The Gathering Of The Juggalos 2009: Violent J's Gathering Report 2009

August 21, 2009


My Time at the 10th Annual Gathering: By Violent J

Unbelievable. It's almost to hard to believe that was somehow the 10th time we've done this. The ultimate Juggalo paradise, very real and very live. The 10th Annual Gathering was the biggest and best Gathering we've ever put on. There was far too much going on at all times so there really was no way to take it all in. Every ninja has a different list of highlights. While you're at one super bomb ass event, there's 2 more super bomb ass events going on someplace else at the Gathering. Everybody's experience is different but they all have one major thing in common: it was the best time ever. The thing about the Gathering is you will never forget it in your entire lifetime. As an old man or an old lady in your 80's or 90's or beyond, even with Alzheimer's, you'll never forget your Gathering experience. I remember all 10 of mine, crystal clear. Now that this year's is over, I can talk freely about it without sounding like I'm trying to sell you a ticket. I'm just trying to relay to you, whoever is reading this, that the Gatherings are the absolute best times I've ever had in my entire life. period.

My highlights from the 10th annual are as follows. first off there in no particular order. Meeting Ice Cube and watching him and WC perform at the Gathering was definitely one of my highlights of not only the Gathering, but of my entire life. Ice Cube is by far my all time favorite rapper and he is the absolute biggest influence musically on both Shaggy and myself. It was such an honor to meet that ninja, it was stunning. When I walked onto his tour bus and met him at the Gathering, my mouth dried up. He was dressed in all black, about to go on, lookin' so fuckin' dope. It was Ice Cube the Great standing there! We shook hands as some guy behind me said "Violent J. Ice Cube". I started talking 1000 miles an hour. I had went over this moment in my head 100 times of what I wanted to say before hand, and even then, I never really got it down. So when I was standing there face to face with the Don Mega, I Just was fuckin' fumbling my words out and I was straight up tongue tied. I think I basically explained to him that this was the 10th Gathering for us and that Juggalos are the world's most greatest and loyal, hardcore music lovers on the planet. I told him confidently that he's never played for any crowd like the Juggalos. I told him the Gathering is underground music's best kept secret and that it was a honor and a privilege to have him there as he is the man who helped break down the barriers of censorship with Gangsta Rap. Ice Cube wrote N.W.A's Fuck The Police", "A Bitch is a Bitch", and so many more. When Cube wrote that shit the rest of the world had never heard anything like that in a song. N.W.A. had the fuckin' Government ready to move on them. But in the end, they won the war! Ice Cube and N.W.A. paved the way for groups like us to say whatever the fuck we want on in a song. And to this day Cube is still one of the hottest MC's on the planet. His new shit is still fire and it always has been. Cube and WC listened to what I had to say, asked a couple questions, said thanks and then went out there on stage and proceeded to fuckin' murder it! They fuckin' blasted the Juggalos with a barrage of street anthems from the last 20 years of hardcore gangsta shit! They opened the set with "Natural Born Killers". Juggalos were jumping on top of each other's heads. Cube was scheduled to play for only 40 minutes, but they were having so much fun up there that they played an extra 15 minutes throwing in extra songs like "Wicked", "Today Was a Good Day" and "Straight Outta Compton". Even WC did some fresh ass solo shit, while Cube changed his Locs. The shit was absolutely insane. They ended the set with a shout out to Insane Clown Posse and that was the nail in the coffin for me. I was done. I was schooled beyond any recognition. Once they walked off stage, Cube walked over to us and told me that the Juggalos are the fuckin' real thing. He really fuckin' loved his time up there. Hell's yeah to say the least. Welcome to the Dark Carnival Ice Cube. Hopefully he will be back again!

Meeting and watching Cube was a great thing for me. But I was also proud to do our own shit as well. Ice Cube and WC had us really fired up on spittin'some gangsta shit especially! And so playing on that second stage as the Psychopathic Rydas owned big time. We had a dope fuckin' crowd. I just remember lookin' out from the stage and seein' gang bangin' Juggalos draped in Ryda Rags everywhere I looked. I didn't know who was an official Ryda and who wasn't. Lookin' back on it all now, I realize everybody was official Rydas. It was so fuckin' fresh. I like that 2nd stage a lot. The stage itself is mad high and it's got a sweet ass shape to it. That show was very fuckin' unique. The Rydas started at 3AM. We did that second stage some justice no doubt, but I truly believe that stage belongs to the Wolf Pac though. They run that bitch every year. The two times I've seen them rock the 2nd stage was incredible. There stage presence was spazmatic... full of hard beats, slammin' bass, naked chicks, fire, smoke and 100mph rappin'. They devastated the crowd again this year.

And of course playing as Dark Lotus back on the Main Stage was completely head crackin' too. I always enjoy playing with my brothers LOTUS. Ever since the Opaque Brotherhood Tour I feel like our game as Dark Lotus is as tight as a fish's anus. I'm sure we will find a way to top it, and come even tighter when we gear up for another album sometime in the far future. Dark Lotus rarely plays these days. In fact only 2 times a year just about. But as soon as we get out there on stage together, the show, the words, it all comes back to me and it feels like were still on tour together. However, we must admit following up Tech N9ne is no easy fuckin' task though. Dark Lotus played Friday night right after Tech N9ne. Whoooo what a slot! Michael Jackson would of had trouble following Tech N9ne. Tech and them killed it up there as usual. Tech's on stage charisma and show antics are truly fuckin' outrageous. His talking between songs is always entertaining and fresh. He's like a comedian, a dancer, and an amazing rapper all in one. Tech N9ne is the real fuckin' deal. He had some great things to say about Juggalos on stage too. Juggalos love him to death and rightfully so. Because Juggalos always know what dope is.

That was the main thing about the 10th Annual. The line up of talent was just ferocious. Unbeatable! The Kottonmouth Kings were all out monstrous this year. I mean come on man, KMK fuckin' slaughtered the ocean of Juggalos with freshness. They were straight up bigger than life up there! Their incredible energy just can't be matched by any other group on the planet. They truly shined at the Gathering and they were right at home too. As they pointed out on stage, they played the very first Gathering 10 years ago, and here they are, still down a decade later at the 10th. Stronger than ever!

It was awesome to have all the greatest underground powerhouses play the Gathering. If it's at all possible, we will have it like this every year. We don't want the Gathering to be only about the Psychopathic artist, but more about the whole underground scene. We want the Gathering to be the greatest stage in the world for underground artist from everywhere. We want the Gathering to be the underground's Woodstock every year. No competition, just a giant Juggalo jam every year, We don't want it to be any bigger either, the 10th annual was as big as it should ever be. We want it to remain personal for everybody. Everybody there is more than just a face. They are family.

Vanilla Ice was outrageously dope too. It's just like I told him after his set. Somehow, someway, after all these years of him doing shows, he is still getting better! I know that sounds crazy but I believe it's true. I've seen him play a 100 times in the past. We even toured with him, but his show this time was the best ever! Even after 20 some years rockin' stages, I believe the man is still getting better and better and that's what's so amazing about him. He and his highly entertaining band had the Juggalos losing there mother fuckin' minds!

The main stage was fire, flames and hot lava every night. Mushroomhead, Twiztid, Haystak, Axe Murder Boys, MC Chris, Anybody Killa, Coolio, Blaze, What the fuckin' fuck! Explosions on and on and on. Everybody truly brought there A game to the 10th Annual. The most amazing out of everybody was the Juggalo family though. After 5 long, hot days and nights total they never tired out. They managed to keep up their crazy, intense energy the whole damn time, and that was fuckin' insane. That was what surprised me most. And it was hot during the day too. It got mad hot on Saturday and Sunday but even so the Juggalos kept up their energy non stop. The sun beat down upon them but the Juggalos beat back with there shine even harder upon the sun causing it to hide behind some clouds. There's nobody like the Juggalos anywhere on the planet and we at Psychopathic don't take that shit for granted at all. All ICP has ever known is the Juggalos but even so, we know they are magic and truly special. We realize it and appreciate it to DEATH. Every fuckin' band, group and rapper, comedian, wrestler or whoever that experiences the Juggalos wants to be down with the Juggalos. Everybody wants to play the Gathering again. Everybody who plays it gets fuckin' mesmerized by the Juggalos. They all say the same thing: "Juggalos are the fuckin' craziest" They are the livest, hypest, downest crowd of people anywhere on this earth. And to think about how so many people diss Juggalos. What the fuck could anybody have to say about Juggalos? Juggalos are the fuckin' dopest, most livest, most fun having, energetic people in the world. You know, being a Juggalo and going to the Gatherings, or any Juggalo event, and being a part of the whole scene... you realize just how fuckin' stupid people who diss us sound. They fuckin' sound like motherfuckin' moronic fools dissing us. Because who could diss something so beautiful? Who would you rather stand there and watch a live event with: A bunch of strangers who don't give a fuck about each other? Or a solid family? People out there actually think they can diss Juggalos somehow. For what? For making the most out of our lives and having a fuckin' great time? For having a magical ability to turn would be strangers into family? For singing, chanting and partying with each other like no other? For belonging to something? And only Juggalos know how truly fuckin' stupid other people sound tryin to diss us. What we have is so special, so magical, and so real it's incredible. And here you have people tryin to diss us for it because they're not a part of it. Because they don't get it. They sound so fuckin' utterly lame dissin' us because we're the ones that are part of a special movement that we'll cherish forever. Like Hippies or something better, closer and tighter. We're the ones who get to be part of a major musical movement in history. They are the ones just out there, alone, just like everybody else in the world. We are the ones that are a part of something truly special. We all have each other. We're the ones bonded by the magic that brings us together. Something never before seen in music, something brand new, original and magical. Something foolishly hated and misunderstood.

We just spent 5 days and nights in the woods, together with no cops, well over 10,000 of us, many of us high and drunk, listening to wicked shit, hardcore music and gangsta rap and there wasn't one single fuckin' fight among us! Not one single fight! And they wanna' diss what we got going on? Shiiiiiiiiiiiiiit.

Every big named group that comes through to play the Gathering for the first time cant fuckin' believe what they're seeing! They are all amazed! I don't care who they are and where they've been in this world. It don't matter how big of crowds they've played for, what festivals or tours they've been on. It all don't matter. It's always the same story. They ain't never seen no shit like the Juggalos ever before and they all wanna know one thing. how can they be down? Let me try to calm down and tell you about this.

The JCW shows were sick with it. The stands were packed, especially Bloodymania 3. We had a couple of no shows but I believe we made up for them pretty freekin' good. For example "Rowdy" Roddy Piper had to cancel due to a serious illness but Terry Funk came out of retirement to take his place and that was fuckin' awesome! We miss Piper and we send him our Juggalo love and wish him a speedy recovery, and we thank Funk to death for his last minute freshness. Kevin Nash was also a no show but his reason was shitty. He flat out took a better offer and left us dry. But thankfully our new JWO homie, Psycho Sid Vicious took his place and the Juggalos we're thrilled to death when he walked out as Nash's replacement. He received the fresh ass "Holy Shit" chant and everything. We had more surprises with the likes of Diamond Dallas Page, Balls Mahoney, and Dan Severn. Bloodymania 3 was level 10 fresh because of reasons like Abdullah and The Rude Boy wrestling again one more time. After 45 years in the business Abby worked hard for us and we respect that. Also to the surprise of just about everybody, 2 Tuff Tony lost a "Loser Leaves Town Match" to Vicera which means Tony has to leave JCW forever! We'll see what happens with that in the future. At the beginning of the show Shaggy and myself walked out there and politely asked the Juggalos not to throw shit this time because it makes the ring wet and slippery and the wrestlers cant put on as good of a match. It truly makes the matches shitty. Plus as Shaggy pointed out ninjas get hurt and the truth is all the wrestlers are Juggalos, even the bad guys or they wouldn't even be there. Look at Mad Man Pondo, he plays a bad guy every show and he's one of the biggest Juggalos there is. But our little pre show speech didn't mean shit as the stuff kept flying anyway. But you know, JCW is like Burger King, have it your way ninja. The whole event was filmed for a new DVD release. It's gonna be a fat ass DVD with all of Bloodymania 3 and a few select bonus matches from other shows such as Hatchet Attacks and the Big Baller's Christmas Party in Detroit. Look for that shit to be droppin' soon!

But one of my best highlights from the whole Gathering was Corporal Robinson's Midnight Massacre Flashlight Wrestling. What made this so dope was that it didn't start until 5 in the morning. There was only about 100 ninjas in the crowd, but that's what made it so intimate and perfect. It was straight up awesome. It was only diehard wrestling fans watching. Only the ones still awake, I should say. There was something very unexpected and special about the whole thing. Right before the event started, I walked out paintless with a microphone. I told them welcome and that we had looked on the schedule from last year's Gathering and realized that there wasn't anything happening at 5am. So what better time for a pro wrestling show? The small crowd was hyped. Then Scott Hall and Corp came out ringside and did live play by play commentary over microphones which made it all extra hilarious. Nobody knew who would be wrestling when the show started. Once the first match began we cut the ring lights off, and the Juggalos cut there flashlights on. This created a fresh ass looking effect like we were in a sold out arena or something. The few lucky ninjas there saw fresh unannounced, legendary stars like Kamala, Jimmy "Superfly" Snucka, Tommy "Wildfire" Rich, Sabu, Raven, Tracy Smothers, Ian Rotten and more compete in comedy based, out of character style matches under the flashlights. As the sun slowly came up, the ninjas all enjoyed the matches and each other's company. There was something very fresh about both of these shows that made them my favorite events at this year's Gathering. Everybody laughed together, cheered and boo'd together, and smoked down as all the wrestlers worked easy and fun matches to Scott Hall and Corp's commentary. After the main event, everybody retired to there campers and tents to rest up for more madness.

Another fresh ass highlight without a doubt was my Beach Boys BBQ Blow Out Bash Blast, the 3rd my Nerd. We had 3 giant grills going with non stop cheeseburgers and hotdogs, and three mini pools full of ice cold Faygo. But even all that seemed to not provide the goods fast enough for all the hungry, hyped ninjas! DJ Dan Diamond was in hella effect with the sunny, sun shiny Beach Boys music. There was fresh ass Lo's and Lette's up on stage dancing with water guns and super soakers, squirtin' off left and right. The smell of Faygo syrup and Crabby Patties was in the air. The party really began when the band, The Beach Bums showed up in a Lincoln convertible with the top dropped. Mike Clark, Legs Diamond and Tino Gross, all three wearing the same beach themed hook up walked on stage, tuned up there instruments and went to town. Belting out a barrage of beach and surfer tunes. The roughly 1000 Juggalos there were singin' along and dancing. The entire show was being broadcast live for the ninjas who couldn't attend the Gathering at home on www.wfuckoffradio.com. A whole host of underground superstars stopped by including Vanilla Ice, Awesome Dre, DJ Clay, Mars, Wolfpac and many more as Corporal Robinson, and Shaggy 2 Dope worked the grills. It was really a special time this year, and the live music by the Beach Bums really cranked up the flavor. When they finished playing Legs Diamond threw his whole fuckin' guitar out into the crowd! It was a true Blow Out, Bash Blast! No Diggity.

The ICP show on Sunday was something extremely powerful for Shaggy and myself. Throughout the entire Gathering, ninjas kept telling us how exited they were to see ICP on Sunday Night. And this year there was so many incredible acts and groups that put it down so tough that we really knew we had to step our shit up. Scarface went on right before we did, which over the last couple years has proven to be a tough slot to play. Shit was flying hard at the stage, but Scarface proved to be a super sport about it all. He truly fuckin' schooled it and had a blast. He played a set of slower music from his catalog which was actually kind of fitting for the mood just before ICP. It was calming and crazy at the same time. It fit the mood for madness. Scarface of the Geto Boys has such a huge catalog of bomb ass jams that he could headline any show or festival on any day. The energy in the air was crazy thick. You could climb it like steps into the skys. Angles were watching from clouds in the heavens. It was nuts. Scarface was having fun with the Juggalos telling them to throw anything they could find up on stage. After his short set, he stuck around to watch us and we talked before we went on. I tried to explain with what little time I had how much of a major influence he and the Geto Boys have had on us and the wicked style of rap that we do. After all, the very first ever Wicked Shit/Horror Core rap song I ever heard was The Geto Boys song Assassins (The same song we re-made on Jeckel Brothers) Early Geto Boys in our eyes invented the whole style of rap that we do with songs like "Mind of a Lunatic", "My Minds Playin' Tricks On Me" and so many more Horror Rap classics." I tried to explain it all to him, but the energy in the air was too powerful. Neither one of us was listening to what I was saying. All you could feel was the excitement of the thousands upon thousands waiting. We exchanged numbers and then it was time for us to take the stage. There was an awesome feeling in the air. We briefly talked to Billy (Our long time homie & manager) before the show and he informed us that we had more Faygo on stage ready to go than ever before in our careers. We had 4 entire pallets worth, which had to be delivered by semi truck. We also had the huge, ultra powerful fire hose and plus a good 15 minutes worth of major Fireworks. It was on. We hit the fuckin' stage. My voice was gone as it always is on the last day of the Gathering. I loose it every year no matter what I do to try and save it. But with all the talking, and the heat, the good times and staying up late, there's just nothing I can do, but thankfully when I got out there, The Dark Carnival was with me and somehow my voice came back for that 75 minutes! I don't know how but it did! I didn't sound like Michael Jackson or anything, but it was at least sounding good enough to get through the show. We broke into our set and it was on like Donkey Kong.. We did a lot of new shit for the very first time like the new Mike E Clark Remix of "Chicken Huntin". We did the second verse of "Fuck The World" which we haven't done in years. We did 2 new songs off "Bang Pow Boom!" including Juggalo Island and the albums title track in there entirety, plus a few more unusual surprises. We even had Legs Diamond come out and sing his famous hook on "Pass Me By". The show was flat out fuckin' awesome for us. I really, truly hope the ninjas who seen it, felt it too because as for Shaggy and myself, we fuckin' loved it to death. I kind of lost my energy during "Halls Of Illusions" but it came right back.. During "Juggalo Island" we had our new 12 girl, Bang Pow Boom Street Team come out on stage and throw out T Shirts and "A Family Underground" DVDs into the crowd. The massive crowd looked like it went on forever. As far back as you could see there were ninjas. I haven't seen anything like that since Woodstock 99, ten years ago. At the end of the show, the stage filled up with many of the other performers. There was wrestlers, comedians, rappers, rockers and people from all over the Gathering up on that stage. The whole stage floor was swaying. We were causing earthquakes in China. The Faygo Armageddon was on. A non stop thunderstorm, tsunami of Faygo. Not just diet Faygo either, but Faygo of all colors and flavors raining down on the Juggalos. Me and Shaggy stood posted in the middle of the stage singing "If I Was A Serial Killer". We then finished with the 8 minute long version of "Bang Pow Boom!". We stood there under the colorful rains, surrounded by all these other fresh ninjas with the fireworks poppin' off above us. It truly felt like Shangri La on earth. That was absolutely one of my favorite ICP shows ever and its what inspired me to write this whole report. I wanted you all to know how much it means to us that we got to do this 10 fuckin' times somehow. There are no words to describe how thankful we are for all the crazy, fuckin hardcore love and support you've shown us over all these years. I don't wanna sound like a set of neden lips flappin' but every year when I get home from the Gathering, I have some kind of emotional break down over it all. It's just so hard to believe. Its all so damn hard to fathom. All the kind things the ninjas say to us while were doing our autograph sessions and meeting everybody, or just driving around or whatever. I hope ninjas know what they mean to us. Because were not Hollywood type of people. All those extra cool, extra creative, and extra amazing people in one place at one time with all that love for us is forever burned into our hearts. We want people to know we want them there for the sole reason to school them with freshness. Its about the Juggalos. It's a festival that we the People run. It's about you. There is no ICP without the Juggalos. Nothing is as special or magical about any of this without the Juggalos. And there is no Juggalos without you yourself. My head is on fire right now trying to relay how much you ninjas mean to us. You ninjas are the air in our lungs, and we owe everything to you and we will always be here for you. We will never stop putting it down the way you like it. And peep, if we ever fall off, just give us a second to get it together again and we will. We will figure it out and be back, you can count on that.

- Joe (Violent J) Bruce Lee -

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