Riot Fest Brought the Good Vibes and a Love of Cannabis to Chicago

On day-one of Riot Fest, there was paranoia. Before music-lovers, which the Chicago-based festival attracts alone, entered the festival grounds, many were asking, “What about my legally acquired cannabis?!” I overheard that concern more than once, but those fears were soon laid to rest as festival goers bypassed the lovely security members and enjoyed their vices in a peaceful, three-day celebration of music and community. 

It was truly a celebration, too, with an endearing sense of community. People cared. Not only about quality music and good times, but about each other. Petty arguing and fighting, which are unfortunately common at festivals, were a rare sight, at least for my eyes. When someone was hurt or had a few too many, people helped.

Photo courtesy of Jack Giroux

During a booming set from cannabis enthusiasts Run the Jewels, when a man hit the ground, there was only concern, no laughter. People giving a crap about one another made the music and overall experience of Riot Fest all the more enjoyable. 

A few bands dropped out before the event, including Nine Inch Nails and the Pixies, but the lineup remained stacked. This year, a few of the headliners included Lupe Fiasco, Devo, Slipknot, The Flaming Lips and The Smashing Pumpkins. 

Sometimes must-see acts conflicted in the schedule, but more often than not, all the stages presented variety. Depending on one’s mood on the day, there was a band that would cater to it. After a long day, for example, Lupe Fiasco got the energy raised sky-high. The Chicago native performed “The Cool,” and it ruled. The artist’s voice was as beautiful as it sounds on a record. 

Artists were delighted to be back on stage. Several acts admitted to the crowd they hadn’t performed since the pandemic started. Many, such as Run the Jewels, worried they’d show signs of rust. Not the case. Every artist, except Machine Gun Kelly, brought nothing but joy and their A-game to the festival. 

A bit of clarification: Machine Gun Kelly took a swipe at Slipknot as the band performed on another stage and dedicated the show to one of its founding members, Joey Jordison. Kelly mocked the group. In the end, Slipknot had the last laugh because people were actually talking about their performance the next day, while people just groaned about Kelly.

Every day was an embarrassment of riches in terms of acts to catch. K.Flay was a dominant force on stage. Along with her band, she held nothing back. She was thrilling. Sublime ignited a wave of nostalgia in the audience. 

“I used to smoke weed listening to this in college!” a friend shouted. The Mighty Mighty Bosstones and Living Colour brought it, as well. Those bands have such an infectious on-stage chemistry together. It radiates off the stage and consumes the audience. 

On the more rock side, nobody left Thrice or Taking Back Sunday disappointed. Disappointment was not common at Riot Fest. The massive crowd, which needed to provide proof of vaccination or a negative COVID test to attend, had nothing to complain about. 

Riot Fest
Photo courtesy of Jack Giroux

Shoutout to the attendees, whose phones were not always up and selfies didn’t run rampant. People were respectful of the performances. There was a tangible passion among the crowd there. Everyone, based on my experience, was there for the music alone. 

The audience was maybe at its most rowdy when Run the Jewels hit the stage. The two-man hip hop group, El-P and Killer Mike, have always been known to put on a helluva show. The hype is correct. Their music isn’t even to my taste, but what a fantastic performance the self-admittedly high duo delivered.

Both spontaneous and choreographed, Run the Jewels had an army of music fans on their feet and moving. There were nonstop cheers, especially when Killer Mike said cannabis prohibition needs to stop. He also gave a lovely shout out to his wife in the audience. She, too, was high, Killer Mike noted. 

Riot Fest didn’t stop after the headliners performed. There are late nights after shows to catch around Chicago. I only caught one myself, but it was one worth catching. The feverish punk group from Los Angeles, The Bronx, had my ears ringing in delight at The Cobra Lounge. The band even gave me an excuse to finally put my long hair to good use and bang it around a bit. They hadn’t performed in a long time, but you’d never know it. 

Riot Fest was such an enjoyable experience full of good times that it’s impossible to list off all the damn fine acts that livened up not only the weekend, but the year, for many in attendance. Fever 333, Anti-Flag, Body Count, which is fronted by Iced-T, and many other groups brought nothing but joy to Chicago. This year’s Riot Fest was yet another reminder of why live music is just good for the soul. 

The post Riot Fest Brought the Good Vibes and a Love of Cannabis to Chicago appeared first on High Times.

Friday, April 3, 2020 Headlines | Marijuana Today Daily News

Marijuana Today Daily Headlines
Friday, April 3, 2020 | Curated by host Shea Gunther

// Eleven Senators Push To Let Marijuana Businesses Access Federal Loan Programs (Marijuana Moment)

// Weed Prices in France Nearly Double as Supplies Dry Up Due to COVID-19 (Merry Jane)

// Illinois Stores Sold Nearly $36 Million Worth Of Recreational Marijuana In March Despite Coronavirus (Marijuana Moment)


These headlines are brought to you by Curaleaf, one of the leading vertically-integrated cannabis operators in the U.S. With legal medical marijuana dispensaries, cultivation sites, and processing facilities all over the United States, Curaleaf has served more than 165,000 medical cannabis patients and looks forward to helping many more long into the future. Swing over to Curaleaf.com to learn more about this very cool company!


// Canada classifies medical cannabis ‘essential’ amid COVID-19 pandemic (Marijuana Business Daily)

// Canada’s COVID-19 wage subsidies could keep cannabis workers on payroll (Marijuana Business Daily)

// Idaho Activists Suspend Campaign To Legalize Medical Marijuana Due To Coronavirus (Marijuana Moment)

// Cops Are Still Busting Weed Grows in the Middle of the Coronavirus Pandemic (Merry Jane)

// The 2020 Hash Bash will be livestreamed due to the coronavirus (Detroit Metro Times)

// Coronavirus Pandemic Cancels Annual ‘420 Hippie Hill’ Cannabis Celebration In San Francisco (KPIX 5 CBS SF BayArea)

// When will your state’s COVID-19 cases peak? Check this chart (Leafly)


Check out our other projects:Marijuana Today— Our flagship title, a weekly podcast examining the world of marijuana business and activism with some of the smartest people in the industry and movement. • Marijuana Media Connect— A service that connects industry insiders in the legal marijuana industry with journalists, bloggers, and writers in need of expert sources for their stories.

Love these headlines? Love our podcast? Support our work with a financial contribution and become a patron.

Photo: Geoff Livingston/Flickr

Vancouver’s Breakout hip hop festival fans react to 2020 cancellation

Vancouver‘s only bi-annual hip hop festival has always been known for its star-studded lineups and dedicated fanbase. Breakout’s journey from throwing small local shows for up and coming artists to being a household festival that showcases local talent alongside hip-hops finest has built solid fans every step of the way. Needless to say, not being […]

The post Vancouver’s Breakout hip hop festival fans react to 2020 cancellation appeared first on Latest Cannabis News Today – Headlines, Videos & Stocks.

Bass Coast Music Festival has been postponed until 2021

Another major Canadian music festival is forced to cancel due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The independent music festival Bass Coast, officially announced they will not return in 2020. The EDM festival was set to take place on July 10th to 13th, 2020 in Merrit, British Columbia, but will now be postponed until July 2021.  Organizers made the […]

The post Bass Coast Music Festival has been postponed until 2021 appeared first on Latest Cannabis News Today – Headlines, Videos & Stocks.

Shambhala Music Festival has officially been postponed until July 2021

With a heavy heart, the official statement was released yesterday to announce the beloved Shambhala Music Festival will be postponed until July 2021. After weeks of uncertainty, the official announcement to postpone the festival has been made. It is important to acknowledge that this could not have been an easy decision to make. Ultimately, after […]

The post Shambhala Music Festival has officially been postponed until July 2021 appeared first on Latest Cannabis News Today – Headlines, Videos & Stocks.

Shambhala Music Festival has officially been postponed until July 2021

With a heavy heart, the official statement was released yesterday to announce the beloved Shambhala Music Festival will be postponed until July 2021. After weeks of uncertainty, the official announcement to postpone the festival has been made. It is important to acknowledge that this could not have been an easy decision to make. Ultimately, after […]

The post Shambhala Music Festival has officially been postponed until July 2021 appeared first on Latest Cannabis News Today – Headlines, Videos & Stocks.

Shambhala Music Festival has officially been postponed until July 2021

With a heavy heart, the official statement was released yesterday to announce the beloved Shambhala Music Festival will be postponed until July 2021. After weeks of uncertainty, the official announcement to postpone the festival has been made. It is important to acknowledge that this could not have been an easy decision to make. Ultimately, after […]

The post Shambhala Music Festival has officially been postponed until July 2021 appeared first on Latest Cannabis News Today – Headlines, Videos & Stocks.

Friday, April 3, 2020 Headlines | Marijuana Today Daily News

Marijuana Today Daily Headlines
Friday, April 3, 2020 | Curated by host Shea Gunther

// Eleven Senators Push To Let Marijuana Businesses Access Federal Loan Programs (Marijuana Moment)

// Weed Prices in France Nearly Double as Supplies Dry Up Due to COVID-19 (Merry Jane)

// Illinois Stores Sold Nearly $36 Million Worth Of Recreational Marijuana In March Despite Coronavirus (Marijuana Moment)


These headlines are brought to you by Curaleaf, one of the leading vertically-integrated cannabis operators in the U.S. With legal medical marijuana dispensaries, cultivation sites, and processing facilities all over the United States, Curaleaf has served more than 165,000 medical cannabis patients and looks forward to helping many more long into the future. Swing over to Curaleaf.com to learn more about this very cool company!


// Canada classifies medical cannabis ‘essential’ amid COVID-19 pandemic (Marijuana Business Daily)

// Canada’s COVID-19 wage subsidies could keep cannabis workers on payroll (Marijuana Business Daily)

// Idaho Activists Suspend Campaign To Legalize Medical Marijuana Due To Coronavirus (Marijuana Moment)

// Cops Are Still Busting Weed Grows in the Middle of the Coronavirus Pandemic (Merry Jane)

// The 2020 Hash Bash will be livestreamed due to the coronavirus (Detroit Metro Times)

// Coronavirus Pandemic Cancels Annual ‘420 Hippie Hill’ Cannabis Celebration In San Francisco (KPIX 5 CBS SF BayArea)

// When will your state’s COVID-19 cases peak? Check this chart (Leafly)


Check out our other projects:Marijuana Today— Our flagship title, a weekly podcast examining the world of marijuana business and activism with some of the smartest people in the industry and movement. • Marijuana Media Connect— A service that connects industry insiders in the legal marijuana industry with journalists, bloggers, and writers in need of expert sources for their stories.

Love these headlines? Love our podcast? Support our work with a financial contribution and become a patron.

Photo: Geoff Livingston/Flickr

Ottawa Bluesfest returns with a legendary 2020 lineup

Ottawa’s Bluesfest Music Festival just dropped their 2020 lineup with music legends across several genres from rock to EDM to R&B and hip hop. Ottawa Bluesfest is an annual outdoor music festival that takes place each July in downtown Ottawa, Ontario. While the festival has historically focused on blues music since its inception, it has […]

The post Ottawa Bluesfest returns with a legendary 2020 lineup appeared first on Latest Cannabis News Today – Headlines, Videos & Stocks.

Ever After Music Festival Announces 2020 Lineup

Ever After Music Festival, Kitchener, Ontario‘s original heavy bass and dubstep festival has released its line up for the summer of 2020. Although Ontario is contending with the grip of the COVID-19 pandemic, and the closures currently in place due to it, the iconic Ever After Music Festival is still aiming to return for its […]

The post Ever After Music Festival Announces 2020 Lineup appeared first on Latest Cannabis News Today – Headlines, Videos & Stocks.