Photos courtesy of Grit Creative Group
Last Wednesday, Los Angeles music lovers wrapped around the block in anticipation of the first Ray-Ban x Boiler Room collaboration of 2016. Open Your Heart; a soulful night of music and fellowship carefully curated by and featuring the LA-based Soulection crew boasted a lineup that also included Kali Uchis, BJ the Chicago Kid, and Jhené Aiko at the beautiful Park Plaza.
To kick off the night, Joe Kay, Kali Uchis, and BJ the Chicago Kid held a pre-concert private listening party. Personal stories were shared and connections were made as the audience was able to take a deeper glimpse into the artists’ worlds. Once the doors for the main event opened, the ballroom and courtyard quickly began to fill up with music lovers and a who’s who of LA’s bustling scene of young creatives and influencers.
Throughout the evening, Soulection’s own SoSuperSam, Abjo, Lakim, Kronika and Andre Power held the turntables down between stripped down performances. Kali Uchis, the first vocalist to take the stage, vibed out and brought the crowd to a height with her “Killing Me Softly“ cover. Not to be outdone on the super soulful tip, BJ the Chicago Kid came on-stage with his band and paid homage to Usher, Aaliyah, Jodeci, and D’angelo by performing a medley of covers of their songs before breaking into this own smash, “Church.” His heartfelt performance wasn’t in vain, as the crowd sang along to every word with conviction. Fresh off a release of TWENTY88 with Big Sean (who was also in attendance), Jhené Aiko closed out the night for her hometown fans. Sharing the stage with only a keyboardist, she performed “W.A.Y.S,” “Eternal Sunshine,” and many other fan favorites from Souled Out.
Boiler Room and Soulection always put together events that are guaranteed to be fun. This collaborative effort, RBxBR 012:Open Your Heart, served a higher purpose than just fun though. It served as a reminder of the power of music and how it encourages community and love.