR,
Emilie 

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

It’s confirmed! Guess who’s going to Camp Bisco 2012?! 
Stay tuned for my report on the weekend! July 12-14. I couldn’t wait until then to post about it, I just had to let you all know I’d be there.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

The Come Up Music Festival

Hey everyone!
I’m back, and hopefully I will be for a while! 🙂 I see that while I’ve been gone, this blog has hit over 20,000 views. That’s insane! I’m so honored that people have continued to read this while I’ve been away. I never thought this blog would be read by anyone, let alone thousands of people! This weekend I attended one of my first raves in a very long time, The Come Up Music Festival. While the festival had a less-than-stellar lineup, the weekend was filled of the same good vibes I used to experience at raves, as the attendance was almost 100% ravers.

The good news is, I’m moving to Brooklyn in August. Yes, that’s the same Brooklyn I used to rave in on a weekly basis. After a year of living upstate for college [I am now transferring to a city school], I’m eager to be back and partying with the best of them.
This summer I’m definitely going to try to hit some raves if possible [I might be bringing in some rave virgins, always fun] and I will definitely be attending at least one more music festival. Hopefully this will be the year I get myself to Camp Bisco. I think I might head up solo, set up camp near some friends, and meet some new souls.

Remember to keep checking here for updates! I’m eager to see how the Brooklyn scene has changed and to experience what the festival scene has to offer.

Me hanging around Painter Production’s booth at the festival, modeling one of the outfits for sale.

A few weeks back I got a message from the owner of a clothing company I model for, Painter Productions, saying that he was having a vendor stand at an upcoming music festival, The Come Up Music Festival. He told me he had a few extra staff bracelets he could hook me and a friend up with, so he could have some cute girls hanging around the booth. I was flattered, and obviously jumped at the opportunity to attend a festival. I recruited my best friend, Ally, who attended the rave Naughty Neon with me last year, to be my partner in crime for the weekend [for those of you who remember my adventures being with another hot blonde named Ida, she moved back to Finland post high school graduation.] 

Kicking it at the festival with Ally.

Ally and I were both expecting the rave to be a little more “hippie”, similar to Mountain Jam, which I attended last year, so that’s what we packed for, and were in for a fantastic surprise when we found out that The Come Up Music Festival was actually one giant rave. So, we traded in our tie dyes for clothing we had more befitting a rave, broke out the kandi kit I conveniently had in the back of my car [seriously, that was so damn lucky], and got ready to rage our faces off, for my first real rave in over a year.

The weekend was spectacular and it brought back so many memories of my raver days. Which, for the record, I told many stories of while away at school. I had been missing the rave scene a lot as of late, and this festival really reminded me of how much fun I used to have.

One of the vendors selling custom hats painted this on my lower back at the start of the festival.

The music at the festival wasn’t the greatest. One of the stages was right next to the booth I was at, and all day Saturday I was stuck listening to shitty wannabe Skrillex DJ’s. Which was awful, since you know, Skrillex sucks. There were a few notable exceptions, especially the Saturday night performances of DJ Jeff BujakThe Alchemysticsand The Cyborg Trio.

Posing with Ally and a new friend at the festival in another piece of clothing I was modeling.

There’s not much to be said about the weekend, except that it reminded me of why I first started raving. It was amazing to just get out there, dance and forget all else, and meet some beautiful souls who were friendly, helpful [thanks for all the sips of water and water bottles, everyone!], and fun. Even though the music was less than stellar, it felt great getting lost in the bass again. The people there truly held the meaning of PLUR and embodied what raving always meant to me.

The festival people were definitely their own genre of ravers. Since I was in attendance as a vendor and camping in the vendor section, which was isolated from the rest of the campers, I got to meet a lot of people who travel from festival to festival, many of whom had pre-existing relationships. Needless to say, this provided some interesting drama to watch over the weekend, not unlike the raver relationship drama I used to report upon. The major difference being that some of the vendors and volunteers seemed to have “festival relationships,” or significant others that they were only “seeing” while at a festival. Weird.

Anyway, with a renewed love of the scene, I’ve made it my mission to return to raving, revisit this blog project, and to start having fun again [I had a pretty miserable first year of college, but that’s another story!] My first quest on this mission? Finally attend Camp Bisco

So keep checking back at Rolling Stone Raver to see where my adventures take me. Hopefully, there will be lots to report upon!

Peace,
Emilie 

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

It’s been ages…

Wow, it’s been a while since I posted… and even longer since I raved. The last real rave I attended was in April 2011, and it’s now November! After

Ida, my old rave sidekick, moved back to Finland in June. We still keep in touch via e-mail!

realizing that people continued to read, comment on, and enjoy my blog, I decided that I owed it to the rave community to explain myself…

 

  • After the threats I received over this blog [see earlier posts] I was a bit hesitant to return to the rave scene. I did, but I was definitely more careful about where I went and who I associated with. Witnessing the death of PLUR scared me, and it definitely contributed to me ceasing to rave.
  • At one of the last raves I attended a good friend of mine rolled a little too hard and after a horrible three days of jitters and sickness, she decided to retire from raving. Losing her from the rave community was another factor in my decision to put a hold on raving. Although I pledged to be a sober raver, my friends do not necessarily feel the same way, and the destruction my friends were doing to their bodies was not something I wanted to be apart of. [One of my close “rave family” members was arrested and ended up in rehab last spring. He has been 7 months clean!]
  • Over the summer I worked weekends at a renaissance faire. On weekdays I worked as a personal assistant and I modeled. Due to my heavy work schedule, I did not have the time or energy to rave. Although I wished I could go out and party, I had a commitment to my jobs, and I had to be bright and energetic for them all.
  • Brooklyn ravers may remember seeing me out a lot during the school year last year… in September I started college in upstate New York, in a town without raves. I now find myself at frat parties with a bunch of drunk assholes, instead of with ravers in an abandoned warehouse, enjoying a light show.

 

Although I’ve been absent from the scene, I have never stopped considering myself a raver. I still wear kandi almost every day, and tell stories to my new college friends about what raving is like, promising to bring them along one day. Hopefully over winter break I will make my return to Brooklyn and the rave scene… and I hope I wasn’t forgotten!

Peace,
Emilie

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

Mountain Jam

So I guess this is a bit late, Mountain Jam was June 2-5 [although I only stayed from the 2-4 because of college orientation], and here I am, posting about it, 20 days later. I’ve been busy. Sue me. I just finished high school [I graduate tomorrow!] and the excitement for college and rehearsals for my summer acting job at the New York Renaissance Faire has been taking up a lot of time.

But woah! I haven’t even checked my stats on here in FOREVER! Thanks for those of you who have been reading. Apparently despite the fact I haven’t been posting, I’ve still been getting a ridiculous amount of hits a day. You’re all the best!

Bear with me, I haven’t written an essay for school or a blog entry in forever. I forgot how to be interesting.

Mountain Jam is a music festival in upstate New York that I generally describe as being like a “mini Woodstock.” Drugs all around, hot boxing the tents, thousands of dirty hippies jamming. I went for the first time sophomore year with my mom and sister. It was kind of fun, but I didn’t love it. But I decided to return this year in leu of attending my senior prom with my best friend Ida [I may have mentioned her before…]

So where do I begin?

My mom, Ida, and I arrived Thursday afternoon, anxiously waiting on a line to get in. After entering the campgrounds, we helped my mom set up her tent and then ventured off to find a spot of our own. After taking a little walk up a hill, some men called out to us asking if we’d join their “commune,” which was a small circle of tents all facing inward to a central grill and sitting area. Well, Ida and I aren’t idiots. We know how to work a man. So we smiled sweetly and told them “only if you set up our tent.” The men, anxious at the prospect of two younger women joining their group [which we later found out travels the country to different music festivals together- they thought we wanted to join them on that!], jumped at the chance and our tent was set up much quicker than we ever could have done. Obviously, Ida and I had no intention of joining these men. But they did offer us drugs.
We did find a few more of these communes during the weekend. Groups of men, and occasionally women, that travel together, live together, sleep together, eat together, drug themselves together. They were all nice and friendly and invited us to join. But they seemed a bit cult-like to me.

Ida and I spent most of the time at Mountain Jam eating. No lies. Eating. We love to eat. That’s why she’s my best friend. She’ll eat with me. We’d eat, go up on the hill, watch the music, and chill. It was extremely relaxing. Very different from the rave scene.

As you can probably tell, if you follow me on twitter , or even if you’re an avid reader of this blog and haven’t seen me post in forever, you’ll probably see I haven’t raved much lately. Not because I don’t love raving, because I do. I love the people, the music, the atmosphere, the PLUR.
But raving is also tiring. Staying up literally all night dancing, without drugs it gets near impossible [no matter how many 5 Hour Energy Shots I take.] The trips into NYC that require a 45 minute train ride, and then another hour subway ride into Brooklyn.
Raving is expensive. The train and subway both put a dent in your wallet, and then the entrance fee into the rave [unless you’re attending a free outlaw they can cost up to $40!], water once your inside, etc.
And the loss of PLUR lately. I’ve blogged about this in some of my recent posts. About how haters are mad about this blog for no reason. About the violence that’s entered the scene lately. About the hatred between the families that throw raves, which effects us rave-goers. It changed things. I liked the love in the air.

This music festival was different. Yeah, it was expensive, but it was so relaxed. You didn’t have to move all day if you didn’t want to. You could set up your blanket on the hill and watch a musical act, not a care in the world. People were kind, but mostly just ignored each other. It was such a chill place to be. Maybe it was the style of music, folk and classic rock instead of EDM, maybe it was the people [I expected to see ravers I knew there, but there were none], maybe it was the scenic mountain location.
What I do know is that Camp Bisco is coming up in two weeks and hopefully I’ll be there. Bisco will be filled with ravers, but it’s still a 3 day music festival. And I’d love to see how different it is from Mountain Jam.

Trying to wash the sweat and dirty off at the end of the weekend.

To all the ravers out there: I’d suggest attending a chill music festival like this at least once. Go relax. Sleep a full night. Enjoy yourself.

I’m going to go remember how to blog well. I’m attending a free rave in the woods that my friend is throwing upstate next weekend [hit me up for details if you live in the NY or NJ area] and then in two weeks I’ll [hopefully] be at Camp Bisco [definitely let me know if you’re going to be there!], so alas! I will blog again soon!

Peace,
Emilie

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , | 2 Comments

Rave Act of 2011.

On December 22, 2011 California State Assemblywoman Fiona Ma introduced the “Anti-Raves Act of 2011.”  This proposed legislation follows the death of a 15-year-old from an apparent drug overdose at the Electric Daisy Carnival in California earlier in the year. The bill, AB 74 would add a new section 421 to the California Penal Code which would read, in part, as follows:

“(a) Any person who conducts a public event at night that includes prerecorded music and lasts more than three and one-half hours is guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by a fine of ten thousand dollars ($10,000) or twice the actual or estimated gross receipts for the event, whichever is greater.”

Aside from my major anger at the blatant attack on ravers and rave culture, my first issue with this is the complete and utter violation of the first amendment, which gives Americans freedom of assembly, along with many other freedoms shot to death by this bill. In the bill’s current form, those licensed to hold public events on private property are exempt from the law, including bars, theaters, and other entertainment venues. However, it takes away the freedom of rave promoters, rave goers, block party hosts, school dances, charity events, and religious gatherings, which may take place on unlicensed private property. Obviously law enforcement agents would not be going after a 13-year-old holding their Bar Mitzvah or a charity dance, but still. Laws should apply to everyone and if a party lasting longer than 3 and a half hours playing prerecorded music is illegal for ravers, it should be illegal to all. Assemblywoman Ma claims this bill was proposed due to the death of the 15-year-old at the Electric Daisy Carnival, right? Well, last time I checked EDC took place at a licensed venue and it completely legal.

In addition, the concept of “prerecorded music” clearly attacks DJs, “electronic” artists, and those hip-hop and rap artists who rap to prerecorded tracks. Does anyone out there remember a time when live rock and roll was a sin, a sign of drug use, banned, and the records burned? Actually, when jazz first hit the scene it was scene as devil’s music and parents were told to not let their children partake. I speak from experience, if someone listens to EDM, techno, electronica, whatever you want to call it, it does not equal drug use, does not mean they’re having promiscuous sex, does not mean they worship the devil, whatever your notions about us ravers are. Some of us are sober, virgins, and believe in God. Why not target drug dealers a bit more? Why blame the DJs?

In fact, on to the drug issue. Assemblywoman Ma claims this act is due to two California citizens who died because of a drug overdose at similar events. But my question for Ma is, how many other California citizens died of drug overdoses who had absolutely no connection to the rave scene? I’m sure it’s way more than two. And again, if drugs is your issue, why not crack down on security at these events, instead of banning them altogether? Personally, I don’t care if people want to use drugs, it’s their own life and I don’t like telling people how to live their life, but I’d rather the rave scene become completely drug-free and clean than disappear.

I’m sure I’m not the only person who finds this law insulting. Are Americans so stupid now we should lose all freewill to speak for ourselves? Where is the lines drawn? First they tell us what drugs we can or cannot take [in my research I’ve found cigarettes to be far more dangerous than marijuana, and alcohol worse than E], what parties we can or cannot attend [outlaws and raves = evil and must be stopped, but we’ll allow Woodstock-look-alikes (such as Mountain Jam in upstate New York) to continue, even though they’re on just as many drugs!] , and now what music we can enjoy? Where does it end? Next we’ll be told that belly shirts and low-cut tops equal promiscuity, and booty shorts are are sure sign you’re a loose girl. The government wont cease to leave us alone until we’re living in a police state, until it’s 1984. 

I apologize to my readers. This started as a commentary on the Anti Rave Act of 2011, but ended in a political rant. Please let us rave, Assemblywoman Ma, let us be.

Peace,
Emilie 

Posted in Uncategorized | 5 Comments

Rage in the Scene.

“If you don’t start showing some peace, love, and unity, I’ll break your fucking faces”. -DJ Frankie Bones

DJ Frankie Bones said that at a rave in 1989 in response to a fight that broke out during his set. Lately, I’ve been wanting to break some faces myself. Probably due to facebook and the over-advertising of events, ravers have been tenser and getting into more arguments then ever before [I’ve been told this by my friends raving for years, and I’ve noticed it myself in the 5 months I’ve been raving.] Crews have been fighting, ravers have been calling the cops on events because of jealousy or other petty issues [getting people arrested], and people have been threatening each other for no reason. Because of this, a lot of ravers have been taking a break from the scene [I took a little break myself… I’ll be back next weekend!] and parties advertised as massives haven’t been quite as large as planned.

Personally, I can’t remember the last time I went to a good party. Lately, everywhere I’ve gone has either been empty or busted before the party got going. Even before I went on my two-week leave from raving, I skipped a rave in favor of just attending the afterparty, which I knew would be good.

When I first starting raving around 5 months ago I was amazed at the people, the music, and the friendship. Everyone I met had a smile and offered to trade kandi, share a cigarette [I don’t smoke, but my friends do], or buy me a water. I was shocked at how sweet, friendly, and caring a group of people could be, especially since I come from a town where people tend to be a little more stuck up than most. As the months wore on, things started changing. People started asking my friends to buy cigarettes off them, no one offered to share their drinks anymore, and people seemed a lot more uptight. I don’t really understand how things changed so quickly, but it’s been deeply disturbing me.

There’s been some knights in shinning neon throughout this all… the rave families and crews who refuse to get wrapped up in the drama and feuding, the kids who throw afterparties and give us a place to go even when the rave is busted, the friends and strangers who respect PLUR and refuse to let the scene die.

To all the ravers out there: remember how things used to be. If you see someone rolling face, offer them some water or gum. If you see someone stranded, offer them a few bucks for the train ride home. Say hello to the shy looking kid who you’ve never seen at an event, and give the virgin a new piece of kandi. What goes around comes around, remember how people treated you when you first started raving and pay it forward. If we all work at it, we can revive the rave scene and bring back the peace, love, unity, and respect.

Peace,
Emilie

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment