Showing Caribbean Love in style

Beres Hammond

The Caribbean Love concert Wednesday evening at Jamaica’s the National Indoor Sports Centre, had a number of top Jamaican and Caribbean entertainers giving their talent free, to aid in the reconstruction of regional islands that were hit by hurricanes earlier this year.

The idea came from Josef Bagdanovich, owner of Downsounds Records as well as world-famous Reggae Sumfest, after Hurricane Irma Hurricane Maria destroyed infrastructures in these islands.

Irma and Maria affected Dominica, Puerto Rico, Turks and Caicos, Virgin Islands, Monserrat, Guadeloupe, St Kitts and Nevis and the Dominican Republic.

The show was a smooth-sailing event, with stage management keeping the scheduled tight, to ensure that the livestreaming taking place, would facilitate telephone and online pledges, that were being done simultaneously.

It drew a respectable crowd to the facility and those who attended, appreciated the entertainment package that was delivered, as they kept tuned into the performances for its entirety and at no stage, had to reject or show disgust at any of the artists.

They also participated in some of the performances, by either singing along or waving appreciatively. Even the breaks for the singers, Deejays and band members, had enough fun to keep the audience engaged, as Metro Media’s selector Sky Juice, had them in stitches with his antics as well as the introduction to each of the songs.

In the other break, Deejay, Chi Ching Ching, performed and had the audience doing a number of his dance moves that he has done in songs. During his performance he also called up international dancehall performer, Sean Paul. The two would also perform some dance moves, with Sean Paul getting a roar from the crowd during Chi Ching Ching’s deejaying of his new dance, Rope Dem In.

Mixed into the evening’s package, were also speeches and video presentations from politicians throughout the region, with Jamaica’s Prime Minister, Andrew Holness and Minister of Entertainment, Gender and Sports Olivia ‘Babsy’ Grange watching the event live, before going on stage to donate US$1,500 and J$100,000 respectively.

In the countries affected by the hurricanes, interviews were done with residents and were also shown on the big screens that were erected around the stage.

With the performances, some that got the most reaction from the crowd, were Beenie Man, Jessie Royal, Proteje, Romain Virgo, Chris Martin, Agent Sasco, Toots Hibbert, Beres Hammond, Taurus Riley, calypso artistes from Trinidad and Tobago BunjiGarlin and Fay-Ann Lyons, IbaMahr, Nesbeth, Jah Cure, Sizzla and Bounty Killer.

Other acts that performed were Tommy Lee, Mr Vega, Carlene Davis, McGregor family (father Freddie with sons Stephen ‘Di Genius’ and Chino), Bunny Wailer, Devin Di Dakta, Harry Toddler, Kevin Downswell, Naomi Cowan, Raging Fyah, Third World, Black H3ro, D-Major, Etana and Hawaiian reggae singer J Boog.

Apart from Beres, two performances stood out. Romain Virgo calling up on stage, Christopher Martin and then Agent Sasco for them to rock the crowd; as well as Bounty Killer and Sizzla, closing the show together in style.