Everything You Missed at Sunday Gov Ball: SZA, Chappell Roan, Reneé Rapp

Written by on June 11, 2024

Written by Shannon Daly

Published on June 11, 2024

Governor’s Ball’s most anticipated day was their Sunday lineup, which included the most up and coming acts in the pop world, including SZA, Chappell Roan, Reneé Rapp, Faye Webster and more. Some could say this was a day for “the girls”, although acts like Peso Pluma, Stephen Sanchez and Don Toliver amassed an honorable crowd of men as well. 

With a completely sold out day, including VIP, the energy in the air on Sunday was the most undeniable. I must, of course, mention the Chappell Roan fans who made the longest line at the gate of the three days at 11:45 a.m. in their cowboy hats and sparkly outfits, who then ran to the barricade to catch a glimpse of their favorite Midwest Princess. The main stage at 1:00 p.m. for the kickoff band Husbands had a generous crowd that I had not seen the other two days, but this also meant incredibly long lines at food, drink and “Beyond The Music” tents. Luckily, the weather was not as excruciatingly hot as Friday and Saturday, so the attitude of the crowd was positive, friendly and electric. 


 Photograph by Mickey Pierre-Louis

Husbands, a surfy beach rock band from Oklahoma City (go figure), kicked off the main stage at 1:00 p.m., with a relaxed, coastal vibe, perfect to start off the day. They began their set with “Try Not to Worry”, a classic from their 2020 outtakes album. The sound of Husbands closely resembled other modern pop-shoegazey bands like Alvvays, Slowdive and Beach Fossils. With electric guitar solos and powerful driving bass lines, it was hard not to catch yourself swaying to the dense, reverb-filled driving rhythms. The gentle background vocals added to the lush songs that kissed my ears as the sun was starting to come out from the rainclouds. My favorites included:

“Try Not to Worry”

“Speed Racer”- A song with a brilliant build up that erupts into an epic guitar solo that is a thrill to listen to live, and also got the crowd dancing, including me with my notebook!

For more information on Husbands opening at Governor’s Ball, new projects, and more, you can check out my interview with Danny Davis, lead of Husbands HERE


Photograph by Payton Abner

Beach Fossils was next across the park with their dreamy mix, a similar vibe to the Husbands before them. I saw Beach Fossils opening for Post Malone in 2023 and funnily enough, it seems like all the touring bands in festivals this year are all in the same choosing pool. Beach Fossils is a band that is the best to listen to when you want to relax after standing up at a festival for hours on end, which made their middle-of-the-day set a perfect time for them.

Beach Fossils founder Dustin Payseur’s daughter joined them on stage for their classic “Sleep Apnea” which I am certain is on every indie-heads’ ‘sad boy’ hours playlist. It was a silly and fun addition to the set, which garnered many “awws” and chants. It made its way into my favorites from this set, which also included:

“Down The Line”- A song which I did not realize until this moment was dedicated to New York (I don’t want your Wall Street.. duh..), and rightfully is their best and most appreciated song. 


Photograph by N Bradley

Now for the moment everyone had been waiting for, the enigma of Chappell Roan. Looking around, I believe her crowd was larger than even that of Reneé Rapp, who came on an hour after Roan.

With her small catalog of songs, it is incredibly easy to learn the lyrics to all of her songs which I can confirm everyone did. The vibe of the crowd was similar to the likes of Lady Gagas’, with extremely passionate fans who come for her showmanship and anthemic music about being true to yourself and extremely raw, relatable tracks like “Casual” which hits too hard for anyone who has been in a situation-ship.

Bursting out of an apple in an all-green Statue of Liberty drag immediately solidified her place as the icon of the festival, an unforgettable and extremely unique choice that fans adored. She played all of her classics, including “Red Wine Supernova” and “HOT TO GO!” which pairs perfectly with her signature hot to go dance, which did not even need to be taught for everyone in the audience to dance along to.

This all led up to the reveal of her unreleased song “Subway”, that she decided to debut in New York City, even admitting herself that she had never done this before. The song sonically resembles “Casual”, being more of a ballad than a dance song, reminiscing after seeing someone who resembled an old love on the subway, wishing she could forget the memories she once shared.

Live debuts are always exciting, but this treat for fans made her performance that much more special. I would go on to list my highlights, but honestly, it was all of them. 10/10 for me. 


Photograph by Anna Downs

Reneé Rapp had a tough act to follow, but sharing most of Chappell’s fans and having one of the best live vocal performances in the industry today made it easy as pie.

Fans kept up their excitement, bringing an array of signs for her to stop and read. Rapp’s ability to interact with her fans makes her performances stand out, and her positive and confident energy flies off the stage with every word. While unfortunately there was no “I Hate Boston”, she did come through with “In The Kitchen” which is simply jaw dropping when heard live, especially the belting chorus.

Her theatre kid side definitely shines through in songs like these, but as she says, she is a ballad girl. Another highlight for me was “Talk Too Much”, the rock-influenced song that perfectly describes relationship anxiety. The live guitar and drums added to the punch, making one of her best songs even better.

After the success of  her 2023 debut “Snow Angel”, Rapp’s career has taken off to new heights, and it is exciting to see how far her and other up and coming pop stars like Chappell will go, even so far (yet so, so early) in their careers. 


Photograph by Mickey Pierre-Louis

Faye Webster was next for me, which was definitely a break from the high-energy pop taking place just before her. Enough indie lovers made it over to the far stage right before SZA to gain a considerable crowd.

I like to describe her music as a wistful and sentimental hug. When I closed my eyes during her set in the forest-y IHG stage, it felt like I was in my backyard in 2008 again sitting under an oak tree. Her music evokes more of a feeling from the instrumentals than a reaction from the lyrics, so some time to relax after dancing to Chappell and Reneé was rewarding.

Some of her songs have few lyrics, but are still able to tell a story. I quite enjoyed the dreamy indie/shoegaze vibe happening in Sunday’s lineup, and all of the artists perfectly wove together.

A highlight from Faye’s set for me was “I Know You”, a slow, jazzy song that is so delicate that when the drums kicked in, it felt like a colorful knife cutting throughout the crowd. Almost folky, the beautiful reverb and swells could make you cry or smile depending on how you’re feeling. Another win for the girls. 


Finally, the last performance of Governors Ball 2024 was here. SZA took the stage with a rustic boat-themed set, which matched the character of her 2022 album “SOS”. SZA’s discography is a mixed bag, featuring slow ballads about growing up and love, punchy dance songs, or even some rock songs thrown in.

Celebrating the seven year anniversary of her smashing 2017 hit “Ctrl”, these songs still resonate almost a decade later to young teens, 20-somethings, and older fans. SZA played eight songs from her debut, including favorites like “Love Galore”, “The Weekend” and “Drew Barrymore”. This was mixed with new heavy hitters like “Low”, “F2F” and “Kill Bill” which featured an epic and sensual katana dance.

Her performance was a pretty even split of dancing and solos, which perfectly described her style. A highlight of mine was surprisingly when she decided to all of the sudden switch the vibe up and start playing “Rich Baby Daddy”, a cover of Drake’s song, encouraging all her fans to dance towards the latter half of her set. Other than her looking stunning on stage, her stage presence was fun, carnal, and occasionally gyrating. She was the perfect ending to a day filled with exciting performances, and it was great to see a newer act with only two studio albums be able to compete with long-running bands like The Killers. 


The festival season has just started, and we are eager to see how festivals like Lollapalooza and Bonaroo compare to Governor’s Ball. From selling out two of the three days, it leaves me wondering if the Governor’s Ball will expand next year, either changing locations again or making a fourth date. Either way, the blessing of nice weather, a relatively unproblematic crowd and amazing performances paid off in the end. My final Governors’ Ball day rating is:

  1. Sunday
  2. Friday
  3. Saturday

Be sure to check out WMSC Radio’s interview with Husbands, and check out Friday and Saturday’s reviews as well. Until next year, goodbye Governor’s Ball 2024!