Sueños Music Festival [REVIEW]
Review by: Roman Sobus
Grant Park, Chicago – 28-29 May, 2022
The first ever Sueños music festival took place over the Memorial Day holiday in Chicago’s Grant Park. The success of the festival was hardly a surprise as the city has a large and diverse Latin community.
Los Bukis sold out Soldier Field , Marc Anthony at Allstate Arena in 2021 and Puerto Rican rapper Bad Bunny at Allstate Arena earlier this year are a clear indicator of the viability of such an event.
The festival set at the south end of Grant Park brought a vast array of music talent from south and Central America and the Caribbean.
The lines to enter formed early and were quite long by the time the gates opened, and with a single stage the best spots on the rail filled rather quickly. The weather cooperated with Saturday almost ideal to be in the park.
Early arrivals were treated to a DJ set by DJ Freddy Fresco with live performances by Puerto Rican singer EIX and Columbian singer Blessd. Tokischa, hailing from the Dominican Republic put in a hot set much to the delight of the crowd!
A few glitches on the first day caused some minor scheduling delays, but by mid-afternoon everything was pretty much on track.
Mexican rapper Natanael Cano and Puerto Rican reggaeton Jowell and Randy had the crowd dancing and singing along. As the afternoon progressed, more fans filtered in filling the field. The crowd began chanting Far-ru-ko, Far-ru-ko, Far-ru-ko in anticipation of the Puerto Rican singer (Farruko) taking the stage! As the sun set low on the horizon, it was time for Puerto Rican Rapper Myke Towers with his well choreographed set, followed by El Alfa (DR) and finally Puerto Rican rapper Ozuna.
Sunday turned out a bit warmer but the crowd gathered early again! When the gates opened, those early arrivals were rewarded with prime viewing spots. The pit crews passed out water and gave the cardboard packaging for fans to shield from the mid-day sun!
DJs Dynamiq and Miriam warmed up the crowd then La Gabi took to the stage, fans tossing her their cell phones and she obliged with a selfie or vid clip before returning it! Cauty (PR) and Lyanno (PR) were outstanding during their sets. Fuerza Regida (Mexico) put in what I might consider a lack-luster performance. Lead singer Jesus Ortiz, was unable to put his cup down during the time I was up front. His large band, with guitars, tuba, and back-up singers-somehow it fell flat, I was expecting more.
Panamanian singer Sech’s performance was fun and among my favorites. Puerto Rican rapper Jhay Cortez was outstanding. Wissin & Yandey, Puerto Rican Reggaeton duo make me wish I had at last some knowledge of the Spanish language! I really want to see them on stage again. Headliner J Balvin (Columbia) was amazing as well!
I’m certain this first Sueños Festival will not be the last. Attendance for the two days approached 100 thousand and if it did not sell out, it came very close! The staff and organizers were amazing and responsive to the few bumps in the road. I would love to see at least two stages instead of only one as that might make for a smoother transition between sets. All in all, a great time!
Check out more great live photos here!
Sueños Music Festival: