Major Lazer have gone from strength to strength in 2015, growing from a niche electronic music act to in demand global pop act with their hit single "Lean On" that has become the most streamed song on Spotify and joined the exclusive one billion play club on YouTube. Now they are set to make history as one of the first major American acts and the largest EDM act to perform in the country since the United States and Cuba normalized diplomatic relations.
The Major Lazer concert will take place at La Tribuna José Marti, in front of the U.S embassy on the Havana waterfront. They will play for free in front of what is expected to be tens of thousands of fans on March 6, 2016.
The historic event is being presented by the Musicbana Foundation ahead of a festival being put on in May.
It is being billed as a cultural exchange so Diplo, Walshy Fire and Jillionaire will meet with local music students and DJ talent.
"For as long as I can remember, Cuba has played an influential role in my love of music--Cuba has such a powerful cultural impact all over the world, and for me, especially growing up in Florida, it became one of the biggest cultural centers for music to evolve from," explained Diplo in a statement. "I was lucky enough to visit Cuba a few years back with my friends Calle 13, and during my four days there, my mind was blown by the people, depth of culture and their way of life. Going back to perform in 2016 and to be a part of the culture once again is a huge blessing, and I couldn't be more honored to bring the Major Lazer project there."
Major Lazer have a strong connection to the Caribbean, drawing strong influences from Jamaican dancehall. They perform one of their biggest shows each year in Jamaica as a way to test out new music.
The one-off show in Cuba will be the teaser to a grander festival, Musicbana, from May 5-8. It will be the first major music festival in Cuba produced by U.S and Cuban partners in over 30 years.