It feels like all of Jamaica and its diaspora descended onto the National Stadium in Kingston, Jamaica this past Saturday for Buju Banton’s Long Walk to Freedom concert – his first live performance after serving 8 years in prison. The Jamaican music legend enjoyed a hero’s welcome, as a slew of reggae and dancehall’s finest joined him on stage in performance. If you were one of the few yardies who couldn’t make it out this weekend (and are currently suffering some serious FOMO), we’ve rounded up our favorite moments from the legendary event.
Buju Banton only recruited the best to warm up the crowd for him. Here, the stellar line-out spans generations of Jamaican artists old and new, including Cocoa Tea, Chris Martin, Romain Virgo and newcomer Koffee.
Backstage at the Long Walk to Freedom concert proved just as star-studded, with Jamaican stars showing up to celebrate his return. Here, Chronicle (L) posed with his reggae star son Chronixx (right) and Cocoa Tea (center). Both Chronixx and Cocoa Tea performed.
The moment when the man himself finally came on stage, breaking out into a classic gospel song for his first performance. He was backed by his legendary Til Shiloh band.
We love this tender moment when Beres Hammond joined Buju Banton on stage for their performance together. They soon got the crowd hollering, performing their hit “Can You Play Some More.” They also sung each other’s verses on another hit of theirs, “Who Say?”
Reggae legends Marcia Griffiths took to the stage in a stunning fuchsia number for her performance with Buju. The pair have been close for years. Buju Banton says Marcia Griffiths has been giving him advice since he was 17 years old. He says that she is like a mother to him.
It was a childhood dream come true for Jamaican-British star Stefflon Don as she joined the stage to perform with her hero Buju Banton. Sharing this moment on Instagram, she said the performance “means the world to me and it takes me back to my childhood. This is the best moment of my career and life achievement ever. I do not believe nothing will top this at all! ”
Back Stage Pass
If something big is going down in music, you can count on it that Miami producer DJ Khaled isn’t far behind. He shared this on-stage moment of Buju Banton on Instagram, as he performed a medley of his hits, including “Murderer” and “Til I’m Laid To Rest.” Both have recently in the studio working on a new track.
We can’t leave without sharing Buju’s beautiful performance of his classic song “Destiny,” completely commanding the stage and the crowd. If you missed this epic concert, you can still catch the man himself live. His Long Walk to Freedom Tour will be running across the Caribbean.
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