For the first year in the festival’s existence, Lollapalooza is all set to take over Chicago’s Grant Park for four days instead of the usual three. That means another day in the sun, another day of replacing meals with alcohol, another day of getting up too early just to stay up too late…and I could not be MORE EXCITED.
If you grew up in or near Chicago, Lollapalooza was more than likely your first festival experience. It is such an accessible festival, and brings music for all kinds of fans to enjoy at their leisure. It transforms a beacon of Chicago into one of the nation’s meccas for live music. It has seen legendary performances throughout the years, and will no doubt continue the tradition for years to come. It’s going to be a long four days, so please pace yourself, be safe and have fun! Below is a fun little preview of our favorite things to do during Loll weekend including our favorite acts, our favorite things at the fest and what we’re going to do after the fest
Sunday – Pepsi Stage – 4:00 – 4:45
This young Chicago duo is all set to make their Lollapalooza debut after a summer of extensive festival touring. Louis The Child kicked down the door and barged into the music scene after they struck gold with ‘It’s Strange’ and haven’t looked back since. And I love it. Watching these guys grow up in front of me , playing opening sets at small venues in Chicago, to playing the city’s biggest music festival. There’s a certain kind of hometown pride to it. It’s going to be 45 minutes of future bass greatness.
GRiZ is at the top of his game right now. After wrapping up an extremely intense festival schedule, he is on his way to finishing up his newest studio album for all the funk addicts of the EDM world. His sets combine beats with bangers without any kind of hiccup. Combine that with his live saxophone and you have a set that can’t be recreated by anyone else.
Friday – Perry’s Stage – 4:45 – 5:45
If you’ve never been to a Bro Safari show – then this is definitely one to keep on your radar for Lollapalooza weekend. You’re going to get sweaty. You’re going to hear aggressive trap music. If that sounds like it’s up your alley, then definitely carve out some time for Bro Safari. He’s been on the tour circuit for a long time under the name Bro Safari and a few others. His genre-bending sets will have you stomping, screaming and everything in between.
Sunday – Perry’s Stage – 4:30 – 5:30
A Seven Lions show is like sitting through a genre roller coaster. There’s not a lot of sets where you will hear a combination of house, trance, dubstep, psy-trance, and even some trap be played seamlessly throughout. Seven Lions does it with no problem – each drop more intense than the one before. He injects his own energy into the crowd and has it returned twice-fold for an incredible live music experience.
Saturday – Perry’s Stage – 7:00-8:15
Big Gigantic saw a meteoric rise to fame somewhere between 2011-2013. Their unique live shows which incorporated a live saxophone and a live drumkit had dance floors bumping all over the country until they reached headlining status at many music festivals. It was a kind of live act that many have never seen before. But it got old – and many fans complained that every Big G set that they saw was oddly similar to the last one. Well the Colorado duo listened and completely changed their sets up. They practiced live renditions of songs that were previously not heard in their sets and absolutely nailed it. One of my favorite sets of the summer was Big Gigantic at Shaky Beats when they dropped Mija and Vindata’s ‘Better.’
Friday – Petrillo Bandshell – 7:45 – 8:30
This Mexican Duo is set to make their Chicago festival debut at none other than Lollapalooza. Their masterful handling of trap and future bass makes each tune they put out an adventure to listen to. Let’s see what kind of journey they take us on at Lolla.
Friday ~ Pepsi Stage ~ 2:50 – 3:30 PM
Coming off her huge debut EP and infectious radio ready singles like “Gold” and “Feels” dropping on Atlantic Records. Kiiara has wow’ed us, with her voice but she’s never played a live show. That all changes when Lolla 2016 comes around as she’s set to play her first ever live festival. Don’t miss out!
Thursday ~ Pepsi Stage ~7:45 – 8:30 PM
Having just worked with Kanye on a couple of new tracks and on his way to drop his Debut LP, Cashy Cat’s got a box full of treats for us. Don’t be surprised if cashy previews a ton of new music at lolla this year.
Thursday ~ Perry’s Stage ~ 2:30 – 3:15 PM
This is the one show I regretted missing out on most when he was playing in January. Thankfully Mr Carmack has dropped a nearly 40 track ensemble LP in that time and that means there’s going to Ce many many more bangers at the festival this year.
Thursday ~ Pepsi Stage ~ 5:15 -6:00 PM
Towkio’s live shows are always extremely energetic and we’re almost always treated to special guest appearances. I’m certain the Lolla show won’t be any different and we’ll have a crazy show in front of us, especially with all the new music the rapper has been working on ever since he dropped his debut EP.
Thursday ~ Lakeshore ~ 12:00 – 12:45 PM
Probably the show i’m excited for most, the ambiance in their music has always made me feel like i’m in a never-ending dreamy haze. Getting a chance to actually be surrounded by other people while they play their mesmerizing music 7 ft from me is something i could only dream of. Tennyson’s Lolla show is something that’s definitely one to look forward to.
Toyota + VH1 Save The Music
If you have time in between your busy music schedule you should absolutely stop by the Toyota Music Den. Toyota and VH1 Save The Music have teamed up to bring a new interactive art activation to Lollapalooza. Guests are encouraged to stop by and answer the question, “What does music mean to you?” The answers will be written or drawn on globes that will be added to the ever-growing art installation. Festival go-ers will be asked to tweet about the art installation with the hashtag #ToyotaGiving to help raise awareness. The best part? They have already committed to presenting three Chicago area schools with over $30,000 worth of music equipment. So stop by the Toyota Music Den to help raise awareness for corporations like this – that team up with music festivals to help us give back in one small way.
After The Festival
Having a music festival in the heart of one of America’s biggest cities comes with some certain logistical issues. One of them is a strict 10 P.M. sound curfew. But I promise you the party doesn’t stop at 10 P.M. The first set of Lollapalooza aftershows included a huge selection of aftershows with huge name artists in intimate venues such as Excision at The Mid, Big Gigantic at Concord Music Hall and Major Lazer at Aragon Ballroom. But some more parties have emerged! If you were in Chicago over the winter you may have been lucky enough to attend the Four Loko sponsored free Dillon Francis show. Dillon Francis was performing and there was free Four Loko. You can only assume the shenanigans that ensued. Well Four Loko is coming back with two Lollapalooza after parties. Friday, July 29th will feature Metro Boomin, Lil Uzi Vert and O.T. Genasis. If you still have energy on Saturday night – Jillionaire of Major Lazer, araabMUZIK and A-Trak performing on 7/30. Both shows are free and you can RSVP Here for your chance to get in! There’s even rooftop after parties to go to! Canvas will be bumping on Friday for Chicago’s ever-growing Too Future Series. This edition will feature Xango and a DJ set from Adam Deitch! The Roof On The Wit will be hosting Audien and Oliver Heldens over Friday and Saturday. The Wit is just steps away from Lollapalooza – and features an incredible view of the city. Both shows are sold out – but if you get in line early maybe you can get lucky enough to snag a ticket at the door. Good luck!
Whatever you end up doing at Lollapalooza, it is guaranteed to be a great time. Take a walk, enjoy the city, be safe, and HAVE FUN! Hope to see you guys out there!
-Nick Isasi + Wameq Khan