Down South hip-hop stars meet young R&B heartthrobs at THE BEAT DOWN

Each year around this time, Miami’s radio stations host mega-concerts, each trying to up the ante by bringing in the biggest or most played artists of the year. 103.5 The Beat made no exceptions this year by catering to a strictly female audience, made evident by the all male roster. While Mike Jones and the reunion of SWV were no shows, there were still more than 12 artists on the bill. Trick Daddy, Three 6 Mafia, Dem Franchize Boyz, Youngbloodz and others composed the down-South-crunk-hip-hoppers section while Ray J, Trey Songz, Marques Houston, Omarion and headliner Bow Wow made up the R&B/rap heartthrobs who were obviously the main attraction.

Dre, producer turned rapper from the production duo Cool & Dre (Fat Joe, Trina, The Game) started the show performing his radio hit “Naomi” and was followed by short term groups Dem Franchize Boyz and D4L playing their hits, “White Tee” and “Laffy Taffy” respectively. Virginia native and R&B newcomer Trey Songz proved why everyone from Trina to Twista have decided to enlist him on their records; his five-song set was mostly sung by himself with some help from the audience.

Three Six Mafia kept it crunk by performing some of their classics “Sippin On Some Syrup” and their new hit “Stay Fly.” Brandy’s brother Ray J came out performing songs off his album Raydiation, including his current radio hit “One Wish.” Special guest and “Mayor of Miami” Trick Daddy performed his classics such as “Nann Nigga” and “Thug Holiday” with expletives and all.

While the show seemed to be going according to schedule, a major roadblock came in the form of two of the biggest stars not showing up on time. After a 50-minute delay and the obvious disapproval of the audience, Marques Houston and Omarion finally made their way to the stage. Performing on his 21st birthday, Omarion performed the shortest set of the night. His high energy performance of “Touch” must have left him out of breath to do much more, because he only performed the chorus of his first solo single “O” before walking off the stage, leaving the crowd a little confused.

Headliner Bow Wow proved that he had grown up, opting not to perform the songs that made him a teenage star when he was 13. Bow Wow ran from one side of the stage to the other, performing less to the crowd in the middle. While he brought Omarion back onstage to perform his #1 single “Let Me Hold You” off of his latest album Wanted, he didn’t perform his current single “Like You.”

All in all, fans did get to see their leading male idols, but for those who they wanted to see the most, it was short lived. One attendee was a bit disappointed with Omarion’s long delay but short performance.

“I was very, very upset with that long intermission,” she said. “I think he should’ve performed more, even if it was his birthday.”

Marcus Washington can be contacted at

things the audience didn’t see:

During Bow Wow’s set, he made reference to his relationship with singer Ciara and a young teenager in the front row stuck up her middle finger to show her disgust along with saying a few choice words.

Youngbloodz member J-Bo forgot his group member’s (Sean Paul) name while trying to get his attention to pose for a picture with a fan.

The 50-minute delay wait for Marques Houston and Omarion was because they hadn’t arrived at the venue. Although Bow Wow was already there, he refused to take the stage before the two others arrived.