Music resumes as after storm in Manchester

Bonnaroo is back. Finally.

After a two-year hiatus, a small city of fesitvalgoers arrived Thursday to Manchester, Tennessee, for Bonnaroo Music & Arts Festival — AKA a psychedelic summer camp jam-packed with four nights of nonstop performances, food and campground shenanigans.

A team of Tennessean reporters set up camp Thursday at Great Stage Park (known lovingly to Bonnaroo faithful as “The Farm). Follow along for real-time updates on scorching hot weather, crowds, festival fashion, tunes and everything in-between.

Friday

All stages open on day two, with rapper J. Cole set to headline the What Stage. Follow along below.

Maggie Rose, Claud and Tai Verde kick off music as crowds (gradually) return

3 pm: After the storm-informed evacuation, Centeroo didn’t reopen for music until 1:45. That led to fairly sparse crowds waiting for afternoon performers like Maggie Rose, But the Nashville-based artist’s set remained a soulful celebration.

“We’ve been waiting three years for this moment,” Rose said, before firing up the slinky R&B number “For Your Consideration” from last year’s “A Seat at the Table.”

Claud performs at “This Tent” at Bonnaroo in Manchester, Tenn., Friday, June 17, 2022.

At the This Tent, indie-pop singer-songwriter Claud was making their Bonnaroo debut, and though the audience was modest, it was dense with diehards. One of them even handed the 23-year-old a greeting card.

But enough about Claud Mintz— the non-binary artist was more curious about theiraudience, and just how tough their living situation was like this weekend (take note, other ‘Roo performers). They were surprised to hear that some of the crowd was staying on the grounds for five straight days. Claud wondered aloud if they should try sleeping in a tent for the first time, and the crowd, no doubt informed by their heatwave experience this week, was split between “Do it!” and even louder cries of “Don’t do it!”

One highlight came when Mintz appeared to call an audible, putting their guitar down to play the peppy pop-punker “That’s Mr. B**** to you.”

Fans enjoy Dayglow as they perform on the Which Stage during the Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival held in Manchester, Tenn., on Friday, June 17, 2022.

Right after those sets, rising artist Tai Verdes – who still had a day job and was sleeping on a friend’s couch back in 2020 – was the first performer to play Bonnaroo’s biggest stage – “What – in three years.

Verdes may be new to playing stages of this big, but his inviting pop songs and infectious energy more than covers for it. As he began, he expressed that bringing up the crowd’s energy was more of a priority than his opening song, and was certainly speaking this sunburned audience’s language with the singalong “Feeling This Bad Never Felt This Great.”

*drumroll, please* Centeroo reopens

1:45 pm: Campground heartbeat Centeroo reopened mid-afternoon Friday in time for fans to claim a spot before music takes off in earnest.

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