Ernie, Pluto delight at Keesing
It was a night for the veterans on Saturday as headline acts Pluto Shervington and Ernie Smith took music lovers on a trip down memory lane, a journey they embarked on without resistance or hesitation.
The grounds of Alternative Music on Keesing Avenue, St Andrew, came alive as the October installation of Keesing Live got under way. Organisers expected the headline acts to pull a large crowd, but so overwhelming was the turnout that many patrons were left standing as the seats were quickly taken inside the venue.
Making his way to the stage to thunderous applause, Pluto Shervington needed to do little to please the eager audience; nevertheless, he put his all into his performance. Singing hit after hit, the veteran entertainer had the audience totally captivated, patrons oftentimes singing along, while whispers of what it was like when that particular song was released filled the air.
Never one to shy away from controversial topics, Shervington had the audience in stitches with Your Honour, Dat and Letter from Miami. While his original songs were undoubtedly a hit with the audience, the entertainer showed just why he had survived the music industry for as long as he had by throwing some current hits from Tarrus Riley and Beres Hammond into his set.
The highly anticipated Ernie Smith's performance was next on the Keesing Live agenda. His deep baritone voice still as strong as ever, Smith put in brilliant performances of some of his most popular hits, including All for Jesus, Life is Just for Living and Sammy.
danced up a storm
By this time, members of the audience could not contain themselves and remaining seated was not an option. They danced up a storm inside the venue as Smith fed them their favourites. When Smith exited the stage, the audience was clearly wanting more and they didn't have to wait long before their desires were addressed.
In what the organisers dubbed a special treat, Shervington and Smith returned to the stage for a collaborative performance the audience thoroughly enjoyed.
The night's other standout performance came from the opening act Kimielia 'Candy' Isaacs. The visually impaired singer provided the perfect start to an evening of exceptional entertainment, delivering the lyrics to some popular hits in an energetic set that had audience members rocking in their seats.
Backed by Desi Jones and Friends, her version of Stevie Wonder's Sir Duke earned Isaacs a resounding round of applause from the Keesing Live audience, before she moved on to Whitney Houston's One Moment In Time, which was handled beautifully.
And just when one thought she couldn't get any better, Isaacs proved she could with a soulful rendition of Etta James' At Last, before taking on Tina Turner's Proud Mary. The audience saluted Isaacs with a standing ovation as she exited the stage.
The 2006 Digicel Rising Stars contest winners, One Third, also put in a good showing and did well to keep the momentum alive. It was clear that their rendition of Toto's Africa remains a favorite with an audience which sang along when the group drew on that number towards the end of their set.
The next act, however, had a difficult time getting a positive response from the Keesing Live crowd. Singer Kelissa, though undoubtedly putting out her best (and had the audience members actually listened they would have noticed that she does possess some level of talent), only received applause when she introduced Chronixx to the stage.
The audience, which seemed to have fallen asleep on the young entertainer, suddenly woke up screaming and clapping as the duo performed their song, Winna.