Female artists shine at CRSSD Festival to kick off Women’s History Month


It has now become an unofficial tradition for the CRSSD Spring Festival to take place during one of the wettest weekends in San Diego. Although the sun did manage to peek out from the clouds a handful of times, the rain, cold and wind persisted for the duration of the two-day, three-stage festival. Despite the unsavory weather, thousands of attendees fervently flocked to San Diego’s Waterfront Park for the annual celebration of house and techno music.

With March being Women’s History Month, it is fitting that the women, both the performers and the attendees, were the highlight of CRSSD. There was no shortage of creative ensembles from female festival attendees that included, shiny suits, leather, bodysuits, parasols, faux fur everything, sequins, fishnet, crop tops, and mesh bell bottoms.

This year’s CRSSD didn’t feature any women headliners so we’ll focus on the eight female artists who played early afternoon or early evening sets on either The Palms or City Steps stage. The opening sets were the perfect opportunity for the early risers to get a lay of the festival land and show their love for Marie Nyx, Nektar, Michi, Kasia, and Sofia Kourtesis – each with an hour-long set. 

One of many things that CRSSD does well is transition smoothly between artists’ sets, and the transition to London-based DJ-producer, Syreeta, brought out the sun. Syreeta’s smile was as infectious as her music and there were no statues during her 75-minute set because her throbbing beats, coupled with the synth, had heads bobbing and feet stomping. The transition from Syreeta to Sally C was also seamless. Whether intentional or not, the Irish-born, Berlin-based DJ-producer gave CRSSD a little nostalgia with a performance reminiscent of the 90s EDM sound. Because women support women, both Syreeta and Sally C showed one other love by joining each other onstage momentarily for their respective sets.

The one female artist who did not have an early afternoon set was Ki/Ki. At 6:15 pm, just after sunset, the City Steps stage turned into what one could expect at a rave in Berlin: strobe lights cutting through swarms of people and music that pulsates so hard and so fast that you can feel it reverberate through your body while the ground shakes. Ki/Ki’s set was an experience that could only be appreciated after dark. 

Although there were some noticeable drawbacks compared to last year’s festival, fewer restrooms, fewer brand activations, no hand washing stations, hand sanitizer only, and a blown speaker by the end of day one at The Palms stage, CRSSD’s spring 2024 showcase was relatively solid. Perhaps future CRSSD festivals will put forth increased effort in celebrating women by booking female headliners and having an equal number of male and female performers. FNGRS CRSSD.

All images courtesy of CRSSD Festival // Photographers: Keiki Lani-Knudsen, Rachael Polack, Miguel Flores.

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