Sat | Jan 20, 2018

Reggae, Jazz and Blues Go Gospel on a roll - Third concert success for St Luke's Anglican

Published:Friday | April 29, 2016 | 12:00 AMShereita Grizzle
Host Fae Ellington (standing, left) addresses Deaconess Elaine Cunningham (seated, centre) and Archdeacon Patrick Cunningham of St Luke’s Anglican Church at the Reggae, Jazz and Blues Go Gospel concert on Sunday night at the Karl Hendrickson Auditorium, Jamaica College.
Gem Myers sings sweetly.
Fourteen-year-old LeAndré Sadler serenades the audience with a strong voice.
Mary Isaacs thrills the audience with Sam Cooke's A Change Is Gonna Come.
Kevin Downswell speaks to the audience in between songs at the Reggae, Jazz and Blues Go Gospel concert on Sunday night at the Karl Hendrickson Auditorium, Jamaica College, Old Hope Road, St Andrew..
Guitarist Seretse Small takes a seat as he enthrals the audience with a soulful performance.
Harold Davis gives a rousing performance, masterfully playing the keyboard.

It was an evening of excellent entertainment as St Luke's Anglican Church hosted their third annual Reggae, Jazz and Blues Go Gospel Concert on Sunday.

The organisers said they expected a large turnout as the concert has enjoyed tremendous growth since its inaugural staging in 2014. Their prediction was on point, as a large crowd turned up at the Karl Hendrickson auditorium, Jamaica College, Old Hope Road, to share in the evening of music.

The first half set the tone of an electrifying concert as Harold Davis, Mary Isaacs and Seretse Small lit up the stage. Before them, Javier White and Canon Grace Jervis whet the audience's appetite and left them hungry for more. Then the musical feast came.

The first of the thrilling trio was Davis. The singer mesmerised the audience with powerful vocals, delivering a scintillating rendition of You Raise Me Up in which he held nothing back. Davis took the audience on a trip down memory lane with a Jamaican popular music medley which included Freedom Street, Sweet Sensation, Rivers of Babylon and Oh Carolina. His energy was so contagious that guests had to get up and dance. Host Fae Ellington could not resist and took a break from her duties to do some moves.

Isaacs kept the musical momentum going, delivering Sam Cooke's A Change is Gonna Come as if onstage at Madison Square Gardens or Apollo Theatre in the USA (places she has performed). Years of experience shone as Isaacs thrilled the audience with song after song. She had the audience singing along, with occasional screams testament to how well Isaacs connected.

Small proved to be a master of his craft. He did not sing, but the notes coming from his guitar moved the audience just the same. Performing Tenor Madness and Bob Marley's Redemption song, the guitarist showed off his skills and proved that singers aren't the only performers who can entertain.

Following a brief intermission 14 year-old LeAndre Sadler got things going again with You Are God Alone, which was well received. Gem Myers showed the audience why she is considered one of the best performers in Jamaica. Myers hardly moved around during her performance, but didn't need to as her voice did all the work. Myers' excellent stage presence commanded the audience's attention as her voice travelled throughout the auditorium.

Her performance of Jesus is Lord, Dreamland and Fantasia's I Believe hot home.

The evening came to a close with minister Kevin Downswell, who did not disappoint. A Change is Coming, One Day and Christian Soldier were among the songs he performed, along with a lively medley of reggae gospel songs. Downswell's performance was well received, patrons leaving the auditorium satisfied with the evening of music.