The 2014 Budweiser Made in America Festival takes on Philadelphia and Los Angeles

Made in America

August 30-31, 2014

Los Angeles, CA and Philadelphia, PA

        It was now the time of year that fans of all shapes, genders, sizes and color came together to celebrate in Lou of the American Labor Movement; Labor Day weekend. An array of great music, talented musicians, overpriced festival food & beverages, carnival rides, and Budweiser affiliated EVERYTHING filled the place in Philadelphia, PA. Los Angeles, CA was not much different, although LA didn’t have any carnival rides- we were graced with sunshine and American flag t-shirts throughout the entire weekend.

J. Cole  5V6A7102Philadelphia. Saturday morning. With Budweiser in hand, fans proudly represented the colors of the American flag. It was a nice overcast day; perfect festival weather. The lineup for day 1 of Made In America Festival was stacked! Acts consisted of: The Ooohh Baby Gimme Mores, Bleachers, Kaneholler, Young And Sick, Bas, Destructo, DJ Cassidy, The Neighbourhood, Baby Baby, Holy Ghosti, Mayer Hawthorne, Cherub, Big Daddy Kane, Ocd: Moosh & Twist, Cut Snake, Chromeo, City and Colour, Pissed Jeans, Baauer, J.Cole, The National, Glassjaw, R3hab, Steve Aoki, and Kanye West; to close out the night.

City and Colour sounded amazing live, but unfortunately not near as lively as many of the other acts, rightfully so as it’s constructed around acoustic guitar. But nonetheless, it sounded wonderful! With passion bursting at the seams, the band played an incredibly beautiful set. Later that afternoon, over at the Liberty stage, J.Cole, had fans going nuts. I could see the mixed feelings on the faces of many fans in the crowd once the rapper referenced the Ferguson case and his take on the situation. It’s great that he feels so passionately about it, but did he go about the right way voicing his opinion? What do you think? The National is another group of talented musicians, they had dramatic lighting which accented their performance rather well. They weren’t as energetic on stage as one may have hoped, but they are talented, nonetheless. EDM sensation, Steve Aoki, stole the crowd with an insane performance that’s liable to leave you without your hearing.  His beats were loud enough to make your heart skip a beat. At one point in his set he sprayed champagne and threw cake into the crowd. Unfortunately anyone in the first 5-10 rows struggled seeing the artist due to his ridiculously high stage set up… But even still, fans went wild for this man! You’d have a better chance parting the Red Sea than maneuvering around that crowd of people. Speaking of, the man to close out the night, was ‘YEEZUS’ himself. Mr. Kanye West was the last to take the stage. I’ve never seen so many rolled eyes in my life, as the musician stopped one of his songs to express his discontent with alleged negative views on his interracial relations, the people who talk about him etc.  He even referenced the Fish-sticks episode of South Park.. Fans became disappointed as he continued ranting. Finally the rapper continued his set, closing out with a stellar performance.

In Los Angeles, the day was packed with equally amazing performers which included Imagine Dragons, Capital Cities, Iggy Azalea, YG, Kendrick Lamar, Afrojack, Metric, Sublime with Rome alongside many others. The scorching LA heat was no match to the determined fans who camped out in the first row for hours and hours, waiting for their favorite performers. Capital Cities put on a dance party that had everyone jumping up and down throughout the entire set. As the set neared the end, singer, Sebu Simonian jumped off the rather tall stage and ran across the barricade, pumping everyone up before they sang their hit Safe and Sound. On the other side of the musical spectrum, Iggy Azalea, who performed midday, had one of the largest crowds, including Amber Rose who bared the heat to watch her set. As Azalea was ending her set, she invited her friend Rita Ora up on stage to sing and rap with her and the duo made Imagine Dragons  DSC_5863everyone in the audience go crazy. Going to the more reggae-rock, Sublime with Rome was definitely a band that people made an effort to see. Their set was stoner paradise and Rome perfectly sang the lyrics of classical Sublime favorites including Date Rape, Wrong Way, What I Got among the newer, more upbeat songs. Kendrick Lamar took the main stage as the last rapper for the night and had a crowd that stretched blocks down Los Angeles. His set was mildly disappointing when he began with two lesser known songs and then went awol, while different rappers took turns rapping their own songs. He later came back on stage and continued by performing a couple songs with Schoolboy Q and some favorites including Swimming Pools, Bitch Don’t Kill My Vibe and M.A.D.D. CITY. The night came to a close with a remarkable performance by Imagine Dragons. They were a huge crowd pleaser, playing old favorites including It’s Time, Demons, On Top of the World and more. Singer Dan Reynolds constantly stopped and stared out into the sea of fans and smiled. He was very humbled and explained to the crowd that they never thought they would play in front of so many people. The band did a cover of Song 2 by Blur which had Reynolds running through the barricade, high-fiving fans and crowd surfing till the end of the song. They ended the night and the first day of Made in America with Radioactive. 


Los Angeles, CA Day 1

Imagine Dragons

Kendrick Lamar

Capital Cities

Iggy Azalea


Sublime with Rome



Philadelphia, PA Day 1 

J. Cole

Steve Aoki

The National

The Neighbourhood

City and Colour

Big Daddy Kane



DJ Cassidy

Mayer Hawthorne

Young & Sick


The second day of Made in America Festival started out awfully bright and toasty. It was another great day for music in Philadelphia PA! It was a much more eventful day, to say the least. Day 2 was also jam packed with some of the most talented artists in the industry. The Sunday, August 31st line up consisted of: Noah Breakfast, Bixel Boys, Misterwives, Mimosa, Vacationer, Bleachers, Cruisr, Penguin Prison, Kongos, YG, Nothing, Will Sparks, Pharrell Williams 5V6A9304Danny Brown, AWOLNATION, Bear Hands, 3Lau, Grimes, Spoon, Man Overboard, Tommy Trash, Girl Talk, Pharrell Williams, The Mezingers, Gareth Emery, Tiesto, and Kings of Leon. Rapper, YG, continued the day with another fun performance. Fans went nuts! During the duration of his set, at one point YG stops and pleads for the fans to show their “Titties.” Some fans were willing, some disgusted/distraught, and some fans were entertained. The rapper seemed rather dedicated as he paced back and forth searching the crowd. YG was all over the stage rapping like there was no tomorrow.  He absolutely killed it! Later in the day, rain clouds began to flood the sky. We were headed for quite an exciting night; closing out Made In America Festival. Band, Spoon’s set was cut short after they were asked to exit the stage due to weather conditions. It began to downpour, and lighting; building up to a severe thunderstorm around 6:30pm.  All concert attendees were asked to evacuate the festival grounds and to seek shelter immediately, as they postponed the festival until further notice. Fans were instructed to hold onto their ticket stubs and keep an eye on the festival’s media sites for updates on reentry when the storm calms. In less than an hour, fans were happy to find they were able to reenter and carry on with the night’s festivities. Hands down, Pharrell Williams was one of the best, if not THEE best, performer at the Philadelphia PA Made In America Festival. One may feel, that he would have fit much better into the headlining category rather than others. His performance was explosive! His vocals were on point, his lighting was fun, colorful and dramatic, his back up dancers fit perfectly into his performance, and the joy on his face and the passion behind each vocal and movement was off the charts. He called the media back out to the stage to capture his remarkable crowd interaction and the joy on every fan’s face as they sang and danced along to radio hit and fan favorite, Happy. Unfortunately due to 3 song restrictions, there was only so much the media could do as per his request. Pharrell Williams set the bar extremely high for the remaining performers that night.  A band anticipated by many since the beginning of the festival, Kings of Leon, closed out the final day of Made In America Festival. They had an interesting and colorful performance with an on-going projection set up in the background of their set. Kings of Leon put on a chilling performance, surly delivering to the expectations of their fans, sending off the Philly crowd with a smile on their face.

Back in Los Angeles, fans would not experience a downpour of rain- in fact, we are in a severe drought! It was sunshine all day long and as night fall came, the heat followed. Sunday was another day of diverse music which included Chance the Rapper, Cypress Hill, John Mayer, Juanes, Kanye West, 2014 Budweiser Made In America Festival - Day 2 - Los AngelesMutemath, Rise Against Steve Aoki, and Weezer. The rock fans came out on Sunday to watch favorites Rise Against and Weezer who both had huge audiences that sang and jumped along with them. Cypress Hill, much like Sublime with Rome performed a set that you couldn’t help but sway along too. The stoners of Los Angeles were once again pleased. Although Sunday was more focused on Rock and Rap, Steve Aoki was definitely a stick out performer, who ‘caked’ many fans and had Machine Gun Kelly come out and perform with him as a plus. He performed in Philly and LA and among so many artists- he was a highlight in both cities- for a reason. John Mayer was one of the last performers of the night and brought out all the screaming girls. He was clearly a favorite among the females and some males who might have been too proud to admit it. The crowd was noticeably much larger for day 2 than it was for day 1, and we would assume it was for Kanye West. He closed the festival out with a hard-hitting, fun performance. He came out wearing a mask and his silhouette was the only thing visible for much of his performance. He took some time to talk about how thankful he was for his wife and child and family and continued his performance by performing many fan favorites.

The Budweiser Made in America festival was successful once again in it’s home of Philadelphia, PA. Tons of great food, music, and people. Being the first year of the festival in Los Angeles, there was a lot of uncertainty and skepticism on whether or not it would be successful or as good as Philly but after seeing the amazing turn out and the reaction of fans, I can honestly say that Los Angeles is more than happy to have this festival again next year!

Philadelphia review by: Liana Marie

Los Angeles review by: Nicole Lemberg 

Want to see what we thought were the Pros and Cons of this festival? Check it out here:

Los Angeles Day 2: 

Kanye West

Chance the Rapper

Cypress Hill

John Mayer



Nipsey Hussle

Rise Against

Steve Aoki



Philadelphia Day 2:

Pharrell Williams

Danny Brown

Kings of Leon