Chance, Vic Mensa Put On A Show At Common's AAHH! Fest In Chicago
AAHH! Fest photos taken by Johnny Fan for Okayplayer.
Chicago was the place to be yesterday, as Common‘s AAHH! Fest was just one of two major events happening in the Windy City. Hundreds of music fans, teenagers and families came from all over to check out the second annual event. Held in the West Loop, the two-day extravaganza served as a community day, which featured local artists such as Ace da Vinci and national acts like Vic Mensa. Spearheaded by the G.O.O.D. Music lyricist, several community groups offered family resources at the AAHH! Fest, including Common’s Common Ground Foundation and Rhymefest‘s Donda’s House organization.
Okayplayer was in the house in a major way during Saturday’s Community Day. Tink, Taylor Bennett and the aforementioned Vic Mensa were on-hand to perform before Sunday’s daylong concert, which featured headliners such as Ice Cube, J. Cole, The Roots and Bilal. AAHH! Fest proved to be an exhilarating event, as 20 local community organizations created activities centered around art, health and wellness, and college and career pathways. Serving the Chicago area with a purpose, Allstate, Google, the Black McDonald’s Operators Association, iHeart Media, Coors Light, Aramark, Starbuck‘s and D0312 were the major sponsors for the day’s festivities.
For those who didn’t know, AAHH! Fest was conceived by the legendary Chi-town MC, Common, as a way of providing hope and enriching the lives of the young people in his community. Hosted by comedian Deon Cole (Black-ish, Angie Tribeca) — the Englewood and Roseland funnyman participated in AAHH! Fest as a shared ambassador of change alongside Common. Returning after a year off, the AAHH! Fest featured a rousing performance from Southside’s own Vic Mensa, who performed “!6 Shots” in an effort to contextualize the uproar behind LaQuan McDonald‘s unjustified death by police. He also played “U Mad” and “Danger” while his set concluded. Nearing the ending of his performance, Mensa also had the crowd chanting, “Fuck 12” as he theatrically portrayed himself being shot by a gun and fell on the stage.
Also in a surprise move, Chance The Rapper, who had his own Magnificent Coloring Day festival going on at the same time and mere miles away, showed up to perform for Common’s AAHH! Fest. The early morning surprise enabled the celebrated independent artist to perform such hit songs like “No Problem,” “Blessings” and “Sunday Candy” to raucous applause. The crowd was absolutely in a frenzy when Chance makes his appearance, as they sing alongside the rapper as he makes his praises to God. After Chance finished, the big man, Common came out to champion Chance, calling him “the biggest thing to come out of Chicago since Kanye” and “the future.” We were able to get some introspective shots for your perusal, so, please check them out and if you’re currently at Day 2 of AAHH! Fest let us know what you think about the event by hitting us up on Twitter @Okayplayer.
Tickets, $15.90-$50 for Saturday (11 a.m. to 3 p.m.), and $65-$250 for Sunday (1 p.m. to 11 p.m.), are available at www.aahhfest.com.