Jay-Z Salutes Brooklyn With Beyonce in Final Show at the Barclays Center
After seven sold-out shows, Jay-Z concluded his run with one final concert at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, N.Y., on Saturday (Oct. 6). The rap mogul saluted his hometown with 19,000 people in attendance, and he also shared it with 60,000 viewers who were watching live via YouTube.
Backed by a proficient live band of drummers, keyboardists and DJs called the Roc Boys, Jay-Z’s finale was truly a celebration not only for Brooklyn, but for hip-hop as well. Jigga pretty much stayed with the set list of his earlier concerts and kept his guest list short to one very special person: his wife Beyonce.
Jay kicked off his concert with songs dedicated to the Big Apple and BK including ‘Where I’m From,’ ‘Empire State of Mind and ‘Brooklyn Go Hard.’ He then followed that with a tribute to his late friend and Brooklyn native Notorious B.I.G. with a sing-a-long of ‘Kick in the Door’ and ‘Juicy.’
He also took a moment to express his indifference to critics who felt that his contribution to the Brooklyn Nets was not significant. “Don’t let no one diminish your accomplishment,” he told the crowd. “Here’s the story. A young black male was raised in a single-parent home in a low-income housing project and I stand before you as the owner of the Brooklyn Nets.”
Midway through his show he performed a solo rendition of ’03 Bonnie & Clyde,’ which segued into his surprise of the night — Beyonce. As he left the stage to take a breather, Ms. Carter, dressed in black leather shorts and a matching Brooklyn Nets hat, stood in the middle of the stage to let fans soak in the awesomeness. Then Bey-Bey strutted across the stage before launching into her girl-power track ‘Diva’ followed by ‘Crazy in Love,’ in which Jay-Z quickly returned to recite his verse on the latter.
Before Beyonce could leave the stage, hubby Hov gave her a playful slap on the butt for a job well done. Afterwards, Jay joked with the crowd, “Of course I had to let BK (Beyonce Knowles) touch the stage in BK — well, BKC now.”
Jay-Z then took fans down memory lane to his ’90s hits including a cappella rendition of ‘Dead Presidents,’ which he then segue into ‘Can I Live’ (both from his classic album ‘Reasonable Doubt’). He then followed those jams with his most notables anthems ‘Public Service Announcement,’ ‘Heart in the City’ and ‘Hard Knock Life.’
Near the end of the show, Jay-Z took a quick break and changed out of his all-black Nets jersey to an all-white Nets jersey and matching hat. He told the crowd to take off their cool and turn the Barclays arena into a bumping club. From there he performed a slew of his club bangers including ‘What More Can I Say,’ ‘Jigga (What’s My Name),’ ‘Izzo (H.O.V.A.),’ ‘Money Ain’t a Thing’ and ‘Jigga What, Jigga Who?’
He also recited his kingly verses from Snoop Dogg‘s “I Wanna Rock (King G Remix)” and Rick Ross‘ ’3 Kings’ rapping, “Ex D-boy use to park my Beamer / Now look at me I can park in my own arena.” For Jay, his finale at the Barclays Center was his full circle moment.
Hov ended the show with his belief that everyone has “genius-level talent.” “I believe that I’m in the building with 19,000 people that will change the world,” he told the crowd. And with that, he performed his inspiring anthem ‘Young Forever.’ He was joined once again by Beyonce, who sang Mr. Hudson’s hook on the song. Before ending the show, the power couple shared a kiss before they exited off the stage as the BK fans cheered gloriously for their hometown hero.
Grand opening. Grand closing. Welcome home, Jay-Z.