Two thumbs up - Thrilling performances at Third World concert
The Third World and Family Under The Stars Concert promised an unforgettable show, and on Friday night, the event delivered just that.
With approximately six hours of non-stop reggae music, to say the entertainment package offered was action-packed would be an understatement.
From the get-go, the show at Hope Zoo had patrons rocking to some authentic reggae music served up by up-and-coming acts like Causion and Sevanna. The young acts did well to get the audience warmed up, no doubt whetting their musical appetites for the main acts of the night.
The Third World band did not have one set performance. Instead, they delivered several short sets throughout the evening, thoroughly entertaining the crowd and thrilling them with several of their hit songs, including Yim Mas Gaan, Committed, and Sense of Purpose.
The night was also filled with several other major performances. Among the standout acts was reggae veteran, Big Youth.
The rarity of his performances on local soil made his set even more special. There was a hunger for his music that could be felt throughout the venue, as the crowd welcomed him to the stage with screams and cheers.
The iconic singer entered the stage, opened his mouth and had the audience totally captivated from that moment onward. One would think, based on the uproar that ushered him to the stage, that the audience couldn't possibly get more involved in his performance, but somehow, the entertainer managed to draw them in some more.
His style of delivery, and the way he moved about the stage sent the crowd into a frenzy as he belted out the lyrics to his songs I Pray Thee (Satta), Every Nigger Is a Star, Motorcycle Sample, and Hit the Road Jack. The crowd would not have objected to him staying on stage a little longer, but with so many acts waiting backstage, Big Youth made way for the next act ñ Toots.
Before Toots even graced the stage, MC Rodney declared that his performance would bring a Bam Bam - and that it did. The entertainer thrilled the audience with some of his most popular songs, including Monkey Man, 54-46 and, of course, Bam Bam. His performance was so highly energetic that the show needed to break before introducing the next act to the stage.
Following an intermission that saw DJ Squeeze leading the audience into a full-fledged dancing session with his selections, Tony Rebel entered the stage, signalling the start of the show's second segment.
By the time Rebel touched the stage, the crowd had grown so large that the lawns of Hope Zoo were filled to capacity. And if patrons thought the show couldn't get any better, they would have been wrong, as Rebel took the night to a whole new level. He had the audience's full attention as he belted out the lyrics to Fresh Vegetable and Sweet Jamaica, but it was his 'current affairs' freestyle, that had the audience glued to his every word. He spoke about his visions for Jamaica if he were to be elected prime minister, and adding a comical twist to some serious issues was much appreciated by the audience. He later made way for Freddie McGregor, who kept the entertainment flowing. The captain of the Big Ship performed songs like Push Come To Shove, True To My Roots, and All In the Same Boat - a tribute to the late Bunny Rugs.
A world-class performance from the next generation of reggae musicians Jesse Royal and Chronixx closed out a night of quality entertainment and a special appearance from Stephen Marley at the very end was only icing on the cake.