Linkin Park, AWOLNATION, Finch + More Rock the 2013 Sunset Strip Music Festival [Photos]
The three-day event kicked off on Thursday night, Aug. 1, with a special show from this year's honoree, Joan Jett. She and her band the Blackhearts played a set at the House of Blues in Los Angeles before a star-studded crowd featuring Rudy Sarzo, Kristen Stewart, Kat Von D, Matt Sorum and many more.
There were shows scattered throughout all the clubs on the Strip Friday night, but for approximately 15,000 fans, it was all about Saturday, Aug. 3. That's the day the Sunset Strip turns into a musical street fest featuring drink, fun and a ton of live music.
Mikael Maglieri, who owns the Whisky a Go Go, one of the most vaunted rock star hangouts on earth, told Loudwire that the Sunset Strip Music Festival epitomizes what the Strip is all about. “My dad was the original owner of the Rainbow Bar & Grill and so I've seen a lot of things here on the Strip. From Hendrix playing at the Whisky to all the amazing metal bands that grew out of the scene in the '80s, this really is the musical mecca of the world. To be able to be a part of creating this festival is something I’m very proud of and I think this year's lineup really speaks to the diversity and impact of music in Los Angeles area.”
More than 70 bands played on two main stages anchored at both ends of the Strip as well as in the Whisky and the Roxy. The Eastside main stage featured many classic hip-hop acts including Doug E. Fresh, Slick Rick and headliner Wale.
Down at the West End main stage, things were more or less packed from late afternoon on when veteran post-hardcore legends Finch kicked things off under the late afternoon summer sun.
Next, the bluesy rock trio Black Rebel Motorcycle Club delivered a solid and sturdy set which set the stage for AWOLNATION right before the sun went down. Fueled by the phenomenal success of their hit single ‘Sail,’ Aaron Bruno led his band through a beguiling 45-minute set that featured much of the band's first and only album, ‘Megalithic Symphony.’ Bruno, who spins and dances like a whirling dervish, captivated the crowd, directing them through several sing-alongs and hand-waving participations.
By 9:30 PM it was time for headliners Linkin Park to take over and deliver, which they more than did. The legendary Southern California rap/rock outfit is beyond beloved and the faithful were in full force. Their 19-song, 90-minute set featured many fan favorites from ‘Numb’ to ‘Burn it Down’ and the tightly packed Strip responded just as expected. They knew every beat, and every lyric and thus the festival ended on a triumphant note.
Check out our photo gallery from the 2013 Sunset Strip Music Festival below.
Black Rebel Motorcycle Club: