Jay-Z Rocks Tour Opener Despite Hoarse Voice

Beyonce, Diddy, Alex Rodriguez in crowd for Miami show.

[artist id="1269"]Jay-Z[/artist] opened the North American leg of his BP3 tour at Miami’s BankAtlantic Center on Saturday with wife Beyoncé, Diddy and New York Yankees star Alex Rodriguez in the audience, according to the Miami Herald. The show’s lineup included opening act Trey Songz as well as Young Jeezy, who is billed as a special guest for the tour.

Backed by a 10-piece band, including live horns to accentuate tracks like “Roc Boys,” Jay sported an all-black outfit, topped with a black baseball cap, and began the show with his hit “Run This Town.” As images of the New York City skyline flashed behind the stage on an expansive screen, the rapper tore through his recent (and first) #1 hit, “Empire State of Mind,” with singer Bridget Kelley filling in for Alicia Keys’ vibrant alto.

Unfortunately, a bit further into his set, Jay-Z lost his voice and was obviously straining to spit his lyrics. Then the horn section was muted during the poignant tracks like “D.O.A” and “Show Me What You Got.”

Jeezy took his special-guest spot in the middle of Jay’s set and performed for almost 30 minutes, giving Jay-Z a chance to rest his voice. The Brooklyn native re-emerged for the pair’s Obama-honoring collabo “My President.”

Ending the show with a rendition of “Encore,” Jay-Z told the audience, “I’m not jaded, I appreciate every one of you being here.”

Jay-Z’s tour continues through the end of next month, and wraps with a performance at the Coachella festival in April . He’ll also perform at the Bonnaroo festival in Tennessee in June.

Jay-Z’s tour dates, according to Pollstar:

» 2/22 Houston @ Toyota Center

» 2/23 Dallas @ American Airlines Center

» 2/25 New Orleans @ New Orleans Arena

» 2/27 Atlanta @ Philips Arena

» 2/28 Greensboro, NC @ Greensboro Coliseum Complex

» 3/2 New York @ Madison Square Garden Arena

» 3/3 Washington, DC @ Verizon Center
» 3/05 Uncasville, CT @ Mohegan Sun Arena
» 3/06 East Rutherford, NJ @ Izod Center
» 3/07 Norfolk, VA @ Norfolk Scope Arena
» 3/11 Boston @ TD Garden
» 3/12 Uniondale, NY @ Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum
» 3/13 Atlantic City, NJ @ Borgata Hotel, Casino & Spa
» 3/14 Auburn Hills, MI @ Palace Of Auburn Hills
» 3/16 Pittsburgh @ Mellon Arena
» 3/18 Chicago @ United Center
» 3/19 St. Louis @ Scottrade Center

» 3/20 Indianapolis, IN @ Conseco Fieldhouse
» 3/22 Denver @ Pepsi Center
» 3/24 San Jose, CA @ HP Pavilion at San Jose
» 3/26 Los Angeles @ Staples Center
» 4/16 Indio, CA @ Coachella Valley Music & Arts Festival