Hip-Hop festival set to take over Oakland


Louis LaVenture

Ohio based rapper Trippie Redd performs at the Bay Area Rolling Loud event last year.

Louis LaVenture

What started as an after party for Florida-based rapper Rick Ross in Miami in 2015, has turned into one of the biggest music festivals in the world.

The Rolling Loud music festival makes its return to the Bay Area on Saturday and Sunday featuring some of the biggest names in hip hop, including, Wiz Khalifa, Travis Scott, Lil Uzi Vert, Rae Sremmurd, E-40, Gucci Mane and many more.

Last year’s Rolling Loud in the Bay Area was at the Shoreline Amphitheater in Mountain View, however, organizers managed to book this year’s show in the East Bay at the Oakland Coliseum.

Co-founders Matt Zingler and Tariq Cherif debuted Rolling Loud in February 2015, primarily with Florida artists because that is where they are from. However, Cherif knows the importance of highlighting local artists.

“In Miami we always had the local artists,” Cherif said in an interview on Tuesday. “In LA we put a good amount of Los Angeles acts on the lineup. You have to stay true to where you are. You have to respect the local regions culture and vibe, which is for sure something we do.”

In addition to E-40, there are several other Bay Area artists on the bill, including, IAMSU!, Berner, P-Lo, Lil Pete, Kamaiyah and Mike Sherm. Cherif took that Bay Area connection even further when he visited “Sway’s Universe” radio show on Sirius XM to promote the upcoming event. Sway Calloway is an Oakland native and probably best known for his collaboration with DJ King Tech on “The Wake Up Show” a staple in the hip hop community.

“That experience was humbling,” Cherif said. “He’s a legend and I felt welcomed, at home and thankful. What he represents for the Bay and hip hop in general, to take time to talk to me on air and even talk to me at all was truly humbling.”

Last year’s Bay Area event was headlined by Travis Scott, who has been on the lineup since its inception in 2015. Scott descended on the stage on top of an eagle and was one of the most talked about performances from the show.

“Travis Scott is exemplary,” Cherif said. “He is a Rolling Loud golden child, like an A-plus student if Rolling Loud was a school. He is one of the greatest live performers in the world and his energy is undeniable.”

Cherif also had a personal relationship with rapper XXXtentacion, who was shot and killed in a robbery attempt in Florida on June 18. XXXtentacion was featured on previous Rolling Loud lineups and would have been at the Bay Area show if not for his tragic death. Cherif said that while he could not reveal the exact plans, XXXtentacion was an important part of the Rolling Loud story and he would be honored in some way.

There are limited tickets left for the two-day event and you can visit rollingloud.com for more information.