Santogold Brings the Heat in Central Park

Sean Keenan

It was amazing to see so many people out in Central Park on such a brutally hot day, one of the hottest of the year for sure. But the place was packed and Santogold certainly did not disappoint. Reppin’ Bed-Stuy, this hip-hop/reggae diva hit the stage and refueled a worn-out crowd with a bolt of energy and charisma. It was a big sweaty feel good pow-wow when she got all arms swaying in the air. To warm up the crowd, as if they needed it in this heat, Diplo and A-Trak spun with Kid Cudi, Blaqstarr and Mz Streamz supporting on the mic. Their dance crew brought some serious New York playground vibes to the stage. I half expected them to bring out a jump rope and chant in unison. A-Trak showed off his technical skills, supplied with two decks and a warehouse of records. This guy is a born DJ, redefining what a turntable can do. Having won DMC’s World DJ Championship in 1997 at only age 15, he’s gone on to DJ for Kanye West, and make a pretty serious career behind the DJ booth. But Diplo knew how to work the crowd with just the right recipe of jams. This maverick Philly-based DJ helped produce M.I.A’s latest album, Kala, and when he dropped in "Paper Planes" on the set, the crowd went nutz! We’re only halfway through the summer, and there’s much more to come, but SummerStage is going to have a hard time topping this one.

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