“Sing so loud Jay Z can hear it,” Chance the Rapper hollered Sunday from one of two stages in front of Los Angeles City Hall. It was a reference to the hip-hop mogul and mastermind behind the two-day Budweiser Made in America festival, where established chart-toppers such as rock band Weezer, local rap heavyweight Kendrick Lamar and pop-star-of-the-moment Iggy Azalea performed before Kanye West hit the stage Sunday night to close the event.
The festival was the first major close-up for Grand Park, the 2-year-old public space that stretches between City Hall and the Music Center. Although the park has hosted large New Year’s Eve and Fourth of July gatherings, those were free and attracted an estimated crowd of 25,000. Made in America was the park’s first ticketed event and its first test as a major concert destination.
West walked out after an overture of tolling bells and barking dogs, opening the set with his bracing, primal, aggressive “Black Skinhead,” the sound of spacious, damning rhythms and slicing guitars filling Grand Park.
By that point, if concertgoers had given the park and festival a passing grade, it came with fine print.
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