Drake once again brought the stars to his hometown for the 5th Annual OVO Fest. Following last year’s star-studded lineup of Kanye West, TLC, Diddy, and Ma$e, the Canadian superstar shared the stage with Lauryn Hill, Usher, 50 Cent, Trey Songz, and J. Cole during Monday’s three-hour event at Toronto’s Molson Canadian Amphitheatre.
Jhené Aiko opened the show, making way for the first big surprise of the evening, Ms. Lauryn Hill. The Fugees frontwoman performed “Killing Me Softly,” “Fu-Gee-La,” and “Ready or Not” before a bowing Drake showed up to perform a mash-up of “Draft Day” and “Doo Wop (That Thing).”
“I gotta hug my mom before I do this show because it’s the fifth year,” he said (via Billboard) before his mother Sandi Graham took the stage in a wheelchair.
“If you’ve been a fan of music or a fan of Drake, I want to take you back tonight,” he said before taking a trip down memory lane, starting with his 2009 mixtape So Far Gone.
Trey Songz joined him for “Successful” and “Na Na.” “I promise you my career as a human being would be nowhere without this guy,” said Drake of the R&B crooner.
After his appearance at last year’s OVO Fest, J. Cole returned to perform “Can’t Get Enough” and “Power Trip.”
Drizzy also took a moment to acknowledge Kendrick Lamar. “I wanna shout out my man Kendrick Lamar. He was on my album, I was on his, we were touring together,” he said. “He’s one of the hardest ni**as out there. He should be standing right here.”
PARTYNEXTDOOR and DJ Khaled were up next, followed by Tinashe and YG, who performed “Who Do You Love?”
“This is probably gonna be one of the best moments in OVO history, so make some mothafuckin’ noise,” said Drake as Usher emerged to perform “Climax,” “Confessions Pt. II,” “Lovers and Friends,” “U Don’t Have to Call,” and “Good Kisser.”
Drake also announced that the two have collaborated on Usher’s upcoming album, due this fall.
Majid Jordan guested on “Hold On, We’re Going Home” before 50 Cent and his G-Unit members Lloyd Banks and Tony Yayo stormed the stage for “Gangsta,” “Smoke” (with Trey Songz), “I Get Money,” “Don’t Worry Bout It,” and “In Da Club.”
Before closing with “Worst Behavior” and “0 to 100,” he made a vow to his city. “I’ma let you know I’m about to go on this tour, and I’m about to come home and make the best I ever made for y’all,” said Drake, who will hit the road with Lil Wayne starting August 8.
His fourth album Views From the 6 is due next year.
Photo credit: Nigel D