For Latino New Yorkers, La Mega 97.9 defines the sound of the city. When it rebranded in 1993, the station became a home for salsa and merengue lovers, as tropical radio formats began to dominate the industry. Nowadays, you can hear La Mega blasting trap and reggaeton from every block in Brooklyn to the Bronx.
Now the station is embracing its status as a New York institution, perhaps most explicitly through its recent La Mega Summer concert series. Last week, the radio giant hosted some of the biggest names in reggaeton and trap in a massive blowout at Madison Square Garden; featured performances included Don Omar, Bad Bunny, Fat Joe, Jory Boy, Bryant Myers, Arcángel, De La Ghetto, El Alfa, and more. From the Dominican and Puerto Rican flags that peppered the audience, to Fat Joe’s explosive finale, La Mega Summer was a heartfelt ode to New York’s Latinos.
Here are some of our highlight moments from the night.
Bad Bunny served a strong abuelita look.
Donning a head scarf and abuelita loafers, Bad Bunny leaped across stage during De La Ghetto and Arcángel’s set with an abuelita look for the ages.
De La Ghetto and Arcángel brought out an electric violinist.
Ah yes, this whole time, the reggaeton legends’ key to success has been an. electric. violin.
Don Omar made an anti-Trump statement.
In a surprising move for the mostly apolitical night, Don Omar called for unity among Latinos of different backgrounds during the four years of the Trump administration, asking fans to stop discriminating against each other based on national differences. “No se puede caminar por el mundo con los bolsillos lleno de dinero y la cabeza vacía,” he said.
J Balvin made a surprise appearance.
As a fellow Colombian, superstar La Mega DJ Alex Sensation has been a longtime supporter of J Balvin; he was one of the first DJs to give the rising star U.S. radio play. In a flashy DJ booth worthy of a Transformers movie, Alex Sensation rocked the crowd as Balvin hopped on stage in overalls, performing his massive hit “Mi Gente.”
Fat Joe brought out A Boogie Wit Da Hoodie during the finale.
After running through an endless stream of New York anthems to soaring cheers and echoed choruses, Fat Joe put a New York touch on the end of the night by bringing out Bronx rapper A Boogie Wit Da Hoodie. It was a welcome nod to his successors and a celebration of the city’s hip-hop history, worthy of a million BX emojis. ?? ?? ??