Lollapalooza 2021 Saturday: LAUNDRY DAY, Joy Oladokun, Megan Thee Stallion deliver surprising, fun performances

Lollapalooza 2021 Saturday: LAUNDRY DAY, Joy Oladokun, Megan Thee Stallion deliver surprising, fun performances

By Carolina Garibay

Everyone looks forward to Saturday and at Lollapalooza last weekend, this was no exception, from the lingering buzz of the previous music-filled days to the anticipation of Saturday’s headliners.

During the festival’s third day, festivalgoers were treated to performances from the likes of Journey, Post Malone and Megan Thee Stallion, along with a surprise set from Machine Gun Kelly at the festival’s Bud Light Seltzer Sessions venue.

At a festival where music is always happening, it’s hard to keep track of the myriad of artists who performed, which is why we’ve compiled some of the most memorable performances of the day into this list.

LAUNDRY DAY brings passion, talent to Grubhub Stage

One of the more surprising performances of the day was LAUNDRY DAY, not in terms of the band’s performance quality but of the audience’s energy and enthusiasm. LAUNDRY DAY hails from New York, but the band fits into the Chicago scene perfectly. They performed at the Grubhub Stage, and a decent amount of the crowd was filled with clearly day-one fans who knew all the words to their songs and were screaming the band members’ names. The band performed several favorites and also debuted a song that fans were more than excited to hear. Being able to watch this band full of people who clearly loved and knew what they were doing was a treat, and it’s safe to say that this is just the beginning of LAUNDRY DAY. 

Michigander brings emotion, varied instrumentals to set

Jason Singer, lead singer and founder of Michigander, said performing at Lollapalooza was a dream come true for him, saying, “I know I’ll cry by the end of this set, so I hope you’ll be there with me.” The singer and his band performed around 2 p.m. at the Grubhub Stage. They proceeded to play a setlist with inspiration drawn from midwest emo vocal inflections, alternative-indie instrumental qualities and the crowd’s energy. A highlight of the set was the trumpet feature, which brought a calming sense of clarity to some of the more intense songs of the set. Singer and his band played tunes from their latest release, “Everything Will Be Okay Eventually,” playing songs with dreamy, blurred guitar melodies and other songs with intense climaxes and heavy drums. 

Joy Oladokun perseveres despite technical difficulties 

Joy Oladokun brought folk and rhythm and blues to the BMI Stage on Saturday afternoon despite some slight technical difficulties that delayed her and her band’s performance. Oladokun played some tunes from her latest album, “in defense of my own happiness (complete),” such as “smoke,” “sorry isn’t good enough” and “i see america.” Oladokun also did a cover of Nirvana’s “Smells Like Teen Spirit,” taking a pleasant diversion from her usual relaxed and soulful tone. As she performed, her vocals were complemented by harmonizations from her band members, creating soulful, slightly dissonant harmonies that brought the group’s performance to an otherworldly level. 

Whitney provides much-needed breath of fresh air

One of the more relaxed and most enjoyable performances of the day was Whitney, who performed at Tito’s Stage in the late afternoon, which fit their vibe and aesthetic perfectly. The indie-folk band featured live violinists and a cellist, which added an entire extra layer to the performance and created a nice, mellow performance that stood out from the crazier, more intense sets. The lead singer Julien Ehrlich was on drums and vocals, which was super impressive and intriguing to watch. Though the audience started pretty small, by the start of Whitney’s set, the crowd had grown substantially, and the band’s lyrics could be heard from everyone in the crowd. The more chilled nature of Whitney’s songs mixed with the laid-back but passionate audience created an atmosphere that was really unlike any other set at the festival. Since all the band members were playing instruments, there wasn’t much dancing or moving around like some of the other performances, but that perfectly fit the mood of Whitney’s sound, and they were still able to keep the audience engaged throughout the show. 

Megan Thee Stallion channels “real hot girl s—”

Being in the middle of the crowd during Meg Thee Stallion’s performance was quite an experience in all the best ways. The set started with a compilation of Meg on the big screen, and when she made her way on stage with a bejeweled AC/DC bodysuit, the audience, understandably, lost their minds. Everyone was dancing, screaming lyrics and cheering Meg on, and she was cheering on everyone right back. She made use of her “real hot girl s—-“ phrase several times and repeatedly asked, “Where are my hot girls at?” which was answered by loud, affirming screams. Her set also featured incredibly talented dancers who made everyone’s mouths drop. It was one of the most fun and confidence-boosting crowds to be a part of at Lolla, and even if not everyone knew every song she was singing (but most people did), they were still dancing and having a good time. The crowd went absolutely wild when Meg performed one of the most popular songs of the past year, “WAP.” It was one of the loudest people have sung a song back to an artist at Lolla, and her performance was everything you could want and more from an audience as an artist. 

Cavetown brings whimsy to Grubhub Stage 

Cavetown delivered a dreamy performance at the Grubhub Stage early Saturday evening. Many sat on the ground during Cavetown’s performance, listening to and vibing with his setlist as he played some of his more recent songs and revisited some older tunes. Cavetown, or Robin Skinner, interacted with his crowd before his set, sitting down and swaying to the pre-set music and even telling the crowd he was drinking black tea with lemon. Some notable tunes from his setlist include “Idea of Her,” “Lemon Boy” and “Juliet.” With his stylistic voice cracks and hazy guitar melodies, Cavetown was in his element as he gave a whimsical performance, even bringing chloe moriondo on stage for a subdued version of Wheatus’ “Teenage Dirtbag.” Telling his audience to take care and stay healthy, Cavetown ended his set with “This Is Home.” 

Journey engages audiences with timeless, popular hits

It’s no surprise Journey dominated the Bud Light Seltzer Stage Saturday night. Festivalgoers had much to look forward to as the band played hits like “Lovin’, Touchin’, Squeezin’,” “Wheel in the Sky” and, of course, “Don’t Stop Believin” as the night’s closing set. It’s still unclear who was having more fun Saturday night – Journey or their audience – as the band took the time to add solos to many songs, including a drumset duel and insane guitar and piano solos. When the band played “Open Arms” and “Faithfully,”  many couples began slow dancing while others sang along to the ballads. “Any Way You Want It” was another crowd favorite as the massive crowd took on a life of its own, singing the lyrics back to the band. ”Don’t Stop Believin,” one of the band’s most popular tunes, was the obvious choice of a closer for the night, and fans seemed to agree. Even people leaving Grant Park sang along to the tune as they passed the Bud Light Seltzer Stage, and that’s pretty special.