Here’s why FVDED in the Park saved festival season on the West Coast
Surrey, BC – While Vancouver is considered one of the most popular destinations in Canada, there are actually very few occasions for the West Coast community to come together for larger festival experiences with international artists. The cancellation of Pemberton Music Festival in May left most fans disappointed but the space vacated left room for a greater opportunity for local event planners. Blueprint Events raised the bar with their third year of FVDED in the Park – a festival set in the heart of Holland Park in Surrey, British Columbia that took place back on July 7th and 8th.
To provide sufficient background information on the scope of the festival – the 2016 weekend brought Bryson Tiller, Metro Boomin’ and Travis Scott and went down as unforgettable. With elaborate performances, an overall hype energy that consistently brings out the rowdiest side of Greater Vancouver, and great festival preparation – this has quickly become Vancouver’s favourite festival (and a completely local organized event).
The 2017 event promised to be equally as memorable, but also nostalgic, with performance from: Wiz Khalifa, Partynextdoor, Ty Dolla $ign, Madeintyo, 24hrs, Zaytoven, Night Lovell, KYLE, and Russ along with many others. After an unpredictable summer of weather, the skies emerged a clear blue on Friday morning with a sweltering hot sun. We couldn’t ask for a better setting, and each act brought a dynamic set to an already ecstatic crowd.
That July weekend reminded us of our resilience as a community, the impact that we have in our collaborative numbers when we come out to support live music (which was felt in an bolstering crowd), and our value as a destination for top acts from across North America. Catch our artist highlights below from Day 1 with our full photo gallery.
With the first set of the afternoon on the main stage, 24hrs had the tough job of opening up the festival to a crowd that was just arriving, and also still collecting their energy. But this didn’t stop him from delivering an inspired performance. The Private Records member and founder came out with stage-confidence that is probably a result of his past year touring. As soon as “VSVSVS” dropped he had the whole audience singing. He fed off this energy and was fairly interactive with the audience during “What You Like” – a perfect song choice that features Ty Dolla $ign (who hit the stage later in the afternoon).
His last visit to Vancouver was earlier this year so many of us were familiar with his set, but there’s something epic about hearing 24hrs do his acappella with auto-tune. Times are changing in the music industry, and 24hrs is an artist who represents a new generation of rap fans who don’t box artists into a certain style of the genre. His own come-up was a redefinition in itself from his previous identity as “Royce Rizzy.”
He also seems to be one of the most-liked and collaborated-with artists as he made appearances during almost every other set on the first day. Mind you, he has features with most of the artists performing – but it’s rare to see an artist come back out four times in one day. Just when you think 24hrs was gone for good, he popped back out for another encore.
The most surprising set of the day went to Private Records artist Madeintyo – who took the crowd to another level of energy. This is the first time that we’ve seen the emcee make a festival appearance on the West Coast, but the reach of his music was apparent by the sheer number of kids who were chanting back viral tracks like “Skateboard P,” “Uber Everywhere,” and “I Want.”
Some rap fans are quick to judge a new wave of the genre that is being elevated by a new generation of youth – but there’s no denying its’ relevance when it fills festivals with fans. Madeintyo’s set quickly converted any doubters to believers with the rowdiest crowd reaction of the day – and he’s undoubtedly a lot more than just a genre trend.
Ty Dolla $ign
This year was the second time that FVDED has brought back Ty Dolla $ign to perform – the first being two years ago for their inaugural event. Having attended both, it’s confirmed that Ty is one of the most underrated live performers. He brings a unique energy to the stage every time that always has the crowd feeling elated, and his voice is equally as good acoustically as on “Zaddy.”
Running through many of his hit tracks, he brought a live band with him for his mid-day set and vibing renditions. You may not initially realize how much of an OG that Ty has become until he starts listing off those features that he’s given throughout the past few years alongside Free TC. This is an artist who has successfully figured out how to develop an individual brand that has maintained its’ value through countless collaborations – even coming out stronger for it, which not many artists can pull off.
Vancouver-based duo So Loki had a crazy year with a slew of national recognition including a spot the Polaris “Longer List” and a highly successful charting music video for “Liquid Luck” that hit Vevo earlier this year. Their debut album “V” branded Vancouver as a city which always had the potential to produce industry-competitive and forward-thinking creatives. Blueprint has always made a point of putting a spotlight on upcoming West Coast artists.
Known for their explosive stage presence and interactive live shows, the duo came through with another consistent and quality show. Sam Lucia and Geoffrey Millar are prepping to drop their second album, and released their new single “Razer Thin” this past week.
With Day 1 of the festival packed with a mostly rap lineup, the final headliner was the greatest attraction. Wiz Khalifa was at Pemberton last summer, and packed the valley with listeners for a truly hype show and this year at FVDED he packed Holland Park with youth for a memorable show as well. Every nostalgic hit was played, but the set was especially memorable from the embrace of all the artists who hit the stage throughout the day. Madeintyo, 24hrs, among others joined Wiz on stage and created a collaborative moment that probably won’t be recreated in the near future.
Khalifa’s decade-long career was put forth in the set as we were brought back to his top his like “Black & Yellow” and more recently “See You Again” for the younger audience. Vancouverites love to take in live music, and Wiz ended Day 1 by bringing together artists and fans alike – the same way the festival did.
Photography by Nikai Rai Rolle for HipHopCanada
Review by Kira Hunston for HipHopCanada
Twitter: @madeintyo | @2fourhrs | @SOLOKI_ | @tydollasign | @wizkhalifa