July 4, 2010 | « back

THE BERKSHIRE EAGLE – Thousands flock to Tanglewood to see Taylor, King

By Scott Stafford

LENOX — Blue skies, sunshine, green grass, and 18,000 people.

Add James Taylor and Carole King and you’ve got the sold-out show at Tanglewood Saturday.

It was truly a moveable feast when the gates opened at 4 p.m. and the race began. Clumps of people came in quickly — pushing, pulling and carrying enough food and drink to last the night — to find a good spot on the lawn closer to the Shed. Soon it was like a family picnic for thousands.

By 6 p.m., the lawn was packed. Some parties settled for spots so far back on the grass, they couldn’t see the Shed, much less the stage, but they could sure hear the music.

Jessica Voutila, a 24-year-old James Taylor fan from Templeton, said this is her fourth year in a row to come spend the evening with JT at Tanglewood.

Like last year, she brought one of his albums for him to sign. Last year she actually got his autograph.

“I just love James Taylor,” she said. “And this is a great place to see him — it’s so laid back.”

For Heather Belson, of North Andover, the show was her Mother’s Day present.

With her husband and two toddlers, she sat in the shade finishing the picnic and waiting for the show.

She described herself as a James Taylor fan, having already seen him perform four times.
David admitted to not being a Taylor fan.

“I’m not sure I had a choice,” he said smiling. “But it’s a family trip, so I’m here to have some fun.”

At the back of the crowd, closer to the Stockbridge Bowl, six ladies from central Connecticut sat watching the crowd and the many kids playing Whiffle Ball and Frisbee on the lawn.

They arrived by bus, and were plainly enjoying themselves.

“We travel together and we’re always looking for somewhere to go,” said Rosemary Glorioso.

“We keep a suitcase packed at all times.”

They couldn’t see the Shed, but that was OK with them.

“We can hear the music and there’s plenty of room to dance,” said Jill Geissler.

With the sun setting and the shadows growing, the bell began tolling.

Soon after, the spirited strumming of an acoustic guitar began rolling over the crowd.