Flags, food and fun mark the environment in Bayfront Park at this year’s Best of the Best concert. The massive reggae concert is celebrating its 13th year bringing Caribbean musical talent to Miami.
Audience members had the chance to jam out to current and classic hits. I” have to give praises to Joey Budafuko and Jabba for always representing the music of this day and age. Best of the Best is the name suh, If yah come round here and don't plan fi put on your best, stay home in ya Sunday best,” said Shabba Ranks, headlining performer for this year’s Best of the Best.
The Best of the Best concert took place on Sunday, May 26 at Bayfront Park in Downtown Miami. This year’s roster was a culmination of present and 1990s reggae artists. The roster included Alkaline, Super Cat, Shabba Ranks, Skinny Fabulous, Bushman, Stylo G, and General Degree.
“I haven't been on a major stage like this in America in years,” said General Degree. “It was a pleasure to represent the ‘90s dancehall. I am looking forward to more shows like this in America,” said Degree.
Best of the Best is one of the largest Caribbean concerts around. Not only does this show refresh veteran artists, but it can also jumpstart careers as well.
“A lot of promoters and executives come out to the show. They can become links that can take you far,” said Jahmiel, reggae artist and a returning performer of Best of the Best. This is Jahmiel’s third time performing in the festival. He delivered a high-energy performance but he recalls his first time performing at the show.
“Yo, that was crazy. The energy was right and the uproar from the crowd was there. I got a few more bookings from that first time and it did great for me,” said Jahmiel.
Between acts during the show, Best of the Best was honored with a proclamation from Miami-Dade County.
“It is a celebration of Caribbean heritage. It has been kind of downplayed because it has been doing well for so long,” said Retha Boone-Fye, program officer and director of the county’s Black Affairs Advisory Board. “Best of the Best has earned its reputation based on the fact it’s in its 13th year. This particular festival also hasn't had any negative incidents and we are very proud of that.”
Memorial Day Weekend in Miami has a history of fatal and tragic incidents. During this weekend, a man was stabbed while riding the Miami-Dade Metromover in Downtown Miami. Rolling Loud was the last large music festival to come to Miami and that came with a series of problems including the death of Chicago rapper AAB Hellabandz, who was shot. Best of the Best has so far been incident-free, according to Boone-Fye.
“This fact makes the show a safe and fun activity for everyone to enjoy.” We are very happy to see the show come to Miami and bring these types of artists that make Miami a destination location for safe tourism,” said Boone.
The show concluded with a performance from Alkaline. He performed his hits such as, “With the Thing” and “Juggernaut.” The biggest surprise in his set was an appearance from Mavado. Together they performed “Farewell” and the crowd went wild.
Best of the Best brought another evening of great Caribbean music that left many tourists and locals satisfied.
“Hardwork is the key to success. When we say Best of the Best, we mean the artists are going to put on the best performance to make our patrons happy to be there,” said Jabba, radio personality of Hot 97 and co-founder of Best of the Best.