Summer Jam comes to Canada (Live) [Review]
Kitchener-Waterloo, ON – Hot 97’s DJ Enuff, brought a New York classic to the small Canadian town of Kitchener, Ontario on Saturday July 17, 2010. For the very first time Summer Jam Canada was held at Bigemans Water Park.
It’s a typical 30 degree July Saturday and hundreds of hip-hop fans gather in the large field, under the burning sun to show support and see some of the hottest emcee’s throw down on the stage.
MC Crazy Chris from Toronto-based Legacy Sound Crew had the crowd hype by mid- afternoon when F-A-B-O-L-O-U-S was set to perform. “Fabolous is in the building; let me hear y’all make some noise!” Chris asks the crowd. When a mediocre wail belts from the crowd, Chris is not impressed. “Nah, y’all sound like y’all are sleep. Let me hear you make some mother fucking noise for Fabolous!” The eager crowd screams out louder, begging the MC to bring out the Brooklyn Don. With that and a fresh pair of Jay’s, Fab steps onto the stage to entertain the anticipating crowd, dropping hits from There Is No Competition, and Loso’s Way. After being in the game for so long, every song Fab performs has the crowd regurgitating every single bar as if it was their own. Hiding behind a pair of red-framed shades, the emcee was able to captivate the crowd purely off the strength of his long list of hits. Both male and female fans in the crowd tugged and pushed their way to the front of the stage in an effort to get closer.
Throughout the entire show there was a melting pot of performers. Local artists had a presence. There was Kitchener native, Dizzi who was granted the opportunity to perform in front of his own local fan base and get one step closer to living his dream. Inching closer and closer to the stage, during the Fabolous set, in an effort to get noticed, Dizzi whips his mixtape, The Army Volume 2 onto the stage from the audience. A simple shot in the dark, but Fab’s hype man takes notice, picks up the mixtape and brings it over to the DJ. Dizzi’s Just Anutha-Hustle crew, Lil’ J and Step Dee rush around him and in a playful banter, praise their friend for making such a boastful move. When asked about the mixtape toss up, Dizzi said, “It means everything because this city is so under the map right now, and to have Summer Jam come here and to have us as opening acts, it’s a blessing, [a chance] we had to take.”
“SALUTE!!!!” Enter onto the stage Mr. Ricky Rozay. Wearing a white T and sweats, with his signature white towel draped around his neck, the Teflon Don enters the stage. “I think I’m Big Meech, Larry Hover…” was all the crowd needed to hear to send the energy level up a few notches. With his fourth studio album, Teflon Don, in stores now, Ross takes the time out to acknowledge the fans, and to thank them for bringing him this far. Ever so often, the Don would wipe his face and send a white towel off into the crowd, causing brief tussles between fans hoping to capture a piece of Ross and to commemorate this event. As the sun is setting, a cool breeze blows over the crowd and the heat becomes bearable, Ross performs one of his personal favorites, “Hustlin’.” Whatever he asks of the crowd, they oblige, be it putting their hands up, or keeping quite to let him speak, the crowd seems so eager, so grateful to have him there. Despite the trivial misconceptions of Ross’ street cred, the fans still love him. On the stage, it seems Rozay can do no wrong.
As the evening pressed on, it was time for ass. The call was made out to the crowd for ladies who thought their dunk had what it took to compete. Of the 13 contestants it came down to two with the crowd being the final judge. Lucky contestant number three was able to stimulate certain members of the crowd with her dance moves to Tony Matterhorn’s, “Dutty Wine”. Beating out contestant number 12, to win a trip to the island paradise of Jamaica.
From ass to the Good Life, next up T-Pain hit the stage. With his own entourage of dancers, Pain came to Summer Jam with one intent: to entertain the crowd, and he did so. In an unconventional way of performing, when most artist just come out to recite a few bars from certain tracks, Pain made his show so much more personal. In little “speeches” as he referred to it, Pain took the time to explain certain things to crowd about everything from Lil’ Wayne, offering advice when in the bedroom and even making jokes. This type of performance wasn’t so easily accepted by certain members of the crowd. One fan said, “Yo’, looks like this guy came out here to talk.” Pain himself even said to the crowd he knows that he talks a bit much, yet for some reason, it worked. At one point Pain’s dancers, shirts off, performing the Pat Pat dance, which as Pain described it, as being for men who are, “at least seven inches”. Despite being in such an impersonal setting, Pain was able to draw the crowd in, making each person feel as if the message he was sending was just for them. “Soldiers are made, warriors are born,” Pain tells the crowd and with that he goes into his verse of, “All I Do is Win”, offering the guidance to the audience to pursue their dreams.
The sun has finally set, and the heat of the day have finally subdued. The crowd though, is still hot, waiting for one last performer. Yah, yah, yah, yah, yah they were waiting for Busta Bus. Dylan Francis, 18, has been a Busta supporter from the beginning. “He’s just one of my favorite rappers,” said Francis, adding that Busta’s one of the only reasons he came to Summer Jam. After so many years in the game, Busta is still able to capture fans that were about the same age as Busta’s career.
With Spliff Star in tow, Busta would not allow the crowd’s energy level to drop at any point. Jumping up on the stage, dancing, talking to the crowd, he had his fans constantly engaged. “Sing my shit,” he tells the crowd, when they are not too familiar with the words to Mariah Carey’s part in the hip-hop ballot, “I Know What You Want”. Busta starts off the crowd, “Yes you know I’ll die for you/And ya’ know I’ll ride with you,” but the crowd delivers a mumble response. A playful Busta helps the crowd finish the song. Performing classics like “Break Ya Neck” and more recent hits such as “Make It Clap”, Busta’s fans’, even at 11:00 o’clock at night and after waiting close to eight hours to see him perform, were thoroughly entertained by the performer and excited for the champagne shower he gave the crowd at the end of his performance.
Summer Jam 2010
Written by Tiffany Thompson for HipHopCanada
Photography by Melissa Moffat for HipHopCanada