Day 1- Girls, Girls, Girls
Didn’t get tickets for made in America? We got you covered with a full recap of the festival from great performances to overpriced beer. The Budweiser-sponsored event was on fleek with their time schedule for the artists. Sneaking in weed and alcohol was a big theme for the MIA audience since Budweiser beer was $12.
One of the top performances during day 1 was Philadelphia local, Meek Mill. After bringing out his son on stage to dance to “Watch me (Whip / Nae Nae)”, Nicki Minaj surprised guests with “All Eyes on You” with Meek. Another great highlight from day 1 was the top headliner, Beyoncé. Although it was her first performance since 2014, Beyoncé rocked the stage. Some of the songs performed were “Ring the Alarm”, “Bow Down”, “Diva”, and the Fifty Shades of Grey rendition of “Crazy in Love”. She also sang songs from her old Destiny’s Child track with “Say my Name” and “Survivor”, which had the crowd going nuts. Beyoncé also fit in 8 outfit changes during her hour and a half gig with one outfit being a Philadelphia 76ers Jersey. If you were paying attention to the crowd, you could have found Jay-Z incognito with a gray hoodie in the crowd dancing to his wife’s songs. Other artists that performed during day 1 were Death Cab for Cutie, Modest Mouse, and Bassnectar. Nick Jonas’ performance pulled in every 18 year girl within a 50 mile radius of Philadelphia, which explains the 60/40 underage girl to guy ratio.
Day 2- When Shit Meets Storm
Day 2 brought in an older crowd of men, with the girl to guy ratio switching to 40/60. The estimated 70,000 people to attend was clearly underestimated. By the second day, fans had found a broken a fence guarding Made in America and were sneaking in by the dozen. Security guards were also being bribed for $20 to let fans without tickets inside. Bag check became a joke, which made it easier for fans to sneak in their travel sized booze and weed.
By 5pm, there were stampedes of people caught between the paths of the two stages. The audience was so stuck they started knocking gates over to get free. If you got through that without getting trampled, you were able to catch Future’s performance and announcement of a new album coming out before the New Year. If you got in before the madness, then you got to see Kevin Hart introduce the NY rapper, Fabolous with a short video about tips for performing in Philly including eating a Philadelphia pretzel and making the fans cheesesteaks. Towards the end of his performance, Fabolous brought out members of the legendary Philly rap ensemble, including Young Chris, Neek Buck, and Freeway.
Big Sean and J Cole also performed during day 2. The Weeknd ended the festival Sunday with a memorable performance. He kicked off his set with “High for This”, and as soon as the song started, the audience lit up, literally. He ended it with his big hits, “Can’t Feel My Face”, “The Hills”, and sang “Wicked Games” during his encore. He also did a tribute to Beyoncé and performed a cover of “Drunk in Love”. So was Made in America worth it? Maybe next year we will avoid the crowd and stream it online via Tidal.