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Broccoli City 2017: The DMV takes on the festival atmosphere with Solange, Rae Sremmurd, 21 Savage

The same weekend as Rolling Loud took place in Miami, Washington D.C. and the surrounding DMV area held a festival of their own. Broccoli City Festival 2017 was the fifth take at throwing a day long musical event by the DMV, for the DMV, and despite the rain and the cold the DMV came out to support.

This year’s lineup included Solange, Rae Sremmurd, 21 Savage, Alunageorge, Lil Yachty, NAO, Chaz French, Nick Grant, Smino, and Sir the Baptist. The extremely diverse collection of artists offered something for everyone. From the Jazz-house vibes that Solange delivered in her all red set to the jumping crowd that 21 Savage whipped up in the rain, Broccoli City truly had something for all of its audience’s listening desires. In addition, the festival had the perfect one day lineup. A weekend long festival featuring Rae Sremmurd, 21 Savage, and Lil Yachty performing all in a single day might see guests that leave before the whole duration, but Broccoli City has mastered keeping the energy at 100% for its full 12 hours.

Sir The Baptist

One thing, however, that the Broccoli City Line-up lacked was more DMV representation. This was a festival by the DMV, for the DMV,  and almost exclusively attended by the DMV, yet the only artist from the DMV in attendance was Chaz French. Where was Wale? Where was Jay IDK or Goldlink? The DMV is brimming now more than ever with up and coming talent, but Broccoli City seemed to lose out to Rolling Loud.

While DMV representing artists seemed to fall short this year, the DMV vendors, food trucks, and atmosphere did not. Despite raining nearly all day the event itself seemed to shine through. Attendees could choose to snack on almost anything from burgers to raw vegan options, and there was even a coffee truck (which was a true blessing on the 50 degree day).  The festival hosted vendor stands selling everything from curated vintage streetwear to organic beard oil.

While the festival was diverse enough for everyone to have their own personal highlight, mine came in the form of a wonderful meet up with Sir the Baptist who agreed to sit down with me between interviews to snap some portrait shots, and talk about working in the music industry.

Sir the Baptist had an early set in the day full of crowd engagement. In fact, from all the sets I watched Baptist took the most time out to connect with his audience, getting them to sing along on that rainy morning, which makes sense coming from someone who loves being on the road as much as he does. Sir is on his second round of Festival season after last year, and you can clearly tell based on the banter between him and his manager, Jay, that the two love what they do.

Sir the Baptist is an extremely conceptual artist,  repeatedly referring to his shows as “going to church”, with an affinity for using long documentary style visuals to convey his creative and spiritual vision.

Sir The Baptist

Next up for Sir is a show on May 11th in L.A. immediately before the drop of his upcoming project, with his next festival set to be Firefly Festival on the weekend of June 15th in Dover, Delaware. Doing the festival rounds as an up-and-coming conceptual creative is sometimes difficult, but with a talent and a personality as bright as Sir the Baptist I’m confident that the end of this year’s festival season will only bring amazing things for him.

On this fifth Broccoli City Festival the event seems to be finding the right ground to stand on. The line-ups are only getting better, the atmosphere is becoming more cohesive, and the security is well informed and able to keep event-goers safe without seeming like a militant enforcer of the rules. Broccoli City 2017 might have been in the cold rain, but the DMV made it a bright day at Gateway.

Solange onstage

Kathryn DeFrank
Kathryn DeFrank is a traveling filmmaker and photographer based in Richmond Virginia who focuses in coverage of music culture and its influence and importance on the East Coast. Find her work at kathryndefrank.com.

Broccoli City 2017: The DMV takes on the festival atmosphere with Solange, Rae Sremmurd, 21 Savage

The same weekend as Rolling Loud took place in Miami, Washington D.C. and the surrounding DMV area held a festival of their own. Broccoli City Festival 2017 was the fifth take at throwing a day long musical event by the DMV, for the DMV, and despite the rain and the cold the DMV came out to support.

This year’s lineup included Solange, Rae Sremmurd, 21 Savage, Alunageorge, Lil Yachty, NAO, Chaz French, Nick Grant, Smino, and Sir the Baptist. The extremely diverse collection of artists offered something for everyone. From the Jazz-house vibes that Solange delivered in her all red set to the jumping crowd that 21 Savage whipped up in the rain, Broccoli City truly had something for all of its audience’s listening desires. In addition, the festival had the perfect one day lineup. A weekend long festival featuring Rae Sremmurd, 21 Savage, and Lil Yachty performing all in a single day might see guests that leave before the whole duration, but Broccoli City has mastered keeping the energy at 100% for its full 12 hours.

Sir The Baptist

One thing, however, that the Broccoli City Line-up lacked was more DMV representation. This was a festival by the DMV, for the DMV,  and almost exclusively attended by the DMV, yet the only artist from the DMV in attendance was Chaz French. Where was Wale? Where was Jay IDK or Goldlink? The DMV is brimming now more than ever with up and coming talent, but Broccoli City seemed to lose out to Rolling Loud.

While DMV representing artists seemed to fall short this year, the DMV vendors, food trucks, and atmosphere did not. Despite raining nearly all day the event itself seemed to shine through. Attendees could choose to snack on almost anything from burgers to raw vegan options, and there was even a coffee truck (which was a true blessing on the 50 degree day).  The festival hosted vendor stands selling everything from curated vintage streetwear to organic beard oil.

While the festival was diverse enough for everyone to have their own personal highlight, mine came in the form of a wonderful meet up with Sir the Baptist who agreed to sit down with me between interviews to snap some portrait shots, and talk about working in the music industry.

Sir the Baptist had an early set in the day full of crowd engagement. In fact, from all the sets I watched Baptist took the most time out to connect with his audience, getting them to sing along on that rainy morning, which makes sense coming from someone who loves being on the road as much as he does. Sir is on his second round of Festival season after last year, and you can clearly tell based on the banter between him and his manager, Jay, that the two love what they do.

Sir the Baptist is an extremely conceptual artist,  repeatedly referring to his shows as “going to church”, with an affinity for using long documentary style visuals to convey his creative and spiritual vision.

Sir The Baptist

Next up for Sir is a show on May 11th in L.A. immediately before the drop of his upcoming project, with his next festival set to be Firefly Festival on the weekend of June 15th in Dover, Delaware. Doing the festival rounds as an up-and-coming conceptual creative is sometimes difficult, but with a talent and a personality as bright as Sir the Baptist I’m confident that the end of this year’s festival season will only bring amazing things for him.

On this fifth Broccoli City Festival the event seems to be finding the right ground to stand on. The line-ups are only getting better, the atmosphere is becoming more cohesive, and the security is well informed and able to keep event-goers safe without seeming like a militant enforcer of the rules. Broccoli City 2017 might have been in the cold rain, but the DMV made it a bright day at Gateway.

Solange onstage

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