Fresh, jazzy beats as well as moisture filled the air yesterday evening at Park Slope’s Prospect Park. This very well-attended Celebrate Brooklyn! event was hosted by Brooklyn native Talib Kweli and welcomed some of the biggest names in Hip Hop for decades. Thousands upon thousands of people piled into the Prospect Park Bandshell yearning to hear the eclectic beats of The Roots as well as many other artists who performed that evening and to celebrate the end of the World Cup.
The place was surrounded by hundreds of latecomers who were happy to sit on the lawn surrounding the Bandshell just to hear the magnetic sounds coming from inside. Okayafrica.com made it’s debut to the public that day. The air was thick with smoke from pipes and barbeques just outside the Bandshell’s perimeter, accompanied by the sounds of How I Got Over, The Roots’ new album, released just a few weeks ago.
The evening was kicked off by Sahr Ngaujah, star of the hit Broadway musical, Fela!. The OkayAfrica World Cup 2010 Finals party featured performances by Bajah + The Dry Eye Crew of Sierra Leone, Blitz the Ambassador of Ghana and many others. Talib Kweli also did an unexpected free style and the crowd went crazy. He seemed happy to be back in his old neighborhood of Park Slope. The free concert welcomed all types of people. The diverse music went along with it’s audience.
The rhythm didn’t stop all evening as babies as young as 2 and grown folks as old as your Grandma danced to the uprising reverberations of the full horn section and the MVP of the night, guitarist Captain Kirk. You could feel the motions of the crowd as “You Got Me” was beautifully played. After Kirk blessed the crowd with “Sweet Child O’ Mine” he busted out the funk in everyone with guitar riff’s of the great Hendrix. Although Spain was the winner of the day, The Roots caused everyone to briefly forget about soccer and their vuvuzela apps and made us focus on something greater: la musica!