The 5th annual KAABOO Del Mar kicked off on Friday the 13th of September, at the Del Mar Racetrack and Fairgrounds near San Diego, California. The beachside venue provided a beautiful, sunny fall day which turned into a perfect night under a full harvest moon.
This unique festival combines multiple genres of music, world-class comedy, gourmet food trucks, craft libations, a massive art gallery and live performance art. There are mulitple levels of VIP seating and amenities, including a VIP-only stage where the thoroughbreds are presented on race days.
The venue layout continues to improve from year to year. The main drag between the main stage and the 2nd and 3rd stages has been opened up, making it much easier to move between stages, or to stop off at the comedy hall, the art gallery, VIP area and craft food and drink stations.
Plain White T’s kicked off the event on Friday afternoon, as the crowd was streaming in. Andrew McMahon In the Wilderness got the main stage rolling, with an extremely entertaining set, centered around a piano which he played, danced on and jumped off. Little Steven & The Disciples of Soul filled the stage with a full band featuring backup singers and a horn section. Boyz II Men sounded incredible and had the crowd singing along.
REO Speedwagon showed everybody that they can still rock with the best of them, looking and sounding great. Kevin Cronin brought his daughter out to duet on “Can’t Fight This Feeling”, and they paid tribute to their fallen friend Eddie Money with a cover of “Two Tickets to Paradise”. Wu-Tang Clan is on their 25th anniversary tour and they put on an aggressive New York show. Snoop Dogg chilled things out a bit with his laid-back California style. Kings of Leon closed things out on the main stage with a bang.
The HUMOR ME comedy club was filled with laughter and libations, late into the night. Kevin Smith killed it earlier in the day, telling the story of his recent heart attack and subsequent weight loss due to a green diet. Pete Holmes ended the day with a late night set that brought the house down. On the way out there was a silent disco for those unwilling to let the night end.
The full lineup for Day 1:
Music by: Kings of Leon / Maren Morris / Snoop Dogg + Wu-Tang Clan / Reo Speedwagon / The Cult / Boyz II Men / Silversun Pickups / Little Steven & The Disciples of Soul / Andrew McMahon In the Wilderness / Plain White T’s / Vintage Trouble / Grizfolk / J. Human
Amplify (VIP Only) performances from: Tori Kelly / Hailey Whitters
Comedy by: Pete Holmes & Friends / Kevin Smith / Cristela Alonzo / Cameron Esposito