Broccoli City Fest 23’ Recap: Brent Faiyaz, Kodak Black, Keke Palmer and More
This year’s festival featured a variety of twists and turns amongst dazzling performances from some of the hottest billboard charting artists.
Home to the DMV, Broccoli City geared up for its 2023 summer debut on July 15 and 16, showcasing a slew of talented artists scattered between its two days. Under the sweltering heat, RFK Stadium grounds swarmed with die-hard fans from across the globe rushing to catch a lick of each set.
The Fox Magazine had the opportunity to attend this year’s fest hosted by Little Bacon Bear and Mouse Jones.
Covering festival grounds laid a wide array of vendors sandwiched between the two stages, shelling out alcoholic beverages, cannabis products, tasty treats, and more. Ford Bronco showcased a cozy wooden area paired with a sparkling car where fans could browse merch. Around the corner, Starry and Smirnoff amongst others dished out samples. Broccoli City came equipped with elaborate attractions for fans including an adorable swing set, photo-taking areas, and swing golf.
Between Broccoli and City stage, black women artists dominated across the board with both stages igniting colossal waves of energy. Non-stop music from artists floated seamlessly throughout the grounds, with a hint of a few vendors’ aux.
Finesse2Tymes and Saucy Santana started the day off, slowly trickling into Rema’s set which occurred almost an hour after its original start. Later on, producer, singer, and actress Chloe Bailey performed her top hits in a gleaming green outfit.
At Broccoli Stage, Keke Palmer elevated fans with anthems of Hands Free, Right Now, and of course, lyrically altered Bossy, which exhilarated fans due to the latest news about her relationship. Shortly after, the hype continued with Ice Spice performing Munch (Feelin’ U), Boy’s a Liar Pt.2, and In Ha Mood. City Girls continued the day’s fever with Twerkulator and Take Yo Man.
The searing heat persisted throughout the day, with multiple fans passing out left and right. Midday, a majority of artists at Broccoli stage stopped their performance to help guide ill listeners out of the crowd.
Back at City Stage, Backyard Band and Foggieraw encapsulated fans. Later, Cookie Kawaii and Nikki Jay made stunning appearances with their lineup of songs. Closing the tent on a high note, TiaCorine kindled excitement with FreakyT and Lotto, even bringing out surprise guest Tony Shnow for Boogie.
Despite a strong start, the festival came to a close early with a preemptive severe thunderstorm watch which eventually canceled the two headlining acts, Lil Uzi Vert and Jasmine Sullivan. Initial anger from fans’ waiting hours in the stifling heat, crammed like sardines by the ticket pick-up windows built into a new outcry post cancelation on the festival’s social media. Due to these initial mixups, Broccoli City’s team issued full refunds for single-day attendees and partial refunds for two-day passes.
Starting stronger, Broccoli’s team came equipped with a partially new set-up for a smoother experience. The weather was promising with few clouds looming in the distance.
After hosts Mouse Jones and Bacon’s kick-off at Broccoli stage, Fat Trel performed a rousing 20-minute set before Coco Jones stepped on. After performing Caliber, No Chaser, and Put U On, the cloud gave way for a coincidental shower while Rain rang out. Shortly after the rain ceased for Asake to showcase his new album Work Of Art under sunny skies.
Next up was Mariah the Scientist engaging graciously with the crowd between Spread Thin and 2 You amongst others. Shortly after Glorilla took the stage in a shimmering orange-pink outfit rapping Lick Or Sum, Tomorrow 2, and Moneybagg Yo’s On Wat U On. She closed with the most popular F.N.F. (Let’s Go) rippling waves of excitement which compelled its second go-around.
On early arrival, Kodak Black played a slew of bangers, ranging from ZEZE, Too Many Years, and Skrt. After performing Wake Up in the Sky, he sipped water in between the playback track of X’s and O’s before tuning back in for No’ Flockin.
After Kodak’s set, the crowd dispersed and headed towards City Stage to catch Lola Brooke’s set. Prior to her performance, Dess Dior displayed a thrilling set where Mariah the Scientist was brought out during Stone Cold for a second performance. Earlier, the stage exhibited performances from Bizzy Crook, OG Bobby Billions, and Tre’ Amani amongst others.
The crowd swarmed for a long-awaited performance from headliner and DMV native Brent Faiyaz, chanting his name as he opened with WASTELAND’s intro, VILLAIN’S THEME, fading into Loose Change. Igniting tremendous uproar from the jump, he further heightened listeners’ elation with surprise guest Joony during FYTB and another performance from Tre’ Amani for ADDICTIONS.
Faiyaz dug through his arsenal of tracks, singing ALL MINE, Clouded, Trust, GRAVITY, and many more. Ending in front of a twinkling deep-blue cityscape, Faiyaz closed with banger WASTING TIME featuring Drake and the Neptunes.
All in all, despite certain mishaps, Broccoli City Fest 2023 was an unforgettable weekend. Emitting essence of Hip Hop, R&B, and Go-Go, amongst other musical elements, the captivating lineup pulled fans from across the globe. Throughout the two days, tasty food and drinks, a diverse stack of vendors, and intricate activations brought individuals together for a taste of the DMV’s spectacular experience.