I've often wondered if Sunfest's entertainment committee made their booking decisions ala the basement scenes from"That 70s Show." It's not hard to imagine a cough and a smile following: "lets put on George Clinton & P-Funk in the daytime - and after after the Squirrel Nut Zippers!" A move that so confounded Clinton that he opened the set by singing the words to "Free Your Mind (And Your A** Will Follow)" while P-Funk played "Alice In My Fantasies."
This year is no different. Friday night's headlining double shot of screamo band Taking Back Sunday and southern rock warhorse Greg Allman could only happen at Sunfest and still be considered one festival. Tonight's (Thursday) bill of neo-soul king Cee-Lo Green and coffee house rock champion Jason Mraz is pretty eclectic too - although it's not hard to imagine your average latte-drinking soccer mom humming along to "forget you."
But it's Saturday where the craziness really goes down when Styx - the champions of late 1970s "corporate rock" and embodiment of all that is not cool - co-headlines with MGMT, a 21st-century psychedelic nu new wave act so cool they thought Columbia records was crank calling them when the label called to say they were interested in making MGMT, who began life as a dorm room duo at Wesleyan, a worldwide concern.
There is no way that anyone, save for the most devout South Park fan who fell in love with Cartman's version of "Come Sail Away," or hipsters who ironically like Styx's pomp synth-rock opera single "Mr. Roboto," could possibly be into both bands. But that is the beauty of Sunfest. It really does have something for everyone. That willingness to go to the edge of cool vs. not-cool in their programming makes the Sunday bill of Jeff Beck and Earth, Wind & Fire - which would be an amazing feat of diversity at any other festival - seem logical and almost tame.
Domo Arregato, Mr. Sunfest-O. Domo. (Domo).