It was all one big feting family when patrons gathered at the Soca Yard for the inaugural D’ Music Summer Soca Fest. With J’NASA Entertainment at the helm, the festival officially launched on Saturday night with a top tier cast of local artistes.
The line-up was a blend of new and experienced artistes. Getting their feet wet at a major event were some participants who have come through the ranks of the Junior Monarch competition. Enjoying themselves on the stage were Triple D, Dynamo and Ross. Also, among the youthful brigade in the opening segment were newcomers KDM, Reckon Drums and Jai-A, who has been gaining popularity with her debut release, Captivate Ya.
It was obvious that, like their younger counterparts, the seasoned acts were elated by the opportunity to be back on stage as they delivered energy-filled performances. In the welcomed opportunity to be on the outside, the attendees lapped up performances by Grateful Co, Walkes and Jus D.
Patrons enjoyed not only their familiar favourites but got a taste of some of their newer material. Grateful Co delivered his sweet soca Fall In Love and Jus D received a warm reception with Boom Boom from his new album. The youthful crowd went wild from the time Jah Reddis dropped his catchphrase “hashtag”. They were vociferous as they sang all the lyrics to his bashment soca hits.
Seasoned performers bringing their characteristic energy to the Soca Fest stage were Soca Monarch Mikey, Hypasounds, Peter Ram and Lil Rick. The Hypa Dawg was the final guest performer of the night, and he was joined on stage by a female member of the audience with a spirited dance to Sugar Lump. During his performance, he and Ram teamed up to do some of their old dub material. By the time Lil Rick wrapped up his set, he was drenched in sweat.
Backing band for the night was The Element Band, with lead vocalist MarzVille upfront. The singer showed his vocal prowess, performing multiple genres and styles in various segments. His wide-ranging set included soca covers of Savannah Grass by Kes, Sometime by Leadpipe, Splinters by Shal Marshall and Farmer Nappy’s Hooking Meh. He showed his range with Billie Jean by Michael Jackson.
It would not have been complete without some of his own original material such as My Boo, Fog Up, Give It To Ya and Owe Me. In the wee hours of Sunday morning, he fittingly belted out the popular gospel song I Know Who I Am followed by his own feel good tune Life So Nice.
Patrons were teased with a brief appearance by the Caribbean Queen Alison Hinds. The soca diva confirmed that her fans would enjoy an extended performance when she is featured at another festival event. Before she departed she was joined by MarzVille for a playful rendition of her Caribbean Song Contest winner Hold You in a Song, which was a duet with John King.
The festival is set to conclude on August 28, 2020. (STT)