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Photos by Josh Taylor

*Arriving at Cornerstone Festival...*
6/29/05, Cornerstone Festival, Bushnell, Illinois

Few festivals in America can pack as much of a punch as Illinois' annual Cornerstone Festival. All forms of art are present and on display at any given moment, for five full days. To say I was excited to finally be attending would be a gross understatement. Indeed, I was thrilled out of my mind to at long last experience what I had for so long only dreamed about…Cornerstone.

I arrived Wednesday afternoon and met up with my friends the Turners and the Rosses. The Rosses, who are somewhat of Cornerstone veterans, knew what to expect, but I was treading on foreign ground. Cornerstone is not only a festival, it's a lifestyle for just under a week. The real world is worlds away and all that really matters is what is happening on the festival grounds. The people are friendly, and somewhat weird, and there is absolutely nothing even remotely strange about strangers running up and demanding hugs, while letting you know how much they love you.

As most of the real festivities started Thursday, Wednesday was more of an "unload and gear up" day. We did a lot of exploring and figuring out where the various shows were going to be. I was most interested in finding the Encore 1 and 2 stages - as those were where the Tooth & Nail sets were taking place the next day. It didn't take long to realize that Cornerstone was going to be a lot of walking. Though everything was tightly packed, the place was huge. The only thing remotely on its own was the main stage, which was a good distance from just about anywhere.

That night, various eclectic bands played near the lake. I am not the most cultured person, thus I cannot provide a fair description of the acts that played. One of them was named Seeds. My friends were more into it that I was, but eventually I went to look at the various tents and attractions that were set up in the main circle.

I got to talk to members of the Lonely Hearts, and I bought their EP and a shirt. But the highlight of the night was running into the producer of one of my all time favorite movies. I walked up to clothing set up, where they had many Truth Soul Armor shirts. Off to the side, they had some DVDs. One of which was Extreme Days. I mentioned to the guy at the stand that there was a lot of Truth Soul Armor wear in the movie, and he asked me if I liked the movie. Once I had given him an affirmative "YES," he let me in on his secret.

It had been a long day of driving and unloading and just all around being exhausted, so I hit the sack fairly early, excited to see what tomorrow held in store for me.

On to Thursday...

-- Josh Taylor, 8/05

*all photos by Josh Taylor and are the property of

Cornerstone 2005 Review: MAIN | Wednesday | Thursday | Friday | Saturday | Sunday


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