One of the highlights at this weekend’s Made In America festival was the set Skrillex DJ’s on Saturday night. The festival featured many electronica music artists including Afrojack, DJ Shadow, and Calvin Harris, but it was Skrillex who set the bar high with his over-the-top mix of dubstep and electronic dance music. To fans, Skillex is one of the foremost producers and performers on the electronic dance music (EDM) scene. So, what happens at a Skrillex concert? Below, watch the first couple minutes of his set from the other night. From start to finish it was a visceral, hi-energy body moving experience.
Yesterday was the first day of Jay-Z’s Made In America festival. Overall, the festival delivered on the promise of a fantastic, eclectic lineup, and a fun experience on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway in Philadelphia. The seemingly mostly under-30, racially mixed crown (upwards to 50,000) filled the Parkway for nine hours of music that alternated between two stages and a DJ tent. Gary Clark, Jr started the day on the Rocky Stage (the main stage at the feet of the Art Museum steps), and ended with an incredible set from Jay-Z (wearing a Brooklyn Nets cap) with special guests Kanye West, and his G.O.O.D record label pals Big Sean, 2 Chainz, Pusha T, and Common. Earlier in the set, Jay-Z brought out Memphis Bleek, Swiss Beatz, Young Chris and Freeway. From the start of Jay’s set (with a snippet of “Made In America”) to the set closer “N—– In Paris,” it was an historic moment in rap music.
The festival atmosphere was energetic, hot and slightly breezy, and even with the large attendance, it didn’t seem too overcrowded. There was plenty of police presence but the police reported no major and a just a few minor problems during the day. There were food trucks alongside local favorites Tony Lukes and Chickie & Pete’s, a local market featuring local artists and crafts, and plenty of water stations offering refills.
Aside from the star studded headliners for the day, musical standouts included an absolutely fantastic set from Janelle Monae (including a terrific cover of The Jackson 5’s “I Want You Back), Gary Clark, Jr., rapper Jay Electronica, Passion Pit, D’Angelo and Skrillex, who DJ’d in a spaceship in front of a breathtaking light and screen show. Skrillex performed on the side stage (the Liberty Stage) yet should have performed on the main stage. As one of dub step’s poster DJ’s right now, Skrillex’s show was a pleasant shock of high energy beats and drops and reggae that was massively fun.
The musical highlight of the day though was the hour and 1/2 set by Jay-Z and his special guests. Jay delivered a hit filled set (“99 Problems.” “Empire State of Mind,” “Dirt Off Your Shoulder,” “What We Do” (with Freeway), “Encore,” “Izzo (H.O.V.A),” “Excuse Me Miss,” “Run This Town,” and more. Jay is an impeccable showman and was backed by a funky, flawless live band. He introduced Kanye West and along with Big Sean, 2 Chainz, Pusha T, and Common they performed new songs including “Mercy,” and “New God Flow.” The crowd sang along with almost every song (Common’s “The Light” was a standout) and the evening came to a close with a fireworks display behind the set over the Philadelphia Art Museum.
Today’s lineup at MIA includes headliners Pearl Jam, Drake, Odd Future, DJ Shadow, The Hives, Santigold, Run DMC and more. Go here for more information about today’s show.
This weekend, Jay-Z‘s much-anticipated Made In America festival will fill the Benjamin Franklin Parkway with more than thirty artists playing on three stages in two days. It will be a massive musical melting pot, with everything from hip-hop (Meek Mill) to dubstep (Skrillex) and art-rock (Dirty Projectors) represented. Chances are, you know many of the bands on the bill – Pearl Jam and Run D.M.C. are household names. And even if you don’t realize who sings it, Passion Pit‘s “Take a Walk” has been an inescapable and awesome summer hit. Other performers may be completely new to you (Prince Royce? Afrojack?)…and that’s cool too! Music festivals are about discovery, after all, and we’re here to help you in that process with a crash course in the Made in America lineup. Listen to our Spotify playlist below – it’s got one track from just about every artist on the lineup – and get excited for two days of eclectic sounds eminating from the Parkway!