San Diego State University’s Independent Student Newspaper Since 1913

The Daily Aztec

San Diego State University’s Independent Student Newspaper Since 1913

The Daily Aztec

San Diego State University’s Independent Student Newspaper Since 1913

The Daily Aztec

As Rolling Loud inches closer, SDSU students prepare to ‘rage’ to all-star headliners and a surprise Kanye West performance

The hip-hop festival continues to grow its outreach a decade later with new artists and certified hit makers
Ethan Karlin
Rolling Loud’s 2023 festival in Los Angeles drew in a nearly sold out crowd

From its debut a decade ago in Miami as a small-scale showcase of new talent in the hip-hop world, Rolling Loud will now return to Los Angeles from March 15-17 with a massive following of dedicated fans and popular headliners.

Nicki Minaj will lead the festival on “Pink Friday,” named after her 2023 album, “Pink Friday 2.” The album was a much-awaited follow-up to her 2010 triple-platinum debut record. 

Also returning to the Rolling Loud stage, and for the first time since 2021, Post Malone will headline Saturday’s event. Last year, Post Malone released the introspective album “Austin,” which was a more stripped-back direction for the artist.

On Sunday, March 17, a special performance from Future and Metro Boomin will bring the weekend to a close. Metro Boomin has had an eventful past year for new music, from releasing a new album to producing the soundtrack for the latest animated “Spider-Man” installation. The pair’s performance replaces Lil Uzi Vert, who was originally listed as the event’s third headliner.

Included in the now four-day set is a Thursday night performance of “Vultures,” Kanye West and Ty Dolla $ign’s highly-anticipated collaboration album. 

The special event was announced last month, and marks the first time Rolling Loud has added an Thursday night to the festivities. The extension came with no added cost for ticket holders and caused much buzz among music fans.

Miguel Tisnado, a second-year electrical engineering major, was convinced to buy his tickets for two main reasons: spending time with his friends and seeing Kanye West. He said Rolling Loud will be the second concert he’s ever attended and that he’s ready to “rage” in the mosh pits with his friend group. 

Ice Spice was one of the performers at Rolling Loud 2023 (Ethan Karlin)

Tisnado recalled the moment that he saw West had announced his addition to the lineup.

“I was like, ‘I have to go.’ And of course, it’s a three-day festival. So I’m seeing the other artists there, like Nicki Minaj and $uicideBoy$. Not only am I seeing Kanye, but I mean, this being only my second ever concert, it’s like I’m seeing a bunch of concerts at once,” Tisnado said. 

This year’s lineup features a variety of subgenres across generations, from Rae Sremmurd and Chief Keef’s 2010s chart-topping hip-hop hits to Flo Milli and Sexyy Red’s youthful, bold trap bangers. 

The rapidly changing aspect of the genre will be on full display, as experienced artists will share the stage with younger rap artists cutting their teeth with a younger demographic. 

These hip-hop artists will be joined by R&B musicians Summer Walker and Bryson Tiller, returning guest Don Toliver and many others. 

This year’s festival will also place special emphasis on regional Mexican music. This comes at a time when Spanish language music has enjoyed a mainstream boom.

According to Spotify, Mexican music streams rose by a rate of over 400% in the past five years and made countless appearances on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. Rolling Loud will host four influential artists within the genre: Natanel Cano, Fuerza Regida, Junior H and Chino Pacas.

First-year sociology major Simone Zayashien is going to Rolling Loud for the first time after attending the Outside Lands festival in 2022.

Lil Uzi Vert performed at Rolling Loud in 2023 (Ethan Karlin)

She said she’s looking forward to day three’s lineup and seeing artists she’s listened to since the sixth grade. Whether or not she rushes to the front of the stage, however, is yet to be determined. 

“I don’t know if I’m going to be able to go into the Chief Keef mosh pits because I’m literally 5’2 and I would probably die,” Zayashien joked.

In addition to the performances, Rolling Loud will have a variety of pop-up stands and activities for all attendees. Merch stands, soul food, a Ferris wheel and pick-up basketball courts will line the perimeter of SoFi Stadium. Exclusive amenities are also available for VIP packages.

Tisnado has high expectations for the upcoming weekend. With a long list of artists at his disposal, he’s excited to explore new music and take advantage of the activations in between sets. 

I expect Rolling Loud to be like a rave,” Tisnado said. “Lots of people, and I guess rides will be there, too. I know there’s gonna be merch so I’ve been preparing my wallet to spend. I’ve been picking up extra shifts for that merch!”

Zayashien shares a similar sentiment. She said she views it as a way for her and her friends to see her favorite performers for the first time. 

“I just think it’s a fun experience,” Zayashien said. “To see some of your favorite artists in person is really cool and not something you’re going to have a lot of opportunities to do in your life.”

About the Contributors
Noah Lyons, '23-24 Opinion Editor
Noah Lyons (he/him) is a Journalism major and transfer student from Irvine, California. Ever since he was young, he loved to tell stories and dive deep into his favorite subjects — sports, music, current events, and film. He joined the Daily Aztec in 2022, and has since covered the Wonderfront and Rolling Loud music festivals, attended advanced movie screenings and interviewed several musicians. When he isn't doing homework until midnight or writing articles, you can expect to see Noah searching for the best California burritos that San Diego has to offer or walking around campus listening to Bleachers and Paramore.
Katerina Portela, Staff Writer
Serena Neumeyer, '23-24 Social Media Editor
Serena Neumeyer (she/her/hers) is an aspiring journalist major with a passion for writing and storytelling. She is a third-year working towards her Bachelor of Arts in Journalism and also has a minor in interdisciplinary studies as a part of the Weber Honors College program. Although she has begun to branch off to other sections, Serena found her start as a writer in the Arts & Culture section of the Daily Aztec and only recently began contributing to the live broadcast as a multimedia reporter. Outside of her studies, she loves attending concerts and music festivals, some of which have been the inspiration behind her writing. In the future, she hopes to enter the realm of broadcast someday and use the skills she’s learned here to prepare herself as a reporter in the field.