Drake, Usher, Summer Walker, and Lil Durk are among those joining co-founder J. Cole at Dreamville Festival 2023 in Raleigh, North Carolina.
J. Cole’s Dreamville Festival has always been a highly anticipated fixture since the first show took place in 2019 — and while the next two would-be editions were called off due to the COVID-19 pandemic, that hasn’t taken any of the excitement away from the event, which saw a triumphant return in 2022.
Now, the third time is shaping up to be the charm.
On Tuesday, Dreamville announced a star-studded lineup for 2023 featuring Drake, Usher, JID, Summer Walker, Lil Durk, and a legion of fellow stars coming together for the two-day show in Raleigh, North Carolina on April 1 and 2.
Dreamville Festival 2023: The Lineup
“With a continued emphasis on community, diversity, and inclusivity, Dreamville Festival will once again offer fans from across the globe a weekend celebration curated by J. Cole himself and featuring a variety of local vendors, food trucks, artisans, and community organizations from the greater Triangle area,” Dreamville said in statement. “Festival-goers can look forward to exploring the historic Dorothea Dix Park, Raleigh’s largest city park, and enjoying incredible music performances next April featuring Cole’s own favorite musical artists and collaborators who are traveling worldwide to perform in his home state of North Carolina.”
As Boardroom’s Randall Williams points out, Dreamville Fest 2022 grossed $6.7 million for the city of Raleigh; that figure could very well increase mightily with so many big names attached to both days of the event. Last year’s show was highlighted by Lil Baby, JID, Rico Nasty, and Kehlani. Cole also gathered Dreamville label associates for D-Day — a collaborative mixtape with DJ Drama.
If you require a further indication of how popular this year’s festival is shaping up to be, pre-sale tickets were already sold out in November.
The Cole & Drake History
Back in April 2010, Cole talked about his relationship with Drake in a feature with Vibe: “We’re both young and even though he’s more established and has hits, he still doesn’t have an album out. He still has to prep for that. So, we’re not in the position to be best friends. We can save that for when we’re both laid up and chilling, but right now we both have work to do.”
It appears that time has come.
The two teamed up on “In The Morning” in 2010 and “Jodeci Freestyle” in 2013, not to mention Cole freestyling over Drake’s “Pipe Down” instrumental to create “Heavens EP” on the D-Day mixtape.
Dreamville at a Glance
- J. Cole birthed Dreamville in 2007. His 2021 album, The Offseason, posted the heaviest streaming week of the year up to that time, accumulating over 325.5 million streams. In January of this year, Cole erased all content from his Instagram — which he also did back in 2018, 2019, and 2021 before dropping three major albums each time. Keep an eye on this space, as they say.
- JID ascended in 2022 after dropping his third studio album, The Forever Story, in late August. It secured the No. 12 spot in its first week with 30,000 units sold and boasts features including Lil Wayne, 21 Savage, EarthGang, Kenny Mason, Lil Durk, and Ari Lennox.
- Ari Lennox dropped Age/Sex/Location a few weeks after JID dropped The Forever Story, helping Dreamville maintain its momentum in the later months of the 2022 calendar year. The album was a hit among her die-hard fans, but it didn’t quite win over the mainstream. It sold 12,000 units and debuted at No. 69 on Billboard’s 200 during the week of release.
- Bas, EarthGang, Omen, Lute, Cozz are all a huge part in what they’re building, most recently heard on D-Day: A Gangsta Grillz Mixtape from March 2022.
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