While the Republican National Convention is happening right now in Cleveland, Ohio, less than three hours away in Legend Valley the Faygo will be toasted at another massive convention, the 2016 Gathering of the Juggalos. The 17th incarnation of the annual event, the year’s Gathering arrives with the pomp-and-circumstance we’ve come to expect from the good people at Psychopathic Records, with paint and Juggalo slang wall-to-wall. Of course, this arrives with the eighth annual Informercial promoting the show.
This year’s stands out at resembling a more traditional informercial, a concept I’m frankly surprised the Clowns haven’t pursued before. As a result, the use of readily available stock footage and fonts all-too-common in the late night informercial world make this year’s parody as slick as it’s ever looked. Hosted by Willie Fudge and Connie Queefer…let me give you a minute before we continue…alright, our two hosts are here to tell you in 26 minutes how the Gathering has proven to be not only effective against “staleness,” but is proven to have more health benefits than any other music festival. When are charts and graphs ever inaccurate? Also, they go out of their way to promise you lots of sex this year.
But as if that weren’t enough, there’s a lot of music, wrasslin’ and comedy set for the largest annual Gathering of Juggalos on Earth, so here’s a glimpse of what’s going down this year.
The Usual Unusual Suspects
It wouldn’t be a Gathering without two things: The Juggalos and the leaders of the Juggalos, the Insane Clown Posse. Violent J and Shaggy 2 Dope headline again, as well as perform a few other times as part of other groups such as Dark Lotus. Gathering mainstays Tech N9ne, Kottonmouth Kings, Twiztid and Blaze Ya Dead Homie are all on this year’s bill.
A Lot of Metal
While Gatherings in the past have leaned on triumphant returns of nostalgia rap acts or 80s and 90s flavor, this year’s seems very metal-centric. While longtime veterans GWAR perform, there’s also Suicide Silence, Attila, One Eyed Doll and Kissing Cadence.
The “What Are They Doing There?” Contingent
Every year the Gathering has that handful of names we’re surprised to see on the bill, and this year’s is pretty impressive. Slick Rick will be there, no idea how he’ll preserve his white mink from getting Faygo splashed on it, but hey, Ricky D is a legend. In addition, all members of Bone Thugs-N-Harmony will be reunited on stage, which is down right impressive. Additionally, there’s names like Green Jelly and Hopsin who surprised us but we know will fit right in, but this year’s biggest shock is probably DJ Qbert who will be spinning at an all-night party.
The Big Alliterative Comedy
There’s a comedy tent every year at the Gathering of the Juggalos as well, and this year has three J’s who don’t seem particularly violent. SNL and Half-Baked’s Jim Breuer, Jim Norton and Joey Gay all headline, with no word if they or any other comedians will be donning paint for the occasion.
Juggalos’ Biggest Wrestling Event Ever
There’s also an emphasis this year on Bloodymania 10, the tenth annual culmination of a year’s worth of Juggalo Championship Wrestling storylines. The big story this year is former WWE main event player and one of the all time biggest names Jeff Hardy making his Gathering debut. Also set to wrestling are former ECW champion and current aspiring Michigan congressman Rhino, podcast pionerr and wrestling’s alternative comedy ambassador Colt Cabana, and recently released WWE competitor Hornswoggle.
But the big story nobody seems to be mentioning is…
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THE JUGGALOS ARE PLANNING A STAGE PRODUCTION OF A HIP-HOP VERSION OF THE WIZARD OF OZ!
Maybe nobody else knows what this is and that’s why what’s potentially the most ambitious Juggalo endeavor this year is getting overlooked, but Violent J’s 2003 concept album Wizard of the Hood is going to be brought to life with costumes, sets, and raps performed live. 25 years after the original “Wizard of the Hood” track was first conceptualized, Violent J is entering the theater world.