Burna Boy wins hearts of Jamaicans at one-of-a-kind concert
African Giant, Burna Boy. (Photo: Andre Skeen)

KINGSTON, Jamaica – There’s something about Burna Boy. He’s a performer like no other.

From the very beginning of his Love Damini Tour stop at the National Stadium in Kingston on Sunday, the Afrobeats hitmaker – whose given name is Damini Ogulu – made himself at home, despite it being his first visit to Jamaica. He did that by embracing the Jamaican crowd, but even more so by expressing his connection to the island and its people.

“This feels like home to me. This feels like I’m a long lost brother that came to visit my country,” Burna Boy said as he ended his performance with dancehall artiste, Serani.

“See Jamaica, I’m from Nigeria, but we have so much history that you don’t even know about. I’m from Nigeria, but I’m still Jamaican.”

For this very reason, it didn’t take long for the African Giant to leave his mark on the thousands of patrons in attendance. And whether they knew his catalogue or not, they were surely in awe of his majestic production.

From his arsenal of hits, he performed tracks such as Last Last, Bank on It, Jerusalema, Its Plenty, Location, Kilometre and Alone from the Black Panther soundtrack and many more, leaving men and women alike in amazement.

However, let’s not forget the local acts of Popcaan and Lila Ike that shook the National Stadium to its core with performances that left fans rocking and grooving.

Popcaan performs some of his greatest hits at the Burna Boy Live concert. (Photo: Andre Skeen)

Popcaan, whose birth name is Andre Sutherland, gave fans many throwback moments with hits such as Dream and Firm and Strong. He also brought on iconic reggae crooner Beres Hammond for a cameo that elicited loud cheers from the thousands inside the National Stadium.

Love was in the air when the St Thomas native brought Miss World 2019, Toni-Ann Singh, on the stage to sing their joint track Next to Me. The rumoured couple’s chemistry erupted throughout the event as Popcaan ‘singhed’ his heart out, while Toni-Ann left it all on the stage.

Reggae artiste, Lila Ike performs at the National Stadium at the Burna Boy Live concert. (Photo: Andre Skeen)

Meanwhile, reggae artiste Lila Ike needs no second chance as her soulful and emotional performance started off the event with a bang.

Ike made it known that it was the biggest audience she has ever performed for locally and she made every moment count.

In addition, she spoke of her humble beginnings as “a girl from the ghetto”, which saw her introduce mentor Protoje, while stating, “when I had nothing, this man believed in me and said ‘Lila, you have power’.”

“Oh gosh! I’m at the National Stadium. Mommy can you see me now?” Ike added as she basked in the moment.

The Burna Boy Live concert in Jamaica was one for the books. He had previously visited Trinidad and Tobago and Antigua as part of the Caribbean leg of the tour.

Downsides to the Burna Boy Live concert:

1. Venue’s technical issues - Patrons were left booing and shouting, “we cyah hear” several times throughout the event because of technical problems, especially with the speakers and the mics used. As such, Burna Boy had to stop several times during his set, while Popcaan stormed off the stage and stated, “Doh try ramp wid me enuh man. Fix up di ting man,” to the concert’s technical team.

2. Pick pocketing – Pick pocketing was reportedly rampant at the VIP section of the concert. One man stated that he had to resort to hiding his belongings in his clothing, while another stated that he caught the perpetrator red handed. But some were not as lucky, as a woman, who said she journeyed from Miami, Florida was robbed of her iPhone.

Athena Clarke , OBSERVER Online reporter

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