By Chris Godfrey
On Sunday, December 31, 2023, The Barclays Center will be the launching pad for a historic evening of Haitian excellence, titled Konpa Kingdom. The concert presented by prominent New York City event producer Jay Upscale, will feature performers Kai, Joé Dwèt Filé, Zafem, Nu-Look, Vayb, Rutshelle Guillaume, Oswald, Baky & DJ Staks.
Brooklyn, New York is known to be the home to a large and diverse Caribbean population as evidenced by the variety of businesses, such as restaurants, real estate offices, attorneys, doctors, travel agencies, barber shops and beauty salons, not to mention the countless events highlighting Caribbean culture such as the West Indian American Day Carnival, which takes place annually on Labor Day. Proud Caribbean immigrants fly their flags high, representing their heritage through their contributions to the fabric of society. You can feel it in the music, taste it in the food, experience it through the culture and be engulfed in it while walking the streets of Brooklyn neighborhoods like Crown Heights, Flatbush and Canarsie, to name a few.
So, when the news broke of this concert slated for New Years Eve, marking the celebration of 220 years of independence for Haiti, the first Black republic to achieve such a feat, well, I was hooked. If you know me, then you know how much I love reggae and dancehall music, and you also know that I love and appreciate other genres of music, including zouk, compas, mizik rasin and rap kreyol. Haitian artists like Emeline Michel, can be found on my playlist, not to mention the late Mikaben, who achieved fame as a producer, songwriter and singer.
According to the event producers, “KONPA KINGDOM is an extraordinary showcase of Haitian culture, featuring an unparalleled lineup of musical greats. It’s a passionate tribute to Haitian Independence, encapsulating the spirit of freedom and resilience. This event is more than just a concert; it’s a holistic celebration of excellence in Haitian music, cuisine, and art, offering a global experience that resonates beyond borders.”
“We’re creating a space where community and culture intertwine, fostering connections through thoughtfully curated interactions and engagements. Set in the illustrious Barclays Stadium in New York, this historic night promises to be an indelible memory, a grand convergence of music, culture, and community, marking a new chapter in the story of Haitian excellence. Join us in this unforgettable journey at KONPA KINGDOM, where every moment is a tribute to the rich legacy and vibrant future of Haiti.”
View this post on Instagram
Tickets are selling fast for this momentous event, so get your tickets now before you miss out on an opportunity to be a part of history in the making. Visit konpakingdomlive.com to purchase tickets or ticketmaster.com and search for “Konpa Kingdom”.
Konpa Kingdom, live at The Barclays Center on Sunday, December 31, 2023, 8 pm to 1 am.