The 13th annual Bonnaroo Music & Arts Festival kicked off today in the sunny fields of Manchester, Tennessee with a crowd expectancy of around 90,000 music fans. The festival began in 2002, modeled after major music festivals in Europe and is most famous for bringing in diverse top acts spanning multiple countries and genres.
This years headliners include Sir Elton John, Lionel Richie, Skrillex, Kanye West and many more. Every year the festival brings together several musicians from all different genres and has them perform together in whats called “The Superjam”. This years strange bedfellows consist of Skrillex, Big Gigantic, Damien “JR. Gong” Marley, Rob Krieger of The Doors, Ms. Lauryn Hill, Chance the Rapper and others performing a two hour set together.
Yeah, that’s actually happening.
The weekend’s Hip-Hop lineup consists of Kanye West, Frank Ocean, The Glitch Mob, Danny Brown, Ice Cube, Chance the Rapper, A$AP Ferg, Wiz Khalifa and Pusha T spanning over 4 days. Pusha T will begin the hip-hop portion of the event later this evening with big expectations coming from fans over Kanye Wests performance due on Friday. In 2008 West was booed and had items thrown at him for arriving over 8 hours late for an abysmal performance. The paparazzi-bashing mega star later took to social media to display his disgust with Bonnaroo’s big wigs and fans. Several years later Kanye was invited back and from the sounds of it, could not be more thrilled. When asked about why they invited Yeezus back to the major event, Rick Farman of Superfly Entertainment had this to say;
“First and foremost, we think Kanye is one of the most prolific and groundbreaking artists of this generation. He’s hugely influential. His albums are as great and as acclaimed as they get. He’s also a great live performer. He takes a lot of chances and he’s adventurous with the live space. All those things are what Bonnaroo performers are about. That’s why we booked him [in 2008].
Everyone has moved on—it’s in the past. We’re happy he wants to come back to Bonnaroo and is embracing this. It’s a great opportunity for everyone to look forward, and we think it’s a great opportunity for the Bonnaroo community to show what it’s made of. It goes back to what Bonnaroo stands for: It’s about having good time, radiating positivity and that whole message. We couldn’t be more excited about what we think has the potential to be another historic Bonnaroo moment.”
We’re sure that Kanye will more than redeem himself. Stay tuned into the weekend as we are on site at the festival and will bring you any breaking news first. For more information visit www.bonnaroo.com
By Mark A. Macpherson & Rodolfo Arias