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Columns > Annabel Lukins - Both Sides of the Rail

Published: 2012/05/05
by Annabel Lukins

Sharing in the Holidaze and Panic en la Playa

This gazebo is one of the best places for a daytime show, agreed? We have daily DJ’s and here, Brendan Bayliss gave a beautiful acoustic performance while we all just floated in the pool around him. This is a quintessential reason why Cloud 9 events rock. Who wouldn’t want to swim around in a pool while listening to amazing music in DECEMBER in the Caribbean?

This is one of the sickest photos I took down in Mexico. And honestly, Peter from Lance Herbstrong was a total bad ass for getting in the water with his guitar. He ROCKED this solo with the sun setting behind him.

This pose is not unfamiliar to you guys. Mags and I take it wherever we are. We probably have 10 or more shots from various locations around the world. It’s pretty damn cute and he is a dear dear friend of mine.

My best friend in the world is Kelly. We work together so although she lives in Florida, we talk every day and that really helps our connection. And getting this moment to dance with her on stage for Lance Herbstrong was simply perfect.

Classic….Brownie and I pose for a cute shot when Jeffrey Lerner from STS9 jumps in. Usually when this happens, you end up saying, “dude, who’s the guy in the back who ruined our photo?” But of COURSE, Jeffrey made it even BETTER!

I guess this run of photos is me with rock stars which is sorta typical for me. Ryan Stasik, AKA Pony, is DEFINITELY a rock star. Sweet, funny, talented and a true rocker. Getting to hang with him as a friend in Mexico is wonderful.

Yet ANOTHER rocker…Wade Wilby. He’s totally family to us at Cloud 9 and his alter ego Wyllys can keep us dancing till the sun comes up.

Oh Kamal…he was first my manager when I worked at Lollapalooza for 3 years. But there was instant connection so the friendship was really easy to slip into. I’ve long since worked at Lolla, but our relationship continued and even strengthened. I worked hard to get his band Lance Herbstrong on Mayan Holidaze and they DELIVERED…all re-mixes of our favorite covers from back in the day. I love love love this guy so much! Clearly he feels the same way.

Colorado is hands down the top state where Mayan Holidaze attendees come from. My friend Abby and I have helped organize a group photo every year and it keeps getting bigger and bigger. She even started a facebook event this year so we can get the word out sooner for December’s event. The pride that oozes from all of us is apparent in this lovely photo taken by Chad Smith.

Another gorgeous musician I get to call a friend…Zach Velmer. His talent behind a drum kit along with his incredible spirit makes him another one of God’s greatest creations. And since he’s sexy as hell, I had to take a shot of us in bathing suits.

I really hope you can read this funny note. My favorite lines are “We like to party” and of course, “Your (spelled wrong) cute.” I learned a really important lesson this year at Holidaze. Hand pick who rooms next to me! The boys next door were SOOO loud all week long. But whatever, it’s not like it was appropriate to say anything to them. Anyway, I’m a pretty visible member of Cloud 9 as I make the stage announcements and spend my time ensuring everyone is a having a good time. On the last night, we all got back to our rooms at the same time after dinner and they were shocked to see “me” rooming next to them. “You’re the one on stage,” to which I replied, “and you are SO loud.” They got all sweet and apologetic saying “you should have come in and shut us up.” “I’m here to make sure you have fun, not kill your buzz. But if you can try to be quiet tonight, that would be great since I’ve got an entire 2nd event starting tomorrow.” We hugged it out and went on our way. I get this adorable note under my door and of course, how could I stay mad at them? Even the rowdiest of our fans are super sweet. I’d say Mayan Holidaze was another major success. Onto PANIC!!!!

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