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Hangout Music Festival 2023: Day 1 Recap

Hangout Music Festival 2023 took place in Gulf Shores Alabama, May 19th through May 21st.

Hangout Music Festival starts the summer on a good note by celebrating community, up and coming artists and a good time. 


5/19/2023 at Hangout Music Festival | Dylan Basden Photography

With Red Hot Chili Peppers and Lil Nas X headlining the night, and tons of artists from all over the country building up the energy throughout the day, the first 12 hours of Hangout Fest were nothing short of a blast. 


Red Hot Chili Peppers 5/19/2023 at Hangout Music Festival | Dylan Basden Photography

The festival was prepped and ready with drinks, food vendors, fun attractions, 6 stages and enough space for near 40,000 people to dance and savor the moment. Not only was the environment provided by Hangout 2023 amazing, but also the community created by the masses was beautiful. The fans walking around in the awesome extravagant outfits that represented their true self, along with the familiar feel nearly everyone brought with them, kicking off day one with a good caring attitude, made it impossible not to make friends and enjoy yourself to the fullest with an enriched community. 


5/19/2023 at Hangout Music Festival | Dylan Basden Photography

Our very own Auburn University alumni, The Vegabonds, along with A Hundred Drums and G-Haas opened the stages. After promoting their new EP, Tom Petty and the Braves, and leaving the masses buzzing with their nostalgically happy country rock sound, The Vegabonds left the stage and welcomed the sets of Meet Me At The Altar, Stephen Sanchez and Aluna, all in separate stages. Meet Me At The Altar played all their most popular songs as well as the band's favorite Avril Lavigne covers, who, the lead vocalist confessed, was her inspiration since she was a kid. Stephen Sanchez moved the crowds with his acoustic guitar and heartfelt songs, but this softness, of course, didn't stop him from showing his energy and passion for music; since he blew up on social media, his music career has been nothing but uphill. Aluna, bringing her fun, playful spirit, undoubtedly kept the dance floor alive and well. 


The Vegabonds 5/19/2023 at Hangout Music Festival | Dylan Basden Photography

Not letting the party stop, at 3PM Tove Lo strutted the Hangout Stage with winning attitude and delivered a set that the masses loved; even though her career peaked a couple years ago, the fans' need for more and more of her and her music has never given in. mike. and Two Feet followed at the Shein Surf Stage and Boom Boom Stage respectively.


5/19/2023 at Hangout Music Festival | Dylan Basden Photography

Russ, Gryffin, Harleigh Colt, and Thundercat performed under the lights, over looking thousands of fans. Everyone was a little bummed out because Rainbow Kitten Surprise had fallen out of the line up, but Harleigh Colt, Rainbow Kitten Surprise's bassist, saved the day with their spins on RKS's popular songs. When the artists has fun, the audience has even more fun, Thundercat proved this with his set, happy as ever to be performing for Hangout Fest 2023, bringing a crowd that packed to the brink Mermaid Stage. They ensured that Hangout Fest doesn't go a minute without good music; Russ's bars, Gryffin's guitar solos, Harleigh Colt's beats and Thundercat's iconic bass lines wowed the crowd and warmed up the stage for the incredible headliners the night had prepared. 


Thundercat 5/19/2023 at Hangout Music Festival | Dylan Basden Photography

Louis The Child had a playground set prepared for the audience and the name couldn't have suited better, everyone watching Hangout Stage jumped to the music with wild, senseless energy. Old fans and new fans danced the way they best new how, with a vivacity only Louis The Chid could bring out that Friday night. The stage presence of the artists as well as the dancers on their team was a joy to witness. 


Louis The Child 5/19/2023 at Hangout Music Festival | Dylan Basden Photography

Lil Nas X was next on the Shein Surf Stage and delivered a vibrant performance. He has definitely come a long way since Old Town Road, bringing a production so big to the Hangout Fest that at a certain point in the set, even a dragon was on stage. He glowed with passion and dedication for his art, and not only was the music incredible, but the performance value of his set was through the roof, making him a distinguished Hangout Fest 2023 artist. 


Lil Nas X 5/19/2023 at Hangout Music Festival | Dylan Basden Photography

The night was coming to an end and everyone stalled for the long awaited Red Hot Chili Peppers. They jammed and shredded and one can just tell the Chili Peppers were having the most fun. Anthony Kiedis, their frontman, gave his heart out to the masses as he sang. Flea, John and Chad Smith; bassist, guitarist and drummer respectively, showcased their incredible talents as well, delivering breathtaking musical power. The Red Hot Chili Peppers still got their spark going after more than 40 years, and no one can see it going away any time soon. 


Lil Nas X 5/19/2023 at Hangout Music Festival | Dylan Basden Photography

The first day of Hangout Music Festival was a success that wrapped up with beautiful fireworks, commemorating all the musicians, organizers and enthusiastic fans that came along and made this festival possible. Two days left at Gulf Shores; Paramore, SZA, Skrillex, and Calvin Harris on the bill; thousands of music lovers walking the same grounds; Hangout Music Festival was ready for it all. 

Want to catch the rest of WEGL's Hangout Fest coverage from this weekend? Check out the links to our other recaps below!

Hangout Music Festival: Day 2 Recap

Hangout Music Festival: Day 3 Recap

Hangout Music Festival: Weekend Recap

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