The three-part concert series Music in the Square – Icon Nights, produced by the National Cultural Foundation (NCF), continued Friday night at the Golden Square Freedom Park.
The second instalment, A Tribute To Jackie Opel – From Spouge to Reggae, featured a cadre of artistes paying tribute to the legendary entertainer.
The event opened with an outstanding performance of a medley of Opel’s popular songs by the St Leonard’s Steel Orchestra, presented by students from his former school.
Top performers from the Baje to the World competition paid homage to the beloved artiste who was recognised for his finesse on stage.
The Showman, who secured third place, delivered a powerful rendition of Only a Fool before his energetic presentation of the upbeat Vehicle.
Kyrique Alleyne, the competition’s winner, showed off his star quality donning an eye-catching blue outfit as he captured the audience’s attention with performances of Every Word I Say is True and You’re No Good.
The lineup also featured Junior Monarch alumni. Entertaining patrons were The Mighty Bit Bit with a dynamic performance of Cry Me A River and You Got to Pay, and Emari Browne with Another Try.
Jackie Opel’s musical journey saw him making a mark in Jamaica, where many believed he originated. This chapter of his life was represented with the inclusion of popular reggae tracks. Saxophonist Irwin Belgrave played Bob Marley’s One Love. Fellow instrumentalist Daniel Harvey, winner of the NCF challenge, was also in impressive form with selections from local artistes Buggy Nhakente and Hotta Flames. He skillfully delivered Just a Man, I See Them, and Girls Need Love.
Continuing with the reggae genre, Daniel Medford displayed his smooth vocals with Vampire, Equal Rights, and his own original Come Away. The Icon Night’s Band was fantastic with Redemption Song, Rastaman, and Stir It Up.
The female performers were not to be beat with their style choices, standing out equally with both their attire and vocals. Dondria Forde, sweetened the audience with her rendition of Love is the Key, while Harmoni Haynes, who was resplendent in a sequined blue jumpsuit, put her all into her performance of My Sentimental Friend and Hello There Baby.
Jeliah Boyce also made a striking appearance with Midnight Blue.
Also appearing on a night dominated by exceptional performances were Peach Bless and Supa Star with their popular Pressure Point.
Budding soca star Asasnta Blossom was accompanied by saxophonist Darren Watson who infused spouge elements into Lil Rick’s Breakfast in Bed.
Jessica Rose added her neo-soul flair to This Time I’ll Be Sweeter while Jadon Knight sang Help Me Love.
The show concluded with Biggie Irie performing his hits, Ten Tons of Love and Problems.
The three-part series will culminate next week with a tribute to The Merrymen lead singer Sir Emile Straker.