Best Venues To Camp Out for Hip-Hop During Hopscotch

Many seasoned Hopscotch-goers, festival attendees and planning-freaks in general may anticipate seeing all of their favorite acts in this year’s Hopscotch line-up. Luckily, all this takes is hours of research, plenty of running around in the hot sun, and if you’re blessed enough to be unfamiliar with downtown Raleigh, you can burn through tons of GPS data usage trying to find your next spot.

What’s the point of all this sarcasm?

Some people just wanna camp out at a venue and chill there for the whole damn day.

Perhaps even specifically those who LOVE Hip-Hop.

If you’re one of these people, here’s the best venue each day of Hopscotch for your lethargic, Hip-Hop needs:

Thursday, September 7th: Lincoln Theatre

Hip-Hop fans rejoice, for the first day of Hopscotch has an amazing line-up to kick things off, found at none other than Lincoln Theatre. Local emcee/producer/figurehead in NC Hip-Hop P.A.T. Junior will be getting the party started at 9:30pm. He’s known for both amazing production and lyricism, and is sure to kick off a vibe you won’t want to miss. Following P.A.T. is an artist who’s always done it dope, but even more so recently due to “North Cack”-fame, Durham’s own G Yamazawa. Take this from the Underground Director of WKNC: this guy puts on a show. Come witness the flow. BARS.

Then, Oddisee and Good Compny hits the stage. This is a great example of Hip-Hop meets live-band (think The Roots). It’ll touch your soul, man. Finally, riding the wave of success from her July 2016 tape Telefone, Chicago’s own Noname will be closing the night out, which is icing on the cake to a great first night of Hip-Hop at Hopscotch.

For those who haven’t been before, Lincoln Theatre will be a cool spot. It’s certainly one of the larger venues in Raleigh and has a wide variety of seating to view the act, both standing and seating. It’s got a hipster-type ambience, and plenty of good beer specials. Additionally, there are quite a few restaurants within walking distance of the venue, for those who will be have dinner before they pick their venue for the night.

This is the spot for Hip-hop on Thursday!!

Friday, September 8th: Red Hat Amphitheater

It’s no secret who is hosting the biggest names this year. Red Hat Amphitheater is the venue that will give you the most Hip-Hop on Friday. When I say the most, I mean the most. The night opens with Busdriver, an underground-rap hero hailing from Los Angeles, at 5:20. He’s a seasoned artist, so he’s gonna bring the juice. Keeping the night going is NC’s own Rapsody, who’s accolades include a huge amount of work with NC-producer 9th Wonder, landing the only feature on Kendrick Lamar’s Grammy-winning To Pimp a Butterfly, and recently being signed to Jay-Z’s Roc Nation. Yeah, you probably wouldn’t wanna miss that. And of course, the grande finale of the night: Run the Jewels. It has been said that they put on some of the best live performances ever. Like, ever.

Red Hat Amphitheater is a staple in Raleigh live music, known for housing some of the biggest acts that come to the 919. Their parking is ultra-convenient, so for those who may stress about that like me, this is your relief. AND for local beer lover, they feature brews from Lone Rider, Carolina Brewery and many others. With all types of seating that has great views of the stage, this is your best bet on Friday to catch all kinds of Hip-Hop vibes.

Saturday, September 9th: City Plaza

City Plaza’s got the good stuff on Saturday. Kicking off the night is Electronic-Rock/Indie Rock band Body Games, who’ve got many LP’s to pull from and an amazing live set. They’ve also got ties to Hip-Hop through their dope collaboration with WELL$ (perhaps we’ll get a surprise performance of their track “WMN”?). This will be a great transition into ILOVEMAKONNEN, who’s infectious super-hit “Tuesday” track from 2014 is a staple in any college-party playlist. Keeping the Atlanta-vibes going, the biggest act of the night is legendary emcee Big Boi. With a handful of hits from his Outkast days and a handful of hits from his solo records, Big Boi never disappoints live. Don’t miss!

Raleigh’s City Plaza is right in the heart of the city, which will be a unique outdoor spot for the performances on Saturday. This will be a great way to experience music in Hopscotch differently than other, indoor venues downtown. So let the outdoor city life spice up your Hopscotch weekend experience! 

Side note: Not to disregard everything I’ve said above, but it is important to note that Solange is performing at Red Hat Amphitheater on Saturday at 9 o’clock, just in case Solange is must-see for you as it is many others. Good luck choosing between the 2 amazing line-ups at each venue…. ah the struggles of festival planning! 

Sunday, September 10th: Red Hat Amphitheater

After 3 days of heavy festivities all through downtown Raleigh, Red Hat Amphitheater is the only venue hosting any sort of major music activities for Hopscotch. Come on out to the venue to see a line-up of amazing Indie music, including Cloud Nothings, Mount Moriah and Angel Olsen. Close out the festival with an awesome Sunday of music!

Thank you to all Hopscotch-goers and enjoy Hopscotch 2017!