J Balvin has earned a place in NFL history…
The 37-year-old Colombian singer performed at Alamitos Beach in Long Beach, California, on Thursday, September 8 as part of the NFL Kickoff Experience to celebrate the beginning of the 2022 NFL season, becoming the first Latino artist to headline an NFL kickoff concert.
Attendees defied the L.A. heat wave and made their way to the beach for a free day event that featured all sorts of activities and activations, including a beach football field.
Before Balvin took the stage, a local mariachi band serenaded the sweaty crowd before the Alabama State Marching Hornets took over for a riveting number.
Opening for Balvin was West Coast-based DJ and producer Tokimonsta, who was able to get the concertgoers out of the shade and closer to the main stage where they danced to her eclectic set.
Then, an inflatable giant hand appeared onstage holding up an equally large smiling face balloon — Balvin’s signature smiley face— which could only mean that the chart-topping artist was ready to take make his grand entrance. While his set was scheduled to begin at 4:00 pm, Balvin took the stage 10 minutes earlier to perform a nearly one-hour show.
He appeared in a two-piece, army-like outfit styled with a matching balaclava that only exposed his eyes.
“Cómo está la vibra esta tarde, how’s the vibe today?” he asked the crowd.
Balvin kicked off with the fan-favorite “Mi Gente” and went on to perform back-to-back hits like “Reggaeton,” “Nivel de Perreo,” “Con Altura,” “Loco Contigo,” “Blanco,” “Ritmo,” “Amarillo,” “Ginza,” “I Like It” and “In Da Getto.” He also brought out a special guest, Trueno, an emerging rapper from Argentina, to perform their collaboration “Un Paso.”
“My name is Jose but they call me J Balvin,” he added. “Where are all the warriors that fight for their dreams? I see my Latino gang representing here.”
Throughout the years, artists like Shawn Mendes, Meek Mill, Meghan Trainor and Ed Sheeran have performed at the NFL Kickoff Concert.