A Raptors cameo, a Mariachi band and six other things you missed at Drake’s OVO Fest

A Raptors cameo, a Mariachi band and six other things you missed at Drake's OVO Fest
Photo courtesy of Instagram

Drake put the city’s beloved OVO Fest on pause last year, but the Raptors win must have put him in a good mood. After their sweet, sweet victory, he announced that the festival would return with a bang, and he delivered. In case you couldn’t scrape together the scratch—$1,000—for a ticket, here’s a roundup of highlights from this weekend’s hip-hop extravaganza.

The biggest championship trophy you’ve ever laid eyes on
1Drake’s prophetic 2014 jam “Trophies” was the ideal anthem for the reveal of a massive shining replica of the Larry O’Brien Trophy—his most impressive prop since he commissioned a monstrous CN Tower for OVO Fest ‘17. But who needs a replica when you have a the real deal? To open the show, Drizzy strolled onstage sporting a No. 17 Percy Miller jersey—a slick nod to Master P’s tryout for the Raps in 1999—while clutching the actual Larry OB.

A Raptors cameo
2In summers past, NBA luminaries like LeBron James and Kevin Durant came to town to support OVO Fest. But this year was all about the local squad. Drake shouted out Serge Ibaka, Fred VanVleet and Kawhi Leonard, who were all in the house for the show.

A Chris Brown embrace 
3OVO Fest is equal parts surprise party and concert, and this year, Chris Brown showed up for the festivities. The foes-turned-friends hugged it out on stage—something no one could have predicted when they were beefing over Rihanna’s affection a few years ago.

A Meek Mill and Drake duet
4Another famous frenemy was in the house. “I want you to make some noise for my brother…” Drake teased mid-set. “He goes by the name of Meek Mill!” Four summers ago, Meek was the target of Drake’s venom (in addition to being a surprise party, OVO can also be a bit of a soap opera). The 6 God riled up the crowd with performances of “Charged Up” and “Back to Back”—the two diss tracks he put out after the Philly emcee accused him of using a ghostwriter. On Monday, they put the past behind them and linked to perform their hit “Going Bad.”

A Cardi B comeback
5When Cardi B made her OVO debut in 2017, she only performed one song. This time around, she got a full set. “It’s only right that I exit the stage and leave you in the company of grace and greatness,” Drake said. Even his guests had guests: Cardi destroyed crowd-pleasers “I Like It” and “Bodak Yellow” before bringing her hubby Offset (of Migos fame) onstage to perform “Clout.”

A Mariachi band (?)
6If OVO has taught us anything, it’s that Drake loves a good curve ball. But no one could have predicted that a Mariachi band would make the lineup. YG brought the trumpeters along to accompany him for his  Spanish-tinged single “Go Loko.” Drake danced like a fool, but it was an improvement from his courtside antics. 

Gucci Mane making it across the border
7In 2016, Gucci Mane rapped, “I got so many felonies, I might can’t never go to Canada, But Drake said he gon’ pull some strings, so let me check my calendar.” This past May, the Atlanta rap icon had to cancel a Canadian tour due to border issues, but, as forecasted way back when, Drizzy was able to pull some strings to bring Gucci to OVO.



A side of Caribana flavour
8As an ode to Caribana weekend, Drake performed his reggae-spiced hit “Controlla,” accompanied by Jamaican dancehall artist Popcaan.


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