Calling Dope Ent.’s third annual Rolling Loud Festival a success is a huge understatement. This past weekend, FORTY-THOUSAND Hip-Hop fans swarmed to Downtown Miami’s BayFront Park for three days of non-stop music and partying. Watch out Coachella, Rolling Loud is here to stay. Over the course of the festival, music lovers were treated with unforgettable performances, contact highs, and even a couple death-defying stunts. Of course though, nothing is perfect. As great as the festival was, there were a few bumps in the road that could be improved upon.
Going back to last year, I give credit to the Rolling Loud staff for being quick to make day-to-day adjustments to ensure the safety and comfort of it’s customers. Friday night, the first day of the festival, concert goers were asked to exit the park though two single person gates. Yes, they expected thousands of people to exit the festival one by one. Police officers barricaded the entrance to the festival, leaving that exit closed. This forced some people to resort to climbing a barbed wire fence in order to return to their vehicles. The situation could have turned ugly. Fortunately, this was the only night that this problem existed. More exits were opened for the last two days of the festival.
Of the three days, Saturday ran the smoothest and was the most enjoyable. The down time in between acts was kept to a minimum and for the most part, the majority of the acts started and ended on time. The same can’t be said for Sunday.
The last day of the festival included some of the biggest names on the line-up. Although, Rolling Loud provided the performance schedule physically and via Instagram, there were changes to that schedule that could’ve been announced in better fashion. The Migos, Post Malone, and Lil Uzi Vert all had their performance times and stages adjusted with little mention to the fans. This caused the crowd to stampede between stages when they found out Migos were performing on the Postmates Stage after their fans waited hours to see them perform at the Monster Stage. Post Malone also had his set cut short in the middle of his breakout hit “White Iverson”.
“Damn JT, sounds like you didn’t enjoy Rolling Loud”
THE DEVIL IS A LIE.
Rolling Loud was LIT AF!!! Each night was better than the last. Wayne set the bar high Friday night when he shut shit down. It was legendary seeing him perform hits like “Go DJ” and “A Milli”. He even did it for the nine-nine and the two-thousand when he performed a small snippet of Juvenile’s “Back That Azz Up”.
Kendrick Lamar closed out the festival Saturday night. Performing a number of his older hits like “King Kunta” from To Pimp A Butterfly and “Swimming Pools” to newer tracks like his verse on Travis Scott’s “Goosebumps”, Kendrick gave us one of the best and my personal favorite performance of the weekend. Complemented with a live band, South Florida Hip-Hop fans were treated to an epic preview of Kendrick’s Damn Tour, that doesn’t include a Miami stop.
Rolling Loud wrapped up with an amazing set by Travis Scott. On stage with Travis was a huge bird, in a trap. I don’t know if that specific bird sang McKnight, but I’m sure it did. The energy of the set seemed to rise with every song Travis performed. The set reached a peaked when Travis performed last year’s smash “Antidote” and set the bird free. Travis also did the crowd a huge favor by bringing out The Migos to perform in front of the fans who missed their performance.
I gotta give Rolling Loud huge props for featuring South Florida’s upcoming acts $ki Mask The Slump God, XXXTentancion, and Denzel Curry. I ended up walking away a Denzel Curry fan as he had one of the better sets of the whole festival. I’m not too familiar with XXXTentancion, but I can tell you that little guy is crazy. Jit told the crowd “I want to die in there” before jumping into one of several mosh-pits.
After the threat of being cancelled, looks like Rolling Loud is here to stay. The festival’s co-founder, Tariq Cherif, was quoted in the Miami Herald saying, “Rolling Loud will return to Miami”. With some minor adjustments and improvements, next year’s Rolling Loud is sure to be.