Cocoa Jouvert a fun experience
Soca and Halloween came together to form a fantastic experience at the recent staging of Sunnation's Sunset Cocoa Jouvert.
The lush, expansive grounds of Caymanas Estate in St Catherine was the place to be for soca and Halloween lovers on Saturday as the two things became one.
This combination of two popular social events in Jamaica highlights the creative stamp that followers of the popular Sunnation brand have come to expect.
"The turnout tonight is indicative of the love that people have for soca and what we are trying to do at Sunnation. It was a good turnout and it was a good vibe," said Philip 'PP' Palmer, one of the event's promoters.
"We keep people guessing, we try new things and at every event we give patrons new acts. We are happy to bring Ricardo Drue to Jamaica so that people could put a face to popular songs like Professional and Vagabond," Palmer added.
Patrons entered the venue through a portal of cobwebs and ghosts, some getting a good fright from the Halloween actors. The theme continued in the decor of the venue. Hanging ghosts in trees, carved pumpkins and bartenders made to look like the un-dead were some of the sights on display. Taking photographs with the Appleton zombie hostesses and downing shots of the brand's delicious coffee liqueur was a popular activity among patrons, some of whom dressed in costumes.
Speaking of drinks, Sunnation was not short of an array of libations which flowed with ease from the hands of the friendly bar staff at the three conveniently placed bars inside the venue.
The partying started out slow, but picked up as the crowd grew and attendees warmed up to the music and took more sips from their cups or party water bottles.
On the wheels-of-steel were popular deejays DJ Richie Ras, DJ Taj, DJ Smoke and DJ Bambino, along with MC Jason 'JW' Williams from Trinidad and Tobago. JW had the crowd to his bidding as they followed his every instruction. It was a symphony of hand waving, waistlines rolling and friends dancing together as soca, dancehall and hip hop pelted from speakers.
When it came time for the release of the chocolate it was as though the spirits of Destra Garcia's Lucy and Ricardo Drue's Vagabond had been unleashed on the crowd as patrons, at least those who wanted to get messy, revelled in the popular sweet-tooth treat. Oh what a treat it was. The mood was set for the eagerly anticipated performance of the growly-popular soca artiste Ricardo Drue. His performance did not disappoint as seen in the large crowd support he received.
"It was a great pleasure being here and having the people take my vibes and I take their vibes and we interact and have a good time," he said, noting that this was his first solo performance in Jamaica.
He said his Jamaican fans can expect more good music from him. "I'm looking forward to 2016 and just giving my fans the best. After the carnival (in Trinidad), I plan to put out a collaboration with Charly Black (Jamaican dancehall entertainer) and we are looking forward to that," said the first runner-up in the 2015 Antiguan Groovy Soca Monarch Competition and the third-place winner of Trinidad's International Soca Monarch Competition 2015.
The partying continued pass the 1 a.m. cut-off time to the pleasure of patrons who could not get enough. Following cries for more music, the happy crowd was treated to a bonus set, while those who had enough enjoyed the music as they made their way through the exit.