It’s been nearly a decade since the iconic concert Rock the Bells brought hip-hop’s greatest acts together for a night of epic performances. In 2008, monumental MCs such as A Tribe Called Quest, the Pharcyde, Nas, MF Doom, Rakim, Mos Def, Talib Kweli, De La Soul, Method Man & Redman, Immortal Technique, Little Brother, Raekwon, and Ghostface Killah congregated at Bayfront Park to deliver classics live in front of thousands of fans.
Rock the Bells began in 2004 and ended in 2013, just a year shy of its tenth anniversary. Now, four years later, a new concert series is here to fill the void that hip-hop heads in South Florida have been feeling for so long.
Addictive Affairs and DNA Entertainment will bring Raekwon, Jadakiss, Styles P, Sheek Louch, and an army of rap veterans together to form the Boom Bap All-Stars for one night in Miami. The Watsco Center in Coral Gables will be the official hub for special performances from the OGs of New York hip-hop. There will be pioneers such as Pete Rock & CL Smooth and leaders of the new school like Smoke DZA. While Addictive Affairs CEO DJ Heron listed all the notable names in the lineup, he was also working on wrapping up his Boom Bap All-Stars mixtape.
“It’s a playlist of songs from all the artists that are performing,” Heron says. "Everyone that’s going to be on that stage is on this mixtape.”
Over the past five years, Heron and partner Johann Torres of DNA Entertainment have masterminded plenty of hip-hop-centric events. Within the past year, the two have brought Bone Thugs-N-Harmony to perform and put together events like J Dilla Weekend 2016. The latter featured Smif-N-Wessun and DJ Premier vs. Pete Rock at Sidebar Miami.
After they locked up the Lox, which had a free date on the Filthy American It’s Beautiful tour, the idea for Boom Bap All-Stars took off. Heron and Torres expanded the lineup to include Raekwon, DMX, Royce da 5’9 & DJ Premier, AKA PRhyme, Smoke DZA, Pete Rock & CL Smooth, M.O.P., Smif-N-Wessun, Buckshot, the Beatnuts, Camp Lol, and others.
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“We came up with name for the idea with my boy Chris, AKA DJ Klassik,” Heron says. “We came up with some stupid names until Chris said, ‘Boom Bap All-Stars.’”
Boom Bap All-Stars will be unique. While younger rap fans flock to pop-up parties featuring clones of Lil Uzi Vert and Lil Yachty, Heron's classic hip-hop concert which will have 103.5 the Beat's Papa Keith as the official host. It could become a mainstay on the local hip-hop scene.
Boom Bap All-Stars
With Raekwon, DMX, Royce da 5’9 & DJ Premier, the Lox, Smoke DZA, Pete Rock, and CL Smooth. 4 p.m. Saturday, May 13, at the Watsco Center, 1245 Dauer Dr., Coral Gables; 305-284-8244; watscocenter.com. Tickets cost $55 to $100 via boombapallstars.com.