When LGNDVRY got word that Rolling Loud fest was coming to Northern California we knew that we couldn’t miss out on an event of this Caliber. With the likes of Travis Scott, Young Thug, and Lil Wayne gracing the lineup; Rolling Loud was one for the books. While Rolling Loud has been around for 2 years now, this October was the very first time it took place in the Bay Area– and we have no doubts it will be back.
Marty Grimes was the first of many hometown talents that were on the Rolling Loud lineup. Using this time to showcase his skills, Marty performed tracks off his Cold Pizza EP, and got the crowd energized when he dropped “SIKE!”. Marty showed us during that performance why he’s been garnering so much attention lately.
The next Bay Area native to take the WAV stage, was Mr. OJ himself, Larry June. Rocking a custom “Larry June” apron, June let loose dropping tracks like “Glock 40” “The Dealer, Part 2” and “4DEEP”. With orange juice and beach balls being thrown out to the crowd, it was clear that everyone in the crowd was on a vibe.
One of the must-see performances for us was Nef The Pharaoh. The South Vallejo rapper, took the stage with DAGHE, to give the crowd the Bay Area performance they came for. Nef dropped hits like, “Bling Blaow”, “Everything”, and his smash hit “Big Tymin’”. And would it be a Nef performance without his signature giggin’ to “Boss Me”? It was a dope experience to watch how engaged everyone was with Nef’s set.
Immediately after Nef tore up the Loud Stage, it was time for Smokepurpp to take over the festival. The crowd absolutely lost it when he opened up with “Audi.” Essskitt chants were roaring throughout the festival. It was the first time I had witnessed a mosh pit at a rap concert. At one point Purpp told the crowd, “If the person next to you isn’t turning up, punch that fool in the face.” He even brought up 3 people from the crowd to stage dive and crowd surf. Smokepurpp continued his performance with tracks, “Bless Yo Trap” and “Krispy Kreme”.
Rolling Loud decided to add even more Bay Area flavor with the addition of Lil B. Unfortunately things didn’t go as planned for the Based God. Lil B had to pull out last minute after being jumped by A Boogie Wit Da Hoodie and his crew.
Lil B came to the stage to give the crowd a statement:
“Hey man, A Boogie and his whole crew just jumped me in the back, man,” Lil B told the audience. “That shit crazy, man. But I’ma tell y’all like this, it’s all love. I don’t promote violence, I’m never with the violence. So I love them and it’s all good, you feel me? It’s all good. I said something about Boogie’s music, and they all got mad and they jumped me.”
After the mishap with A Boogie and Lil B, we found ourselves back at the Loud Stage getting reading for local standouts SOB x RBE. Performing crowd favorites like “Calvin Cambridge” “Anti” and “Lane Changing”. This was one of the more entertaining performances of the weekend simply by how engaged the crowd was. There was a sea of SOB shirts in the crowd, and you couldn’t help but throw that thizz face on when they dropped “Calvin Cambridge”.
The time for XXXTENTACION snuck up on us, so we head over to the crowded WAV stage. It seemed like damn near the entire festival was standing on the stage getting ready to see what the XXL freshman had in store. You already know he came out to “Look At Me”. During X’s performance, he jumped into the crowd, and it was during this crowd surfing stunt that he was allegedly punched by a fan. This leads the rapper to punch the fan in “self-defense”. The show went on once he made it back on stage.
With Day 1 coming to an end, it was now time for some of the bigger billed artists to hit the stage. Lil Uzi Vert was getting ready to turn the Loud Stage upside down. As soon as Uzi started performing the crowd erupted in roars and began to rap in unison. One negative on the performance was the fact that it seemed like he was relying on the playback of the track, rather than actually rapping. As the set went on Lil Uzi played hits like “The Way Life Goes”, “Sauce It Up”, and “XO TOUR LIF3”.
Being that 21 Savage was getting ready to start, we headed over to get a good spot for this set. One thing that really set this performance apart from the others was the fact that you could actually hear 21 Savage’s voice and not just the track playing. The crowd was probably the most live that I had seen them all night. At the end, He brought out Amber Rose to wish her a happy birthday. The crowd sang Amber happy birthday as the couple walked off stage together.
The finale of the first day of Rolling Loud was no doubt, Travis Scott, as it was rumored that he was going to be unleashing his Crow production. The crowd when silent as the show began to start. The stage was filled with smoke that was illuminated by a deep red glow. Scott showed why he belongs in the same conversation as artists like Kendrick Lamar. In a genre marred by lackluster live performances, Scott’s energy and swagger is refreshing, and his discography translated spectacularly through the microphone. He even made a few acknowledgments of Lil B’s importance and proclaim, “protect Lil B at all costs”.
Kodie Shane was the first set of the day. The 19 year Atlanta rapper has been making a name for herself throughout 2017, so it was no surprise to see her on the lineup. For an earlier set of the day, she has a really good turn out to what would end up being a good performance. She performed tracks like “Do You Love Me Now” “Start a Riot”, and a gang of other tracks off her “Back From the Future” EP.
Another stand out of the weekend was Berkley stand out Rexx Life Raj. After gaining much-deserved attention throughout the past few years, he was given the chance to showcase his artwork to the masses. With his “Father Figure 2″ release right around the corner, he gave us all a sneak peek of what to expect with his latest release. Rexx gave an unforgettable performance that showed every reason why he has the attention of many.
Day 2 was flying by and before we knew it Denzel Curry was taking the Loud Stage. We walked over to and as I walked into the photo pit to catch Curry’s set, I was created by this super grimy trap beat that was later accompanied with the rough edge lyrics of Denzel Curry. He came with some much engird and emotion that you could tell that he was performing with everything he had. The crowd damn near started an earthquake when he dropped “Ultimate”, with mosh pits breaking out throughout the crowd.
It was really hard for us to walk away from Curry’s set, but it was Famous Dex’s turn to take over the festival, so we made our way back over to the WAV stage. During Dex’s set, the festival almost had to take a break due to that fact that security was claiming that Dex was inciting a riot by promoting fans to throw trash and trash cans around the crowd.
The Bay Area’s own, P-LO was one of the surprise guests on Sunday. “Put Me On Somethin” got the crowd hyped, but “Never Sorry” and “Every Night” were the standouts of his performance. He brought the homies IAMSU and K00L John out to perform alongside him. P-LO throw down the hypiest set that even the lemonade made giggin’.
Isaiah Rashad’s performance was a heartwarmingly genuine mix of casual audience interaction and pure, unadulterated talent. You got the sense that Isaiah’s onstage presence was an exaggerated version of his character, but a sincere and endearing one—one that was so incredibly fun to watch that it was impossible to look away. His unique blend of playfulness, authenticity and intimidating realness was awesome to both see and hear. Isaiah Rashad had a performance that left everyone in awe seeing him perform standout tracks from “Cilvia Demo” and “The Sun’s Tirade” in front of this massive crowd was especially meaningful.
Young Thug didn’t disappoint one bit. He performed tracks from various albums and EP’s. At many times throughout Thug’s set, he would go acapella and the entire crowd would sing along with him; that was something else. Thugger’s set was the perfect lead to Lil Wayne. This was my first time seeing Lil Wayne, and it was dope to see that his sound translated so well from the studio to the festival atmosphere. He ran through hits from his nearly 20-year career, and even brought out Young Money artists Mack Maine and Gudda Gudda.
ScHoolBoy Q did a great job closing things out. He performed various hits off his most recent LP’s, “Oxymoron” and “Blank Face“, and even took us back to the “Habits and Contradictions” era with a lit performance of “Hands on the Wheel”. Throughout Q’s set he was constantly asking the crowd what tracks they wanted to hear, it was clear that he was trying to give the crowd everything they wanted. Similar to Travis Scott on Day One, Schoolboy Q was vocal in expressing his love for Lil B, and called the drama “sucka shit”. An impressive performance made even more so by when the beat for “Blessed” drop. The entire crowd erupted and starting singing along the to thought-provoking track. At that moment I knew that Q had just taken the top spot for the most lit performance of the weekend.
Rolling Loud did their thing in that weekend, and it was great to see a music festival of that caliber making a stop in the Bay Area. The entire music festival was available for live streaming, so I felt like this was a good chance for local talent to showcase their skills to the entire world. With the fall of Rock The Bells, and no other true hip-hop music festival in sight, it would be great to see Rolling Loud making Northern California a permanent home for the foreseeable future.
If you weren’t able to make it to Rolling Loud Bay Area don’t worry. You can catch Rolling Loud Los Angeles in a few weeks.
Check out more highlights of the weekend below: