Coming off a controversial rant at the 2015 Grammy Awards, rapper Kanye West’s next performance was in Manhattan in the form of a free concert. The show (in the Flatiron pedestrian plaza near Madison Square Park) helped kick-off NBA All-Star weekend. The concert was organized by Jay Z’s company Roc Nation. Fans packed the relatively tight area for hours. Traffic was shut down on Broadway between 23rd and 26th Streets. Side streets were also closed. Despite the brutal cold and complaints from unhappy neighbors, thousands of people showed up. The show took place on Thursday, February 12. Special guests who made appearances at the show included: Pusha T, 2 Chainz, Big Sean, Travis $cott, Fetty Wap and Waka Flocka Flame. The concert, like other similar events planned around the city was not affiliated with the NBA. NYC & Company, the city’s marketing and tourism agents stated that the economic impact of All-Star Weekend was nearly $200 million. Kevin Durant also made an appearance to talk about his new role as brand ambassador for Sonic Drive-In. The event was also available via livestream on Jay Z’s website for anyone that wasn’t able to be there in person.
By Farren Washington