I spent this past Sunday at the Ottawa Bluesfest with my friend Rey. The Bluesfest is a annual music festival which (unlike the name suggests) features a wide range of different musicians and bands from all sorts of genres. The lineup this year was really impressive, but Rey and I had our hearts set on seeing Fun perform.
I've been in love with Fun since their album Some Nights came out, which was instantly welcomed into my iTunes library already dominated with indie music. Months ago I also helped introduce Rey to all of Fun's music after he had mentioned liking their singles on the radio. Fortunately Rey was back from Vancouver just in time to watch Fun perform with me.
Rey and I got to the festival a few hours early to enjoy some beer and watch Tegan and Sara, who were touring with Fun. The whole day had been rainy and dreadful up until that point, but just as Tegan and Sara's stage crew finished setting up the sun started breaking through the clouds. I had come expecting to have to stand through a rain shower, so seeing the clouds clear left me feeling euphoric.
The crowd at Bluesfest was energized from previous shows, and the atmosphere on it's own was uplifting. I was surprised by how many different age groups were there to see Tegan and Sara perform.
We stayed for most of Tegan and Sara's set, enjoying some of their older music that we weren't familiar with. However, we were really excited to see Fun perform, and left early to make sure we got a good spot. It was such a good decision. Half an hour before Fun were due to start, the crowd had already built up around the stage. By then, the rain clouds had completely cleared and everyone was excited to have a perfect night for the performance.
Fun started late because there had been stage changes earlier in the day that threw everything off schedule. The anticipation and buildup definitely teased the crowd. Everyone was so excited for the show that people started cheering and reacting to any stage crew that walked on the stage to setup.
When Fun finally came on stage they started with the intro from Some Nights all wearing tuxedos to suit the theatrical sound of the song. The stage was lit only by spotlight. Then, as the song finished, there was a blast of green light and by the time the light cleared the band had changed into more casual clothes.
You guys, I know it sounds silly to say... but they were just so much fun! They really are performers and put on a great show. The band was so pumped and excited to be there, and the crowd absorbed that energy and gave back nothing but love. Everyone in sight seemed to be having an amazing time either singing along, clapping or cheering.
The band continued to exude seemingly endless energy. Nate Ruess joked with the us, energetically jumped around the stage and even ran into the crowd giving everyone high fives. The concert also included effects like confetti being blown out from the stage and large, glowing balls thrown into the crowd for us to play with. It was by far the most entertaining concert I've ever been to at Bluesfest.
I think the majority of the crowd had just as amazing a time as Rey and I did. We cheered endlessly for Fun. It was to the point that they couldn't continue between songs, and would just pause and look out humbly into the crowd while we went on cheering. They surprisingly looked like they were in awe, with both Nate and Jack often staring out into the crowd between sets with amazed smiles.
I know I'm going on about this, but it had to be one of the most entertaining and fun concerts I've been to in a long time. To boot, the band met all of my expectations; they sounded amazing live, and came off as the most humble and exciting people. I'm definitely even more of a fan than I was before.
I leave you now with a video from the show of Fun covering The Rolling Stones (courtesy of James Skinner). I recommend if you do decide to watch it, that you turn your volume down to avoid some of the rattling that resulted from the crowd cheering.
Can't you just tell how pumped we all were to be there?