Diplo, Walshy Fire, Jillionaire along with the ladies of Major Lazer - Mela and Lafayette - proved on Friday night that Jamaica is more than ready to fully embrace EDM influenced Reggae/Dancehall crossover that has been growing in popularity worldwide.
The concert attracted a huge turnout with Jamaicans from all over the island piling into Mas Camp at Independence Park and some with patrons even flying into the country just to make it to the show. The venue reportedly held close to 5000 individuals that night that all got their money's worth at the drink inclusive event.
Major Lazer's fresh take on Dancehall and Reggae music, that Diplo has been producing since the group's debut album in 2009, has been redefining Jamaica's Dancehall and Reggae culture for a more global audience. The album which was titled "Guns Don't Kill People...Lazers Do" featured Vybz Kartel's megahit "Pon De Floor" (the instrumental of the same name was later picked up by Beyonce for her hit single "Run the World (Girls)").
Jamaican music received the spotlight at the concert with RDX treating the crowd to a brief performance of their singles Lose Themself and Jump, but the concert ultimately featured a more diverse showcasing. Jamaica's own Chromatic sound system opened the show and played a good set, though most of the patrons already came ready to rave. As the free liquor began to course through the veins of those who were lucky enough to not be driving, the crowd could no longer contain their excitement and some patrons soon began to scream for Major Lazer to take the stage.
Before Major Lazer could perform however, International EDM DJ/producer and Godfather of Dubstep, Skrillex, took center stage. Skrillex took the concert to another level with his skillful mixing and proved why he is a world renowned music master. He fed the crowd his own take on Jamaican music which included his hit with Damian "Junior Gong" Marley titled Make it Bun Dem, while still showcasing his own personal brand of EDM music that has brought him fame internationally.
After announcing the addition of Skrillex to the concert roster, Major Lazer had also divulged that they had more surprises in store for patrons and this was no lie. One of the biggest surprises for the night was Vampire Weekends lead singer Ezra Koenig taking the stage for a quick performance. The indie-rock star quickly crooned a few notes from his song on Major Lazer's latest album Free the Universe. The song which is titled Jessica features a Neo-Reggae/Dub sound that ties in with the album's Jamaican feel but Koenig's voice definitely sets him apart from the rest of the musicians featured on the album, making the track one of the most memorable.
Major Lazer's performance summed up the entire show as Trinidadian producer, Jillionaire, Black Chiney's Walshy Fire and Diplo played a dynamic, high-energy set. The crowd exploded for some of the more popular selections like Jet Blue Jet, Watch out For This and Mash Up The Dance and still partied to the ones they were unfamiliar with proving that they were there to have a good time no matter what. Needless to say a lot of new music was discovered on Friday and Walshy Fire took the opportunity to give the audience a preview of his latest mix titled Suns of Dub, while Jillionaire featured his new music with Machel Montano.
Celebrities, including dancehall's up-and-comer Samantha J and international sensation Sean Paul, where also in attendance, showing Major Lazer's far reaching influence.
sponsors of the event, including Red Stripe, Ting, Pepsi, Pure Country, Digicel
and Restaurants of Jamaica should also be acknowledged for giving Major Lazer
the opportunity to produce a concert that was unlike any other seen in Jamaica
thus far. Completely original and with the right mix of local and international
music, Major Lazer Presents was the place to be on December 20th and the
perfect way to kick of the holiday season.