I’m finally home in South Africa and ready to talk about Firefly Music Festival. I was there shooting for a music publication called Consequence of Sound, click here to check out the rest of the album. Firefly is held in Dover, Delaware, USA and is in its second year, this year. I think they’re onto something great. The line-up for Firefly Music Festival included: Red Hot Chili Peppers, Foster the People, Calvin Harris, MGMT, Grizzly Bear, Toro y Moi, St. Lucia, Robert DeLong, Zedd, Ellie Goulding, Krewella, CHVRCHES, Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeroes, The Neighbourhood, Matt and Kim and the Yeah Yeah Yeahs.

Dover is relatively easy to get to. Unfortunately for me I had to rely on public transport and that meant numerous hassles when it came to lugging around all my gear. I swear that I could have died in the process. My journey time meant that I missed Ellie Goulding’s performance on the first day which kind of sucked.

Firefly is big, as in covers a large amount of ground. I guess it has to be in order to accommodate 65000 people. Walking from the last available camping spot, which was at the Delaware State University, directly across the road from the festival, used to take 25 minutes. Where I was staying made me reconsider ever going back unless it was absolutely necessary e.g. going to die in my bed. The Lawn Stage is the first stage you will see after entering the festival groundss and it’s another 15-20 minute walk to the last stage, aptly named the Backyard Stage. I walked, ran and hobbled to get to all the stages to take photos. If you’re at next year’s Firefly then take really really comfortable shoes, Bengay (painkillers in a gel), blister plasters and painkillers and you will survive.

Some of my favourite acts included: St. Lucia, and not only because he’s South African, Robert DeLong, not only because he’s coming to South Africa, but also Grizzly Bear, MGMT, Matt and Kim, Calvin Harris, Toro y Moi, Capital Cities, Foster the People, CHVRCHES, Zedd and the Yeah Yeah Yeahs. I could say that my most surprising performances were by Kendrik Lamar and Matt and Kim. I was not expecting the crowds to be that crazy for their performances. Kendrik Lamar would often point the microphone at the crowd and everyone would sing/rap back to him. Matt and Kim probably had the best crowd of the weekend even though it rained during the first half of their set. There were people stomping in the mud, crowd surfers and their whole performance was high energy.

It was surreal seeing MGMT and Foster the People live. Sometime last year I halfheartedly tried to start a #MMMF Twitter trend, MMMF stands for Modestep, M83, MGMT and Foster the People and those were the acts that I really wanted to see live at the time. I got to cross off two of these acts in one incredible weekend so when I say that I might have cried a bit when I was watching MGMT and Foster the People then you must understand why. Zedd experienced technical difficulties which led to a delay in the start of his set, while we waited I just wanted to tell the angry teenage girls that were trying to complain to me while I stood in the photo pit to shut up. His set was worth the wait. It almost makes me feel like starting a #ZinSA Twitter trend to get him all up in South Africa’s business.

Firefly is more than just a music festival, they really thought about things that would make festival go’ers happy and comfortable. To this end there was a silent cinema and hammock hangout in the forests; people could take time out, get away from the heat and totally relax. There was also a silent disco which I failed to go to because I was too exhausted and it ran from 2am until 4am. There was gourmet food, from awesome Pepperoni pizza, to a cheesecake stand, frozen margaritas, freshly squeezed juices, gluten-free sandwhiches and homemade ice cream sandwiches with freshly baked chocolate chip cookies. There was even yoga in the mornings.

I really hope that I can go back next year. I think the organisers of Firefly have created something really special and they went beyond what was required from them and it’s very rare that you find an event like that. Music festivals all over the world should take note of Firefly.

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