The Virginia Key GrassRoots festival of Music & Dance brought together musicians, artists, culture and community at the Virginia Key Beach Park this past weekend. These images are just some of the people who attended and who were willing to share their stories.
1. “We’ve only been married for two and a half years …
… and we met at a music festival dancing. The other festivals we go to Donna the Buffalo performs at. These shirts we’re wearing are from a festival in New York, we’re from New York and this festival Grey Fox always has Donna the Buffalo at the festival. We were at Donna the Buffalo festivals before we knew each other. So it’s a match made in heaven. Where we met was at Rhythm & Roots, that’s in Rhode Island.”
“She asked me to dance. I was just standing by a pole tapping my feet.”
“He’s very shy, luckily I asked him to dance and the rest is history. That song ‘Roundball’ that they just did, when we got married that’s the song we played at our reception.You’ll never know, you’ll meet your life partner out here.”
2. “I can’t give you my name…
… but it would be wonderful for my granddaughter to see this picture of me one day.”
3. “I woke up with a hangover …
… and when I woke up these brats had written all over me. Just kidding. I wanted to make you laugh. I did a meditation this morning and it was about honoring yourself so this is my way of honoring myself, by letting them draw all over me. I’m teasing you! They wanted to do a cute picture on me and it just turned into a disaster.”
4. “Take a picture of me….
… I like for people to call me Jazz… I’m here because of the drugs. They have the best heroine actually. Just kidding. My friend called me and told me to come out here today and I haven’t been at Virginia Key in like 10 or 15 years. When I was 25 this was a place to come out here and hang out. It was called Jimbo’s. Do you like poetry?
A peculiar bird is a pelican,
his beak can hold more than his belly can,
food in his beak,
all for a week,
man I don’t know how the hell he can.”
5. “I love Donna the Buffalo….
… I’m a mom now and I only get to see them once a year. There’s such an amazing spirit here. The people are wonderful. I’ve been hula-hooping for a while now. I’m a one-trick pony. I can’t do tricks like these other ladies. It’s really fun. I feel more comfortable doing this than dancing. It’s the way I dance.”
6. “I’m a gypsy vendor….
… I travel around and do music festivals. No one else is making raw energy chocolate treats. Nobody else has the microgreens, we grow microgreens out on the farm in Tampa and high-end gourmet restaurants buy the greens. We grow about 26 different varieties and then around festival time I bring extras out, so I’ve got these beautiful salads and I got no competition. Nobody else has that.”
7. “I bought this at a festival…
… it was the Wanee Festival up at Live Oak and they sell a lot of, I don’t want to call this a costume, they sell wardrobe and fur coats and they have some over-the-top stuff. This caught my eye and it’s just, you slip your arm into the sides and you just put it right on. It just so happens that they pick out the material and they make their own clothes at the festival.”
8. “It was super fun…
… I thought I would want him to stop but after a while he asked me if I wanted to keep going and I didn’t feel dizzy at all. It was so fun. I loved going upside down. That was the best part. I didn’t feel anything in my stomach.I just screamed when I was upside down. You know that dropping feeling when you’re on rollercoasters? I didn’t feel any of that. I don’t even like rollercoasters because of that feeling. I like going upside down, I like the loops, but I don’t like the drops and I didn’t feel any of that.”
9. “This hat is made from the palm trees of Colombia…
… and I had a friend bring it back for me. He made it and I asked him if I could have it. This is a muu muu dress from the 1960s and I just dyed my hair the other day. I do makeup and hair for MC2. I always like dressing up in costume. I do a lot of art, I do performance art, I do music and I think it’s another form of expression. It’s just a really good outlet to express yourself and let the world view you without even having to talk to you.”
10. “I go to a lot of festivals….
… I used to be a lawyer. I’m very much retired, 10 years ago. I’m not a young man. The mustache is year around. I used to do it for festivals and I do it now all the time. Have you heard of Manic Panic? It’s called Electric Lizard. It resonates with my personality.”
11. “Es mi cuarta vez que vengo aquí….
… Bailar es mi inspiración. La música me inspira tranquilidad y por eso cuando yo oigo la música como soy psicólogo es mi inspiración y por eso me fascina. Cualquier música no hay barreras para mi. La gente se queda como WOW mirándome. Siempre mis padres me dijeron desde que estaba pequeńa me decían adora la música y por eso yo siempre me conecte con la música. Adoro la música.”
“It’s my fourth time coming here. Dancing is my inspiration. The music gives me peace of mind and that’s why when I hear it, since I’m a psychologist, it inspires me and that’s why I love it. Any type of music there are no barriers. People look at me like WOW but my parents always told me since I was little to adore music and that’s why I connect with it. I love it.”