Sunday, August 16, 2009

Purple Door 09

The day began early. I was up at 5:45 AM. Showered, shaved and loaded-up for the road by 6:00 AM. I made a quick stop to top off the gas tank and then picked up JT before 7:00 AM, for our excursion to Purple Door. We made one stop at Giant Eagle to grab a case of water and a bag of ice for the cooler - so we could stay hydrated during the day. We also grabbed some road munchies to get us through the ride.
We only had to stop once on our way out. That was at Sidling Hill, so JT could grab some coffea at Starbucks. And so we could use the restrooms, but the coffee was more important to JT.
Took us a little bit over 3 hours to get there.

We found the Compassion booth right away. Since I was here last year, I knew right where it would be. It was great seeing Randy again, as it always is. We, also visited with the other advoctes for a few minutes before heading out into the festivities.
The first band I wanted to see for the day was Reilly. I highly recommend checking out the video on their page...

I saw them at Creation and really liked their sound.

And I thought JT might like them too. He did.

We came over as they were playing their cover version of Buffalo Springfield's For What It's Worth (Stop! Children, what's that sound... - you know the rest). They do an incredible job with it, too.
Then they do their dueling violins thing, which is pretty cool. I can't really describe their sound - which is why I recommend checking out the video at their page.

Afterwards, JT went in to the merch area to talk to them. He grabbed their CDs and got their permission to play their music on his podcast. So that's cool. And he was doing this all day long with so many of the bands - especially the ones who played on the Gallery Stage. But that's one of the reasons why I like taking JT to these festivals with me. I do what I can to get the word out about his podcast and this helps. And we always do have fun.
Meanwhile, I headed over to the HM Stage to see what was happening there. And to say "Hi" to the Security Crew people.
Becoming The Archetype was on stage.

Yeah, they're hardcore. And if you go to their Myspace page I suggest you check out their version of How Great Thou Art (Jeff, this means you!).

One thing I will admit seemed strange to me about their show was that they ended it with a song titled End Of The Age. The last line of which is simply "Halleluiah! Halleluiah!", screamed, of course. But imagine that being done by several hundred young people, all with their "devil horns" pumping in the air...
When their set wasdone it was time to wrap up for lunch. And that's when I went back to the stage area to talk to all of my friends from Creation's Fringe Stage Security Crew. I had brought pics from Creation with to share with all of them. But I dind't get any new pics here. They were all busy and I didn't want to interrupt their lunch break.
I headed back to the Compassion booth for a few minutes, and to get a bottle of water. That's when Randy asked me if I'd be interested in doing a presentation from the HM Stage. Of course, I said "Yes", and at 1:30 I stood up and talked about Compassion.

Thanks, JT, for getting the pic of me on stage.
When I was finished I left the HM Stage for the Main Stage. Children 18:3 were playing there and I wanted to see them, again!

Another great live show! These kids do get better every time I see them.
After their set they went to the Main Stage merch area to sign stuff and talk to anyone who wanted to. I went.
I had taken quite a few pics of these kids at Creation. So I made several prints of those pics for them, since they keep a scrapbook of them on their merch table. But more than that, I made an 8 x 10 print of This shot and had them each sign it for me. That was cool. But I also got my pic taken with each of them, too.

At Vertical Fest they had a box for donations to their food expenses. So I tossed a few bucks into it before I talked to Lee Marie. She thanked me as I asked her to sign the pic, and I promised her that if they ever come to Pittsburgh, I'll feed them so they can use their money for more important things.
Seth was really cool about all of it. He actually saw me back in the line and waved to me and asked if I had the pics. I showed him what I had and he really liked them.

David was feeling much better this time around. I get the feeling he's struggling with something ongoing. But I didn't feel lead to pray with him this time.

All in all, it was great to see and talk to them.
Took a little break after this. Stopped at the Compassion booth for more water. Asked Randy what time he needed me to be at the booth for my shift. He said anytime I'm ready. So I asked if it would be OK if I caught the last two bands at the HM Stage, and he was fine with that.
The first badn up was The Showdown.

Yeah, it was hardcore!

And here's a little bit of video of the mosh pit. No moshing, just a bunch of kids swirling. But that's what the lead singer said he wanted to see.

Eventually it became a mosh pit. And yes, I jumped into it for a few minutes.

The Showdown finished up and then came Project 86.
These guys are awesome live!

For the last song of their set they had the entire audience moshing. It was great seeing everybody moving as they yelled out the last lines of the song Steins Theme:

You hate us cuz we'll never go away
and like some sort of fungus
we're growing everyday
our knuckles aren't draggin'
I guess that leaves us say
our message isn't stoppin'
til you drag us all away!

and repeat...

They're the only band that had an encore - even of the bands at the Main Stage. And when they cam back out, the crowd went nuts, again.

This was so everyone could sing along. And we did!

And again, the entire audience was moshing and screaming along to Spyhunter. Who could ask for more?

That wrapped things up for the HM Stage. So I returned to the Compassion booth to work my shift. Fortunately, the booth is set up with a good view of the Main Stage. So I didn't have to miss any of the rest of the bands.
I got back in time to see Fireflight another band that I really like, and have seen several times before.

The distance was a bit of an obstacle for the picture taking. But I still like the shots I got.
Now, some of you may remember Sam from my Creation post. Well, it was great to see him here too.

And I was glad to get a pic with him.
This was an interesting character...

Moo... ?
No idea why, or if there's any significance to wearing a cow costume to Purple Door. And I was afraid to ask.
And this was The Purple Door. I signed it.

As things were kinda slow, Randy let me go grab a bite to eat. So, this is what I chose: Chocolate covered frozen cheesecake. Mmmmmmmmmmm...

The main speaker of the evening was Stephen Christian of Anberlin. He had a compelling message encouraging the audience to "do something". He reminded everyone that even the smallest efforts have an impact. And he pointed to the scriptures which tell us that true religion, or pure religion, is to care for the widows and orphans (James 1:26-27). This stirred up a few people to come to the Compassion booth.
Shortly afterwards Disciple hit the stage.

This is another one of those bands that I really like and have ssen before. But this was the band that JT was really looking forward to catching. And when they finished he headed off to the Main Stage merch area to get a signed poster. JT pointed out to me that he had autographed posters from every band he's seen, except these guys. So it was a good idea.
Next up was a band called Mewithoutyou. I wouldn't know what to call their style, but some of their songs reminded me of Rusted Root. It was not what JT and I were expecting after Disciple. It was like stripping gears. But we liked them.
There was one last push for child sponsorships after this set. One of the artists who was there as both a speaker and to sell his artwork, Eric Samuel Timm, has been a Compassion sponsor for some time. He shared about his first experience visiting his sponsored child and the way it changed his life. So he stirred up the crowd for us a little bit more.
The last act of the festival was Anberlin. I had never seen them before. They put on a good show, too. I'm also not very familiar with many of their songs. So this was a good opportunity for me to get to know them. I liked them.
During this set, Randy and I were putting most of our booth materials away. We were hoping to have things good-to-go so we could all leave as quickly as possible when the festival was over. But we still had a few people walking up to the tables for a while.
In the end, there were 26 sponsorships. Not bad for this crowd, and better than last year's. We don't expect great things from the crowd at Purple Door. We know that the crowd draws a lot of people who only like the hardcore bands because they're into metal. So, we understand that the crowd may be a majority of Christians, but certainly not an overwhelming majority.
We were ready to roll by 11:30. But JT and I were both exhausted. I pushed myself to get us to Sidling Hill again in the hopes that getting some more substantial food into my mbody would fuel me for the rest of the ride. I did for a short burst. I still had to pull over somewhere between Breezewood and Bedford so we could take a nap.
After about an hour long nap I was ready to go again. Dropped JT off at 4:30-ish AM, and made it home by 5:00 AM. Slept til 11:30 and now I'm sharing the day's events with all of you. Now, I think I'll go take a nap...

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Blogger Faith said...

DUDE!!! I WAS TOTALLY THERE!!! And it was awesome. Too bad you weren't there on Friday... FF5 did an AMAZINGLY AWESOME show. I kept meaning to stop by the Compassion booth, but I never did... I don't know why...
OH, I found your blog from your review of PD last year, and when you were onstage at the HM stage, I was wondering if you were "that guy from the blog..." But I thought you had too many tattoos to be that guy. Apparently not.

6:44 PM  
Blogger M+ said...

I'm so glad you stopped by to let me know you were there. And to tell me that you read my review from last year's fest.
FF5 are amazing! I saw them at Creation, even though I didn't get pics. And I saw them at Vertical Fest last year.
Next time you have a chance to stop at a Compassion both I highly recommend it. Sponsoring a child can change your life in an amazing way. Or, if you think you're ready to, just click on the banner here at my page.
Yep, I'm that guy. Next time you see me at a festival say "Hi".

8:52 PM  
Blogger Jeff A said...

I checked out Becoming The Archetype and you were right, I did enjoy them. I don't think my girls enjoyed being awoken like that this morning, but thats life with me! Now I am going to check out the other bands. Glad you had a good time and got quite a few sponsorships.

9:39 AM  
Anonymous Tim Albertson said...

Hey I enjoyed reading through your blog. Any chance you could email me a copy of this photo I'm the guy witht he camera behind the drummer. My website is You can check out my photos from both Purple Door and Creation there. If you could email me that photo to I'd sure appreciate it. Thanks so much. Tim

3:17 PM  

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