This past Saturday I was fortunate enough to attend the first ever music festival at U.S. Cellular, now Guaranteed Rate Field. It was an all day event that featured some of the biggest artists in the world, and brought them all to the south side of Chicago for an all day event for everyone to enjoy.
I think it’s great of the juxtaposition of holding such a great event on the side of town that often only receives press coverage if the press coverage is bad. Hundreds of people have been shot on the south side of Chicago, just this year, but for a night everyone was able to come together to enjoy an historical moment.
Saturday was a long day, I didn’t even get to the field until almost 5 p.m. This was largely due to the immense amount of traffic that this event created, not to mention the general Chicago traffic on a Saturday afternoon. The traffic probably would have been more bearable if I didn’t know that I had just missed Kanye West’s surprise performance at the festival as I was stuck in traffic, following the excitement on twitter instead of actually taking it in, in person.
The first artist I was able to see when I arrived was John Legend. This really took me back to some of the first times I ever really remember listening to music. His first two albums were some of my most played growing up, as it was right around the inception of iTunes, and the iPod, those were both released right around that era.
The next act that surprised me, but really shouldn’t have with how great she was, was Alicia Keys. It could be because that’s not really my go-to genre of music, but she arguably put on the best performance of the night, and I would strongly consider going to see just an Alicia Keys concert in the future, she was that memorable.
Then it was the hometown heroes turn. Winning is usually kept for sporting language, but Chance The Rapper has been winning ever since he started making music. This was just the next step in what has been an amazing, still very young career.
In a time of turmoil in Chicago, and around the country, he was able to bring 40,000 people together for an amazing day on the South Side of Chicago. It truly was a Magnificent Day, and just another great thing that Chance The Rapper and his team have done for Chicago, and the Chicago community.
Aaron J. Boma 2016 ISU Graduate