My Weekend In Vegas With 311, Big Boi, And The Black Keys
I write before you sleep-deprived, haggard, in desperate need of a shower and perhaps a new liver. Let’s just say I pushed myself to the brink, then pushed a little bit more this past weekend. I would normally be guilt-ridden having created this subhuman slop of a self, but when you spend 3 nights in Las Vegas with bands like [lastfm link_type="artist_info"]311[/lastfm], [lastfm link_type="artist_info"]The Black Keys[/lastfm], and [lastfm link_type="artist_info"]Big Boi[/lastfm] from [lastfm link_type="artist_info"]Outkast[/lastfm], testing the elasticity of mind, body, and soul was the right thing to do.
I offer here a time line journal of my 3 epic nights in Las Vegas, where I slept 8 hours in a matter of 3 days. Columbian millionaires, that [lastfm link_type="artist_info"]Deadmau5[/lastfm] guy, and great live vids of 311, Big Boi, and The Black Keys await you.
10:00 PM: Vegas here we come!
11:45 PM: It’s raining HARD on the 15 North. That doesn’t stop people from driving like maniacs. Last time I checked parties in Vegas don’t get started till like 2AM…
12:30 AM: Stop in Barstow for our only bathroom break along with 50 other degenerates making the midnight trip to Sin City. A small party occurs in the mini-mart. If these are the type of people I’m going to be spending 3 days with, this is going to be a weekend to remember.
2:45 AM: Hallelujah! It’s a quarter till 3 and there are herds of drunken bafoons wandering Las Vegas Blvd like happy hour just kicked off. This place makes me happy. Arrive to the room where fellow friends through friends are doing their best impersonation of Animal House in the hotel room. I am greeted to two swigs of whiskey upon my entrance. Good morning from Las Vegas!
7:15 PM: Arrive to the Hard Rock Hotel in plenty of time before 311 rolls into The Joint. To kill time my, partner and crime and I stop and check out the NBA Slam Dunk Contest. Blake Griffin jumps over (yawn) a car and throws down an alley-oop hookup from Baron Davis who’s sitting on the driver’s side. I think Dave the King Of Mexico officially decided to build his Blake Griffin shrine.
9:20 PM: “3-11, 3-3-11!” The vibe in The Joint is majestic. Nothing but respectful and jubilant concert attendees here. 311’s energy is off the charts, and so is the crowd’s. Nobody is static or lackluster, even when the entire venue is getting hot-boxed like a KROQ promo van…jussst kidding we don’t do that kind of stuff!
“All Mixed Up”
“Applied Science” (Insane drum solo by Chad + drum off with all 5 members)
11:00 PM: We exit The Joint and things are just getting started around here. I am now joined by a Columbian millionaire and his partner who have taken a liking to my friend and I. I don’t know this yet, but I am about to embark into the belly of the beast that is Vegas.
2:30 AM: Roughly 8-10 free rounds of drinks have come and gone thanks to my incredibly talkative new Columbian friend (insert Columbian coke joke here). We have recently relocated to the crisp and razor-sharp class that is The Cosmopolitan, a mecca for attractive and sophisticated young adults. I get a text from the lovely Nicole Alvarez who is also in town for music and vice. We decide to rendezvous at The Wynn, breaking ties with our generous new friends.
6:00 AM: Finally arrive back at the MGM after an insane night of partying and walking in the rain. My partners in crime Nicole Alvarez and former KROQ phone-op Kris have been excellent company throughout night/morning. Ready for round 2!
6:00 PM: After hibernating for most of the day, I locate my inner animal and gear up for Big Boi and The Black Keys. This might sound like an odd pairing to most of you if you haven’t checked out the mashup they released a couple of months back. Heavy consumption of alcohol is soon to follow and I’m giddy as a schoolgirl.
9:20 PM: BIIIIGGGG BOOOIIII! Daddy Fat Sax is on stage at the charismatically fresh Chelsea Room at The Cosmopolitan. Have you ever wondered what it’s like living in a bass amp? Just attend a Big Boi concert and you’ve turned into a walking vibrator. Hits like “B.O.B.,” “So Fresh, So Clean,” “Ms. Jackson,” “Shutterbug,” and “Speakerboxx” buzz from every radii in the room.
10:00 PM: Enter The Black Keys. The temperature in the room seems to have risen 20 degrees since Big Boi departed. I’m a sweaty mess, lubricating amongst the crowd and too drunk to care. A bottle of Jack Daniels circumferences my huddle, and every swig feels like a shot of wicked splendor. Dan speaks, “Vegas grabbed a hold of me last night and didn’t let me go,” before immediately bustin’ out an old-school jam “Thick Freakness.”
“I Got Mine”
“Howlin’ For You”
11:30 PM: The Black Keys just went for 90 minutes of blues-rock heaven, and I’m starting to wonder how a s**thead like me was ever lucky enough to experience such a performance. Highlights were “Howlin’ For You,” “Busted,” “She’s Long Gone,” and “Your Touch.” Like the previous Black Keys shows I’ve attended this year, Dan and Pat do their dirty deeds for the first 5 songs or so as the signature duo, before a bassist and keyboardist are utilized for tracks off Brothers.
2:30 AM: I have arrived at Excess at The Wynn thanks to Stryker and his overarching hookup in Sin City. The bouncer escorts Kris and I to a VIP booth where a few other KROQ notables are enjoying bottle service just off the dance floor. Now I really feel like the luckiest bastard alive. I do not deserve being served alcohol by beautiful women, nor partying arms length from the one and only [lastfm link_type="artist_info"]Deadmau5[/lastfm]. Yeah, the dude with the mouse head and his posse of scantily dressed bombshells are right behind us. No, he was not wearing his famous mouse head to my dismay.
6:30 AM: Good night.
12:00 PM: After 2 hours of sleep, we depart Las Vegas and the 4 and a half hour drive seems black diamond difficult. My friend is trying to talk to me, but all that’s coming out are short, nondescript utterances that I may or may not be saying at all. Better yet, I have work in 5 hours where you lovely KROQ listeners get to talk to a shell of a human being for four hours. Then it’s off to Loveline until 12AM. If it weren’t for coffee, or Psycho Mike’s bulging biceps, I may have never survived.
Note to self: Next time you spend 3 whole nights in Las Vegas, request the next 2 weeks off.