Six years in and still going strong, JMBLYA recently concluded their three city run in Texas. The annual hip hop music festival took place last May 4-6 with stops in Dallas, Austin and Houston, with 80,000 attendees not only from Texas, but also from across the world with some fans traveling all the way from Asia and Europe.
This year, JMBLYA wrapped up the festival at the Sam Houston Race Park in Houston, which marked the long-awaited return to H-Town since the festival has not made a stop there since 2013.
JMBLYA also debuted a new layout with two stages instead of one. They also expanded their water stations all thanks to a partnership with Event Water Solutions, as well as water slides and other water activities to help festival goers keep cool amidst the Texas heat.
JMBLYA, which was founded in 2013, has always featured an all star lineup that include not only chart-topping acts, but also up-and-coming performers (Lil Uzi Vert took the stage last year months before his MTV debut). This year’s lineup was headlined by Grammy-nominated J.Cole, who closed out the night for all three dates. Cole’s JMBLYA performance was also the very first time fans heard songs from his new album live.
Making a return to the JMBLYA stage was rap-trio MIGOS. The superstar Atlanta trio composed of Quavo, Offset and Takeoff delighted fans as they barely broke a sweat performing their chart topping hits such as “Walk It Like I Talk It, ” Bad and Boujee” and “Stir Fry”.
Young Thug was a last minute addition to the festival after pregnant Cardi B backed out of the festival, which hurts a little for Texans because she will also not be opening for Bruno Mars during his tour stop in Austin this coming fall, did not let fans down and proved himself to be a worthy alternative to the “Bodak Yellow” rapper, Thug whipped the crowd into a frenzy, rapper T.I. also took the stage with Thug after being called in as a last minute replacement for Kevin Gates who was recently released from prison and unfortunately was denied travel by his parole officer.
Not only did JMBLYA give fans good music, the festival also gave back to foundations such as Tha Truth’s Angel By Nature Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to providing relief to those that were affected by Hurricane Harvey, they also partnered with Grounded in Music, a charity that helps underprivileged children in 4th grade and up–they provide music instruction and they also connect these children to musicians, opportunities as well as scholarships.
This years event may have had some hiccups, but the team behind the festival showed that even with last minute hiccups they can still put on a stellar show for festival goers.