After a weekend of camping at Muncie Springfest, after washing off the music festival funk at a friend of a friend’s (who I met for the first time on the same day that I bathed in his home), after two hours of driving west on highway 26 to Lafayette, and after a generous glass of margarita at a Mexican restaurant on campus, I came to a major realization about myself last Sunday: Girl Talk has become a guilty pleasure.
Urban Dictionary best defines the term: something that you shouldn’t like, but like anyway.
No amount of persuasion could make me deny the fun I have getting squished between hoards of strangers as I bounce up and down to the mash-up magic of Greg Gillis. When that Kelly Clarkson track plays and the crowd explodes at “Since you been gooooone!” I get an inexplicable burst of energy I’d be ashamed to express anywhere other than a Girl Talk concert. And while people will argue until the end of time whether or not this guy has any real talent, there is no mistaking he has the ability to incite a true riot on the dance floor. In my book, ladies and gentlemen, that is a win.
Last October I took a Thursday night road trip to Bloomington to see Girl Talk perform on IU’s Dunn Meadow for the Victoria’s Secret PINK Nation B-Town Bash. Now, having also seen him play for Boilermakers on Purdue’s Slayter Hill, I believe we can finally lie to rest the never-ending IU/PU debate… at least in terms of deserving recipients of a raucous Girl Talk show, anyways.
The Lafayette concert started and ended before the sun went down, voiding the effects of fun concert props such as glow sticks and light shows. Nonetheless, the Purdue crowd quickly made it apparent they weren’t passive concert goers. In addition to the on-stage mob of brightly-clothed dancers (a given at a Girl Talk show) and the continually compressing pit in the front of the audience, crowd surfing quickly became an attractive challenge for many. Once the bodies started floating over our heads, they literally didn’t stop until the concert was over. One after the other, guys and girls alike took their turn at one of the sweetest forms of concert activity in existence- nearly to the point of annoyance.
While I do remember being packed so closely together in Bloomington’s Dunn Meadow last year that the falling rain had virtually no effect on our dry clothes, I don’t believe IU came to party with Girl Talk with the same intensity that Purdue did. The crowd (full of kids that looked barely old enough to drive) was madly physical, yet never temperamental with one another. We were there to get wild and have fun. So we did.
Lafayette’s Girl Talk show was Purdue’s (successful) attempt to offer an under-21, non-drinking alternative to the Grand Prix, the university’s annual charity go-kart race. Kudos to the student government for keeping in touch with what’s popular in their younger student population. However, having also seen Mr. Gillis perform at Jake’s Nightclub to a 21+ crowd, my recommendation for future performances is to skip the all-ages events and stick to adult shows with adult beverages and, well… adults.