This was my first time attending Hopscotch Music & Design Festival. The perfect weather this weekend made trekking through downtown Raleigh, NC to see indie bands from all over the United States a fun experience. Several restaurants even had exclusive menus dedicated to this annual event. However, seeing artist like Solange and Kaytranada takeover the stage was the highlight of the entire experience
Let me start by saying I loved that the majority of the acts hailed from right here in North Carolina. Even with a few cancelled shows, like ILOVEMAKONNEN and Jllin, they easily recouped by replacing them with NC natives, like rapper Phonte. The only frustrations with the canceled shows is walking from one spot to another to find out the artists you wanted to see was no longer available.
Friday night, Kaytranada’s set was a huge party. He was surrounded by a dope light show as he played his hits from his newest album 99.9%. Even though the crowd was in love with every song he played, he made sure to tell us “Lite Spots” was his is sh*t. The next day was spent at day parties that included local bands at various venues and even a wrestling match at Ruby Deluxe. I went to Machinedrum’s show Saturday night and I had never heard of him. It show was pretty unique set with great energy so afterwards I followed him on social media, to find out he has produced some pretty legit songs. Like “Sands” by Dawn Richards, which was featured on the Season 2 finale of Insecure.
That night, headliner Solange, completely showed out! Hands down she is the best performer I have ever seen. I am not saying this because she looked me in the eyes and sang to me this weekend either. Her creative dance, beautiful set, and twerk sessions alone were enough to have you mesmerized; it was almost as if her music was the bonus to her entire performance. The crowd loved every moment and the icing on the cake was her rendition of Proud Family.
The entire weekend, the streets were filled with food, people, and music. Every corner you turned you could hear or see a band. The first years Hopscotch began to fill the streets of Raleigh, it was not this big and I can’t imagine it being this much fun. It has definitely grown and I can not wait for next year.