Top 10 Summer Festival Moments of 2017

Top 10 Summer Festival Moments of 2017

Depending on where you live perhaps you've already noticed that the summer is pretty much over. I'm sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but it was a good run, wasn't it?

A banner summer, there were more festivals of all shapes and sizes than ever before. Each one of these celebrations had its own unique combination of setting, aesthetic and lineup, leading to an innumerable amount of memories made by attendees, performers and staff alike.

Everyone has their own, personal memories that will last forever, but here are the top 10 moments from an action packed summer 2017 festival season.

The crowning of King Kendrick


Alright so this went down in April, which isn't technically the summer. But I'm sure you'll allow me a little poetic license here, especially since in the festival world Coachella unofficially marks the beginning of the summer.

Releasing his world beating third album DAMN. a week before the festival's first weekend, his Saturday night headlining set felt more like a coronation than a concert. With interactive stage production, a short film staring his alter ego Kung Fu Kenny and of course his unmatched stage presence, this was the moment the Compton rapper officially ended the debate of who the best rapper alive is.

Haim to the rescue


Remember when Frank Ocean was cancelling all his shows because of mysterious production issues and we didn't know if he'd ever actually perform? In the wake of him pulling out of Primavera Sound one week before his scheduled headlining set, his fans were understandably annoyed.

With no time to replace the R&B star, the festival had to go on without a proper Friday night headliner. And then it happened. Late in the night, everyone with the Primavera app got a notification that an equally elusive act would be hitting the Ray Ban stage soon. Sister trio Haim magically appeared in front of an elatedly packed crowd and eased everyone's pain. 

Another secret set to settle the score


After some controversy over originally planning on skipping EDC's flagship festival this year, American house giant Kaskade atoned for his sins by playing a secret sunrise set at the festival's Kalliope art car.

His initial decision to give EDC Las Vegas a pass didn't go over well on social media, so when he started playing, the news that he had changed his mind spread quickly throughout the festival site and a storm of fans started running to find him. The end result was an unforgettable jam as all was right with the world again.

He finally showed up


I'm not sure there's ever been a more accurate representation of the expression 'better late than never' than Frank Ocean. After continually delaying the release of his sophomore album, he stayed true to form and continually delayed his return to the live stage, citing the previously mentioned production issues as the culprit.

His first show in three years took place at Denmark's NorthSide and somehow managed to make the festival's massive main stage feel like an intimate underground club. 


Frank Ocean #ns17 #northside #frankocean #solo

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JC landeth


Music and politics have always worked well together. Music is a perfect platform for ideology and politics is a good subject matter for musicians. In times of unrest, this pairing is all the more apparent, and so during the political turmoil we find ourselves in now, its not surprising to find that the two worlds are overlapping.

In the wake of the contentious UK election that saw the Labour party defy all expectations, their leader Jeremy Corbyn arrived at Glastonbury to give a rousing speech in front of a packed out Pyramid Stage.

Don't tell Solange what to do


After playing the Montreux Jazz Festival on 11 July, Solange immediately checked into the hospital. Diagnosed with dehydration and exhaustion, she was bed ridden and had to cancel her 13 July Dour Festival set. When she woke up the next day, she didn't feel any better and doctors told her to cancel her next appearance too, which happened to be later that night at Lovebox.

So what did the cooler Knowles sister do? As she told the London crowd that night while performing she "broke out of that bitch... because I knew this place was going to be filled with so much love." Legendary.

Too big to fail 


Tomorrowland is one of the biggest festivals in the world. Organisers work all year to make sure that when the time comes, everything goes off just right. So what happens when one of your biggest main stage acts is stuck in traffic and about to miss his set? Call the police, of course.

A notoriously nervous traveller, Eric Prydz doesn't likes airplanes and opts to go by train whenever he can. On route to Tomorrowland his train was seriously delayed, so the police came and escorted him the rest of the way at 240 km an hour. Amazingly he was only 20 minutes late and Afrojack stepped up to keep the decks warm while a massive crowd waited for him.

Dekmantel has arrived  


This one is kind of cheating as it's not really a single moment, but 2017 was the year of Dekmantel. Celebrating its fifth edition, the Dutch electronic mecca was the talk of the festival world. With its fomo-inducing lineup and unparalleled commitment to creativity, this is your favourite DJ's favourite festival. 

By all accounts this year went off without a hitch and a ton of amazing sets have been posted online to prove it. Organisers also put on Dekmantel São Paulo for the first time in 2017, taking their patented artistic haven to South America. 

Touching tributes


Unfortunately the trend of losing some of our best and brightest continued from 2016 into this year. Chris Cornell, Chester Bennington, Chuck Berry and Greg Allman are just a few of the musicians we've lost this year. Festivals can be a bit hedonistic, but at the end of the day they are about coming together as a community. 

Because of this, many musicians chose to use their platform at festivals this summer to perform heartfelt tributes to those who left us too soon. This tribute to Chris Cornell at Rock am Ring by a number of his Audioslave bandmates was a particularly nice moment. 

One of the best ever call it a day


After coming back from an 18 year hiatus in 2016 and then suffering the loss of the one and only funky diabetic Phife Dawg, there was speculation that hip hop legends A Tribe Called Quest's Bestival headlining set could be their last. As they walked on stage, band leader Q-Tip confirmed that this was indeed the case.

Paying tribute to their fallen comrade throughout, celebrating all they achieved and continuing to promote their message of peace and unity, the group was visibly emotional on stage. When all was said and done, everyone in attendance left knowing they had witnessed something special.


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