Out of all the soca sessions for summer in Kingston, I opted for Soca vs Dancehall. I attended SVD last year and wasn't blown away so I wanted to give it another chance. Even though it's not a true soca fete, I had a good time, not the best, but good enough.
Throughout the night I kept getting mixed responses from people I knew. Some were having a blast, while others felt it was boring. I am going to go out on a limb and say they were all correct. You see SVD is not for the die-hard soca lovers in Jamaica, but it works well to attract the non-soca crowd, especially those who are familiar with the standard 10 soca songs. For those who didn't know, the theme is soca AND dancehall, so you should be prepared for the genre mix. I admit that I was one of those who tuned out during the dancehall set, but I didn't mind it too much because it was not the real hardcore dancehall you would hear at a passa passa or container satdaze.
|Yes I know..I need to work on my pics|
I am not an expert, but I do know that not every deejay can mix dancehall and soca well, which was the real problem at the party. The deejays were either really good at mixing soca or really good at mixing dancehall, but not both. For instance, Coppershot failed at soca ...miserably..and Dei Musicale fell flat with their dancehall set. My suggestion is to leave the genre to its expert deejays.
I had no complaints about the bar. I obtained my usual Johnnie and coconut water mixes without problem during the night. I also liked that Haagen Dazs ice-cream was included.
|Don't worry, I had my lactaid|
As much as Hope Gardens is accessible and I suspect that it's a cheaper venue, it has become soca central. I've been to so many parties at Hope Gardens that they've all merged into one memory. For those who found SVD boring, could it be that they are tired of the same venue, the same themes, the same patrons, the same deejays? Again, it depends on who you talk to. Although the soca crowd in Kingston is small, probably it's time to change it up. What about an out of season Jouvert or breakfast party or even a cruise? (Thank me later promoters)....
Yet, there were many, I believe the majority, who had a blast at SVD and were just grateful for the little soca in July. The SVD crew did well but with a party that's held so often, they need to think about the future of the concept...