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Concerts

Burna Boy Paid Tribute to Sidhu Moose Wala at Sold-Out Concert at Toronto's Scotiabank Arena

The Nigerian singer held a moment of silence for the late Punjabi artist, who made his mark in Brampton, Ontario, during the second of two shows at Scotiabank Arena.

Burna Boy

Burna Boy

Courtesy Photo

Burna Boy paused his show for a moment of silence at Toronto's Scotiabank Arena on Sunday night (Feb. 25) in tribute to Sidhu Moose Wala.

In between performing hits like "It's Plenty" and "Last Last" to a rapturous, sold-out crowd for the second night at the arena, the Nigerian musician and Afrobeats star took a pause. The sombre moment was in tribute to Burna Boy collaborator Sidhu Moose Wala, the influential Punjabi artist who was murdered in 2022.


"This is the home of Sidhu Moose Wala," Burna Boy told the cheering crowd. Though Moose Wala grew up in India, it was while living in Brampton, Ontario, that he became a major name in Punjabi music, helping to spur a wave of Punjabi-Canadian artists that are finding success today.

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"Where are my Punjabi people at?" Burna Boy asked the crowd. "I need one minute for Sidhu, we're gonna have a minute of silence for our guy, the legend." Though some cheering persisted through the silence, Burna Boy held his mic up high.

He then launched into "Mera Na," the Sidhu song that features Burna Boy and Steel Banglez, posthumously released in 2023. Sidhu's voice echoed through the arena singing the song's catchy hook as Burna Boy danced along, before singing into his mic: "R-I-P to Sidhu, put your hands up reach for the roof."

Though he died nearly two years ago, Sidhu Moose Wala's legacy and popularity live on. He's currently charting on the Billboard Canadian Hot 100 with the posthumous single "Drippy" featuring AR Paisley and MXRCI. With Punjabi music becoming increasingly popular in North America, artists like Burna Boy are making sure audiences remember who led the way.

The tribute took place during the second of Burna Boy's two sold-out shows at Scotiabank Arena, reportedly making him the first African artist to sell out the Toronto venue.

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Like Punjabi music, African music — and Afrobeats, specifically — is also becoming hugely popular in North America, and Burna Boy is one of its biggest stars. The Grammys introduced a new award this year for Best African Music Performance, and Burna Boy gave a kinetic and charismatic performance at music's biggest night, bringing out Brandy and 21 Savage. Last year, he also became the first Nigerian artist to headline a stadium in the U.S., with his sold-out performance at New York City's Citi Field in July, as well as the first African artist to headline a U.K. stadium show.

Burna Boy heads to Montreal next, with two dates at the Bell Centre this week. Check out his full tour dates here.

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Kid Cudi performs onstage during Weekend 2 - Day 3 of the Coachella Valley Music & Arts Festival at Empire Polo Club on April 21, 2024 in Indio, Calif.
Scott Dudelson/Getty Images for Coachella

Kid Cudi performs onstage during Weekend 2 - Day 3 of the Coachella Valley Music & Arts Festival at Empire Polo Club on April 21, 2024 in Indio, Calif.

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