This year was full of so many disasters. Fortunately, music was not one of them. San Diego hosted a ton of great shows in the last 365 days, and plenty of great albums and songs were released in that time as well.
Here are some of the highlights.
Best shows of 2017 in San Diego
6. Run The Jewels at Observatory North Park on 1.20
5. Benjamin Booker at Belly Up on 9/29
4. Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds at Civic Theatre on 6.26
3. Khalid at House of Blues on 7.18
2. Glass Animals at Humphrey’s on 9.19
1. KAABOO DEL MAR at Del Mar Fairgrounds from 9.15-17
The third installment of the annual KAABOO “mixperience” was a good one. The continually varied lineup included a solid roster featuring Weezer, Pink, Jane’s Addiction, Alanis Morissette, Ice Cube, David Guetta, Fishbone, and Garbage. Even Shaquille O’Neal got in on the action with a DJ set. But it’s retrospect that puts this 3-day festival in the top spot. KAABOO headliner Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers closed down the festival on Sunday night with a two-hour career-spanning set. No one knew that just two weeks later the rock and roll icon would pass, leaving the Del Mar performance as one of his last.
Best songs of 2017
10. (No One Knows Me) Like The Piano — Sampha
9. Feel It Still — Portugal. The Man
8. Mi Gente (feat. Beyoncé) — J Balvin & Willy William
7. We Love (feat. MNDR) — TOKiMONSTA
6. Love Galore (feat. Travis Scott) — SZA
5. Ascension (feat. Vince Staples) — Gorillaz
4. Silence (feat. Khalid) — Marshmello
3. Plastic — Moses Sumney
2. Call The Police — LCD Soundsystem
1. Humble — Kendrick Lamar
Continuing on his meteoric rise as the greatest rapper alive, Kung Fu Kenny owned 2017 with his April-released album, DAMN. This single, Lamar’s first-ever number one, proved that the Compton rapper’s reach extends much farther than just fans of hip-hop.
Best albums of 2017
10. DAMN. — Kendrick Lamar
9. Halo —Juana Molina
8. American Dream — LCD Soundsystem
7. Aromanticism — Moses Sumney
6. Fin — Syd
5. Amar Y Vivir — La Santa Cecilia
4. A Crow Looked at Me — Mount Eerie
3. 3 — Run The Jewels
2. Half-Light— Rostam
1. Big Fish Theory — Vince Staples
So many best-of lists have Kendrick as their number one, but this 24-year-old Long Beach rapper takes the top spot here. Perfectly utilizing a solid roster of guests like Kilo Kish, Damon Albarn, Ty Dolla $ign, ASAP Rocky, and Lamar himself, Staples never gets overshadowed on his sophomore effort and takes big risks on this widely varied album.