[Event] 2023 Head In The Clouds Festival with Rina Sawayama, DPR, Jackson Wang, XG, YOASOBI, Tiger JK & Yoon Mirae, more

After a far-too-long time away, event coverage is back at Asian Junkie, starting from 2023 Head in the Clouds Festival in Los Angeles, which went off with a bang with standout performances by some of the top artists today. I felt very lucky to be present and return to festivals to see the likes of veterans like Jackson Wang perform on the same stages as the hottest newcomers XG!

Every year HITC becomes a more deeply eclectic festival celebrating Asian culture from around the world, as well as acknowledging the diaspora right here in our own neighborhood. They bring the artists that represent the different cultures like ATARASHII GAKKO and NIKI, but also bring the sounds loved by everyone like one of the gods of EDM, Zedd. This year’s massive lineup had the festival starting earlier with three different stages all offering amazing sounds throughout the weekend, each with a packed schedule.

For us, the highlights began early on Saturday with MaSiWei coming out and hyping the early risers at the main stage. He was followed by Milli, who changed the pace slightly and was a nice setup for the audience considering who followed.

That was, of course, Rina Sawayama, who came with dramatic costume changes, neverending supplies of confidence, and, most importantly, quality music.

Things escalated in rapid succession, as festival vets DPR were up next, and DPR Live hit the stage first and gave us a glorious performance of his best hits. By now, the crowds were clambering to get a taste of that DPR magic.

When DPR Ian hit the stage it was like throwing gasoline on a fire. The fans completely lost it as the audience sang along to songs from his newest album. Long gone are the timid movements, Ian now owned the stage.

On the other stage, we continued on the hip-hop train (happy 50th birthday, hip-hop!) with Rich Brian showing up and showing out as he does every year. It’s worth it just to see him live. His ability to hype the crowd, engage with his fans, and then take them through the emotional sad boy moments is a talent we rarely see.

Our Saturday night finale was none other than Jackson Wang, who brought the heat from his recently concluded tour to the festival. The sheer magnitude of the crowd was flexed by this man, as everyone sang along to his sexy pop songs. His dancers kept up with pristine skill as they maneuvered the catwalk and teased the fans to a frenzy, leaving them thirsty for more. What a way to end Saturday!

Sunday … oh how do we even start Sunday?! With Voice Of Baceprot, of course!

Oh, you don’t know Baceprot? Baceprot is a phenomenal metal band from Indonesia, and seeing three Javanese women in hijabs absolutely wail on stage and deliver a most amazing performance was a treat. We decided to try to get a few more artists from the Honda Double Happiness stage, and Baceprot did not disappoint.

How do we follow this? With Korean sensation Yerin Baek and her stunning voice live. She was beautiful on stage, giving the growing crowd a fantastic performance.

We watched Zior Park perform with his wild antics and signature copper red hair, then hustled it back to the main stage to watch Zion.T in his gradient bell bottoms woo the crowd with his sensual and sentimental sounds.

Up next was one of the most anticipated performances of the weekend with one of the hottest girl groups, XG! They dominated the stage with their punchy hit songs and choreography. The crowd ate them up as they performed one of the most entertaining sets of the weekend.

In a complete about-face soundwise, YOASOBI took to the stage with their haunting vocals and beautiful songs. This was such a huge performance for fans who’ve waited for the duo since their debut in 2019. Their record-breaking songs took the crowd to a whole new level.

As the sunset, it was NIKI who appeared with a show-stopping performance of her hits that rivals any pop queen today. With her flashy costumes and fantastic choreography, she wow’d the audience.

Last but certainly not least was the grand finale, which was arguably one of the best they’ve put on yet. HITC brought on by Tiger JK and the goddess herself Yoon Mirae (Tasha to the OG fans), who finished the night with a medley of massive hits and hip-hop splendor!

The finale ended with it’s usual boisterous fanfare as everyone hit the stage.


Overall, it was an amazing two days as Head In The Clouds came to an end with one of the best lineups I’ve seen in years.

I can’t wait for next year!


Thank you Easton Ramos (@eastonr) for coming in clutch with the photos!

About Yaaaaaas

I'm not drunk enough for this.