Concerts featured Festivals Merriweather Post Pavilion

2012 Sweetlife Festival

The 2012 Sweetlife Festival at Merriweather Post Pavilion

COLUMBIA, MD - April 28th, 2012 -  Rapper A$AP Rocky performs at the 2012 Sweetlife Food and Music Festival at Merriweather Post Pavilion in Columbia, MD. After a string of successful mixtapes, his debut album, LongLiveA$AP, is scheduled to be released in July 2012. (Photo by Kyle Gustafson/For The Washington Post) (Kyle Gustafson/FTWP)

Now in it’s third year, the Sweetlife Music and Food Festival looks to be here for the long haul. And for the second straight year, it was cold and rainy, two conditions that don’t exactly scream “Summer concert season is here.”

COLUMBIA, MD - April 28th, 2012 -   James Mercer (left) of The Sins performs at the 2012 Sweetlife Food and Music Festival at Merriweather Post Pavilion in Columbia, MD.  The band is currently touring behind their latest album, Port of Morrow. (Photo by Kyle Gustafson/For The Washington Post) (Kyle Gustafson/FTWP)

COLUMBIA, MD - April 28th, 2012 -   Kid Cudi performs at the 2012 Sweetlife Food and Music Festival at Merriweather Post Pavilion in Columbia, MD. Cudi recently released the album WZRD, a collaboration with the record producer Dot da Genius. (Photo by Kyle Gustafson/For The Washington Post) (Kyle Gustafson/FTWP)

This year’s festival added a second stage and more food vendors, which greatly improved the festival experience. Last year’s fest was just on the pavilion stage and there was a lot of downtime after I was done shooting. This year, I was on my feet and working most of the time, which made for a very long day, but I’ll take it.

COLUMBIA, MD - April 28th, 2012 -  Swedish DJ Avicii headlines the 2012 Sweetlife Food and Music Festival at Merriweather Post Pavilion in Columbia, MD.  After a long day of rain and cold weather, fans went crazy for his brand of electronic dance music. (Photo by Kyle Gustafson/For The Washington Post) (Kyle Gustafson/FTWP)

COLUMBIA, MD - April 28th, 2012 -  Fans watch headlining DJ Avicii perform at the 2012 Sweetlife Food and Music Festival at Merriweather Post Pavilion in Columbia, MD.  (Photo by Kyle Gustafson/For The Washington Post) (Kyle Gustafson/FTWP)

COLUMBIA, MD - April 28th, 2012 -   Twin Shadow perform at the 2012 Sweetlife Food and Music Festival at Merriweather Post Pavilion in Columbia, MD.  (Photo by Kyle Gustafson/For The Washington Post) (Kyle Gustafson/FTWP)

This year’s lineup included Avicii, Kid Cudi, The Shins, Zola Jesus, Twin Shadow, A$AP Rocky and more. The two acts that I liked best, however, happened to be locals. US Royalty played a blistering late-afternoon set on the second stage and Bluebrain supplied the crowd with some nice beats during their DJ set on the pavilion stage. Avicii and The Shins were also better than I expected.

COLUMBIA, MD - April 28th, 2012 -  Paul Thornley and John Thornley of US Royalty perform at the 2012 Sweetlife Food and Music Festival at Merriweather Post Pavilion in Columbia, MD.  This was the band's last live performance before going into the studio to record their sophomore album. (Photo by Kyle Gustafson/For The Washington Post) (Kyle Gustafson/FTWP)

COLUMBIA, MD - April 28th, 2012 -  Nate Ruess and Jack Antonoff of fun. perform at the 2012  Sweetlife Food and Music Festival  at Merriweather Post Pavilion in Columbia, MD. The band's hit "We Are Young" recently reached number one on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 and Digital Songs charts. (Photo by Kyle Gustafson/For The Washington Post) (Kyle Gustafson/FTWP)

I got to the venue a few hours before the gates opened for a photoshoot with the band fun. Look for those photos in the Post tomorrow.

COLUMBIA, MD - April 28th, 2012 -  Fitz and the Tantrums perform at the 2012 Sweetlife Food and Music Festival at Merriweather Post Pavilion in Columbia, MD.  (Photo by Kyle Gustafson/For The Washington Post) (Kyle Gustafson/FTWP)

COLUMBIA, MD - April 28th, 2012 -   Zola Jesus performs at the 2012 Sweetlife Food and Music Festival at Merriweather Post Pavilion in Columbia, MD.  (Photo by Kyle Gustafson/For The Washington Post) (Kyle Gustafson/FTWP)

Full photo set below. Photos are not for sale due to the photo release.
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2012 Sweetlife Festival – Images by Kyle Gustafson

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