This past Labor Day weekend, Budweiser’s Made in America 2014 two-day festival made its debut in Los Angeles, the first major event to take place in the beautiful Grand Park. The outdoor music festival was hosted in this 2-year-old public venue that stretches between City Hall and the Music Center of downtown Los Angeles.
Living close to the venue, I was nervous about how the festival setup would play out in such a compact space clustered with landmark buildings, but I was highly impressed. Each stage had a unique set up with the stunning Los Angeles skyline view in its surrounding.
This weekend proved Mayor Eric Garcetti’s point that “LA can celebrate [being] the music capital of the world and that we don’t have to travel to other places to see great music in our backyard. “
From the Los Angeles Times building to the City Hall, the festival was planted in the heart of downtown LA and reflected the city’s diversity in food and music. The line-up, curated by hip-hop legend and founder of the music festival, Jay-Z, ranged from rap, rock, punk, blues, Latin music and EDM.
The food trucks lined along the venue served gourmet street food, serving anything from tacos to snow cones to plates from cultures including: Argentinean, Thai, Korean, Japanese, Greek, and Hawaiian.
The two-day festival, held simultaneously with its sister show in Philadelphia, featured over 30 artists and bands. Exciting performances on Saturday included: Iggy Azalea with surprise guest Rita Ora, Imagine Dragons, Kendrick Lamar and Schoolboy Q. On Sunday, Cypress Hill, Weezer, Rise Against, Juanes, Steve Aoki took the stage, not to mention Kanye West shutting the event down with a dramatic hour-long ending set.
The audience on Sunday gave off great energy that caused artists like John Mayer to feel thankful. Mayer tweeted Sunday night: “#MIAFestival you were a great crowded. I’ll be taking your energy back to the studio with me…Needed that.”
Even West stopped during his monumental set to thank fans. Opening with a intense intro that fired up the crowd, West assured that just because he was performing in front of the City Hall didn’t mean he was going to hold back from being Kanye.
“Society is set up to control you,” he said. “I’m keeping it real in an unreal situation.” Wow Yeezus, way to leave us concertgoers inspired.
Both Saturday and Sunday drew in an estimated 34,000 attendees. The festival was made to accommodate 50,000, although I’m sure with some improvements that number will rise next year, especially with Kanye West’s over the top headlining performance that went overtime.
For more information, and the full line-up, check out:
Photo Source: CJ Berina of CollectiveLifestyle.com