Welcome To Our Covering International Fests: Iceland Blog

Welcome to Columbia College Chicago Communication Department’s Covering International Music Fests: Iceland award-winning class blog. Please enjoy the students’ on-air work, blogs, radio documentaries, interviews and more from Iceland Airwaves. Visit our Iceland Airwaves 20162015, 2014, 2013, 2012 and 2011 class tabs to see what students have produced each year.

Stay tuned right here for students’ Fall 2017 work, beginning in September!

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Iceland Airwaves 2017 Daily Blog Eight (11/6) Iceland, You Make My Heart Skip a Beat

After eight days of adventure, stepping completely out of my comfort zone and no sleep, we are headed to Keflavík International Airport to catch our 16:45 flight back to Chicago. As I reflect on my time here in this beautiful country, it is surreal that it is already over.

Our last night in Reykjavík, I found myself in tears about leaving this city and all the memories I have made in it. No one could have ever prepared me for how difficult it would be to leave Iceland. It is hard to believe that we arrived a week ago. I thought I was tired then, but it does not come close to how exhausted I am today.

It is time for a round of applause and thank yous. First and foremost, thank you to our professor, Althea Legaspi, for making this trip happen. Thank you for pushing us, for believing in us and for encouraging us day after day to do our absolute best. You have made me a better writer, a better student and opened my mind up to the amazing possibilities of the music and journalism industries. Next, I’d like to thank my parents, my family and my friends for their endless love and support. Without you all, I don’t know how I would have made it through this strenuous course. Also, thank you to the kind Icelanders who took the time out of their schedules to meet with me to discuss Iceland and the current projects that they are working on in their country. Last but not least, thank you to my classmates. It’s crazy to say how little we really knew about each other before getting to Iceland. It’s even crazier to say that I found six lifelong friends out of this experience. I am forever grateful for your knowledge, constant love and encouragement. We are a team.

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Iceland Airwaves 2017 Daily Blog (11/6): Goodbye Iceland

 

As our time in Iceland comes to a close, I look back at specific parts that gave me a unique opportunity that just being a tourist, I never would have. Our instructor, Althea Legaspi, is the ultimate tour guide. She took us blindsided sometimes to unique places I never would have gone on my own.

Going to the Secret Lagoon was one of the best parts of the trip. Althea had a few surprises for us in store, and this short trip was one of them. We hopped on to a bus and for the first time saw outside of Reykjavík. The Secret Lagoon (yes, that’s its true name) is at Hverahólmi, the geothermal area near Flúdir, was made in 1891 and is the

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Iceland Airwaves 2017 Daily Blog (11/6): Beginnings/Endings

It was Saturday night in busy Reykjaviík, Iceland. It was well into Iceland Airwaves, so there were people everywhere, crowding venues and dancing. Local post-rock elemental favorite Mammút had just finished their electrifying set at Gambla Bió. I went to get my jacket from the (free) coat check and could not find it. Because of all the people, when I arrived earlier there was no room to hang it up so I tucked it underneath on the floor. When I could not find it after the show, I assumed the worst: That someone had taken it, as would likely happen in Chicago.

Gullfoss waterfall in Southern Iceland.

But then I took a closer look. It was hanging on the edge with all the other coats. Someone had picked it up from its hiding spot and found a place to hang it on the rack! Gratitude and generosity spilled over me like the Iceland waterfall Gullfoss—strong and beautiful—further bolstering the genuine community of Reykjavík I felt when I had arrived seven days ago.

It wouldn’t have been this way in Chicago. It wouldn’t have been like this in any other place. The experience of Airwaves and Reykjaviík was such an arduous yet astonishingly utopian experience—utopian because it felt as if we just plopped into this quaint Northern city when it was at its best. Encompassed by an excited, open community of locals and tourists who treated us as their own, writing about one of my biggest loves and connecting with Iceland’s nature has me teetering in disbelief on the idyllic experience. It wasn’t just a vacation or all business; it wasn’t reality, either, and that’s the beauty of it. Everyone there experienced something different but we shared the music connection and made lasting relationships with locals and musicians that prompt me to say the most cliché phrase ever: It’s not the end, Iceland; I will be back.

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Iceland Airwaves 2017 Daily Blog (11/6): The Final Chapter

The people of Iceland would always mention how this country has this magical quality about it and that one would experience moments quite like no other. Upon arriving we were all filled with exhaustion and excitement and couldn’t believe the fact that after weeks of preparation we had finally arrived. Everything started very quickly: in one day we tasted our first Icelandic hot dog, our professor Althea Legaspi familiarized us with the town of Reykjavik, we learned about the tourism within Iceland and got to try out the hot springs, which I have to point out was extremely relaxing and muy caliente (very hot). We ended the night at a tapas bar where we had the opportunity to try out some exotic cuisine, which was at times delicious, but my favorite was definitely their seafood.

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Iceland Airwaves 2017 Daily Blog Day Seven (11/6): The Bittersweet End

Wow. I am sitting in my hotel lobby pondering how to put my experience into words. As I look out the glass doors I see a Smoky Bay, Reykavík – it won’t be the last time.

Amazing music. Amazing people. Amazing city. It’s hard to grasp the totality of everything I experienced. I’m still delusional from lack of sleep and not properly taking care of my body, but I couldn’t be happier. This post is a reflection of my past week.

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Iceland Airwaves 2017 Daily Blog (11/6): My Final Reflection

Sitting on the cold floor of the Keflavik Airport, I am waiting for my departure flight that will take me back home to Chicago. There are of course a lot of important people to see and important things to do back home, but I find myself yearning to return to my little twin bed at my hotel in Reykjavík. The people and places in Iceland are unlike anything I’ve ever seen. Pastel rooftops sprinkle color around the city, while friends in Iceland laugh, drink and create art together. Everything in Iceland is like a perfect snow-globe town, and if it were up to me, I’d be here forever. But for now, I have pleasant memories to guide me through the experience all over again.

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Iceland Airwaves 2017 Live Review (11/04): Sóley, TORRES, MAMMÚT

Sóley crowded the small church and sang acoustic songs behind her band.

Sóley @ Fríkirkjan

Sóley so-old out the Fríkirkjan church. The line was down the street and inside, most could not see as the local soul vocalist sang her new music to her best fans: the locals. Those who could not see the show imagined it in their heads—people were staring into space, letting the music take over their mind and feeling the music mentally and emotionally.

Sóley’s child-like voice—which works well with her instruments—balanced out the music and created a feeling of being on the ocean in warmer weather than it is here now. She explored different ranges, physically and vocally. The last song had her down in a huddle for a bit, growing as the music did.

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