On Sunday, May 28th I will be heading to Minnesota for Soundset for the seventh time and I couldn't be more excited about it. Not because it's my second year with a press pass but because it is the one day a year I get to experience all elements of the hip-hop culture in a positive, loving environment. For those of you that don't know, Soundset is the largest one-day hip-hop music festival in the country. If you don't believe me, take a look at my recap from last year. Last year they sold over 30,000 tickets before the gates even opened and I'm sure this year won't be any different.
Every year, the Soundset team puts together a day that hip-hop fans can only dream of. They have three stages dedicated to artists, one stage dedicated to DJs, one stage dedicated to b-boys and b-girls, as well as an area dedicated to graffiti artists. And they also have a car show, skate competition, and Ferris wheel to top it off. Over the years, I have seen performances from Kendrick Lamar, Chance The Rapper, Nas, J Cole, A$ap Rocky, The Roots, Future, Common, Logic, Redman & Method Man, Wiz Khalifa, Macklemore, Mac Miller, Tech N9ne, Brother Ali, Slaughterhouse, Lupe Fiasco, Busta Rhymes, Schoolboy Q, Raekwon, Snoop Dogg, Ludacris, Big Sean, Danny Brown, Action Bronson, Sean Price, Pusha T, G-Eazy, to name a few.
Every year is memorable but I am going to tell you the moments that stuck with me over the years. Let's start with the first time I attended Soundset which was in 2010. There are three things I remember from that day. The first was walking into the crowd at 11 AM and not leaving it until the festival was over around 9 PM. It was one of the most exhausting days of my life but I enjoyed every minute of it. One thing I will never forget is that it rained most of the afternoon and when Atmosphere played "Sunshine" the clouds broke and the sky turned pink. It was something out of a movie. That night I decided, I would go every year. I remember Soundset 2012 vividly because that was the year the storm hit and we had to evacuate the festival during Lupe's set. I also got to see Kendrick and Macklemore that year. Fast forward to 2016 which I will never forget because it was the first time I got to capture the event behind the lens of my camera. I can't wait to do it again this year.
As Soundset grows and they add more stages and artists, my planning gets more difficult. It's possible to see all the different parts of the festival but almost always impossible to see all the artists I like due to the fact that they might be performing at the same time on different stages. I guess that is a good problem to have. This year I am most excited to see Brother Ali, Mac Miller, Travis Scott, Ty Dolla $ign, Pusha T, J. Plaza and Atmosphere of course. Make sure to check back after Memorial Day for my full recap and photos.
Learn more at www.soundsetfestival.com
Soundset Music Festival
Soundset After Party