Made in America Music Festival: Jay Z bringing event to LA


LOS ANGELES -- Rapper Jay Z’s Made in America music festival is coming to downtown L.A.’s Grand Park despite concern from one City Council member that the influx of thousands of people attending multiple stages with access to beer could create a "nightmare."

The rapper joined L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti on the steps of City Hall on Wednesday to make the announcement, saying two years ago, "This was a dream." He also called Garcetti an "incredible mayor," noting he "pulled this thing together in record time."

No music lineup for the Budweiser Made in America festival was announced at the news conference, but big acts including Phoenix, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis and Jay Z’s wife, Beyonce, have appeared at what’s billed as a festival "curated" by Jay Z.

The prospect of a major concert drawing as many as 50,000 people to the heart of downtown had raised red flags for Councilman Jose Huizar, who warned about street closures and beer sales and their effects on residents. Last month, he introduced a council motion saying no permits should be provided for the event until questions are answered about its effects on the surrounding neighborhood.

But Garcetti said the festival will be a boon to the city and its economy.

He noted the festival, which will run Labor Day weekend Aug. 30 and 31, will "shine a spotlight on Grand Park" and celebrate the "best neighborhood anywhere in America."

However, Huizar spokesman, Rick Coca, said in an email his office had questions over whether the festival is the best use for Grand Park, "the so-called ‘people’s’ park."

But Jay Z said he was happy the festival will be "in the middle of the city" where everyone can access it easily. "It’s inclusion, it’s not exclusive."

L.A. County Supervisor Gloria Molina, who spoke Wednesday, said she knows people have had concerns about the location, but is confident the organizations in charge can handle it.

The Labor Day weekend event will run alongside the original Budweiser Made in America festival in Philadelphia, according to Live Nation. Tickets went on sale Wednesday.

Staff writers Emily Alpert Reyes and David Zahniser contributed to this report.


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