As I said before...Beach J'ouvert is a must-go fete during carnival in Jamaica and the fete delivered this year.
As usual, James Bond beach is an appropriate venue for the fete. It offers a large space, bathrooms and a covered area for those who do not want the paint. If you got there too late, you had to park on the road (some people told me that it is actually a highway). Now I don't mind parking on the road because I got there about 5:15pm but why the hell I must pay JA$300 to park on the Government of Jamaica road (or highway)???? And the people who collected the money were definitely not employees of the Government so why the a$$ I must take my hard earned money and pay a man not to tief my car???? especially when there are loads of police officers everywhere! Lo and behold when I walk the mile and a half to the venue, I hear a security guard telling another guard to let people park inside...so I paid JA$300 to park on the road when if I was 15 minutes later, I could have parked closer to the venue...steups.
Anywho, so I reach inside and another security guard by the entrance confiscated my Republic of Trinidad and Tobago flag! So I get vex one time...how the hell you would confiscate a national flag? So then I thought about it...why am I assuming that the guard knows that this a national flag...so I proceeded to explain to her that I am from Trinidad and this is our national flag yada yada.. My girl would look to tell me that I'm carrying a weapon and that the sign clearly states "no weapons allowed"...So by this time, I'm keeping back the line and person getting disgruntled so I told her that I did not plan to hurt anyone, I just wanted to wave a flag...so she took the flag off the stick and kept the stick...and I left it that...no time for no CARICOM argument. I say flag...you say weapon...whatever...
I'm finally inside and realized that the paint wildness was going on so I hid near the no paint zone because I don't like that wildness...trini to the bone...doh play mas and fraid powder...stoosh...whatever....not me and that paint attack.
Every year there's this guy (don't know his name, so is nobody popular) that takes control of the microphone in an effort to hype up the crowd...I think he's some kind of Bacchanal Jamaica mascot of some sort. First of all, the beach j'ouvert crowd does not need to be hyped up so this man continues year after year to make a fool of himself. He just becomes a distraction to the music...just let the DJ play the music and leave this man's annoying voice and antics out of it. Talking about Djs, you know these people bring the same mas camp DJs to play the same 10 songs that they play in mas camp...steups...I'm not going down that road again. But thank you Bacchanal Jamaica for bringing a REAL soca Dj to the fete...Big up to Private Ryan...the best soca DJ outside of Trinidad and Tobago (he's from Miami)...let me tell you that this man saved the fete!
Now I was not happy about seeing Ding Dong perform and boy was I right...a bunch ah man on the stage and they alone know what was going on...There were so many people on the stage that I'm not sure if Ding Dong was actually there. Let's just say that the performance was awful. Again, leave the dancehall and Ding Dong for another event.
A little after 8pm, Faye Ann, Bunji and the Asylum band came on the stage...madness...They performed all of their popular songs and these two really improved their act. Forget being husband and wife, there's a clear chemistry in their performance. Their voices were clear, the delivery was strong and there was a lot of energy. The majority of the crowd were not familiar with a lot of the songs but everyone else enjoyed them. Faye ann's out fit was a little boring which didn't matter to me because her performance was that good...and no one cares what Bunji wears anyway. The freestyle bits by Bunji were not too much and he got a good response from the crowd. Their performance went on for over an hour and ended with Faye Ann's True Lies (my absolutely favorite song!).
What I loved about their performance was that it was enjoyable...no glitz...no lip syncing...no imitation...just a legit show. At one time Faye Ann said, "I'm not Rihanna and I'm not Beyonce....I am Faye Ann Lyons"". This is the point that I was trying to make about Destra...stop trying to imitate other artistes...just do you...nothing was wrong with you before. Is it that we are not confident in our cultural capabilities so we imitate others? Faye Ann's attitude will make soca stand out by not making it into R&B or dancehall performance.
All in all I had a ball...it was a great fete...one of my favourites outside of Trinidad....and talk about Trinidad...if you see how much Trinbagonians were in this fete...down to meh girl Wendy Fitzwilliam...so the Trinis represented well!