For thousands of Reggae, Dancehall and Soca music fans in the tri-state area, HOT 97 On Da Reggae Tip 2014 was a proper kick off to Labor Day weekend on Friday. The live music concert serves as a nice transition into Monday’s (Sept. 1) 47th annual West Indian American Day Carnival/Labor Day Parade, marking the unofficial end of summer.
For the first time, HOT 97 On Da Reggae Tip known as “the biggest reggae party of the summer” was held outdoors at JBL Live at Pier 97 along Manhattan’s breathtaking waterfront. Celebrating Caribbean music and heritage, Dancehall, Reggae and Soca recording artists performed in front of a culturally diverse crowd. Attendees proudly waved flags representing their Caribbean heritage including Jamaica, Guyana, Haiti, Trinidad and Tobago and other Caribbean islands.
Some of the most memorable collaborations of Reggae and Dancehall music were included in HOT 97’s On Da Reggae Tip 2014 lineup. Shabba Ranks brought out Maxi Priest for their smash 90’s hit song, “House Call”, while Shaggy and Rayvon took the crowd back in time with “Big Up”. Dancehall artist, Red Fox appeared during Shaggy’s set to perform his “Hot Dis Year” Riddim classic, “Pum Pum Shorts”.
On Da Reggae Tip 2014 didn't disappoint us with the surprise guests, R&B songbird Ashanti popped up during Beenie Man’s medley performance of hits. Newer reggae/dancehall artists like Kranium crooned his chart-topper, “Nobody Has to Know” while QQ encouraged the crowd to “Skip to My Lou” when he took to the stage. He wowed the crowd when he invited one female concert-goer on stage to “Walk Wi Di One Drop”, a popular dance that shares the same name as his hit song.
Participation wasn’t limited to just the crowd when it was time for female dancehall recording artist Spice to perform. The “So Mi Like It” singer took a moment to put her whining skills to the test on both Ebro Darden and Peter Rosenberg from the HOT 97 radio crew. In West Indian culture, “whining” is a form of dance in which you roll your hips in a seductive way.
NBC’s The Voice season 5 winner and Jamaican native, Tessanne Chin enchanted the audience with her single, “Heaven Knows”. Samantha J performed her flirty Dancehall tune, “Tight Skirt” and “Back it Up” Dancehall star, Tifa and backup dancers gave a high energy performance.
“Ready for the Road” singer Bunji Garlin and wife Fay Ann Lyons commanded the crowd to jump up, wave and whine, Trinidadian Carnival style. Keeping up with tradition, HOT 97’s On Da Reggae Tip 2014 concert was a mix of the hottest classic and new artists of the Caribbean. Assassin, Bugle, Gyptian, Kes, Nature, Red Rat, Ricky Blaze, Sanchez and Wayne Marshall were among the performers. On the R&B and Hip-Hop tip, Ne-Yo and Treach also came through to join the Reggae Dancehall party at JBL Live at Pier 97.
Check out our exclusive HOT 97 On Da Reggae Tip 2014 concert photos in this article along with HOT 97’s official video recap.