HARD Summer: The Recap

August 12, 2017

Festival season is in full swing, my friends. No matter what music you love, where you live/are willing to travel to, and what you are looking for in a festival, there is definitely something for you.

This past weekend, Saturday August 5th and Sunday August 6th, was HARD Summer Music Festival. The festival took place in California, and celebrated 10 years of HARD events. The first HARD Music Fest was held in December of 2007, and was started and founded by Gary Richards. Gary Richards is one of the most important people in EDM because of his work as a music executive, concert promoter, and DJ career, under the stage name Destructo. Although HARD was acquired by Live Nation Entertainment in 2012, the group of festivals, shows, and events still stay true to the original HARD vision.

HARD Summer Music Festival features artists from EDM, as well as alternative, hip-hop, and rap. This year’s headliners include: DJ Snake, Justice, Rae Sremmurd, Zeds Dead, Snoop Dogg (who performed Doggystyle), Dog Blood (their only show this year), Bassnectar, and Migos. Representing many genres, I think this is a pretty impressive lineup, and all great acts to see at a music festival. A few other artists that I love that played were: Ty Dolla $ign, Charli XCX, Nina Las Vegas, Kill The Noise, Destructo, and Kittens. During the two days, the fest hosts 4 stages.

This year marked the last year that Gary Richards would be running HARD Events, and was a celebration of sorts for him. Destructo had a final set with his HARD family. Skrillex stopped to thank Richards during the Dog Blood set. The mix of artists and genres throughout the weekend was a reflection of Gary Richards’ initial vision, and also of how diverse the attendees are. Attendees also seems to enjoy the change in location – from the Auto Club Speedway of California to the Glen Helen Regional Park.

Migos performed a tight and energetic set, to compliment all of the hard and intense beats of the EDM performers. Charli XCX brought a set of her danceable hits that was a crowd pleaser. DJ Snake brought the party with a Pardon My French themed and curated set. Snoop Dogg closed the weekend by playing Doggystyle in it’s entirety.

The fest was extremely well curated, and each of the performers brought the heat. The hip-hop, rap, and pop acts brought serious energy to match the EDM sets around them. Some of the EDM artists played tracks featuring some of the other artists at the festival. All in all, the festival celebrated the past 10 years and what they have accomplished, while also enjoying the moment and music today, while looking towards the future.

With the change in who is spearheading the festival, next year may be a bit different. But with this strong of a vision of what the festival should be, the insane and impressive lineups, and the dedicated fan base and HARD family, I think next year could be better than ever.

-Tara Howell (@taraisntpunk)

Feature Image by Leslie Crow

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