1. The Don Julio #EEEEEATS Activation
I guess somebody read my Governors Ball review, because Don Julio and #EEEEEATS came through with another activation and they did not disappoint. They really came correct this time with free burritos from Taqueria Diana and amazing cocktails. There was a mint lemonade and I think something else with ginger beer (?), and both were bomb. They also had fresa fresca, a prickly pear marg, and a paloma for purchase—also bomb. They were also embroidering these adorable little bandanas with tacos on them and personalizing them FOR FREE. It was a great little pick-me-up in the middle of the weekend.
2. Future’s Guest Performances
My bae and future husband (sorry Ciara) came the fuck through with a set that blew his Barclays Center concert out of the water. (Which was not THAT hard to beat considering all he had to do was not have another stampede at the end where I and other attendees feared for our lives, but whatever.) In between songs DJ Esco started playing “Rake It Up”, and then Yo Gotti came out. That was very cool to me personally, but not a huge deal to all of you reading this, probably. But then, just in time for her guest verse, he brought out NICKI MINAJ. The queen herself came out, decked in furs, despite the fact that it was 80 degrees out, and slayed. And then just when we thought there couldn’t be any more guest appearances, Young Thug came out and did a bunch of songs. It. Gave. Me. Life. FutureILoveYouPleaseCallMeBackBye.
3. Run The Jewels’ Set
Okay this is going to be a niche list item but fuck it. I’m here for a good time, not a long time. Run The Jewels is awesome and always puts on a killer set even though they’ve basically played at every major festival uninterrupted since 2014. Killer Mike and El-P are like the cutest best friends ever—yes, even cuter than you and your besties. But anyway, the part that really got me was when they started playing “All Day”, my favorite RTJ song of all time. The chorus consists solely of repetitions of “She want that dick in her mouth all day”. It’s poetry, my people. But on the studio version, a female rapper who goes by the name of Gangsta Boo (which, incidentally, is what I have guys call me in bed) does this verse where she raps about getting eaten out and changes the hook to “He had this clit in his mouth all day”. I know we’re getting graphic here, but it’s very important feminist sex-positive work that she’s doing. So anyway, usually in lesser known songs on albums with guest verses, the main group will just skip the guest verse on tour. But not Run The Jewels. They brought out Gangsta Boo, she inserted her much-needed female perspective into the song, and I was probably that scream you heard very loud in the audience.
I’ll be honest, when I knew Jay-Z was headlining the first night I was like “meh, Jay-Z will probably play only and I haven’t even gotten around to listening to it yet so I’ll probs just stay for like, 15 minutes and then bounce.” WRONG. Jay-Z played basically his entire discography, which was basically a Greatest Hits tour of my adolescence. Jay-Z killed it, plain and simple. Honestly a little upset that he turned down the Super Bowl because if The Meadows was any indication, his performance at half time would have been legendary. Oh well, you can’t win ’em all.
5. The Decor
Even though this festival was in a parking lot, the festival organizers really did a lot with the space. There were a lot of cool decorations, like graffiti walls everywhere and a circle of those inflatable wavy arm balloon men. There were also a lot of different lounges and shit like the VICE bus and the Don Julio and Tito’s lounges. All in all, they made it feel like you weren’t in a random shitty parking lot in Queens.
All in all I love The Meadows even though it kind of makes me feel old (there were literal children there, I’m talking like 7-year-olds). It was a great way to close out festival season and I definitely plan to be back next year, so maybe listen to me next time when I tell you all it’s gonna be lit.
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