SAN FRANCISCO — A massive number of festivalgoers crammed the Polo Field on Sunday for the third and final day of the 2016 Outside Lands Music Festival to see Third Eye Blind and Chance the Rapper.
Tens of thousands of fans swarmed the lawn back to the festival’s iconic windmill an estimated one-quarter of a mile away from the main stage for the veteran San Francisco rock group as well as the Chicago hip-hop artist for two of the best-attended sets of a weekend that saw more than 70 artists play.
While temperatures that climbed into the sunny 70s after the first two chilly, overcast days of the festival, the sun finally emerged to play about 45 minutes before 3EB’s set time. The local band delivered an inspired, energetic set behind the work of lead singer Stephen Jenkins. While 3EB nodded to its 1990s mainstream glory days with hits such as “Jumper,” “Never Let You Go” and “Semi-Charmed Life,” it was an unexpected David Bowie tribute medley with help from the Magik*Magik Orchestra and 15-year-old guitarist Spencer Barnett that made the masses applaud.
Chance, meanwhile, cut his set short by 10 minutes on both ends. He ran through a string of feature verses he performs on other rappers songs — Action Bronson’s “Baby Blue,” Towkio’s “Heaven Only Knows” and Kanye West’s “Ultralight Beam” — before playing a smattering of tracks from this year’s Coloring Book mixtape.
Also drawing a massive crowd and closing the weekend on the Twin Peaks Stage was Lana Del Rey. In an hourlong set, the Los Angeles-based singer delivered hits such as “Video Games,” “Blue Jeans” and “Summertime Sadness.” Despite a staircase leading down into the crowd, Del Rey felt like she kept at a safe remove from the “Lanatics,” her devoted fanbase. While much of her artistry feels like a retro pose, she did strap on a guitar and play a bare bones rendition of “Yayo” from her Lizzy Grant album that felt raw and allowed her voice to lift into falsetto.
Ryan Adams and the Shining closed the weekend on the Sutro Stage with one of the day’s best sets. The North Carolina-born rock and alt-country musician’s band brought muscle to his material to match the might of 2014’s self-titled LP, but also beefed up older songs such as “To Be Young (Is to Be Sad, Is to Be High)” and “Shakedown on 9th Street.” While Jason Isbell appeared to play guitar on “Oh My Sweet Carolina,” the takeaway moment was Adams’ improv song, “Goodbye Two Balloons,” which was a nod to a previous improv performance during his last appearance in Golden Gate Park, when he made up an impromptu song about a person holding “Three F— Balloons” at the back of the park during the 2014 Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Festival.
Other notes from day three:
• Kamasi Washington — Kicking off the day on the main stage, the jazz saxophonist who played long, layered selections from last year’s triple album The Epic. He also invited his father, Rickey, to join him on stage for “The Rhythm Changes.”
• Dr. Teeth and the Electric Mayhem — The Muppets house band made an appearance, “performing” along to pre-recorded covers of The Mowgli’s “San Francisco,” Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros’ “Home,” The Band’s “Ophelia” and closing with a choir-backed reading of “With a Little Help From My Friends” in Joe Cocker’s style.