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Festival Guide

9 Must-See Acts at Made in America 2015

The Philly festival is going down this weekend; here's who you need to get psyched for

1 / 9

De La Soul: Saturday, 4:45 - 5:45PM, Rocky Stage

The fourth annual Made in America Festival is returning to Philadelphia on Saturday, September 5 and Sunday, September 6. BeyoncéDeath Cab for CutieJ. Cole and more—these are the nine artists nobody should miss. (Peruse the full lineup and schedule here, and don't forget to read our survival guide.)

Made in America always specifically giving love to veteran hip hop artists is one of the event's most beautiful facets. 2015’s lineup is graced by De La Soul, who first got big riding the daisy-age, late '80s hip hop bloom, are still out here making great, conscious rhymes. A Kickstarter-funded album called And the Anonymous Nobody, featuring guest spots by everyone from David Byrne to 2 Chainz and Little Dragon, got underway in April. Just a couple days ago, they confirmed that UsherEstelle, and Snoop Dogg will also be on the record. So, clearly the sky is the limit for the possibilities of the trio’s MiA set. —Jessica Letkemann

2 / 9

Meek Mill: Saturday, 6:30 - 7:30 PM, Rocky Stage

Take away all the Drake drama and just reflect one time on the greatness of Meek's ambitious new album, Dreams Worth More Than Money. Then add the Drake drama back, purely as fuel for Meek's fire, and daydream about a Nicki Minaj guest appearance. See ya there. —Zach Dionne

3 / 9

Death Cab for Cutie: Saturday, 7:30 - 8:30 PM, Liberty Stage

If you like brains with your rock 'n' roll brawn, don’t skip Death Cab for Cutie. Their songs come in sonic waves that wash over you while their lyrics weave their way into your soul. They make brooding beautiful, which is the reason so many of us go see them every single time they hit town. —Laurie Ulster

4 / 9

Beyoncé: Saturday, 10:30 PM, Rocky Stage

Queen Bey has been off the road for a year. Friday, the day before her headlining set, is her 34th birthday. Made in America is her husband's festival (she shut it down with her 90-minute gig in 2013). You've got every reason to expect a legendary night, and it wouldn't be a bad bet to hope for some deep cuts from the B'Day album. —Zach Dionne

5 / 9

Future: Sunday, 5:15 - 6 PM, Liberty Stage

In this post-Dirty Sprite 2 world, Future's on a helluva high. You might not be able to hear him over the Future Hive screaming every word—especially when he hasn't done a big show since Governors Ball in June—but a set including "Fuck Up Some Commas" isn't something you should miss. —Zach Dionne

6 / 9

Big Sean: Sunday, 6-6:45 PM, Rocky Stage

If there's one dude who can work a crowd, it's Big Sean. Bold, energetic and boasting endless party-friendly hits, the Detroit rapper is sure to be a festival favorite. The singles off his chart-topping Dark Sky Paradise alone are enough to guarantee an electrifying set— extra security may be needed for "I Don't Fuck with You" and "All Your Fault," two of Sean's most contagious bravado-laden cuts. Expect lots of hopping, smokey visuals and love for the Philly crowd. —Tina Xu

7 / 9

A-Trak: Sunday, 7:15 - 8:30 PM, Freedom Stage

A-Trak is a pro at holding down (and lifting up) festival stages. His late afternoon set in June at Governors Ball was a beauty to behold, for example. But with the end-of-summer vibe in the heart of Philly at Made in America, look for his beat-slinging to be especially on point. The man makes a party whereever he and his sound system go. —Jessica Letkemann

8 / 9

J. Cole: Sunday, 7:30 - 8:30 PM, Rocky Stage

North Carolina native J. Cole draws both mainstream appeal and grassroots love, making him one of the festival's most versatile and intriguing acts. His third studio album 2014 Forest Hills Drive became his most successful to date, despite dropping with very little marketing. Madison Square Garden, the arena Cole vowed to one day hold a concert in, was sold out this summer. And yet mainstream success doesn't take away from his ability to connect with fans who have supported him since his mixtape days. The Roc Nation star might perform radio favorites like "Crooked Smile" and "Work Out," but he'll always hit you with the "Lights Please." —Tina Xu

9 / 9

The Weeknd: Sunday, 9:30 PM, Rocky Stage

Abel Tesfaye is headlining Made in America's final slot just nine days after dropping his astonishing, sensory-overload-heavy album Beauty Behind the Madness. He could conceivably play the entire thing and still have time for a batch of mixtape favorites. And with all the fire he's been working into his videos and live performances (like "Can't Feel My Face" at this past Sunday's VMAs), we can expect serious pyrotechnics. —Zach Dionne

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