The second day of LA3C started with morning rain that thankfully gave way to clear skies, as thousands poured into Los Angeles State Historic Park to check out the Latin-centered lineup set to close out the festival’s inaugural weekend. Between watching heavy hitters perform, attendees also explored food vendors — including Lil Bobacita and Cena Vegan — and installations from celebrated L.A. artists like Patrick Martinez and Tiffany Alfonseca. (LA3C, which celebrates the city’s cultural diversity, is owned and promoted by Rolling Stone’s parent company, Penske Media Corp., and also included a separate stage in partnership with automotive-lifestyle event producer Hot Import Nights Brand, which was helmed by Mustard.) Here are highlights from a day that started chilly but heated up quickly, metaphorically at least.
Marc Segui Brings Summer to December
At sunset, the Spanish pop star took the stage in a bright-red Diesel shirt and performed alongside his band. Each member wore highlighter-bright shirts in red, yellow, blue, and pink; one member’s shirt had a playful message that said “We Promise We Rehearsed” splashed across the front.
The singer brought the sad-summer feels to December with his songs “Despertar” and “360,” pairing his performance with groovy, Sixties-style visuals. He was soon joined by fellow Spanish artist and collaborator Xavibo for “cara :)” and “Haciendo na.”
As Xavibo shared the stage, he brought a jolt of energy to the set, and bounced from one end to the other to hype up the crowd. Segui closed out with “Si nos vamos,” singing “Por ti, por ti, por ti, por ti” at twilight.
“You should all be so fucking proud to be Latino”
Chesca reminded us all why she’s one of the next big artists to watch. The Puerto Rican pop star hit Latin radio waves with “Subelo” with Pitbull, Static, and Ben El Tavori, and in February released the bachata-trap bop “Soltera.”
“So wonderful to be here in L.A.,” she said, speaking to the crowd in Spanish. “I hope you all continue to check in on me, Chesca, from PR. That you keep growing with my music; there’s a lot of good things coming. We’re going to keep going — it’s getting hot, but not really, it’s really fucking cold.”
Her performance was one of the highlights of the night. Flanked by backup dancers, Chesca belted each song with raw energy as she swayed across the stage and performed “Tu Weekend” and “Te Quiero Baby” — a collaboration track with Pitbull and Frankie Valli, which pulls from the 1967 classic “Can’t Take My Eyes Off You,” written by Bob Crewe and Bob Gaudio, and recorded by Frankie Valli.
Before jumping into “Activa” — a song about self-empowerment — Chesca teased: “It’s my current single that is out right now with Villano Antillano, and I have a mega fucking surprise.” Antillano, who has had her own remarkable rise this year, was that mega fucking surprise, joining the singer to perform the track.
Before closing out her set, Chesca had a few more words for the audience: “Latinos are really up, aren’t we? You should all be so fucking proud to be Latino. Let’s fucking go. … Like I said a thousand times, I hope you all are motivated to get to know me more. I love you.”
Fonseca Celebrates 20 Years
As the evening settled in, Fonseca and his band got everyone on their feet with “Vine a Buscarte,” and followed the performance with a heartfelt speech: “I am celebrating something so special — it’s been 20 years of my career,” he said. “Thank you for always accompanying me on that journey. Thank you for being a part of the dream.”
Before launching into “Volvámonos a Enamorar,” the Colombian singer-songwriter said, “This song talks about something very important. I believe that always in life, you reach a point where you have to find yourself again. And I’m not talking about love, or a relationship, but with anything in life — learning to fall in love again, and again.” As he closed his performance with “Eres Mi Sueño,” the crowd danced as his accordionist rocked out onstage.
Gerardo Ortiz Brings Regional to His Home Region
With an undeniably large Latino audience, the Pasadena, California-born norteño trailblazer was warmly received in his home county. “Los Angeles sounds so beautiful!,” Ortiz felt compelled to share midway through his set.
Known for his experimentation with the genre, Ortiz set the tone for his performance with an opening video that alternated video clips of his major regional hits interpolated with unexpected moments of EDM remixes and psychedelic visuals. Then his 19-piece banda took the stage in matching black-sequined suits before Ortiz stepped out in black leather pants, complementing a matching cowboy hat and pointed boots, and a stylish black leather jacket adorned with turquoise patches and silver rounded studs — another example of how Ortiz mixes tradition with modern flair.
As Ortiz broke out hits like “Quién Se Anima?,” couples were quick to join together in dance as friend groups filmed themselves singing along. That kept up as Ortiz ran down hits from different chapters of his career — “Mañana Voy a Conquistarla,” “Y Me Besa” — with minimal between-song banter, while saving his most recognizable hit, “Tranquilito,” for the close of his set. The set’s standout song, though, may have been the rock-leaning banda rendition of Gloria Estefan and Miami Sound Machine’s “Conga,” performed by the mega backing band as Ortiz’s walk-off music. We can only hope that maybe a recorded version will make a future project.
Snow Tha Product Makes Her Mother Proud
“Even though I didn’t go to college, I’m doing pretty well for myself,” outspoken Mexican American rapper Snow Tha Product shared as she awaited her mother, visiting from Zacatecas, Mexico, to join her onstage for a shot of tequila. “I told her — I think I’m probably going to be the most famous lesbian Mexican rapper that’s ever existed!” Snow stated before prompting the audience to go crazy for her next song, so her mom could take the video back to Mexico and show off how well her daughter is doing. (Mom eventually got around to filming, after downing some Don Julio.)
Easily one of the most entertaining sets of the weekend — finding its unique place somewhere between a rap show, dance contest, and stand-up comedy set — Snow Tha Product’s performance was something her mom couldn’t be anything but proud of. “I have so much love for you all, for supporting and loving my daughter for who she is,” her mother shared during her few seconds on the mic. And Snow made it clear she didn’t care whether attendees knew about her or not; she was going to make them listen either way. And while that meant she would spend what seemed like nearly half of her time speaking, she made good use of that time to educate the crowd on a range of important topics — including men needing to learn to respect women, the importance of women supporting other women, uplifting migrant communities, and standing up against the music industry as an independent artist.
Other highlights of Snow’s hourlong set included an acknowledgment of the one-year anniversary of legendary Mexican artist Vicente Fernandez’s passing (complete with audience participation in an a cappella chorus of his hit “Volver, Volver,” and a tequila shot in his honor), a front-row champagne spray, and a public standoff with production staff after pyrotechnics were not set off during a requested song.
After security aided in the mission of bringing “bad bitches to the stage,” per the artist’s request, the no-filter rapper stopped “Nieve” early on and provided an ultimatum that the festival either set the fire optics off as planned or return the $5,000 she spent on them. Moments later, fire burned bright as the stage turned into a twerk-a-thon, behind a safety implemented orange line, of course. Then “La Mexicana con tremendo flow” freestyled her most streamed release, her acclaimed BZRP music session, while jumping offstage and running down the barricades to complete her goal of connecting with as many fans as possible. Before parting, she made an actionable offer to have fans join her at popular downtown L.A. bar La Cita for an afterparty, and offered some final words of advice: “Go where your love is appreciated. Fuck everything else!”
Maluma (Baby!) Heats Up a Cold L.A. Night
The final words “Now — I give you my heart” are narrated by Maluma at the end of a video that preceded the festival’s final performance. The swelling crowd showed how anticipated the Colombian megastar’s set was, and the man of the hour — attired in a Supreme x Yohji Yamamoto leather jacket, diamond jewelry, red gloves, and sunglasses — burst onto the stage amid a sea of fog and white lights, wasting no time to deliver a high-energy and firework-assisted performance of “Hawái.”
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The fan response was rowdy from the start, and while we can’t be surprised his sultry voice or most sensual dance moves were producing loud reactions, it was his most basic actions, like simply removing his sunglasses, and in another moment his jacket, that markedly enabled even louder ones. The chart-topper played off the energy and had the audience captivated with a set list that included “11PM,” “Vente Pa’ Acá,” “Chantaje,” and “Felices Los 4,” and that came with suave dance moves and backup dancers sporting leopard leotards.
As the night proceeded and the temperature continued to drop, Papi Juancho provided a variety of ways to try to keep the audience warm, from encouraging dancing to the foolproof method of … alcohol. As he refilled his black solo cup midset, he asked his fans, “Are you guys drinking tonight or no? Because I am!” Then he toasted his dedicated fans just in time for the holiday season. “I am so thankful for your continued love and support through my 11-year career. The best part about it so far is knowing that it’s only just beginning!” the self-referred Don Juan proclaimed before raising a cheers with the audience. “I am so honored to be back in my favorite city in the U.S. — Los Angeles. Thank you so much for your love. Without the love of my fans, I would be nothing. Maluma, baby! For many more years to come.”