11 Coachella highlights: Kendrick Lamar is a ‘DAMN’ good headliner

Kendrick Lamar should get some good mileage out of his new album title, DAMN, because after hearing him perform some of it as Coachella’s Sunday headliner, that’s also what festival-goers were saying about the Compton, Calif. (Read our full recap of her Coachella set here.)
Drake, The Weeknd, and more made cameos
Kevin Mazur/Getty Images; Frazer Harrison/Getty Images; Rich Fury/Getty Images
Drake — who brought out Madonna when he headlined Coachella in 2015 — came out for a   surprise appearance at Future’s Saturday set to perform condensed versions of “Jumpman” and “Gyalchester” off his recently released More Life   playlist before asking the crowd to help create a “real Coachella moment” as they sang “Fake Love” together. And then @pharrell stopped by to sing #Freedom! @lordemusic had a really cool stage at @Coachella … actors in a glass box elevated above the stage, and in there performing vingettes with each song. This was one of the coolest ideas… @hanszimmer and that #orchestra! WOW. Migos — are poised to see their star rise. @ladygaga has #TheCure for @coachella. “But it had to be done, didn’t it?”
The stirring instrumentals — Pirates was performed via   cello concerto — were often accompanied with a visual show displayed on the screen behind the stage, enhancing an already special experience. Wowowowow Movie songs and scores at @Coachella … I could've sat there all day long! Featuring nearly 20 songs, his concert was woven together with a series of videos about one Kung Fu Kenny (played by Lamar), a character he mentions frequently on DAMN. Was even, strangely enough (or maybe not?), emotional. Such a fun, mesmerizing #Day1 #coachella set! DJ Khaled @ coachella was the epitome of the word ''lit''
— lina (@LinaElToukhy) April 17, 2017

don't think I've ever seen anything like DJ Khaled's Coachella set
— Ally? They played through the issues as long as they could before it became necessary to stop so the issue could be fixed. Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for Coachella
Performing “Antidote,” “goosebumps,” “Pick Up the Phone,” and the auto-tune-heavy “Skyfall,” among many others, Scott hyped the crowd all the way. Check out a portion of #Royals and #GreenLight, but first, hear some of a new song she previewed called #HomemadeDynamite from her upcoming album Melodrama. 1 single “Bad and Boujee” and “T-Shirt,” later that night getting some time with both the DJ Snake and Gucci Mane crowds to perform the former. @francisandthelights couldn't be contained! #FANLUV YOUR ENERGY WAS SUCH A BLESSING!! And because you don’t have to be   at Coachella to enjoy it thanks to livestreaming options on Coachella.com, social media got in on the action. Weekend 2 of Coachella kicks off Friday. Lamar is just one of the many highlights from Coachella 2017. “I came for the rage, Coachella,” he proclaimed (via Billboard). The Atlanta-bred rappers first hit the stage with Future to perform No. #gagachella #coachella2017 #coachella
A post shared by Gerrad Hall (@gerradhall) on Apr 16, 2017 at 11:13am PDT

Gaga has headlined hundreds of shows at venues ranging from the   Super Bowl to dive bars, but Coachella is a different animal. Ironically, the sound went out again   as they played their 1997 song “Let Down.”
Francis and the Lights hypnotized
Francis and the Lights singer Francis Farewell Starlite came dressed for the occasion, telling the crowd he always wanted “a tent designed exactly the color of my jacket,” referring to his burgundy ‘80s-inspired get-up that matched the chandelier-accented covering of the Gobi tent where he performed. Not sure I've ever seen something so visually breathtaking, mystifying, hypnotizing, and euphoric as #Antarctic #coachella 360 dome. A post shared by Gerrad Hall (@gerradhall) on Apr 15, 2017 at 12:50pm PDT

When singing, Starlite’s intriguing and emotional vocals were almost hypnotizing, but it’s when he stepped away from the mic that he was the most mesmerizing, bouncing across the stage (and even into the audience — see above) with reckless abandon, possessed with an intoxicating energy that his loyal fans expected and that newcomers couldn’t help but join in on. Bravo, @obscuradigitalsf and @hp #didntwanttoleave #takemeback #therapy
A post shared by Gerrad Hall (@gerradhall) on Apr 16, 2017 at 5:45pm PDT

HP and Intel also put on a nightly light display with the use of 300 drones, a portion of which you can see below. hip-hop sensation. Combining “the pulse of the music and the flow of human movement,” according to a press release, the projected sequences “are driven by data captured from audio analysis and motion capture, setting a new bar for high fidelity immersion.”
See some video and photos below. In addition to stepping in for a pregnant-with-twins Beyoncé, who postponed her headlining appearance until 2018, Gaga brought a hot new song to share with the desert crowd: “The Cure,” a   pop single driven by its electro-chorus. Playing 15-30 seconds of a song, then pausing to remind everyone “this is just my intro” — a process that played on loop for several minutes — Khaled promised, “I got so many surprises.” So many, in fact, he said the media would be changing its tune about him and that all the new headlines would read, “DJ Khaled takes Coachella.”
Well, with some 20 minutes left in his 50-minute set, out those surprises rolled. Read on to see what — and who — else made the list. The seven-time Grammy winner’s weekend-closing set further helped cement his position as a star   — and a consistent and important voice during a time when he’s choosing not to remain silent about recent social and civil rights injustices. Listen to the first performance of her brand new single! The speaker fuzz and feedback came first, then, total silence. Watching his loyalists is enough to make a newcomer want in on the fandom. #inception #piratesofthecaribbean #thelionking #thedarkknight #hanschella #thosepeoplehavetalent
A post shared by Gerrad Hall (@gerradhall) on Apr 17, 2017 at 8:12am PDT

If that wasn’t enough, even Zimmer got in on the “Surprise!” game, bringing out Pharrell Williams to perform his recent single “Freedom.” “He makes the world a better place,” the Oscar-winning composer said of the singer and music producer. Lamar got lots of love from the Indio music and arts festival crowd for new tracks “ELEMENT,” “LUST,” “PRIDE,” “FEEL,” and “HUMBLE,” and he, in turn, gave some back in the form of “LOVE,” which served as the encore of the roughly 75-minute set that featured appearances by Travis Scott, ScHoolboy Q, and Future (all three had their own Coachella sets this year) performing “goosebumps,” “THat Part,” and “Mask Off,” respectively. Fortunately, so is she, and because of that, she knew exactly what to do to entertain fans of all genres. Lamar also worked in some older cuts, including “King Kunta,” “Bitch, Don’t Kill My Vibe,” and “m.A.A.d city.”

While fans might not have lyrics committed to memory just yet for Lamar’s fresh DAMN releases, that didn’t stop them from becoming absorbed in the rapper’s undeniable ability to command the stage with his passion and energy. @wethebestmusic #GRATEFUL https://t.co/N5Z5iIzraZ
— DJ KHALED (@djkhaled) April 17, 2017

coachella thank you! Nbd just @champagnepapi stopping by to show some #reallove at #Future's #coachella set w/ #fakelove #jumpman #drake
A post shared by Gerrad Hall (@gerradhall) on Apr 15, 2017 at 8:35pm PDT

Elsewhere, people stopped and looked at each other in shock when they heard Lauryn Hill sing the opening to the Fugees’ “Ready or Not” during DJ Snake’s set, where she also got the crowd hyped performing “Killing Me Softly” and 1998 solo song “Lost Ones.”
As for other surprises, the Weeknd dropped in during Canadian rapper Nav’s set to perform “Starboy” and “Party Monster,” along with the duo’s recent collaboration, “Some Way”;   Gryffin welcomed Daya to the stage for “Feel Good”; and British singer Dua Lipa surprised the large and lively crowd at Dutch DJ Martin Garrix’s show to perform his single “Scared To Be Lonely.”

You know what I think of @Daya joining @gryffinofficial at #coachella … #ILikeIt #pun #watchandsee #putyourhandsup #coachellasurprise #coachellaguest #surprise #sahara #coachella2017
A post shared by Gerrad Hall (@gerradhall) on Apr 15, 2017 at 8:21pm PDT

A$AP Rocky got the most out of his trip to the festival grounds by pulling double-duty, appearing during DJ Mura Masa’s set — where Charli XCX also stopped by — then later popping up at ScHoolboy Q’s show. #GRATEFUL THE ALBUM COMING !… https://t.co/cS3Evub5FQ
— DJ KHALED (@djkhaled) April 17, 2017

Lorde debuted “Homemade Dynamite”
Like Lady Gaga on the same stage the night before, New Zealand-born star Lorde debuted a new song, “Homemade Dynamite,” Sunday during her first performance at the fest since 2014. Show Full Article Migos made yet another appearance, again with “Bad and Boujee,” while 2 Chainz performed a few of his own songs, including “All Me” and “Rich as F—,” a Lil Wayne track he’s featured on. Whoever is behind these drone light shows in artist parking @coachella… so sick! “This man is peace and love and freedom.”
Travis Scott was flying high
Texas-born rapper Travis Scott didn’t headline Friday night, but he might as well have for his first fest outing: The crowd at his Outdoor stage show was one of Day 1’s biggest, and the hip-hop-loving scene was ready for his show, which included the 24-year-old performing on the wings of an enormous animatronic bird perched on the stage in a nod to his upcoming Bird’s Eye View Tour. Developed by creative artist Android Jones, whose previous installations have appeared on the Sydney Opera House and Empire State Building, the less-than-10-minute 360-degree animation displays across the entirety of the dome, viewed from a seated, laidback position to maximize visibility. The preview offers another peek at the upcoming Melodrama   (out June 16),   which includes the already-released singles “Green Light” and “Liability.”
Kevin Mazur/Getty Images
“I want you to give the song the biggest f—ing birthday of all time,” she asked of the Coachella crowd before playing the track. #lordechella #coachella2017 #mainstage #boom
A post shared by Gerrad Hall (@gerradhall) on Apr 17, 2017 at 8:19am PDT

HP introduced their Antarctic Dome
While there is intriguing artwork scattered throughout the festival grounds, one structure stands out among the others because of what’s inside: HP’s Antarctic Dome is home to a completely unique visual art experience. 🎮🛰 pic.twitter.com/3gnN6QuYT4
— ira brian miller (@irabrianmiller) April 16, 2017

This drone light show was epic #coachella #drones
A post shared by Geoff Clark (@geoffreyjamesclark) on Apr 16, 2017 at 1:36pm PDT

Hans Zimmer brought his orchestra (and Pharrell)
In one of the weekend’s more rousing “wow” moments, film composer Hans Zimmer and a full orchestra dazzled the Outdoor stage crowd, playing excerpts from movies he has scored — Inception,   Pirates of the Caribbean, The Lion King, and The Dark Knight — but with an added dose of caffeine. (@babyheelbayley) April 17, 2017

Why was dj khaled only playing 20 seconds of each of his songs wtf #Coachella
— drake's pet goat (@drizzygoat) April 17, 2017

DJ KHALED JUST MADE THE COACHELLA CROWD CHANT HIS SONS NAME IM IN TEARS
— riley (@virtuallyriley) April 17, 2017

RELATED:   All the Best Photos From Coachella 2017

coachella FAN LUV THANK YOU FOR COMING OUT FOR ME! Migos were everywhere
Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for Coachella
With four surprise appearances in one weekend, it seems hip-hop trio Quavo, Takeoff, and Offset — a.k.a. “If you not tryna mosh pit … get the f— out.”
Radiohead got “Let Down” by technical difficulties
Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for Coachella
Their third time as headliners was   not a charm for Radiohead:   Friday night’s top act was giving fans everything they wanted and expected… until it wasn’t what they wanted or expected. The 29-year-old performed at least a half-dozen tracks from that record, which dropped last Thursday, opening with the album’s   “DNA” after showing footage of Fox News anchors criticizing his protest song “Alright,” a single he performed later in the show. Rick Ross, A$AP Ferg, Wale, Swae Lee, and French Montana all also made it to the Sahara tent stage for Khaled’s Coachella takeover. “It takes a special kind of crazy person to bring an orchestra into the desert,” he told the crowd after opening with a snippet of the   Inception   score. Lady Gaga premiered “The Cure”
Amy Harris/Invision/AP
Mother Monster pulled through in more ways than one for Coachella 2017. But their weekend wasn’t done there…
DJ Khaled, in his own words, “takes Coachella”
Kevin Mazur/Getty Images
If there’s one thing DJ Khaled knows how to do, it’s how to tease a crowd and build anticipation.