Show Review: 6th Annual Roots Picnic (Part 1)

Festivals are test of how much you like live music. You stand for hours, rain or shine, hoping to discover new artist and to see your favorites perform well. At The 6th Annual Roots Picnic held at Penns Landing in Philadelphia I was able to achieve both. The festival included not just music but photo booths, clothing and jewelry vendors, food and drinks, great people and more.

I arrived at The Roots Picnic around 12:30 and since I knew I had already missed the first two acts, Jennah Bell and Sonnymoon, I went straight to the tent to see Lushlife. I had never heard of Lushlife before this event so I was unfamiliar with his music, style and even what he looked like. So when the guy I thought was the Dj began rapping and hyping up the crowd I was very surprised. Lushlife was spinning, mixing, drumming and rapping on stage alone. It was very impressive especially since he was good at all of them. He did 5 0r 6 songs but the one that stood of the most was Still I Hear The Word Progress which features Styles P. I enjoyed his set and thought Lushlife put on a good show. He is a dj, producer and rapper. He got tired toward the end of his performance because he was doing so much but it didn’t effect the show. Here are a few pics I took.

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The way The Roots Picnic is set up is great because you rarely, if ever, have to wait around with nothing to do because the acts alternate between the tent stage and main stage which is outside. Since it was over 90 degrees and I already had a good spot for the tent stage I decided to skip seeing the Robert Glasper Experiment and wait for Trinidad Jame$.

Trinidad Jame$ came out to Tonk For The Money followed by Super Molly and Turn Up. Then he did Givin No Fucks a capella and I thought he would follow it with the full version but instead he did Team Vacation. Next he did Females Welcomed and smoke some of a blunt that a fan passed to him. He of course ended the set with All Gold Everything. I thought he did a good job despite the over use of the phrase “turn up.” I also wish he would have done a verse from a song he is featured on like Big KRIT’s My Trunk or A$AP Ferg’s Work remix. He was hype and really thankful for the crowd as they were feeling him and very energized. More pics from me. Short video as well.

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After Trinidad Jame$ I again decided that I would stay by the tent stage as more people had come in and I did not want to lose my good spot. Due to this I did not get to see How To Dress Well.

The next act I got to see was Hit-Boy. He is known more for his producing rather than rapping and for good reason. His show was kind of boring as he did songs like Jay-Z Interview and Brake Lights. It almost seemed as if he thought he was too good and I began to wonder why he didn’t go before Trinidad Jame$. He did Old School Caddy and Busta Ass Niggas and that’s when the show got hype. Audio Push, a group signed to Hit-Boy’s label came out and they were fired up. Hit-Boy did Nothing, a song that features Audio Push and even though it was most people first time hearing it, they were loving it. Next, Audio Push did Them Niggas, a song featuring Hitboy. It was a hit as well, the intensity from Audio Push was amazing, one of the members did a whole verse while jumping up and down doing what looked like lunges. Then they ran through a medley of hooks for songs Hit-Boy had produced which included Goldie, Clique, Backseat Freestyle and ended with Niggas In Paris. Hit-Boy closed the set with his newest song, Fan. I didn’t like Hit-Boy as much as I liked Audio Push but he got more into once they got on stage and were jumping and running around. I would go see them again if they opened a show, they were very good. Pics by me.

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Unfortunately I missed Solange as I stayed in the tent but I heard her set was good and that she mixed in the new stuff with some old favorites. A pic of Solange courtesy of LaVan Anderson of Everyday LaVan Photography.

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The next act in the tent was young Brooklyn rapper Joey Bada$$ and he had Statik Selektah as his Dj. He came out to a new song called Word Is Bond then did Waves and World Domination. He followed that up with his verse from 1 Train and Brooklyn Summer. Then he mentioned that he had just accidentally busted his lip but he gotta keep rocking and did Funky Ho’$ followed by Unorthodox. Next, he did a shoutout to fallen Pro Era member Capital Steez and did Like Water followed by a few Pro Era posse cuts and ended the show with Survival Tactics while some guys ran on the stage and shot water guns into the crowd. Joey has an old school rap style so his songs are not really the catchy sing along type but the crowd was still vibing with him. He was intense but not hype, more so focused and just rocking out. It wasn’t a bad performance and I enjoyed it despite not really being a fan of his music. I think this was good venue to see him because I would not just go see him performing by himself.

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After Joey’s performance I finally decided to go outside and get some fresh air as the tent had gotten hotter than the outside and filled with weed smoke. I walked around for a while, bumped into some familiar faces and got some food.  I checked out a few of the vendors and made a  gif at a free photo booth.  I really did not pay attention to the performances of Grimes or Gaslamp Killer. I was waiting for Macklemore and Ryan Lewis to hit the stage and show me what the hype was about.

To be continued with more pics and videos….

Were you at The Roots Picnic? What did you think of the performances or event overall? Let me know in the comments section.

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