What's Hot
  • 100 things you must do in Orlando before you die A list of things everyone who lives in Orlando should do at least once | 12/4/2013
  • Vote smart: Why the Aug. 26 elections are important Your vote matters, and here’s why | 8/20/2014
  • 6 things to do if you don’t love the club Want to go out, but you don’t feel like hanging out at clubs? Try one of these activities instead | 8/13/2014
  • Watering holes UCF college haunts Knight Library 11448 University Blvd., knightlibrary.com Named one of the top college bars in the country by thedailymeal.com, Knight Library has four bars, beer pong, tons of drink specials and notoriously gross bathrooms, just like an | 8/13/2014
  • The best things in life are cheap (or free) Tuition is high, your student loan repayments are looming and chances are you barely have $2 stashed away in your dorm room for an emergency. But, somehow, you still gotta live. That’s what student discounts and freebies are for. They’re hardly publicize | 8/13/2014
  • Is Disney making kids gay? Ridiculous column pulled from Tampa Tribune after public outcry | 8/20/2014
  • How to study abroad (the right way) In the words of Saint Augustine, “The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page.” Whether taking a weeklong excursion to Africa or spending a semester in Europe, studying abroad is at the top of many college bucket lists. So read away, m | 8/13/2014
What's Going On


Search thousands of events in our database.


Search hundreds of restaurants in our database.


Search hundreds of clubs in our database.

Orlando Daily Deals powered by ReferLocal

OW on Twitter
OW on Facebook
Print Email


Our music columnist gets immersed at the Acre for John Vanderslice

This Little Underground

Photo: Rob Bartlett, License: N/A, Created: 2013:11:12 10:51:53

Rob Bartlett

This setting allowed Vanderslice, with ample local help, to do some unusually engaging things. After the main stage set, the band moved down to the meadow among the crowd for an unplugged campfire-style song in what would've been total darkness if not for all the surrounding cell phone lights. Then Vanderslice directed everyone to the front of the property for the grand finale. Guided by the torches of the circus acrobats from local troupe Fun Dipped Productions – oh, did I mention there were circus acrobats? – the now fully pied-pipered audience migrated en masse, filed into and overspilled an open Florida cracker-style house where local weird-pop band Moon Jelly was set up to back Vanderslice for the most rocking full-band song of the night. Afterwards, there was a dance party in the cozy barn with DJs Nigel and Cub. Talk about your money's worth.

The result of all this event conceptualization was great turnout and real buzz, more than I've seen at any of Vanderslice's many previous Orlando shows. And the sense of connection and immersion was so deep that Vanderslice himself was swimming in it.

Most of the time, accounts in this column have learning points for either musicians or audience. This time, however, it's to show presenters. Performers make events special with their artistry. But on the logistical side of things, it's often more business than art. Just ask John Vanderslice. I did, and this is what he said: 

"The typical show takes place in a bar. Bars are the least life-affirming place on earth. I love alcohol but, god, shows in bars are just plain stupid. Of course there are thoughtful bars, great small rock clubs, etc. But the average bar/show experience is offensive. After touring in Japan, Europe and Australia, I began to feel like bands were being scammed here. Again, not all clubs are a life-denying zone of unhappiness, but enough are."

So, boom, there you have it. But all this led to his effusive praise of this event. So for matching the creativity of the artists in crafting probably this year's best show experience, Plotkin gets maximum credit.

We welcome user discussion on our site, under the following guidelines:

To comment you must first create a profile and sign-in with a verified DISQUS account or social network ID. Sign up here.

Comments in violation of the rules will be denied, and repeat violators will be banned. Please help police the community by flagging offensive comments for our moderators to review. By posting a comment, you agree to our full terms and conditions. Click here to read terms and conditions.
comments powered by Disqus