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Top 5 performances I am looking forward to at One Love Music Festival 2016

Calgary, AB – With only a few weeks left until the annual One Love Music Festival, we’re getting super excited to see rap take over the city of Calgary for a whole entire weekend.

This year’s festival line-up is all over the map; everyone from Atmosphere, to Tyler The Creator, Big Sean, Jhené Aiko, and more. Lil Wayne was originally slated as a headliner, but will no longer be making an appearance at the festival. In lieu of Weezy’s cancellation, Logic has been added to the line-up.

The only demographic that got left out of the festival this year is the old-school hip-hop fans. There’s no OG representation at the festival this year. I think Atmosphere is the most old-school act on the bill; and they’re not really old-school.

The festival is also introducing a One Up stage (in partnership with 10 at 10) this year. The stage will be showcasing local and regional artists from in and around Alberta.

So we’ve got two full days of international, national, and local talent. And it’s only a few weeks away! Check out my Top 5 list after the jump, and leave us a comment letting us know who you are most excited to see this year.

One Love Music Festival: Western Canada's largest hip-hop music festival returns to Calgary Sept. 10 - 11 -

One Love Music Festival: Western Canada's largest hip-hop music festival returns to Calgary Sept. 10 - 11 -

1. Jazz Cartier

The artist I am most looking forward to seeing at One Love Music Festival is Jazz Cartier. I was fortunate enough to see Jazz Cartier earlier this summer at Osheaga in Montreal and it just reaffirmed that this kid is THE new Toronto. He still stands as one of my favourite live performers. In case you’ve never been to a Jazz Cartier show, here’s what you need to know: the dude sprays water everywhere. You will get drenched. You will get showered in water. Jazz will probably attempt to climb a bannister on the stage. He will probably also dive out into the crowd. And even if you don’t know the lyrics to his summer anthem “Lil Wayne”, you’ll try your best to sing along as everyone mobs the f**k out on that one: “LIL WAYNE! LIL WAYNE! DIAMONDS ON MY NECK GOIN’ BLING BLING!”

2. Tyler, The Creator

I don’t actually bump Tyler, The Creator on the regular but I love his live performance. Tyler, The Creator is the reigning kid of new wave rap. While most rap shows are about the dude on stage performing, Tyler’s shows are always much more crowd-focused. He wants to make sure everyone is riding on his wave. He wants to make sure people are enjoying themselves. He’ll probably pull someone up on stage and make him/her do something really stupid. He’ll say some really non-PC stuff. And it will be amazing. You’ll also find that you probably actually know the hooks to a lot of the dude’s songs – even if you’re not a self-proclaimed Odd Future fan. The area directly in front of the stage may turn into a mosh pit, as well.

3. Big Sean

People hate on me for being a lukewarm Big Sean fan. I’ll admit I’m not a super-fan. But I definitely don’t hate the dude, either. I’m Switzerland; I am neutral. Dark Sky Paradise was a solid project. And I’m v. excited to see Sean perform “IDFWY” because that’s going to set shit on fire. Also, he’s been collaborating with Jhené Aiko as the Twenty88 duo. And Jhené Aiko is also going to be at One Love. So I’m hoping we get to see a YYC debut of some of their collaborative work.

4. Atmosphere

Atmosphere was one of the most important rap duos in my come-up, later on in life. Atmosphere and People Under The Stairs were (weirdly) the two groups I really got into right after I’d made the decision to pursue music journalism. To this day, Slug is still one of my favourite MCs. For me, this performance is going to be so nostalgic.

5. Earl Sweatshirt

Earl Sweatshirt is the rap game Eeyore. You feel me? He’s successfully honed in on THE Earl Sweatshirt sound; it’s gloomy and dark, and (oddly enough) universally listened to by a lot of different kinds of rap fans. I’m not sure how well this translates to a live show, though. I was supposed to see Earl out at Pemberton Festival a few years ago but he cancelled his appearance. This is the first time I will have ever seen the dude live, and I am super excited.

Local artist to watch for: K-Riz

I’m definitely not stoked on the local line-up for One Love this year. But one artist who you should take the time to check is Edmonton’s K-Riz. He’s fresh off the release of Fresh Air, a meticulous 14-track project that effortless slides between soulful chill tracks, and turnt banger anthems. K-Riz has stayed working these last few years to hone in on his signature sound. It’s a fusion of soulful vibes and hungry lyricism, coupled with hard-hitting production and (at times) a bit of afterhours sensuality.

For full event information and FAQs about One Love, head on over to the One Love Music Festival website. For more details about the line-up, head on over here. And stay up-to-date with all things One Love related by following the festival on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook.

Twitter: @OneLoveYYC


Sarah Jay

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Sarah Jay is based in Calgary and works as a freelance journalist and photographer. Sarah is also a former A&R talent scout for the Universal Music Scouting Program, and runs a vintage store during the day. Sarah has juried the JUNO Awards, The Polaris Music Prize, and The Prism Prize. She has been fortunate enough to interview and photograph some of hip-hop's greatest influencers including Future, ScHoolboy Q, Ghostface Killah, Moka Only, Maestro Fresh Wes, Shad, Joey Bada$$, Mac Miller, and more. Follow Sarah on Twitter: @ThisIsSarahJay

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