With headliners like Mumford & Sons and Deadmau5 the 2015 Bonnaroo music festival saw almost 100,000 attendees show up this year to get wild in the hills of Manchester, Tennessee. Not all were college-aged kids looking to party though, among them was seven-year-old ‘Squish’ who just set a new Guinness World Record for more high fives in under an hour. On Friday afternoon young Squish threw up 2,392 high fives in 60 minutes. That’s 39.86 high fives per minute for those of you keeping score at home. Here’s lil Squish in action:
— Bonnaroo (@Bonnaroo) June 13, 2015
— Festival Snobs (@FestivalSnobs) June 12, 2015
The previous record for high fives was 2,181, set in India back in 2012. At just seven-years-old young Squish is now in the Guinness World Record books alongside ‘the largest line dance’ and ‘the most people head banging simultaneously’. This feat was accomplished on ‘National High Five Day’, because anything and everything has a day now. Squish is a bit of a folk hero, and I’m personally quite proud of what he’s done as I weep for how the Bonnaroo festival has lost the ‘weird’. Bonnaroo is almost completely unrecognizable to me these days. The logo has stayed the same, the location is the same, but the festival itself has had a complete overhaul from what it once was. Back in 2002 when I attended the first ever Bonnaroo every jamband in the world was clamoring to get on stage there. Phish had recently gone on hiatus and the entire hippie world showed up to see Trey Anastasio perform on Sunday, they wanted to recapture some of that special Phish magic they’d been missing. The team that puts on Bonnaroo, SuperFly, really captured lightning in a bottle that weekend…and then lost it. Subsequent years were good, but not as great. And by 2008 when they brought in Kanye West the festival was all but lifeless…Last year even Kim Kardashian was there. Why? I still have no idea.
It ushered in a new era of music festivals, one not dominated by jambands, but one instead being hyped by musicians who had nothing to do with each other aside from sharing the same record label and/or manager. With this new era of festivals the weirdness that made Bonnaroo so magical was gone, but it seems young Squish is trying to restore the festival to its former glory. It was eventually rescued by the surge in popularity of festivals across the nation, but Bonnaroo had lost its identity as a festival.
For any of you at this year’s Bonnaroo I don’t want you to think I’m shooting it down, at all. The lineup looked great for a concert, and it was filled with plenty of talented musicians (lots of whom are in jambands). It’s just lacking the unifying theme it once had. But change can be great, and if that’s what the people want these days then that’s what the people will continue to get. All I’m saying here is that festivals need more people like Squish to keep things interesting, and less crotchety people like myself who go on about the good ol’ days. The world needs more people like Squish in it, and less people like me living in the past….
[Tip of the hat to Mashable for sharing Squish’s Guinness World Record with the Internet]