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88⬆ Helping Asian Artists Rise

Coachella 2022 hit fans of Asian artists in ways we weren’t expecting when it was announced that 88rising would be holding a showcase at the world renowned music festival.

“Head in the Clouds Forever” beautifully represented the diversity of artists, and is titled after the EP release from 88rising.

Asian artist lineup for "Head in the Clouds Forever" showcase by 88rising
Image from 88rising’s Official Twitter

There were countless iconic and memorable moments throughout the showcase. One of the highlights included NIKI singing an Indonesian song, “Sempurna”. It was heartwarming to see her dedicate the song to her country with so much love and pride.

Additionally, Coachella was Hikaru Utada’s first music festival appearance. They performed Simple and Clean for the first time since 2010. Hikaru also performed a new song called T—a collaboration with 88rising and Warren Hue.

It would be difficult to cover each performance in one article. However, the showcase ended with a surprise as 2NE1 reunited and served the world a performance that had them trending immediately on Twitter.

Always Rising

Deviating from how our articles normally cover artists, let’s talk about 88rising as a whole. “Head in the Clouds Forever” had a wonderful lineup of culturally diverse artists from Japan, South Korea, Indonesia, Thailand, and Hong Kong.

This multinational label is associated with a multitude of powerhouses. 88rising pulled together an epic Asian artist lineup that no other Western music festival has ever seen. In the midst of increasing Asian representation, this showcase of artists was impeccably curated.

Although all of these artists have their own mass followings, opportunities are also dependent on those who are supporting them. In this case, it is none other than 88rising themselves.

The Rise of Asian Artists

Is 88rising at the forefront of pushing Asian artists into mainstream spotlight? Maybe I’m still in a dreamlike state after watching the showcase on repeat all day. That said, I can’t recall another event like this. Just as Jackson yelled at the end of his set, “This is a moment of history!”

I also truly believe this is a monumental mark in history for the Asian community.

We’ve had numerous K-pop idols and groups tour the world. Multiple Japanese bands and artists have also flown around the world to perform. Other music festivals have also invited notable Asian artists, but never in this way. Tonight, these artists shared the same stage together. They showed the world their talents in a united form.

It was a statement, and it was amazing.

Tonight, I believe 88rising has set the standard when it comes to Asian diversity in music. They helped open the doors for younger generations. Thanks to this showcase, younger Asian generations have been shown that it is possible for them to be on the Coachella stage (outside of K-pop).

Meanwhile, this also serves as validation for diasporic Asian audiences. At last, we are seeing relatable figures on mainstream stages that never seemed possible in our childhoods. It brings out a flood in emotions in many, and all for the right reasons.

88rising is reminding us all that the Asian community can keep rising, too.

Article written by:

Pirate Queen of TreasureBox PRESS; published poet, writer, and sometimes hobbyist singer. Loves shiny things and believes in the power of connecting the world through music.

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