SoCal – HARD Festival rapid recap
End of an era for the Godfather
With 2017 marking the 10th year anniversary milestone for Hard Events, Hard Summer Music Festival not only lived up to their namesake but enshrined their legacy in the dance music scene. Curated by founder Gary Richards, the diverse lineup of EDM and hip-hop has always made Hard Summer stand out as one of the top music festival in the country. The blend of the two genres creating the ultimate West Coast vibe, with heavy bass acts such as Zeds Dead and Bassnectar to the king of the west coast himself, Snoop Dogg. And while the Glenn Helen Amphitheater has seen its fair share of festivals, it was a perfect way to showcase just how far Hard Events has come.
In addition to all the celebration, Gary Richards had announced that he was parting with Hard Events one week prior to the festival. The announcement stunning fans of the Hard community, set a bittersweet tone for the weekend. While rumors have been circulating as to what led to his parting with the company, he took to social media, encouraging everyone to have fun and celebrate the decade of good times. Sunday afternoon Richards, revered by fans as Destructo, took the stage for one last Hard set. With guest appearances by Yo Gotti, Chris Lorenzo and Giorgio Moroder, everyone came to pay their respects to the ‘Father of Hard’. What was most surprising however, was when Richards welcomed the mass of fans in the front row to share the stage with him as he played, creating the perfect vibe for his departure.
My take on Hard Summer this year aside from falling victim to the post show traffic, consisting of 3-hour ride both nights, it was a great festival. For myself, the lineup diversity along with the minimal stage designs has always been the most appealing aspects of this event. With each day having great lineups respectively, Sunday was a personal favorite as I caught performances from Dog Blood and the showcase of Dirtybird artists at the Pink Stage.
While the future of Hard Events without Gary Richards as its anchor is uncertain, Hard Summer 2017 was a great way to close out an era.