This year, Celebration doubles down on the concept, hosting another ticketed performance by Here Come the Mummies at the
"It's an honor, baby," said red-faced percussionist Java Mummy, who will return once again to bang the bongos and stuff his underwear with plantains, alongside his mummified brothers. "Although it is admittedly lonely at the top of the pyramid."
The mummies are a band that has attracted intense crowd reactions and fan support across the Midwest with their blend of high-energy funk and salacious, fun-loving attitudes. In their first appearance in 2011, they played to one of Celebration's largest-ever crowds on the Funfest Stage in sweltering heat, without ever stopping to take so much as a water break. That performance stands out particularly in the mind of Java when he thinks of
"The first thing that comes to my decrepit mind is almost passing out during 'Libido Knievel' due to the insane heat during our first trip to
Clearly the words of a born showman, one who rolls with the punches on a nightly basis and lives up to the expectations that come with such a bombastic stage persona. It's understandable how the sheer effort of keeping up such performances would wear down any mummy over time, and the group's changing lineup reflects this. Familiar players such as "Oozie Mummy" and "Teste Verde" have departed in recent years, only to be replaced by freshly bandaged additions such as "B.B. Queen" and "Midnight Mummy." Others, such as lead vocalist Mummy Cass and Java himself don't appear to be going anywhere.
"You know how it works; bad apples fall from the tree and rot," Java said. "There were so many mummies present at the time of our curse, that to find a new one, we just look under sofa cushions at The Crypt. What we like in a mummy is energy. Lots of cats can blow, but we also need them to tear it up and act like a monkey on crack."
Perhaps the most significant development on the mummy front since last year's
"Times are changing," Java admitted, citing an upcoming series of free EP releases the band has planned. "The new generations don't really buy music, they stream it, so we just thought we would let them have it from the source. Perhaps they will dig it and then come see us in concert."
Tickets for the
"Baby, we are powered by the inextinguishable fire in our loins," he said. "So as long as the ladies come to dance, we are going to lay it down."
(c)2014 the Herald & Review (Decatur, Ill.)
Visit the Herald & Review (Decatur, Ill.) at www.herald-review.com
Distributed by MCT Information Services