Back in the day (less than 10 years ago) it was rare to see rap artists headlining music festivals — especially those in areas not known to have a major hip hop following. However, those days are over.
“It was such a huge opportunity for my city and hip hop to be welcomed into this family,” Los Angeles’s own Murs told BET.com behind the scenes of the 316 Stage at the 2014 Sunset Strip Music Festival in September. The underground vet was invited to bring hip hop to the Sunset Strip with his debut stage of handpicked artists including Killer Mike, N.O.R.E., IamSu! DJ Quik and others.
The new hip hop headline is a testament to the newfound role and influence rap has on festival culture. “Festivals to me are very good to cross-pollinate creativity culture,” Killer Mike said before hitting the SSMF stage. “I think that hip hop is definitely here to stay … and becoming a festival stalwart kind of just reinforces that.”
Agreeing that hip hop continues to evolve, DJ Quik, who has been in the game for more than two decades, said it’s “kind of scary” that hip hop is still on the rise. “Its funny that after 30-40 years hip hop is still growing,” Quik said.
“Hip hop is going to pop up on more festivals,” Mike foreshadowed. “I think it’s going to continue to play a significant role, you're going to be able to see everybody from Joey Bada$$ to OutKast in your town thanks to festivals.”
Peep the video below to hear more from Murs, Killer Mike, DJ Quik and Noreaga talk about how he plans his set for different audiences and more.
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(Photo: Splash News)