After 3 hours of traffic and popping a squat next to the car in the private parking area (it was empty by the way), I felt 25 yrs old and ready to see some shows!
Rock in Rio was impressive. The infrastructure was amazing! There were a TON of bathrooms, all cleaner than most bars in this city. There was space, tons and tons of space! I was thinking that I was going to end up spending the next 12 hours pressed up against strangers in that creepily close way you do during Carnaval. That wasn't the case though. People with space issues like myself were able to get away from the crowds and still be entertained.
Oh, and there was free booty. No, not that kind of booty (although I bet you could find it too). Wherever you went there was someone offering you some random little treat from some random brand. My personal favorite is the ever phallic Volkswagen blow up drum stick. It brought a whole knew level of classy to Rock in Rio.
Then came the shows. Poor Lenny Kravitz! He just didn't relate to his crowd. Then again, the man was kind of screwed. They had him sandwiched in between Brazilian singer Ivete Sangalo and Shakira. Those two women are some serious Latin Pop. Lenny was busting out his jazzy pothead tunes to a crew who were looking for hips and seriously danceable beats. I have to say, it seemed like he considered crowd acceptance was a given. Yeah Lenny, doesn't work out that way.
Now Shakira, that woman gave the show of a lifetime. Hell, it was so good that I listened to a bunch of her newer music I didn't know and half the Spanish stuff I didn't even understand. What can I say, the hips don't lie and apparently she is my puppet master.
She busts out onto the stage with "Estoy Aqui," loud and in your face. Brilliant move as my Mother-in-law's Brazilian Golden Retriever even knows that song. Within the first 15 seconds the crowd was hers.
But she didn't leave it to just that. She interacted. She spoke an adorable Portuguese with a thick Colombian accent. I LOVED it! Everyone ate it up with chop sticks. She also called people on stage and challenged them to follow her hip moves. I will say, the Brazilian ladies held their own. Basically, this woman went out there to work. She did her job and she did it well! She was there to please. Needless to say, I am getting my little hands on every song of hers that is available.
All and all I think that Rock in Rio was a huge success. Wait, did I just state the obvious? Anyway, I will say that maybe the government should just privatize the city of Rio de Janeiro. After Rock in Rio I'm seeing the the private sector knows how to pull shit off!
*On a side note, there were some obvious separations of class upon entry, being that Rock in Rio is placed next to a favela. I'll save those thoughts and feelings for another blog post.