Deltron 3030 At San Francisco's Stern Grove Festival
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By Mylea Gacutan
San Francisco's annual Stern Grove Festival serves as the summer kickoff for Bay Area residents. Now in its 76th year, the free 10-week festival takes place at Sigmund Stern Grove park in San Francisco's Sunset District and features a phenomenal lineup of diverse artists. On June 30 the featured performers were hip-hop masters Deltron 3030, a collective including San Francisco-based producer Dan The Automator, Oakland rapper Del The Funky Homosapien and Canadian turntablist Kid Koala, all of whom earned a GRAMMY nomination in 2001 for the Gorillaz's "Clint Eastwood."
Combining vocals from Del The Funky Homosapien, Kid Koala's mixing and Dan The Automator's production technique, the supergroup's talent has no limits. After more than a decade since releasing their 2000 self-titled album, Deltron 3030 are expected to release their highly anticipated sophomore set, Event II, this year.
Upon arriving to the park, the air was fresh and cool with hints of eucalyptus from the surrounding trees. Fans filing off Muni busses mobbed the streets to enter the park for Sunday fun. The venue quickly filled to capacity while 10,000 fans waited anxiously for the festivities to begin. Just as the sun began to peek through the San Francisco fog, Kid Koala took the stage with a beaming smile. With his playful attitude, he masterfully mixed everything from De La Soul to Delta blues. After pulling the audience into a funky groove combined with perfectly timed scratching, Kid Koala encouraged the audience to channel their inner 4-year-old by engaging in some lighthearted hand movements to his "Yo Gabba Gabba!" hit. Audience members looked to their neighbors with fresh-faced pride and the energy of a child. For his final song, Kid Koala brought the audience some vintage nostalgia, with a sample of Henry Mancini's "Moon River." Just as the audience was wrapped in romance, Kid Koala excused himself from the stage to prepare for his performance with Deltron 3030.
Dan The Automator took his place center stage with his back to the audience wearing a conductor's tuxedo and white sneakers. As the beat began to build, Del The Funky Homosapien boomed from the wings with a quarrelsome furry, exuding confidence and charisma as he commandeered the stage. As the crowd roared along to the lyrics of "3030," they were in for a special treat when the perimeter of the stage came alive with a performance by members of the San Francisco Symphony, who recreated the sounds of Dan The Automator. The crowd was lively and energized when Dan taught the lyrics to the new song "Nobody Can."
The sun illuminated the crowd as they chanted, "Deltron is our hero! If he can't do it nobody can!" As Deltron 3030 wrapped with their final song, they exited the stage only to return for an encore — a much-anticipated performance of "Clint Eastwood."
If this concert was any indicator, it's going to be a cool, cool summer in San Francisco.
For more information on the Stern Grove Festival, click here.
"State Of The Nation"
"Things You Can Do"
"City Rising From The Ashes"
"Melding Of The Minds"
"Pay The Price"
Kid Koala solo
"My Only Love"
"Do You Remember"
"Clint Eastwood" (Gorillaz)
(Mylea Gacutan is a resident of San Francisco. She has an obsession with music and attending live shows. When she is not at a concert she enjoys spending time outdoors at Golden Gate Park.)