In a perfect world, you could get to see every artist that played Outside Lands on Day Two. This, unfortunately, can not happen. What I got to catch Sunday were acts that eerily, yet obviously, struck chords under the theme of love, uniqueness and pride.
Saturday was handed the baton from Day 1 and, in an effort to keep a similar energy going, the second day of Outside Lands outdid its predecessor in such a beautiful way.
This year being my first Outside Lands experience, I was still trying to reel in the awesomeness of Friday. Nevertheless, I pressed on and had the most fun I’ve had in a long while, with the help of friends, friendly strangers and artists who deeply care about connections.
My first stop before taking in the music was to see California’s Lieutenant Governor of California speak during Discussions About Literally Everything (D.A.V.E.).
Gavin Newsom and John Battelle – The Future of California … and Beyond
While on his campaign trail to run for Governor of California, former San Francisco mayor and current Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom showed up at The Barbary for his scheduled interview hosted by comedian entrepreneur, author and journalist John Battelle.
Unlike Bill Nye, the room slowly grew fully packed, instead of a rush of people at the beginning.
Perhaps Outside Lands attendees aren’t looking for politics on a day to have fun. Today’s political climate has developed into a place of no happiness.
It’s certainly a misconception.
Sure, Newsom is a Democrat and doesn’t like Trump. But the root of his passion is an eagerness to help others. That’s what he wants and that’s what everyone wants. Whether you’re a part of the Democratic or Republican Party, the common ground is to do right for everyone.
It seemed like, at the end of every answer that Newsom had for Battle, claps and cheers were awarded. They were all deserved. He answers with a craving to advocate goodness.
Newsom even addresses his own party:
“Negative Polarization. No one ‘likes’ our party, but we hate the other party.”
As stance for courage and moving forward, Newsom talks about how he can advance issues in homelessness, the increasing student debt, the LGBT community and more.
After a Q&A between the audience and Newsom, I walk out of The Barbary, feeling hopeful and happy about parts of California’s future, and blend into the crowd at the Land’s End stage looking at the word ‘Lizzo.’
Like Billie Eilish on Friday, I wasn’t too familiar with Lizzo. I only listened to one or two songs before the festival.
A tall and ‘thicc’ African-American woman came out running in a tight yellow one-piece outfit.
All around me, women and men yelled at the top of their lungs, “Yass girl!”
Charged with sass and bedroom talk, Lizzo serenaded fans, filling half of the Polo Fields with her sweet R&B voice while hip/hop styled bass and snares backed her up.
As funny and charismatic as she was, Lizzo also inspires body positivity with her lyrics. With every chance she got in between songs, she reminded every one of us that we are beautiful and amazing.
When she left the stage after drinking from a bottle of tequila, I responded quickly by following her Spotify.
SOB x RBE
On the opposite side of the Land’s End stage, the Twin Peaks stage on the east side of the grounds was getting ready for a Bay Area talent like none other.
Hip/hop group SOB x RBE, based in Vallejo, Calif., took the second biggest stage at Outside Lands.
Becoming more well-known after the Black Panther album reached platinum status, SOB x RBE connected with its roots and performed an amazing set list of Bay classics like “Calvin Cambridge” and “Lane Changing.”
Each one of their songs built up more and more hype, capturing the audience’s screams and dance moves. The crowd, from inside, felt intense. When I walked up small hillside, I could’ve sworn that the mass of people turned into grass flowing in all sorts of directions.
When “Paramedic!” — a crowd favorite and featured song on Black Panther — started, SOB x RBE realized a comradery among strangers. It’s all about dancing and good vibes.
SOB x RBE’s stage successor, Illenium, presented soul-moving beats as a modern EDM master, and the mosh pit was the place to be.
Denver-based, and San Francisco-born Nick Miller performs under his DJ name, Illenium. A juggernaut in the future bass sub-genre of EDM, Illenium has made hit after hit and with “Take You Down” as his latest release, he’s hit the peak of his career so far.
Stunning visuals of landscapes and intricate patterns, symbols and shapes blasted on the three screens of the Twin Peaks stage as Illenium sharply struck the drum pad with drum sticks. His music consisted of releasing spectral sounds from his recordings of female vocalists.
It sounded otherworldly and put me in a different spot than here. Maybe that’s what electronic music does to me: takes me to off this planet and into unknown pastures.
One of his transitions guided him into playing “Take You Down,” his most personal song to date. He wrote it for his mother, who stayed with him through thick and thin as he battled a drug addiction.
It’s a reminder that everyone and anyone has someone that loves them, even if they’re going to their own hell.
Florence + the Machine Takes Day 2
Back to the Polo Field where dusk settled, Land’s End shines bright on a red-headed figure dancing freely on stage.
Florence + the Machine was the talk of the Outside Lands community. People with smiles on their faces blew up when she started gentle note that grew into a grand and theatrical display that will be on my mind forever.
Florence Welch commands the audience with her delicate voice that reminded me of a sweet and majestic elf from a fantastical world. Jer behavior from one end of the stage to the other is magical. I don’t use that word lightly. Florence is a presence to be admired.
On top of that, reflecting some of the glow, Welch’s white sheer gown heightened her spotlight.
Welch sang “Hunger” with heart, then followed with a conversation with the jammed Polo Field by instructing everyone to turn their phones off, hug their friends and tell them that they love them.
A soft-stringed orchestra set the mood and Welch then told the audience to lift someone, anyone, up on their shoulders. I did so and lifted a friend, feeling the moment and the loving energy.
Cinematic doesn’t begin to describe Florence + the Machine. It was pure beauty.
As far as good days go, Day Two of Outside Lands was one of the best. All of the artists had something about positive awareness to share, whether that’s a shared experience of a recovering disease or simply stating to tell yourself ‘you’re beautiful.’