Photos and feature by Empress K for Reggae Reflection.
Photos and Video: 9th Annual Montreal Reggae Festival delivers a great mix of Dancehall and Reggae
The 9th year of the Montreal Reggae Festival kicked off three days of Music on the evening of Friday, August 17th with a dancehall night featuring Cham. At very affordable prices for the 3 day event, the Cham tickets were only $10 for one evening and fans also had the option to purchase mulit-day tickets to encompass the entire line-up occurring Friday through Sunday. Weather always an unknown factor in outdoor events and a problem in past years of the festival could not have been better throughout the weekend. With 2012 being celebrated around the world for Jamiaca's 50 years of Independence and and Usain Bolt's domination at the Summer Olympics, displays of Jamaican pride could be seen everywhere.
Cham Headlines Opening Dancehall Night
Day 2 with Christopher Martin, Popcaan, Konshens and Assasin
Saturday's line-up continued a great blend of Dancehall and some Lovers Rock as well with Christopher Martin, PopCaan, Konshens and Agent Sasco. All quality and good length set times backed by the Ruff Cut Band.
At approximately 7:30pm, the first international headliner Christopher Martin dressed in vibrant Orange pants and a black sleeveless vest easily won over the ladies in the audience when he sang 'his hit songs Cheater's Prayer, Chill Spot, and Paper Loving. Martin also performed a well received selection of R&B covers including Bruno Mars Just the Way You Are and classics from Marvin Gaye Sexual Healing, and Al Green Let's Stay together and I'm so in Love further sealing it with the ladies.
PopCaan one of the most highly anticipated dancehall performers of the night was the second performer of the evening did not disappoint and gave a strong performance of his hits including Ravin and Only Man She Wants.
Photos of Christopher Martin and Popcaan
Konshens made dramatic entrance to the stage dressed in a hooded grey sweatshirt, sunglasses, black pants and a leather studded black glove completing the outfit. Konshens easily engaged the crowd and and brought a female audience member on stage which provided some light hearted humor when revealed that the female fan was indeed married and very happy to be on stage with her favorite performer.
Assassin aka Agent Sasco then closed out the night with a powerful set, a great close to the successful dancehall night.
All of the artists were performing for their first time in Montreal and were pleased with the crowd reaction to their sets. Only one performer that was scheduled to perform was not present. Khago tweeted prior to the event that he would not be attending due to embassy issues.
Photos of Konshens and Agent Sasco closing out dancehall night
Montreal Reggae Festival Supporters show their spirit
Day 3 with Romain Virgo, Tarrus Riley and Jimmy Cliff
Sunday, the final day of the festival featured three more class acts from Jamaica. It's nice to see Romain Virgo continue on his successful path along with Tarrus Riley's quality performance and Jimmy Cliff celebrating 50 years in the entertainment industry.
Former Digicel Rising Star Romain Virgo backed by the Ruff Kutt Band battled some sound issues during his set, however he handled them like the pro that he has become and entertained the the audience with a solid set of his hit songs with several including I Know Better and the title track The System from his latest album released in 2012.
Tarrus Riley backed by Dean Fraser and the Black Soil Band was just in from a show in Kenya and about to thit the road to Europe to resume his tour. As a nice touch, he greeted the audience in French and received an enthusiastic response as he continued to belt out hit song after hit song from his solid catalog of well known selections from his albums Parables and Contagious as well as new singles.
I missed Jimmy Cliff in NY this past summer so I was looking forward to see Jimmy Cliff perform for the first time. Forever a young spirit, It's hard to believe that Jimmy Cliff has been entertaining audiences for 50 years and is still making new music! Just over the summer he released 'Rebirth' his first studio album in eight years. Jimmy Cliff is the consummate entertainer and knows how to please an audience and did so by performing the audience's favorite selections from his many decades of music. He opened up his set with an appropriate selection of You can Get It If You Really Want It and gave the audience what they wanted - a great finale to the 9th Annual Montreal Festival and a testament to the longevity of Jimmy Cliff's years in the business.
Photos of Romain Virgo, Tarrus Riley, and Jimmy Cliff
I had a chance to speak briefly with Tarrus Riley, Jimmy Cliff and Romain Virgo. about their experience in Montreal as well as to ask Romain Virgo his advice to new artists and Jimmy Cliff's advice to having career longevity. Check the video for clips of the show and interview.
Reggae / Dancehall Review and Photos: Caribbean Night at the Northern Star Arena in NJ's Six Flags Park with I-Octane, Mavado, and Barrington Levy
Review by Sheron Hamilton-Pearson
Photos by Empress K Editor at Reggae Reflection
Reggae / Dancehall Review and Photos: Caribbean Night at the Northern Star Arena in NJ's Six Flags Park with I-Octane, Mavado, and Barrington Levy - review by Sheron Pearson-Hamilton
8/12//2012 - I got the call late in the day to attend the Caribbean Night at the Northern Star Arena in New Jersey’s Six Flags Park. Billed as a celebration of Caribbean heritage and 50 years of the amusement theme park, it promised to be a great event, featuring I-Octane, Mavado and Barrington Levy.
Within minutes of my arrival at the venue after an uneventful ride down the Turnpike, that hypest of hosts – Jabba from Hot 97 was announcing the Gully God himself – the one and only Mavado. King of the Gully-Side, he immediately launched into a medley of his popular hits, songs like Star Bwoy, Gangsta fi Life, So Special, Destiny and Neva Believe You. Money Changer had the rude boys in the crowd putting pointer fingers up in the air. Certainly, the beats are highly infections, it’s hard to stand in a crowd listening to Gal a mad ova or Wha Dem ah Do and not nod your head to the beat. The young women in the crowd were going crazy, flags waving, as he greeted the Caribbean patrons in the venue and got excited responses to his roll call, I think Brooklyn got the loudest cheer, but there were partygoers who had even travelled from Pennsylvania! He then moved into his newer hits like Delilah and Come into My Room, the Stacious collaboration. When Mavado concentrated on the ladies, one young woman jumped on stage and proceeded to show him that she could Whine like a Gypsy. Nice to see the Gully God smiling as she told him that she wanted to marry him. Mavado is a singjay with lots of energy, but it’s a shame he doesn’t use that energy to sing his songs to the end.
Mavado Photos at Six Flags Park
As he pranced around the stage, he tripped over a misplaced microphone and almost fell, but quickly recovered and made light of the fact that 'no evil shall prosper'. I would love to see this artist concentrate on his delivery to give the fans what they want, more of him singing his hit songs that they’ve come to know and love. I’m a Survivor is a fitting way to end his set. In a nice touch he sends a shout out to his nemesis Vybz Kartel and wishes him an early release from prison where he is being held on serious charges, including alleged murder, gun and marijuana possession. Mavado is called back on stage and after praising Usain and Asafa sings his final offering – Pepper/ Man a Steppa.
After a relatively short band change, during which the entertainment was provided by Jabba, DJ Banky Hype and the Detour Posse from LA who provided live back up for the next act - Veteran Jamaican artist Barrington Levy. I was really looking forward to this performer and I was certainly not disappointed. Barrington is fit, he’s lost weight and looks really great. You could see this artist came to work as he launched straight into his hit song Living Dangerously. Immediately he urged the crowd to participate in reprising the hook sung by Bounty Killa. It was a rare treat for me, seeing Levy perform classics like Prison Oval Rock, Under mi Sensi, Broader than Broadway, Don’t Throw it All Away, Black Rose, Too Experienced, Teach the Youth, What Kind of World, and his famous Intercom, which he upgraded by singing snippets from his wildly popular 80's Intercom, telephone and so on up to today's modern communication devices!
Barrington Levy Photos at Six Flags
Unfortunately, I arrived just after I-Octane's performance, but patrons in the departing crowd were expressing their satisfaction with his performance.
I-Octane Photos at Six Flags
The two-day music event now in its seventh year, showcased the efforts of two premier promotors Trinii Fly Promotors and G City Enterprises getting together to bring a positive and unique celebration of Caribbean hearitage to Six Flags Great Adventure who, like Jamaica and Trinidad, was also celebrating it's 50th Anniversary. Having a concert in an amusement theme park has a synergy that is hard to come by, there's definitely something surreal about watching a performance when raising your eyes just slightly from the stage groups of folks are whizzing past in a giant roller coaster ride. Sun sets in a blazing ball of fire but the performers certainly brought their own heat to Jackson Township - Jersey's Gateway to the shore.
Fans and Scenes from Six Flag Park
Click the Slideshow below to view all photos from the Six Flags Summer Concert Series featuring I-Octane, Mavado, and Barrington Levy
A TriniFly Promotions / SIx Flags Summer Concert Series Press Release for Event http://www.reggaereflection.com/4/post/2012/06/caribbean-summer-concert-series-returns-for-another-six-flags-great-adventure-august-11-12-2012.html
Reggae Reflection contributors
Photos and feature by Empress K for Reggae Reflection.
Another top quality VipConnectedEntertainment event . VIP Connected Entertainment is the largest Caribbean-American booking agency worldwide. For more information link with them on www.vipconnectedentertainment.com for all your entertainment needs.
Jamaica celebrated 50 years of Independence from Britian on August 6, 2012. Celebrations throughout the island of Jamaica are held each year to commemorate the occasion which is typically a time for Jamaicans living abroad to visit Jamaica and an occasion for local Jamaicans to enjoy the holiday weekend.
Appleton Temptation Island (ATI) is nearly a week long celebration taking place every year in Negril and is a popular destination for locals and visitors alike. Speciality themed parties are the mainstay of the celebrations. The international headliners for this years events were DJ Envy from Hot 105 NY and MTV Sucker Free at Colours on Saturday August 4th and Multi-Grammy Award Nominee Fabolous at Stages on Sunday August 5th.
DJ Envy and more at Colours Negril 8/4
During the day on Sunday August 5th, a large crowd of hotel patrons gathered in the bar around the large TV screen to watch Usain Bolt make history as he competed in the 100 meter contest. Loud cheers soon erupted into mass celebration as Usain Bolt won the gold medal. A perfect way to celebrate Indepence day in Jamaica!
ATI Scenes at the RIU Palace
Fabolous at Stages Negril 8/5
Tropical Storm Ernesto made a visit and attempted to dampen spirtis, however despite the torrential downpour in the afternoon and again in the evening, all Ernesto managed to do was briefly delay some of the of the outdoor ATI events. By the time Fabolous performed at Stages, the rain had stopped and fans had put away their umbrellas and replaced them with cell phones in the air snapping pics and videos of their favorite international rapper Fabolous along with rapper Paul Cain and accompanied by DJ 4our5ive. A special Fireworks display provided a extra touch to the evening's celebration.
Fabolous takes the International stage at ATI Negril
View the Slideshow for more photos at ATI Stages
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