VH1 Save The Music concert with Swizz Beatz & Friends, in partnership with Monster, took place last week at the Hard Rock Cafe in NY’s Times Square. Paul Cothran, Executive Director of Save the Music Foundation since 2004, stated “We work to restore music education by giving packages of instruments to schools across the country. We’ve served over 1,800 schools. $49 million in instruments has been given since 1997, helping to develop creativity and self-expression for students in school and life.” Donate to Save the Music
Watch the Duck, a DJ collective opened the show and warmed the crowd before the first act performed. They are an experience of sight and sound with several artists creating one sound on stage.
“People don’t make the instruments. Instruments make the people.” – Swizz Beatz
Swizz Beatz, dressed in a charcoal colored suit pants and vest with a buckled leather jacket, fedora, and Louis rag, opened with a medley of famous hooks from songs he’s produced and featured on. The first friend Swizz brought out to perform was Sean Paul donning a mohawk and white framed shades. After performing his hit, Gimme the Light, Paul said, “If you got love for reggae and dance hall music, I got love for you.”
“It makes me proud that these artists can come out here and share their love and their light.” – Swizz Beatz.
Swizz then took it back with a slew of Ruff Ryder songs including Jay Z, DMX, and Eve, before performing the Double R Anthem, Stop/Drop. French Montana, sporting a bright red leather jacket and gold chains, then performed his popular radio singles. “I watched music save French Montana’s life. He has a white Rolls Royce sitting outside. Yeah, music saved his life. He’s from the BX like me. With over 500 songs in the catalog we can do this until next Monday if we want to.” – Swizz Beatz
Waka Flocka came out to his Wild Boy song and turned the heat level up a few degrees! Waka with dreads flailing everywhere, mohawks pointed high in the crowd while bottoms dropped low. Waka told the crowd to get ratchet in their business suits and performed Go Hard in the Paint. Waka’s music literally blew a speaker, leaving stage left smoking! Swizz gave Waka a shout out for going triple platinum in one week and thanked him for coming out to save the music.
“Shout to Monster for pushing the envelope, and I am Swizz Beatz The Monster.” – Swizz Beatz. Swizz dropped Don’t Stop the Party and then Busta Rhymes came out to Put your Hands Where my Eyes Could See. The crowd obliged hysterically!
“From his DNA down to his finest fabrics, Swizz is a giver. Whenever he sends out the bat signal the whole city comes out to support him.” – Busta Rhymes.
Swizz declared that VH1 Save the Music with Swizz Beatz & Friends will be bigger and better next year!
Photography: Dean “Flick-Up” Hibbert