It’s only been a few hours since Jay-Z headed down I-95 to schmooze with Philadelphia politicians and Budweiser bigwigs while announcing his Made in America Festival, and yet we’re already crafting our personalized performer wish lists. As Jay stood on the same steps Rocky so triumphantly stormed on the big screen, he confidently announced that 70 percent of roughly 28 acts had been confirmed. Judging by his connections and the philanthropic goals, it probably didn’t take much time to put together, and it looks like we’ll get an official lineup next Monday before tickets go on sale. We’ll then have months to dissect the acts, set times and plan our Wawa trips, but for now, here are a few immediate pieces of information we find more interesting from Rolling Stone‘s post-press conference interview:
DON’T COUNT ON JAY-Z TO HEADLINE BOTH NIGHTS
“I’ll headline the first night; I’ll probably get one of those silly headsets with the thing, just to look important. I don’t really need it, but I’ll just do that,” he explained. While the latter sounds like a golden photo op, his tentative Saturday night slot makes the $99 two-day passes and a proven method of avoiding rush hour traffic all the more essential.
BUT DO PLAN ON BIG-NAME GUEST STARS
It’s almost a toss up over whether or not we’d rather see Jay call upon Kanye West or wife Beyoncé to guest star in September. (Obviously the correct choice is both, with a quick cameo by Blue Ivy Carter.) Jay and ‘Ye will be kicking off their European leg of the Watch The Throne live show in London this Sunday, while Bey makes her return to the stage over Memorial Day weekend in Atlantic City. “I tried to put [Made in America] far enough away that she’d have a little gap in her schedule, so hopefully that works,” he said. Too bad it’s not September 4.
LIKE REALLY, REALLY BIG NAMES
Friend of the Carter-Knowles family and known owner of velvety pipes with a penchant for showing them off at large gatherings, Barack Obama is atop Hov’s dream guest wish list. (See? We all have them.) “Ah, yeah, that guy. I’m gonna try. I’m gonna tell you guys right now: I’m gonna give him a call and I’m gonna try to get him to perform —do a little rendition of Al Green—but I doubt it. I think that opens up the political season. He’ll be so far into helping the world that he probably won’t have time, but I’m absolutely going to ask him.” Luckily the two have exchanged pleasantries before, so it will most likely come down to logistics. But don’t be so pessimistic, Hov! It’s an election year, and haters need more material for their “too cool” campaigns.
AND MAYBE A POST-SHOW JENGA COMPETITION
Jenga games have happened before, and The Spotted Pig—as in the New York City eatery—is home to even a higher-end clientele than you’d previously imagined. Hov’s been on a media tear over the last few hours, dropping the name of Mario Batali and Ken Friedman’s West Village establishment whenever possible. The hamburgers are good, but variety is the spice of life, right? That, and a good game night: “I played Jenga many times. We have Jenga nights at The Spotted Pig. And I’m not very good, ‘kay? [Laughs].” We’re confident Gwyneth cheats; you can’t be that good at everything.