Outside Lands 2022: Dominic Fike shows off cooking skills, Rina Sawayama performs unreleased song on day two of festival

A crowd stretches back to the windmill during the first day of the Outside Lands music festival at Golden Gate Park. Photo: Jessica Christian / The Chronicle

Outside Lands 2022 is well under way at Golden Gate Park, marking a return to not only its traditional summer spot on the Bay Area summer calendar but also its freewheeling pre-pandemic spirit.

The 14th annual festival is expected to draw 220,000 people over its three-day run at the park, with Bay Area pop-punk icons Green Day set to make their festival debut as one of the three main stage headliners, along with rapper Post Malone and R&B singer SZA. There are more than 90 artists on six stages, plus the largest local food and wine lineup the festival has ever featured. There are also plenty of interactive experiences and activations — including its unique cannabis-centric Grass Lands — to keep fans entertained through the weekend.

Here are some of the most memorable things The Chronicle saw at the festival, which runs through Sunday, Aug. 7.

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Dominic Fike (right) and Chef Roy Choi participate in a culinary demonstration on the GastroMagic Culinary Stage during the second day of Outside Lands. Photo: Photo by Tim Mosenfelder/Getty Images / Getty Images

Dominic Fike steals the show at GastroMagic

Fans who just couldn’t wait to see musician Dominic Fike perform on Sunday caught an early dose of the “Euphoria” actor at the GastroMagic Culinary Stage, where he made chicken tenders with celebrity chef Roy Choi.

The pair’s cooking event received more than 7,000 RSVPs on Outside Lands’ official app, beating out all but one musical act — Local Natives on the main Lands End stage — in anticipated turnout. The massive crowd filled the east end of Lindley Meadow and loudly cheered for Fike as he put his chicken in the frying pan and cut fruit.

“He gets that for just cutting an orange?” Choi jokingly asked.

Choi and Fike later took turns throwing oranges into the sea of outstretched arms before hopping into the photo pit and handing out samples of their chicken tenders to festivalgoers in the front row.

— Joy Diamond

Rina Sawayama performs during the second day of Outside Lands. Photo: Ethan Swope / The Chronicle

Rina Sawayama performs unreleased song off forthcoming album

“Are you ready to dance? Are you ready to slay?” Rina Sawayama asked the crowd before the Twin Peaks stage.

The Japanese-British singer-songwriter certainly was. But after electrifying performances of her biggest songs, Sawayama was ready to step a little out of her comfort zone, too.

“I’m a little nervous, because I had this idea of playing (a) song that I haven’t played before,” she said. “San Francisco, do you want to hear a new song from the album?”

Receiving affirmative cheers in response, the singer continued with a lighthearted disclaimer: “Don’t judge me. This is my first time performing it, OK. I might get the words wrong.”

Proving she’s a pro, Sawayama slayed the song, titled “Hurricanes,” without missing a beat. (“Hurricanes” is on her new album, “Hold the Girl,” which is slated for release on Sept. 16.)

Another sweet treat: Sawayama led a chorus of over 5,000 fans in singing “Happy Birthday” to her drummer Simone Odaranile.

— Joy Diamond

Thuy greets fans after performing during the second day of Outside Lands. Photo: Ethan Swope / The Chronicle

Bay Area’s Thuy brings special guest P-Lo on stage

Bay Area-bred R&B singer Thuy made it known that while she now lives in Los Angeles, San Francisco is where her heart is.

“I f—ing love you, San Francisco!” she told the crowd during her homecoming performance at the Panhandle stage.

Doubling down on the local love, the Vietnamese American artist, who has been a vocal advocate for the Asian American Pacific Islander communities, brought out Filipino American East Bay rapper P-Lo. The fellow AAPI musicians hyped one another up as they performed their song, “inhibitions.”

But P-Lo’s appearance was not the only surprise Thuy had in store for her fans.

“I gotta do something special for you,” she said, before giving the Outside Lands crowd an exclusive performance of an unreleased track titled “Playing Tricks.”

— Joy Diamond

Salem Ilese sings out anger at abortion ruling

Salem Ilese’s changed the lyrics to her hit song, “Mad at Disney,” to take a powerful stance on abortion rights at the Panhandle stage during the second day of the festival.

“I’m mad at SCOTUS, SCOTUS,” the 22-year-old Mill Valley native sang. “They voted, voted, our reproductive rights away.”

Then Ilese led the crowd in a chant: “When I say ‘f—k,’ you say ‘SCOTUS!’”

Earlier in her set, Ilese explained that she had dreamed of performing at Outside Lands since attending the festival for the first time at age 14. In addition to delivering her unapologetic message to the Supreme Court, Ilese sang a cover of “Mr. Brightside” to pay homage to her favorite band, the Killers, which she discovered at the festival eight years ago.

— Joy Diamond

The Linda Lindas perform during the second day of Outside Lands. Photo: Ethan Swope / The Chronicle

The Linda Lindas bring out ’80s icon to kick off day two of the fesival

To kick off the second day of the festival, the Linda Lindas performed a rockin’ noon set on the Lands End stage — even bringing out Gina Schock, the original drummer for the Go-Go’s, to sit behind the kit for song. Click here for the full story.

— Zack Ruskin


SZA performs during the 2022 Outside Lands festival’s first day. Photo: Tim Mosenfelder / Getty Images

SZA makes a splash

With the fog engulfing Golden Gate Park, misting just enough to look like steady rain amid the bright lights of the festival, SZA appeared atop a makeshift lighthouse for a nautical-themed spectacle at the Lands End stage to close out the first night of Outside Lands — COVID be damned.

“I had COVID like a week ago, and it beat my ass,” she told the crowd that filled the Polo Fields. “But I was definitely fighting for my life to get to y’all.”

Running through her hits, starting with 2018’s “All the Stars” and continuing with “Normal Girl” and even her viral TikTok track “I Hate U,” SZA certainly looked as though she recovered just fine.

Unfortunately, the sound from the stage didn’t do her energetic set justice. SZA’s vocals often sounded muffled, with her microphone cutting out briefly during a couple songs. She also kept adjusting her earpiece and mentioned “I can’t hear myself. … I can’t hear anything.”

But fans didn’t seem to be fazed. Cheering and singing along — especially during her Grammy-winning song “Kiss Me More” (sans Doja Cat) — festivalgoers celebrated SZA as this year’s only female main stage headliner at the festival. (She returned the favor by looking after them, stopping mid-song to help a fan in the crowd.)

SZA performs atop a lighthouse at the 2022 Outside Lands festival. Photo: Photo by Tim Mosenfelder/Getty Images / Getty Images

Then right before the festival’s strict 10 p.m. curfew, SZA climbed up a ladder to bid farewell and made one of the most dramatic exits Outside Lands has seen, jumping off into the virtual “ocean” — complete with a splash projected on the jumbo screen.

— Mariecar Mendoza

Phoebe Bridgers performs at Outside Lands. Photo: Santiago Mejia / The Chronicle

Phoebe Bridgers bummed she missed SZA’s set

Many Outside Lands attendees were upset that the most popular female acts this year were scheduled to perform at the same time Friday evening, but none more so than singer-songwriter Phoebe Bridgers. Her set on the Twin Peaks stage pitted her against R&B star SZA on the Lands End stage.

“I’ve always wanted to play here,” Bridgers told her fans. “It’s been a dream of mine. The biggest bummer is missing SZA.”

But Bridgers, who wore a disco-style tuxedo and performed against a backdrop of stars, remained in good spirits as she worked through a set of fan favorites, reminisced about coming to the festival as a fan, and captivated the crowd with an acoustic interlude of her ballad “Georgia.”

“It’s been a dream,” she said, introducing her closing song, “I Know the End.”

Shortly after, Bridgers performed an intimate concert at the Independent on Divisadero Street. Click here for the full story.

– Aidin Vaziri

Lil Uzi Vert performs during Outside Lands 2022. Photo: Tim Mosenfelder / Getty Images

Lil Uzi Vert stops set to snap a selfie

The emo rapper stopped his Lands End set when a festivalgoer hopped onstage, in one of the most shocking moments of the festival’s first night.

“Please don’t hurt him,” Lil Uzi said repeatedly to the security guards holding back the fan. “Please don’t choke him. Please, please, please.”

Turning toward the fan, the rapper calmly said, “I love you too, but we gotta do it a better way next time.”

Lil Uzi then offered to take a picture with the man and snapped a selfie of the two of them with the huge crowd at Lands End in the background. After a hug, the fan was escorted offstage and the performance continued.

This disruption occurred after a handful of earlier pauses, during which the rapper had to ask the crowd to take steps back to make space for safety reasons, a move other acts throughout the festival have done in the wake of the fatal crowd surge at the Astroworld 2021 festival that killed eight people in Houston.

– Joy Diamond

Best Coast rocks abortion rights message

One of the rare joys you’ll only find at music festivals is the odd chance of spotting an artist from the lineup in the crowd, just enjoying someone’s set like the rest of us. On Friday evening, that honor belonged to buzzworthy adolescent rock quartet the Linda Lindas.

Slated to kick off the proceedings at the Lands End stage at noon for the second day of the festival, the young punk pups appeared elated to be among those at the Panhandle stage on to watch the Los Angeles duo of Bethany Cosentino and Bobb Bruno, better known as Best Coast. Performing, in this case, as a five-piece ensemble, the band managed to compellingly deliver some good vibes while also taking time to relay a somber yet urgent message.

“You may have noticed this sign behind us,” Costentino said, gesturing to a backdrop behind the band that read “Abortion is Health Care.”

“I was famously quoted as walking off the stage at Riot Fest (in Chicago and) saying ‘‘abortion is health care, bitch!’ ” she continued, “and guess what? Abortion is health care, bitch!”

The band is also scheduled to play the Rickshaw Stop at 10 p.m. Saturday with support from Night School.

– Zack Ruskin

Dayglow overwhelmed with love at Twin Peaks stage

The last time indie pop project Dayglow performed in the Bay Area was at a nearly sold out concert at San Francisco’s Regency Ballroom a few years about. But the turnout for Dayglow’s festival set on the Twin Peaks stage blew singer-songwriter Sloan Struble away.

“This is definitely the most people we’ve played in front of,” Struble said, as the crowd in front of him grew to reach all the way to the food stands in Hellman Hollow, nearly running into the audience in front of the Panhandle stage. “Hello, San Francisco!”

The band got the huge crowd jumping and singing along to fan favorites “Medicine,” “Can I Call You Tonight?” and “Close to You.”

— Joy Diamond

Natasha Leggero does standup comedy at the GastroMagic culinary stage on the first day of Outside Lands. Photo: Jessica Christian / The Chronicle

Natasha Leggero brings Barbary Coast vibes back to Outside Lands

Outside Lands is never short of dining options — especially this year’s event, which boasts the biggest food and wine lineup thus far — but three attendees in the GastroMagic Culinary Stage audience were given the special opportunity to try a dish prepared by celebrity chef Ludo Lefebvre.

The omelet drizzled with brown butter, which the Michelin-star restaurateur emphasized as authentically French, was such a rich treat that even comedian Natasha Leggero stole a few bites after sparking much laughter from the crowd with her unabashed standup set.

Lefebvre and Leggero, who has appeared at Outside Lands in the past when the festival hosted the pop-up comedy club Barbary Coast, were the first pairing to take to this year’s GastroMagic stage. Other duos scheduled for the stage during the festival weekend include Los Angeles chef Roy Choi of Kogi Truck fame and singer Dominic Fike on Saturday and Daniela Soto-Innes, the youngest chef named World’s Best Female Chef by the World’s 50 Best Restaurants, and rapper Pusha T on Sunday.

— Joy Diamond

Festivalgoers can enjoy smoking weed in the consumption area of Grass Lands. Photo: Jessica Christian / The Chronicle

Grass Lands expands with farmers’ market vibes

Grass Lands, now in its fourth year, has grown into a stoner’s paradise, complete with two consumption areas, an on-site dispensary farmers’ market hosted by High Times, and a fully furnished  joint rolling bar sponsored by paper titans Zig-Zag, among other features.

Read more about the cannabis experience and its mission here.

— Zack Ruskin

For more updates from the three-day festival, check back at datebook.sfchronicle.com and follow the team on Twitter at @SFC_Datebook.

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