This year marks the 15th anniversary of Atlanta’s Hot 107.9’s Birthday Bash concert which commenced in front of a sold out crowd of 21,000.
Each year the radio station puts together a mega concert which begins with unsigned talent and ends with some of the hottest artists on the charts. While the show celebrates music coming out of the Dirty South, there’s a special focus on Atlanta.
This year’s headliners included Ludacris, Rick Ross, Gucci Mane and Plies. Monica, the First Lady of Birthday Bash, was also heading up the show and there wasn’t a dry eye in the house when she dedicated her song “Everything To Me” to her children. Roscoe Dash, Shawty Low, Travis Porter, and Wacka Flacka Flame rounded out the night’s stage shows.
Over the years, Birthday Bash has been known for the surprise performances they bring to the stage. In the past, 107.9 managed to shock the fans with appearances by Jay-Z, Lil Wayne and Kanye West. This year the radio station took us back with unexpected performances by Pastor Troy, Luke Skywalker, and Young Jeezy, who hyped up the audience when he joined Plies for their song “Lose My Mind.”
But Luda repped for his hometown with the biggest set of the night. After doing a couple of the songs that initially brought him success as a rapper, he brought out Lil Scrappy, the newest member of Disturbing Tha Peace. Next he brought out Tity Boi, who recorded “Duffle Bag Boy” with Lil Wayne.
Then it was time to bring out Atlanta’s sweetheart Ciara. She and Luda performed the song Ride which had spawned a video so sexy that it was allegedly banned from BET. And just when everyone thought it was over, he brings out Diamond and Trina for the remix of My Chick Bad.
MTV was on the scene to tape the event and also to promote their new AIDS awareness campaign G.Y.T (Get Yourself Tested). Sway shared recent statistics with the crowd that show 70 percent of all new HIV/AIDS cases are in the African American community. He also gave some alarming numbers of how many people there are out there that have no idea they are infected. MTV will be travelling the country to encourage everyone to get tested as soon as they possibly can.
The only things missing were appearances by Usher and T.I, who are such a big part of the Atlanta music scene. Although it was never promoted that they would be participating in the show, fans expected them to be there—especially T.I., considering that he was recently released from prison.
– Stephanie Dayton