On February 24, 2013, I went to a free performance at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts as part of their Nordic Cool festival (which ran a whole month). There was a free performance at 5pm of three artists, Soley, Retro Stefson and FM Belfast. It was promoted as a mini or preview of Iceland Airwaves.

The hall was packed. Not only were all of the chairs taken (at least 100) but there were two or three times that number standing further back. In the standing room section, we endured icy blasts of wind if someone got too close to the motion-sensor activated terrace doors. We watched the big screen mostly and danced. Retro Stefson really tried to get some people to dance up front and FM Belfast succeeded enormously at this. Eventually the attendants started to let the crowd up front, as long as we just danced and didn’t sit down in the chairs. It was amazing! The energy, the artists, the crowd.

That night, once I finally got home, I signed up for the Iceland Airwaves email list. Now I hear about the artists that are coming and get excited every time I see something in my inbox. Until I go, I will know what I’m missing, which I think is harder than not knowing, and will hopefully spur me on toward buying those tickets.