Inside the Rolling Stone Live: Atlanta Super Bowl party at the Goat Farm

The magazine's annual Super Bowl party brought celebrities and performances from Ludacris, Gunna, Young Thug, and Questlove

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Rolling Stone party Atlanta Super Bowl LIII

Photograph by Raymond McCrea Jones for Rolling Stone

In the half hour before the official start of the Rolling Stone Live: Atlanta party on Saturday night at the Goat Farm Arts Center, the scene looked a little bit like a sad prom, with a disco ball spinning above an empty dance floor while a DJ hit the air-horn sound (“FEH-feh-feh-feh-FEH”). You’d be forgiven for thinking that maybe this Super Bowl party was going to stay decidedly un-lit, given that some tickets were going for the price of a Mitsubishi Mirage. But as soon as 9 p.m. struck, the velvet ropes were pulled aside, the wristbands were handed out, the room filled up, the dance floor filled out, the selfies started, and the phalanx of security guards in front of the stage perked up.

Rolling Stone party Atlanta Super Bowl LIII

Photograph by Raymond McCrea Jones for Rolling Stone

Rolling Stone party Atlanta Super Bowl LIII
Brian White, Essence Atkins, and Robin Givens

Photograph by Raymond McCrea Jones for Rolling Stone

Rolling Stone party Atlanta Super Bowl LIII
Taran Killam and Ty Burrell

Photograph by Raymond McCrea Jones for Rolling Stone

The Goat Farm Art Center is a 12-acre complex of 19th-century industrial warehouses. They’re usually populated by artists, but on Saturday, the Bravo-lebrities took over. There was Brielle Biermann (Don’t Be Tardy); NeNe Leakes, Cynthia Bailey, Tanya Sam, Marlo Hampton, and Kenya Moore (Real Housewives of Atlanta); Luann de Lesseps (Real Housewives of New York); and Scheana Shay (Vanderpump Rules). Also in attendance were musician CeeLo Green and actors Merle Dandridge (Greenleaf), Robin Givens (Riverdale), Ser’Darius Blain (Charmed), Taran Killam (Saturday Night Live), and Ty Burrell (Modern Family).

Rolling Stone party Atlanta Super Bowl LIII
NeNe Leakes, Marlo Hampton, and Cynthia Bailey

Photograph by Raymond McCrea Jones for Rolling Stone

Rolling Stone party Atlanta Super Bowl LIII
Kingston Green, CeeLo Green, and Shani James

Photograph by Rick Diamond for Rolling Stone

Rolling Stone party Atlanta Super Bowl LIII

Photograph by Raymond McCrea Jones for Rolling Stone

Rolling Stone party Atlanta Super Bowl LIII

Photograph by Raymond McCrea Jones for Rolling Stone

Face value for a general admission ticket was $650, and that got you cocktails, as well as passed crab cakes, meatballs, spanakopita, other finger foods, and the opportunity to gawk skyward at the VIPs leaning over the upstairs balcony. (This reporter wasn’t allowed to go up there, so I have no idea whether they got bigger crab cakes for their $900 tickets. Or $10,000 tickets, if they reserved a table.)

Rolling Stone party Atlanta Super Bowl LIII
Young Thug

Photograph by Raymond McCrea Jones for Rolling Stone

Rolling Stone party Atlanta Super Bowl LIII
Lil Keed

Photograph by Raymond McCrea Jones for Rolling Stone

Rolling Stone party Atlanta Super Bowl LIII
Ludacris

Photograph by Raymond McCrea Jones for Rolling Stone

On stage was Young Thug, Gunna, and Lil Keed, followed by Ludacris and a DJ set from Questlove. The last artist on that list has been quoted as saying, “I don’t have friends, and it’s hard for me to make new friends.” Normally, you’d think a party like this, with its economic hierarchy fully on display and fans of rival football teams drinking—a lot—in close proximity to each other, making new friends would indeed be difficult. But instead, New England Patriots fans danced next to Los Angeles Rams fans, who danced next to people who had to look up who was playing in the sportsball tournament this year. Rolling Stone brought us all together.

Rolling Stone party Atlanta Super Bowl LIII
Megan Thee Stallion

Photograph by Raymond McCrea Jones for Rolling Stone

Rolling Stone party Atlanta Super Bowl LIII
Questlove

Photograph by Rick Diamond for Rolling Stone

Rolling Stone party Atlanta Super Bowl LIII

Photograph by Rick Diamond for Rolling Stone

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