”We drove for almost four hours to be here today, this is a special f—ing occasion, first ever Real Street Fest!” shouted a shirtless Swae Lee into his microphone. Facing a thunderous, packed audience complete with shrieking women and shoulder-sitters, Swae was buzzing with energy before launching into Rae Sremmurd’s 2016 viral hit “Black Beatles.”
The two-day, two-stage affair hosted an array of attractions and a roster of more than 25 top acts, such as Meek Mill, Future, A$AP Rocky, Trippie Redd, A Boogie Wit Da Hoodie, Cardi B, Big Sean and more on a 650,000 square-foot lot from Aug. 10-11.
As the sun set and gave festival attendees relief from the day’s heat, Rae Sremmurd took to the North Stage to belt a bevy of melodic hits from 2015’s “No Flex Zone” and “No Type,” to the recent “Unforgettable,” (during which Swae Lee performed an a cappella version of the hook) and the Post Malone-decorated “Sunflower.” Swae kept the audience engaged, traversing the entire floor, inciting mosh pits, playing an air-guitar and crowd-surfing at several instances. Slim Jxmmi recited the occasional verse and otherwise supported by hyping the crowd and fulfilling each tracks’ ad libs. The duo closed out their set with a fiery rendition of ”Powerglide,” encouraging several mosh-pits across the crowd.
General admission tickets granted access to not only the two outdoor stages, but also an air-conditioned indoor arena, which was transformed into a Big Boy’s Neighborhood headquarters. Inside the arena, festival-goers could find Big Boy on a mini-stage, holding live interviews with the likes of Megan Thee Stallion, as well as an assortment of hip-hop culture-themed installations such as a West Coast Customs car show, featuring Post Malone’s custom-remodeled 1992 Ford Explorer. Guests could also enjoy a Cantu-presented Brotherhood Barbershop, a nail salon, a digital graffiti wall and a mini-arcade.
Back outdoors, maintaining a momentum since releasing his Free Meekdocumentary series on Friday (Aug. 9) and his recently-announced Legendary Nights Tour, Meek was Saturday’s South Stage headliner, where his DJ greeted the audience with a snippet of Queen’s classic “Champions” record, undoubtedly an ode to Meek’s new Championships album. As the Jumbotron screens flickered between various snippets from Meek’s doc series, the Dream Chasers Records boss energetically hit the stage with “Intro,” then launched into “Uptown” and continued alternating between old favorites such as “House Party,” “I’m A Boss” and newer songs like “On Me” and “Tap.” Throughout his performance, Meek honored and shouted out late friends and associates such as Nipsey Hussle and “anyone who’s ever lost someone to the streets, to cancer, or to the judicial system.” A performance from Meek is classically sealed with an interactive, crowd-driven rendition of “Dreams and Nightmares,” and this time was no different.
Moments later, festival-goers rushed over to the adjacent stage for the final act, where Future and his auto-tuned microphone blessed his original fans with a medley of early 2010s bangers — “Racks,” “Bugatti” and “Same Damn Time.” Shortly after, during “Wicked,” Future was joined by Atlanta dancing duo Meechie and Toosi, who entertained on stage for the majority of the nearly hour-long set. Los Angeles native Ty Dolla $ign stopped by for the club banger “Blasé,” and Meek was welcomed to the stage for “100 Shooters,” perhaps giving fans a preview of what they’ll see on the forthcoming Legendary Nights Tour. Hendrix dropped track after track from what seemed like nearly every mixtape and album of his decade plus-long career, while the swarm of concert-goers showed no signs of fatigue as they screamed along to almost every lyric. Close to the end of his arrangement, Future amusedly proclaimed, “We gon’ run out of time before I run out of hits!” just before “March Madness” and “Shit” concluded the explosive night.