NEW YORK, NEW YORK - AUGUST 27: Bad Bunny performs at Yankee Stadium on August 27, 2022 in New York City. (Photo by Roy Rochlin/Getty Images)

Bad Bunny has been on a roll, and it would not appear to be he’ll be stopping to decelerate any time quickly. While his profession has been skyrocketing for the previous few years, this yr has been particularly vital. He’s grow to be one of the most-streamed artists — and never simply in Latin or reggaeton music, however globally. And his newest album, “Un Verano Sin Ti,” which we have all had on repeat since its drop, is proof of that. But in the event you want any additional proof of the affect the Puerto Rican artist has on NYC’s musical panorama and tradition, look no additional than the back-to-back concert events at Yankee Stadium that befell this previous weekend and have been half of his World’s Hottest Tour.

Like many, “Un Verano Sin Ti” has taken up so much of area in my life. It’s often half of my every day album rotation, and when I’m not really listening to it, I’m reminded of its magic continually by others expressing their love for it, or memes, or merch. The present on Saturday, Aug. 27, opened with a DJ set from Diplo, who received the crowd hyped and energized earlier than Bad Bunny took the stage. The stage — like his album — was devoted to all issues summer time. Benito started his efficiency by enjoyable on a seashore chair earlier than singing “Moscow Mule,” which instantly resulted in a crowd full of folks both elevating their telephones to document a Story or elevating their Puerto Rican or Dominican flag. I even noticed some Yankee jerseys raised at one level. All of this to say that this was a jam-packed stadium full principally of proud Latinx New Yorkers. And if there’s one factor proud Latinx New Yorkers do, it is present the eff up. We confirmed up loud and proud, some alone, some with buddies, some even with their Latinx households — abuelas, children, and all — however we confirmed up. We got here prepared for an excellent time but in addition able to embrace that tonight was going to be our evening.

Not solely did Bad Bunny showcase a killer efficiency himself, however so did all of his visitor performers, together with Chencho Corleone, Jowell & Randy, Romeo Santos (king of bachata and the Bronx), Arcangel, and María Zardoya from The Marías. Each efficiency appeared to excite the viewers much more than the one earlier than it. But what actually made this present stand out in a means I’m not used to seeing is the means it introduced us all collectively as a collective. For a second, it virtually felt like each Latinx in NYC was at that stadium — the orgullo was felt. And not simply by these of us at the precise present, but in addition by of us all through the neighborhood. When I arrived at Yankee Stadium, it appeared like each restaurant surrounding the stadium was performing some sort of Bad Bunny theme or particular. The streets have been crammed with native Latinx Bad Bunny merch sellers and food-cart house owners. When I left the present a couple of minutes earlier than it really led to an effort to truly get myself an Uber again to Queens, I bumped into quite a few pal teams and even households parked outdoors of the stadium. Many of them had seashore chairs, coolers, and snacks and have been dancing and listening to the music that you could possibly hear from miles away.

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - AUGUST 27: Members of the audience wear the Puerto Rico flag as Bad Bunny performs at Yankee Stadium on August 27, 2022 in New York City. (Photo by Roy Rochlin/Getty Images)

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - AUGUST 27: Members of the audience wear the Puerto Rico flag as Bad Bunny performs at Yankee Stadium on August 27, 2022 in New York City. (Photo by Roy Rochlin/Getty Images)

It felt as if for the few hours that this present would run, each Latinx particular person at the present, parked outdoors the stadium, or working at their close by enterprise had made the intentional determination to grant themselves just a few hours of pleasure.

It felt as if for the few hours that this present would run, each Latinx particular person at the present, parked outdoors the stadium, or working at their close by enterprise had made the intentional determination to grant themselves just a few hours of pleasure. Regardless of what they is perhaps experiencing of their lives, whether or not it is a monetary hardship, a household disaster, a well being subject, a job they’re dying to stop however really feel they can not, work burnout, or no matter it could be, everybody in these few hours was going to permit themselves to not simply expertise however marinate in pleasure.

I do know for myself, even attending alone since I solely had one press go and could not deliver a plus one, I rapidly thought of my ancestors. I assumed of my bis abuelos and the ones earlier than them (the ones who by no means left the Dominican Republic) and the way proud they’d be to see me celebrating with ground seats at the live performance of the hottest artist proper now. The hottest artist in the world proper now who additionally occurs to be a reggaetonero from Puerto Rico, who was bagging groceries earlier than changing into a music artist and who has refused to make music in English or that is digestible for white Americans. How proud would they be to see a stadium crammed with flags that symbolize virtually each nation in Latin America with a crowd of of us who refuse to assimilate or whitewash who they’re? As I seemed round, I discovered myself smiling as I took the expertise in. Here I used to be with a era of Latinxs crammed with satisfaction, pleasure, and nonstop Latinx orgullo.

It reminds us of the energy we possess as a neighborhood and as a collective and the magic we launch once we actually put our minds and our hearts towards one thing.

I received right into a swish argument with somebody just a few months in the past who tried to debate me on Bad Bunny’s relevance, not simply as a music artist however on our tradition total. When he requested me which earlier icons I’d evaluate Benito to, I rapidly stated Michael Jackson. Yes, it is a main comparability to make. I hear it. But I can also’t bear in mind the final time I’ve seen this many individuals throughout the world this excited over an artist. I have never actually seen it on this means since MJ. Bad Bunny actually connects along with his followers and his neighborhood in a means I have never witnessed in a long time. And for a Latinx artist, seeing this sort of world fame and appreciation would not simply deliver us satisfaction as a neighborhood, but it surely offers us hope. It reminds us that though we nonetheless have a really lengthy strategy to go in terms of racial and ethnic equality, we nonetheless have made some main strides. It reminds us of the energy we possess as a neighborhood and as a collective and the magic we launch once we actually put our minds and our hearts towards one thing.

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - AUGUST 27: Members of the audience wear the Puerto Rico flag as Bad Bunny performs at Yankee Stadium on August 27, 2022 in New York City. (Photo by Roy Rochlin/Getty Images)

On Sunday, Aug. 28, Bad Bunny made an appearance at the 2022 MTV Video Music Awards stay from his second Yankee Stadium efficiency, the place he carried out “Tití Me Preguntó” and accepted the award for artist of the yr. He made historical past as the first non-English-language artist to win on this class. Did I point out his acceptance speech was fully in Spanish?

At the finish of his Saturday efficiency, Benito held an enormous Puerto Rican flag and huddled collectively along with his stage dancers. I missed this as a result of, as I discussed earlier, your woman wasn’t attempting to get stranded at Yankee Stadium with out an Uber for hours. But the following day, I noticed of us posting the live performance finale on Instagram. With all the things at present occurring on this nation at the border and the corruption, modern colonialism, and gentrification happening on the island of Puerto Rico, waving that flag meant a lot extra than simply Puerto Rican satisfaction. Holding that flag was a type of resistance. For many of us, it serves to say Latinxs in the States aren’t going anyplace. We’re simply getting began.

Image Source: Getty / Roy Rochlin

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