Best of the Best Photos & Recap:  10 Year Celebration Memorial Day Weekend 2016

Photos and story by Natty D Photography for Reggae Reflection 

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The 10th Best of the Best Music Festival took place on Sunday, May 29, 2016 at Bayfront Park on Biscayne Bay in downtown Miami, Florida.  When entering the park there were several vendors such as VP Records selling music merchandise, clothing and food.  People were lined up for fresh coconut water, sugar cane and fresh juices.

Best of the Best 2016 began with several DJs playing music and engaging the crowd as the park began to fill with patrons waiting for the show to begin.  Performers Patrice Roberts, Destra and Denise Belfon began the line up for Best of the Best, by getting the crowd to jump up and wine to soca music.  Little John than hit the stage as the show transitioned to reggae music. Lady G came out and got the crowd moving to hits like Nuff RespectHalf Pint than took the crowd back with hits like Substitute Lover and Just Be Good To Me.  Dancehall artist Vershon changed the tempo when he came out to perform at Best of The Best.  Next, Kranium made his entrance dressed in all black and bright blue sneakers. 


Lady G

Lady G

Vershon

Vershon

Kranium

Kranium

Nesbeth 

Nesbeth

After Kranium, Nesbeth gave an energetic performance.  He gave thanks to Best of the Best for presenting him with a gift in memory of his wife Anne Marie who passed in February.  Nesbeth tugged at the emotions of the crowd as he reminded everyone of how important it is to let your loved ones know how much you love them today, because tomorrow isn’t promised.  He than began his heartfelt performance of the song he sang at his wife’s funeral in March.  You could feel and hear the emotion in Nesbeth’s voice as he expressed the pain he felt and continues to feel after losing his wife.  Even through the heartache, Nesbeth promised to be present and to continue providing great music for his fans. 

Christopher Martin 

Christopher Martin

Rising star Christopher Martin ran out on the stage next dressed in a black and white shirt, white jeans, sunglasses and a pair of blinged out Philipp Plein sneakers.  The ladies were in a frenzy soon as they heard Christopher Martin’s soothing voice perform Mama, Paper Loving, Cheaters Prayer and several other songs.  Christopher then emphasized how talented D-Major is before having him perform for the crowd.  They then went on to impress the crowd with a few old school covers.

Beres Hammond was definitely one of the favorites of the night.  The crowd was full of excitement and everyone pushed their way as close to the stage as possible as Beres Hammond came out.  It seemed as though the entire crowd knew every lyric, and didn’t miss a beat as they sang and danced along with Beres.   
MAJAH HYPE 

Majah Hype

Viral video comedian, Majah Hype, is known for his accurate, yet hilarious depictions of various Caribbean accents, culture and mannerisms.  Patrons saw another side of Majah Hype as he kept the energy high with a Buju Banton versus Bounty Killer battle after Beres left the stage.  It quickly became clear that in addition to accents, he is also talented at imitating several dancehall artists.  Majah, who represented Buju Banton, won the battle when his opponent, whom was supposed to represent Bounty Killer, slipped up and began to recite Buju’s Driver when the taxi riddim came on. 

Tarrus Riley ran on stage in a jean jacket over his all white attire ready to give the crowd a high energy performance. Singy Singy had the crowd jumping up and down along with him. Saxophonist Dean Fraser walked forward and serenaded the crowd with several soulful solos during Tarrus Riley’s segment.  
Tarrus Riley introduces keyboardsist and singer Chris Smith to the stage

Tarrus Riley and Chris Smith

Cham – Lawless Energy 

Cham

Cham entered the stage with so much energy, I felt exhausted for him.  Cham is known for spitting high-speed lyrics and is talented enough to deliver them live.  As if the speedy lyrics aren’t enough, Cham gives a lively performance full of dancing, jumping and smiling.  His energy is contagious, and makes you want to get up on the stage and dance along with him.  Cham is an amazing all around entertainer and he did not disappoint the crowd. 

Javaughn on Bass

Javaughn Bond on Bass

Mr Vegas

Mr Vegas marriage proposal at Best of the Best

A marriage proposal – She said yes!

Next to hit the stage was Mr. Vegas.  He made sure the crowd knew the importance of supporting real dancehall music.  He also expressed the importance of respecting all of reggae’s legends.  Mr. Vegas went on to perform several tribute songs for the audience.  He invited a couple on stage for a surprise marriage proposal midway into his performance.  It was definitely a moment that will be remembered and treasured by the bride to be.  Mr. Vegas’s was full of so much energy he ended up having to take off his shirt.   For those who were not present during the beginning of the music festival he represented for the soca lovers and had the crowd jumping up and whining to several soca hits.   

PictureMr. Vegas

Mr. Vegas didn’t end his performance by walking backstage like the rest of the performers.  He hopped off the stage and jumped over the barrier into the audience. The crowd grew with excitement as everyone tried to move closer and snap a picture while he danced with a few lucky ladies. 

Elephant Man closes the show 

Elephant Man

Elephant Man is known for his colorful hair and flashy ensembles, and his appearance at Best of the Best was no different.  Elephant entered the stage looking like a Mexican bandit wearing a sombrero, baja hoodie, bullet guitar straps and gun holster.  Elephant Man ran back and forth and really engaged the crowd as he sang snippets from several of his hits songs.  

He had the crowd doing the dance moves to songs like Pon de River, Pon de Bank, Willie Bounce and Signal De Plane. Elephant Man invited a girl from the crowd on stage, and while dancing with her, picked her up and carried her to the opposite side of the stage.  Soon after the crowd screamed with joy when Elephant Man introduced his surprise guest Tony Matterhorn.  Tony gave a great performance despite that his microphone wasn’t working properly.  Tony tried to give it a second chance and took Elephant Man’s microphone once more.  My guess is that Tony had the microphone too long, because Elephant Man grabbed the mic away and pushed Tony Matterhorn off the stage.  Elephant man continued performing and even invited a dancer on stage to show the crowd some new dance moves before he closed out another exciting year of Best of The Best.
The crowd was hesitant to leave since Cocoa Tea, one of the scheduled headliners did not perform as expected.  Overall, the music festival did not disappoint.  Best of The Best had a great line up as usual and continues to be one of the greatest reggae shows to attend Memorial Day weekend. ​​

View the slideshow below for more Best of The Best photos

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