We want to hear from you — share your best Lolla story below!Share your story
Under a covered outdoor staging area, Sonic Youth’s 6’6” Thurston Moore and Loser’s 5’4” Beck leaned against a wall engaged in an intense, intimate conversation – a height-sight to see. And I (OMG!) watched. Fate had placed me, a backstage guest, at Lolipolooza - Greatwoods, July 1995, blending in as best I could while dodging roadies with rolling racks, collecting cables, arranging amps, and placing the evidently very important countless packs of Courtney’s sky blue American Spirits on every surface. The rain that had been threatening, started: only a light, sun shower. The three Elastica girls suddenly emerged and ran out into the sprinkle. Spinning and laughing, they peeled down to black tank tops and black underwear, plopped down into a gathering pool, splash-paddled their feet and puddle-patted their hands, and giggled delightedly - heads thrown back with absolute glee. Beck and Thurston stopped, mid-sentence, and turned fixated on the scene framed by the travel cases and equipment. Blink. They looked back at each other, mouths slightly open in “what did we do to deserve this” amazement. Blink. And, turned back to the frolic. Blink. And I watched And…as soon as it started, it was over. The ladies stood up, grinning from ear to ear, hugged, collected their piles of now wet pants, sox and docs, and wandered away. Thurston and Beck turned back to their conversation, a little less enthusiastic and definitely more distracted. And I realized that, in a blink of time, the backstage show of a lifetime had taken place. And I watched.
I'm a Walla Walla kid and we used to go up to the Gorge every summer and camp out when I had just graduated high school.. That year was not only the first time I ever did Ecstacy, but we saw Hole and I think it was also the first year they had a hip hop stage! It was Coolio and the 40 thieves! When Courtney Love came out on stage she was wearing a really revealing too-too with no panties! I mean her whole hairy (black hair) crotch was exposed and when she put on her guitar it finally hid her snatch! It was so hot that summer and little chicks in the pit (this is peak grunge Seattle crowd we're talking about) were getting creamed bad!! Courtney Love started reaching into the crowd, bringing up ever chick she could "save," them give them a doll and let them sit on the stage. As she was reaching into grab one of these rag doll grunge girls, I reached up and grabbed Courtney's forearm like I was gonna pull her in.. ( but wasn't really) Before I knew it security grabbed me by the hair and jerked me over the gate and escorted me back out the side!! I touched Courtney Love in 1995 and fucking rocked my dick off on E! Lollapalooza is still the shit!
I was at lollapalooza in 95 molson park barrie with my brother and some of his friends. Cypress hill cam on and we decided to go get some food on the left side of the stage. there was about 30-40 thousand people and the day was extremly hot. I got a hot dog and a pop and hand one of those foldup packpack seats and was sitting to the left of the mosh pit. Cypress came out and they were throwing joints to the crowd and I remember a big golden buddah behind them. Anyways it was extremly hot as i said before and securty was hosing off the mosh pit with water. This created a swamp of mud and some guys though it was a good idea to fill their hats full of mud and wing them at the stage. Cypress was getting mud bomb by these guys and stopped their song and asked the guys to meet them over on the other side to sort them out. Well the song end and sure enough "over there" happened to be where i was eating my hot dog and 30 thousand people started to surround my brother and I. At first I thought maybe they ran out of food on the other side of the festival. I got up and the crowd made a pather that led them straight to me and my brother. I remember getting pushed aside by one of the members cypress and having mustard on my cloths. The short stocky one double taked at my brother and was just about to smack him when B real stepped in stating these weren't they guys. Now here a lose lose sistuation I thought about kicking one of them in the nuts and making a run for it but would have got killed by the fans and I thought hell if they beat us up the fans are going to rip us apart. I search high and low on the internet for photos for this but back then digital photos didn't even exist. I was going to contact Much Music and see if they have any footage but never got around to it.
I was 17 , has just graduated High School in suburban New Jersey and was heading to NYC shortly for Acting School when my then boyfriend got us lawn seats for Lolla '95 in Camden NJ. My concert experience at that point consisted mainly of concerts at Six Flags Great Adventure so this was a highlight of my young life. The day was crazy and choosing what to see when, swapping tickets w/friends with actual seats, and losing both them and my boyfriend as I had a habit of doing in busy places like festivals and amusement parks was crazy but two experiences, though hazy on the details, stick in my mind. The first was an encounter with a Dickie from the Bosstones. Somehow in my effort to find my friends I happened upon Dickie hanging out at a booth armed with supersoakers (Oh the '90's) and ended up in an all out water battle with the lead singer of one my favorite bands. Why didn't ska last longer in the mainstream? I'll never know. The second was my first encounter with not only Moshing (once again Oh the '90's) and crowd surfing. Once again stranded on the lawn by myself during HOLE under the hot NJ sun and not one to sulk or waste a good concert I happened upon a mosh pit dangerously close to the railing between the arena and the lawn. As I watched men slamming into each other I looked up at the only other girl in the circle, cocked my head and with a nod we were off. After that I was picked up, passed from sweaty man hand to sweaty man hand and almost went head first over the railing and despite my brush with death and the questionable quality of the music Hole will always have a special place in my memory. The perfect combo of '90's alt music, being 17, firsts of all kinds. Wouldn't trade it for the world. if only I lived in Chitown again.
A recent high school graduate I was ready to enjoy my summer before I headed to college. My friend Juan had asked me if I wanted to volunteer for rock the vote at Lollapalooza. He had told me we would be volunteering for about 4 hours signing up people to vote, I couldn't wait for the day to arrive. At the time I was just discovering bands like Pavement, Sonic Youth, Hum, and Built to Spill but never realized how they would shape my college years. I was really more interested in Cypress Hill and Hole. The day arrives and we head towards Tinley Park, once there we set up the tent and are ready to sign up the kids to vote. We are working with a gorgeous girl named Seema and her two cousins. The vibe was great, I could hear the bands from a distance and couldn't wait for our shift to end. Sen Dog and Bobo approached the tent, not sure why but they struck up a conversation. They weren't interested in signing up to vote, but were definitely interested in Seema. After a while they ask Seema if she wants to come back to the tour bus with them, but she responded "I'm not going anywhere without Juan and Luis." They agreed and said they would come back later during the day. As our shift dwindled we didn't think they would show up, but from a distance in a golf cart comes Sen Dog and Bobo. They take us back to the tour bus and this volunteering gig was a success. I never imagined that I would get into Lolla for free, but never in my wildest dreams did I think I think I was going to be hanging with Cypress Hill thanks Seema. After a while we head towards the stage all blown up and catching the end of the Pavement set. Cypress Hill comes out with the worlds biggest bong and catch Hole and finished the night off with Sonic Youth. What a night to remember, thanks Lolla!
Boundary-busting art-rockers Sonic Youth headline the 29 dates of Lollapalooza 1995. In a nod to the tragic events of 1994, Kurt Cobain’s widow Courtney Love’s band Hole joined the tour along with breakout Latino hip-hoppers Cypress Hill.
Other ladies loomed large in Lolla’s 1995 tour, too. Riding a wave of music industry buzz, the Brit-rock bombshells in Elastica replaced Sinead O’Connor, who was forced to pull out from the festival due to pregnancy. And over at the second stage fans could catch punk rock godmother Patti Smith and a young Blonde Redhead.
Even as the age of Alternative was coming to an end and musical tastes were changing with the advent of the Internet and an influx of new, independent artists, Lollapalooza ‘95 garnered critical praise for its balance of new talent and old. Did we mention that Beck – about to blow minds with the release of Odelay – rocked the main stage?
Courtney Love’s interesting behavior generated some memorable stories from the stable of artists. Specifically with Sonic Youth’s Thurston Moore, who razzed her for riding a limo to certain dates on the tour, (something Love maintained only happened once) and Bikini Kill’s Kathleen Hanna, who ended up in a backstage boxing match with the famously eccentric chanteuse.