Grizzly Fest Day 2: Snoop Dogg, Phantogram and Fashawn Close the Festival with a Bang


Photo by: Larry Valenzuela

Rapper Snoop Dogg throws a blunt to members of the crowd as he headlines on the Yosemite stage on day two of Grizzly Fest, Friday, May 18.

As day two of Grizzly Fest concluded on Saturday it has become evident that the festival will be a mainstay in Fresno for years to come as promoters knocked it out of the park in a crucial year of expansion.

The focus of day two was centered on headliner Snoop Dogg. Grizzly Fest succeeded once again at giving the crowd a genre bending lineup as they mixed Reggae Fusion (Dirty Heads), dreamy Chillwave sound (Washed Out), Electronic Trip-Hop (Phantogram) and Eclectic Punk (Mangchi).

A bit of disappointment spread through the festival grounds as it was announced earlier Saturday that rapper Action Bronson would not be performing due to illness. Although the late scratch the promoters were able to find a quick replacement in the form of Sage the Gemini, known for his 2013 hits “Red Nose” and “Gas Pedal.”

Critically-acclaimed and Fresno born rapper Fashawn, who is signed to day one performer Nas’ record label Mass Appeal, set the Sequoia crowd into a frenzy as the crowd cheer on one of their very own. Cranking out music from his “Ecology” album, including his hit song “Something To Believe In” Fashawn killed his set per usual.

The Dirty Heads set was filled with fan favorite hits like “My Sweet Summer,” “Dance All Night” and most notably “Lay Me Down” which saw those in attendance go word for word with lead singer Dirty J.

Not to be outshined by anyone on the lineup the bass thumping, ear splitting and mesmerizing electronic duo of Phantogram (Sarah Barthel and Josh Carter) may have been the highlight of the night as their set was filled with the angelic voice of Barthel accompanied with mind bending visuals.

Photo by: Larry Valenzuela
 Lead vocalist of electronic rock band Phantogram Sarah Barthel gives an electrifying performance on the Yosemite stage at Grizzly Fest on Saturday, May 19, 2018.

With the crowd in the palms of their hands the duo hit on a wide range of emotions with songs like “Same Old Blues,” “You Don’t Get Me High Anymore” and “Fall in Love.”

As the smell of sativa and indica filled throughout the crowd in the waking moment of Snoop Dogg’s set, once the west coast legend hit the stage the crowd exploded as he put a show that put an emphatic stamp on Grizzly Fest 2018.

With the help of former Death Row label mate Kurupt, the performance captivated the crowd through obvious throwbacks like; “Who Am I? (What’s My Name?),” “Gin and Juice,” “Nuthin’ but a ‘G’ Thang” and “The Next Episode.” Snoop also performed the obscure like his guest verses on “All I Do Is Win” and surprisingly “California Gurls.”

The consensus was at the end of the night was that given his star power and array of hit Snoop was a fantastic choice to close out Grizzly Fest 2018 in the year the event decided to expanded to a bigger stage.

One major take away from this year’s event was the presence of security or lack thereof which became very apparent as the final set of the night became a free-for-all in the media pit. With people coming through left and right the scene was more  “Mad Max” than music festival.

With that being the only negative from a two day festival catering to thousands of Fresno natives than many more people will be clamoring with anticipation for the lead up to Grizzly Fest 2019.


–          Local rock duos  Strange Vine were a surprising hit bringing life to the crowd with their unique sound akin to the styling of the Black Keys

–          Current WBC super lightweight champion and valley native Jose Ramírez made an appearance before Snoop Dogg’s set to promote his upcoming fight at the Save Mart Center set for July 7 on ESPN

–          Police Chief Jerry Dyer was front and center in the media pit for the blazed up set put on by Snoop Dogg