• Wed. Dec 8th, 2021

Here's What Went Down at Rolling Loud NYC 2021

Nov 1, 2021

When it comes to crafting largescale hip hop and rap concerts, Tariq Cherif and Matt Zingler, the co-founders of the global music festival Rolling Loud, are among the most tapped in the industry. For Halloween weekend 2021, the three-day event made its way back to NYC’s Citi Field for the first time since the COVID-19 pandemic, allowing 80,000 plus fans to witness electrifying performances from some of hip hop’s biggest emcees.

Spread across the Queens venue were three stages — Deleón, Audiomack and Punx — where excited fans gathered for high-energy performances. Colorful and interactive installations added to the ambiance and included a swing ride, a haunted house hosted by 300 Entertainment, a massive Rolling Loud welcome gate adorned with giant blow-up aliens, a skatepark, a half basketball court, a special Rolling Loud cereal bar, various merch tents and local food trucks.

Day one kicked off the weekend with hard-hitting sets from established artists like Rico Nasty, Joey Bada$$, Jack Harlow, Lil Uzi Vert, Gunna and 50 Cent. Major moments came from Jack Harlow, who brought out Lil Nas X for a live performance of their popular track “INDUSTRY BABY.” 50 Cent delighted the audience by playing many of his iconic songs, including “21 Questions” and “In Da Club,” all the while inviting hometown hero A$AP Rocky, Ski Mask the Slump God, Rick Ross and DaBaby onstage to each perform a song.1 of 13

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Momentum carried into day two where Wale, Rick Ross, City Girls, Trippie Redd, Playboi Carti, Kodak Black and J. Cole performed mesmerizing sets. Wale brought out Q-Tip to perform “Vivrant Thing”, while Playboi Carti and Lil Uzi Vert reunited on stage to play their song “Shoota.” The Off-Season artist blessed attendees with all of his chart-topping hits from “No Role Modelz” including “a lot” and “The London,” and had his fellow Dreamville signees J.I.D., Lute and Bas join him on stage.1 of 13

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On day three, fans were supplied with exciting performances from Sheck Wes, A$AP Ferg, NAV and Travis Scott, who suffered a leg injury on stage during his last Rolling Loud appearance in 2019. True to form, Scott closed out the event with an impressive show, imparting vibrant energy to songs like “SICKO MODE”, “MAMACITA”, “HIGHEST IN THE ROOM”, and “BUTTERFLY EFFECT.” Notably, Scott dropped a new song that’s expected to appear on his highly-anticipated album Utopia.

Still, not everything ran smoothly. Fetty Wap, Lil Durk, Chief Keef and NLE Choppa did not make their set times, while BIA and Megan Thee Stallion’s acts were pulled at the last minute without substitute. Meanwhile, Bobby Shmurda and Roddy Ricch‘s sets were unexpectedly cut short, with Roddy Ricch stating that it might be the last time he performs at Rolling Loud.

Despite its challenges, it’s clear that Cherif and Zingler have found a winning formula for highlighting the greatest hip-hop talent. We’re looking forward to next year’s event, where more organization, better production and greater transparency regarding pulled acts might bring it closer to playing in the same league as other global music festivals like Coachella, Glastonbury, and Camp Flog Gnaw.
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