There couldn’t have been a better season finale to this year’s edition of Mahalia’s Corner.
Last Sunday night, in keeping with the high standard of performances of the four preceding shows, Trinidad-based regional soca princess, Patrice Roberts, gave fans their monies worth and more. Patrice has said time and time again that she loves Barbados and the local fans. As for the fans, well, they love her right back.
Dressed to impress in a fitted black romper, Patrice began her set with her 2016 song Unforgettable. She slowed the song down, showcasing her smooth vocal ability while doing so. She followed up with Old and Grey, I am Soca and Just a Whine, which the crowd loved and sang along too.
The new mom got emotional during her rendition of Always Be, a soca love song dedicated to her daughter Lyara who was in the audience. Patrice told her fans she found true love when she met her daughter for the first time.
Following that emotional performance, Patrice then switched into another gear with her very popular songs Money Done, Sugar Boy, Tempa Whine, Come Lewwe Wuk, Band Ah De Year and whipped the crowd into a frenzy.
Yes it was Mahalia’s Corner! It’s an intimate setting, usually, but when Patrice belted those songs out, fans rose to their feet, danced and whined all across the Lloyd Erskine Sandiford Centre. Afterwards, she invited Marvay on stage for an impromptu performance of his song Know de Face.
Patrice ended her set with her 2017 mega hit Big Girl Now. Fans sang along word for word with a very contented Patrice who had to remind them it was the last song and the show was finished. The fans were obviously eager for more.
Following the performance, Patrice told the media it was an amazing experience for her. “I’m used to being on the big stage performing and waving rags and so on, never getting the opportunity to be so personal with fans,” she said.
She added: “I think I needed this moment for myself; it was really emotional for me. I’ve been so busy performing and touring that tonight I actually got an opportunity to be like friends with my fans.”
Patrice reiterated her love for Barbados and the bevy of fans she has here. “I feel at home here. Every time I come here, it’s like it leaves a stain and a memory in my mind. The Bajan fans always do something different and tonight it felt like I was home, like I didn’t go anywhere,” she said.
She went on: “I could be myself. I cried. I was emotional. I could be myself. And this is why I love them so much. They have been supporting me ever since and they have always been loyal to me.”
The veteran soca artiste believes shows like Mahalia’s Corner are needed and threw her full support behind it. “This is a different vibe. I think if we capitalize on this, it could only get bigger and better and I am on board,” she said.
What’s next for Patrice? She told fans to expect big things and promised not to forget where she came from. “Expect some big tracks next year from the Red Boys. Things are only going to get better,” she said.
Organizer of the show and front line singer of 2 Mile Hill, Mahalia, told the media that just like the other shows, she was thoroughly impressed and pleased with the way it went.
“Hopefully everybody really looks at Mahalia’s Corner and Patrice and NexWorld and the movement itself and see that it’s worthy, that there’s something they could probably take from it as well, and then we keep going up,” she said.
Kudos must also be given to the spotlight group, The Marlon Legall Voice Project, which gave two excellent performances. They brought the room to life with their harmonies and passionate singing.
The open mic-ers, Andre, Orlando, Jabari, Nicofia, Judy (Mahalia’s Mom) and TJ, should also be commended for a job well done.