Lil Uzi Vert, Wu-Tang Clan among Something in the Water festival performers
Something in the Water will be held this year April 28-30.
Fans have been clamoring for a lineup announcement, even as they've snapped up tickets to Something in the Water that have been on sale for months.
Finally, after a long wait, Virginia native Pharrell Williams delivered.
The diverse lineup includes hip-hop legends like Lil Wayne and Wu-Tang Clan alongside indie darlings 100 Gecs and the recently reformed pop-folk stars Mumford & Sons.
Something in the Water, a three-day weekend of music and events right on the beach at the Oceanfront, will be held this year April 28-30.
Williams, a music and fashion star, was born and raised in Virginia Beach. He's brought along locals again, including Chesapeake comedian and Saturday Night Live alum Jay Pharoah and revered Virginia Beach rap duo Clipse, made up of brothers Pusha T and No Malice. Williams worked extensively with the pair.
And once again, fans can expect a set billed as "Pharrell's Phrends," which has previously been a stage for unannounced and unexpected appearances of major musical figures.
The Pharrell and friends set at the first Something in the Water in 2019 included unannounced appearances by local legends like Missy Elliot and Timbaland, and music legends like Jay-Z and Snoop Dogg.
At the 2022 event, Williams was joined onstage by Atlanta rapper T.I. and the reunited Clipse.
Something in the Water is an evolution of College Beach Week, an informal event where thousands of college students — mostly from Historically Black Colleges and Universities — would flock to Virginia Beach for a spring break-style week of partying.
Virginia Beach has long had an uneasy relationship with the event, dating back to its days as Greek Fest and the infamous 1989 riot, when tensions between visitors and police boiled over.
Since then, residents and business owners often complained of violence during the week, but statistics show that crime is not especially high during the weekend compared to other large event weekends at the Oceanfront.
Something in the Water was conceived by Williams as a more focused way for the crowds of primarily Black college students to gather in Virginia Beach.
The inaugural Something in the Water was held in April 2019 and was hailed as a massive success for the city. Virginia Beach calculated the sold-out weekend generated more than $24 million in economic activity for the region.
The 2020 and 2021 festivals were canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Then, in March 2021, Virginia Beach Police fatally shot Willams' cousin, Donovan Lynch. Williams moved the 2022 festival to Washington, D.C., over the handling of Lynch's shooting. He accused the city of harboring a "toxic energy" in an open letter, which many fans took to be a veiled reference to racism in Virginia Beach.
City leaders spent months trying to woo Williams back. Last November, the star announced Something in the Water would return to his hometown in 2023.