Photos and words by: Teresa McCullough

Roots Picnic | Photo By: Teresa McCullough

Roots Picnic | Photo By: Teresa McCullough

In its eighth year, The Roots Picnic managed to bring out some real players in the realm of new talent, a handful not even 21 yet.

Moses Sumney | Photo By: Teresa McCullough

Moses Sumney | Photo By: Teresa McCullough

Starting off the day early, around 1:00, was someone that caught my eye, artist Moses Sumney. His cool, soulful sound was nice on the ears and had a funky twist to it. “I can’t believe so many people came out for my early set,” he said modestly as he went into his next song. Definitely check him out.

Bishop Nehru| Photo By: Teresa McCullough

Bishop Nehru| Photo By: Teresa McCullough

Next on the list was Bishop Nehru, a young rapper, producer, video director, and climbing. The 18-year-old, currently residing in NY, brought a fresh style with fiercely delivered rap flow. One of my favorite small stage performances for sure.

Rae Sremmurd | Photo By: Teresa McCullough

Rae Sremmurd | Photo By: Teresa McCullough

A crowd favorite, Rae Sremmurd, comprised of 19-year-old Swae Lee and 21-year-old Slim Jimmy, really hyped up the crowd. Performing radio hit after hit like, “No Type” and “No Flex Zone” while smoking blunt after blunt.

Dj Windows 98 | Photo By: Teresa McCullough

Dj Windows 98 | Photo By: Teresa McCullough

Following that was DJ Windows 98, also known as Win Butler of Arcade Fire. His tribal sound with two live drummers and accompanied by choice select songs was an unexpected treat. Wearing a cool driving jacket over an already long sleeved button down, a cowboy-like hat and a vintage case, he was packing some hot style.

Phantogram | Photo By: Teresa McCullough

Phantogram | Photo By: Teresa McCullough

Phantogram was a nice change in pace for the day, still amping the crowd up and bringing the noise, they had a stellar performance. Packing on the style wearing sunglasses from Philly sunglasses designer, LeGrand Leseur, lead singer Sarah Barthel really turned up the heat. 

Raury | Photo By: Teresa McCullough

Raury | Photo By: Teresa McCullough

Eighteen year old performer, Raury, had a more spiritual performance for the crowd, lighting sage behind the harbor stage at Festival Pier. With three backup singers and an array of musicians behind him, he provided one of the more chill performances, dressed in a traditional Chinese qipao. Young and talented for sure.

A$AP ROCKY | Photo By: Teresa McCullough

A$AP ROCKY | Photo By: Teresa McCullough

A$AP ROCKY was definitely one of the performances to catch. If you haven’t heard his new album, At. Long. Last. ASAP. I would highly suggest checking it out.

The Weeknd | Photo By: Teresa McCullough

The Weeknd | Photo By: Teresa McCullough

There was a long pause as the crowd anticipated The Weeknd coming out to perform. I guess he figured waiting was the best aphrodisiac, because it was about to get sexy. The sun was lit, and there was definitely no shade of grey about it.  Playing hit’s like “Often” which was expected, and many more. The crowd was into it.

The Weeknd | Photo By: Teresa McCullough

The Weeknd | Photo By: Teresa McCullough

Next up, Hudson Mohawke did a DJ set as the sun started to go down…it was a much expected dope set by the electronic music producer/DJ from Glasgow, Scotland. Taking us into the night was the one and only Erykah Badu, who delivered a spiritual and epic performance. The Roots played late into the night per usual, as The Weeknd came back out on stage to close out the picnic and send the crowd home satisfied. Yet another successful Roots Picnic here in the City of Brotherly Love. See you next year!