Bands rule Reggae Wednesday

Basil Walters

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

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SINCE February, Emancipation Park in New Kingston, has been humming with musical beats each Wednesday evening.

Last Wednesday, the second in the series of mid-week showcase, was an entertaining experience with bands.

From JaRIA, the organisation producing Reggae Wednesdays in celebration of Reggae Month, Ibo Cooper told the well-attended, free concert-goers that it was the music industry’s way of giving back to the Jamaican people and visitors from overseas who have supported the music over the years.

The evening saw seven of the island’s finest musical outfits. Dubtonic Kru demonstrated why they were able to attain another milestone after earning the title ‘Best New Band In The World’ 2010 — 2011, at the Global Battle of the Bands World Finals in Malyasia.

Their performance was a fitting celebration.

Raging Fyah gave an energetic performance from their Judgement Day album. Uprising Roots Band rose to the occasion with mystic roots music such as Know Yourself, Marcus Garvey, Most Royal, Brightest Light, Skyfiya.

Their counterpart from the west, Living Culture, didn’t quite live up to expectations as they failed to create the impact that was anticipated.

As usual, holding sway with the rich and subtle rhythmic patterns and styles of drumming was The Akwaaba Ensemble that opened the night’s entertainment package. Included in the line-up was Errol Lee and the Bare Essentials that never failed to enrich whatever event they are featured.

However, not to be left out is the party segment in which Fab Five ruled supreme. With all of the songs included in their repertoire "written by Fab Five, played by Fab Five and produced by Fab Five," as bandleader/bassist Frankie Campbell informed the crowd, the over 40-year-old band could do no wrong.

For the most part, it was party time which had almost everyone dancing to the set which featured a short guest appearance by Gem Myers and many time Festival Song winner Roy Rayon, whose presentation (of a few his popular festival numbers) was revetting.

C Sharp’s appearance was a fitting closure to the night’s musical jammin. Vocalist Chevaughn Clayton’s took on the Wailers’ smash hit from yesteryear Soul Rebel, Bob Marley’s Rastaman Vibration and the Heptones’ Book of Rules, and did more than justice to not only the originals, but Scotiabank’s corporate support of the C Sharp a year ago through the Adopt a Band Programme co-ordinated by Grafton Music.




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