Pick Up the Phone, it’s Boston Calling
By MADELINE CESARETTI ‘21
Entering through Boston Calling’s blow-up gates, I immediately understood why so many of my friends raved so wildly about the festival. Hosted at the Harvard Athletic Complex in Cambridge, the event provided plenty of green space for people to stretch out, soaking up the sun and live music. The much-anticipated event bursted with energy from the constant live music in the air to the food booths’ delectable aromas. This year, the event drew crowds because of its star-studded lineup, which featured headliners Twenty One Pilots, Tame Impala, and Travis Scott, along with standouts including Odesza, Clairo, Hozier, Denzel Curry, Logic, and special guest Lil Nas X. The festival grounds boasted three outdoor stages helpfully color-coded as red, green, and blue. The Arena, an indoor performance space, boasted a variety of other performers such as Jenny Slate, Michael Che, and the Boston Ballet.
This year, Boston Calling ran quite smoothly. The from its prompt acts to its easily accessible schedule and copious amounts of food. In fact, the timely nature of the musical acts, helped the festival keep its relaxed atmosphere. Most importantly, the weather cooperated throughout the weekend, as it was consistently bright and sunny. The Boston Calling mobile app kept the diverse array of appearances at one’s fingertips; the schedule was also posted around the festival grounds on both electronic screens and large billboards. Food booths lined the field and beyond, and the relatively reasonable prices at such a huge event offered festival-goers plenty of options to fill their bellies,.
Notable performance highlights included Twenty One Pilots’ literally explosive set that kicked off the festival, and Travis Scott’s giant one-eyed teddy bear that closed the event. Additionally, Lil Nas X’s performed “Old Town Road” in full cowboy attire, causing the whole crowd to converge on the stage and maintaining the energy throughout the festival.
One of the Boston Calling’s largest attractions year after year is its diversity of artists. Unlike many music festivals, Boston Calling emphasizes the inclusion of artists from various genres. While the festival traditionally focuses on showcasing indie, pop, and alt-rock music, it shone a spotlight on rap and hip-hop this year. This new trend bodes well for the festival’s future, as it expands to new genres and audiences yielding a more diverse lineup.
Gracie Deneen ‘21 raved that “Boston Calling [was] such a great experience! The live music and overall excitement of everyone at the event [made] it so fun. There were so many different types of artists from folk bands to mainstream rappers, making the festival great for many different types of people.”
Boston Calling is an electrifying event for music lovers as a result of the artistic variety, accessibility, and ambiance of the festival. Despite the expensive price tag that comes with the event, early ticket purchases can help alleviate the impact the event has on one’s wallet. Start planning for next year — this event is certainly not one to miss!