Enron, 104 KRBE team up
with today's hottest pop acts for Earth Day Festival
By Jake McKim
Daily Cougar Staff
Thousands of sun-soaked kids and adults
swarmed Eleanor Tinsley Park on Saturday for the fifth annual 104 KRBE/Enron
Earth Day Festival.
Those who shelled out $20 for admission
were treated to jugglers, face painting, moonwalks for the kids, all fattening
foods known to humankind and environmentally friendly booths designed to
educate people on how to conserve nature.
The food was overpriced, the booze was
flowing and most of those who decided to wear little clothing made the
wrong decision. But what the festival had going for it was something organizers
couldn't control -- the weather.
The festival is perfectly placed in the
spring, when people are tired of hauling around those pesky jackets and
-- as was evident by the skimpiness of some of the female attendees' wardrobes
-- are ready to display their bodies.
Wyclef Jean, formerly of
successful hip-hop act, the Fugees, lends his considerable talents to the
Fifth Annual Enron Earth Day Festival.
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Yes, it was a tad hot, but ingenious attractions
like The Rain Room (where it literally rained cool water) kept folks happy.
But what most in attendance came to see
was the diverse lineup of musical acts that have graced this event's stage
year after year. The 2001 version featured A Touch of Class and soulDecision
along with popular rock acts Collective Soul and Vertical Horizon.
On the r&b side, Mya made an appearance,
and for hip-hop fans, the multi-talented Wyclef Jean made a cameo.
It was an odd, almost surreal experience
to see the same youngsters who bobbed their heads to Collective Soul and
soulDecision jump around to Wyclef's always energetic stage antics. It
was a perfect example of what pop music is today -- a jumbled mess where
hardcore rappers and cheesy-lyric rock/pop acts are likely to be heard
on the same radio station back-to-back.
SoulDecision, ATC, and Collective Soul
kept the crowd interested, but it was Wyclef who seemed to make the most
notable appearance of the day.
Wyclef is a relatively impressive artist
in the studio, but when he gets on stage, be prepared for a wild set. Stepping
on stage just after 2:45 p.m., the Haitian-born Wyclef switched effortlessly
between Latin-tinged songs, rock 'n' roll ditties and hotter-than-Houston-in-the-summer
Brian Viney/The Daily Cougar
This lucky fan got to "crowd
surf" and listen to music while learning more about the environment at
the Fifth Annual Enron Earth Day.
The crowd didn't seem to expect much from
the soloist (who is also a member of the Fugees, along with Lauryn Hill
and Pras) but it certainly was treated to a much-needed dose of onstage
theatrics and talent.
It's really a shame that Jean didn't headline
because he exposed the weaknesses of the two acts that followed him, Mya
and Vertical Horizon. After a drawn-out, 45-minute delay in which the crowd
was forced to endure stalling from terribly unfunny KRBE disc jockeys Sam
Malone, Maria Todd and Adam Smasher, Mya hit the stage around 4:45 p.m.
The up-and-coming starlet has had hit after
hit on the radio and television, but when it comes to singing live, Mya
makes Jennifer Lopez sound like Lucianno Pavarotti.
Vertical Horizon concluded the festivities
by ripping through hits from its four highly successful albums, concluding
a full day of music.
KRBE and Enron need to invest in more high-profile
acts next year if they plan to top themselves, but as far as 2001 goes,
the sunburned revelers appeared to head home happy.