“I know I look like i’m 12, but seriously you guys, 10 years [together]. Thank you so much for helping us get to play this very stage,” Paramore‘s Hayley Williams joked about her band’s decade-long union during the penultimate set of iHeartRadio’s fourth festival (and biggest yet) in Las Vegas.
There were many platitudes of gratitude expressed from the main stage at the MGM Grand Garden Arena, as artists ranging from Nicki Minaj and One Direction to Eric Church and Bastille all went out of their way to thank iHeartRadio and its programmers for spinning their singles into top 40 gold. As in years past, there were several surprises: Chris Brown joined Usher for their hit “New Flame”; Macklemore jumped on Ed Sheeran‘s cover of “Same Love”; Ariana Grande tackled both her and Jessie J‘s high notes on “Bang Bang” during Minaj’s set; and Pete Wentz rafted across the crowd while Steve Aoki debuted his new track with Fall Out Boy.
And then there were the moments that almost happened: A planned Taylor Swift–Coldplay collab was nixed at the last minute, as was an unannounced Saturday set by Prince. Meanwhile, temperatures up to 96 degrees couldn’t keep 5 Seconds of Summer fans from flocking to a parking lot blocks from the venue for the second annual iHeartRadio Fan Village. An ambitious and sweltering daytime offering, the Village also boasted sets from The Pretty Reckless, Meghan Trainor and Iggy Azalea, though many fans cleared out post-5SOS to beat the heat.