Once the gates opened for the final day of Bumbershoot, groups of ravers flocked to the festival’s main stage, setting up camp for a spot in the front to local duo ODESZA’s headlining set.
As they kept pouring in, 23-year-old singer-songwriter Bibi Bourelly, famed for writing such hit songs as “Bitch Better Have My Money” and “Higher” for Rihanna, played a short set of her own before Lil Yachty took to the stage for an almost hour-long set.
Yachty fans sang and rapped along with the artist, who blew through songs in a jumbled breeze, giving samples of a verse before moving on to the next in record time. Though the set was messy at times, Yachty’s ride or die fans thrived in the heat of the sun, watching their favorite performer have the time of his life.
Critically acclaimed up-and-comer Leikeli47 was a surprise, wowing the hungry crowd with her unique hip-hop style, accompanied by backup dancers and choreography of her own. Fans in the seats watched the set intently. Others on the floor warmed up for the later sets, losing themselves in the crowd.
A set by local EDM artist Ekali acted as a transition between Leikeli47’s set and Vince Staples' return to his Northwest fans. By the time Ekali had wrapped up and Staples was set to take the stage, the KeyArena had reached its capacity. The packed arena waited impatiently for the Long Beach rapper’s arrival. All were on their feet as soon as the lights went down.
Staples' set featured a plethora of new material, coming off of his latest record, Big Fish Theory, as well as old favorites and his own feature on Gorillaz’ “Ascension.” The fans were on their feet, jumping and moshing.
As Staples finished his set, the hip-hop and R&B fans intermingled with the pop fanatics and the ravers, who had taken the main stage from the beginning of the day. This rich melting pot of groups continued to collide as more and more attendees poured through the gates to the stadium stage for what was easily the most anticipated sets of the festival: the incredible Solange.
Though her set only clocked in at around 45 minutes, the magnificence of the stage design, the choreography, the horns and the sunset acting as backdrop to it all made for a highlight of the night.
Though the people gathered together in the heart of the city on that Sunday night may have come for different reasons, they all ended up together as a single group, creating memories, sharing experiences and sparking new friendships with the people they met. If Bumbershoot continues to thrive, who knows what new memories will be made. Perhaps those there this year will reunite again, hungry to experience even more. —Brendan Swogger