Tue | Oct 23, 2018

Thousands have Fun in the Son

Published:Monday | July 16, 2018 | 12:09 AMMarcia Rowe/Gleaner Writer
Rondell Positive
Prodigal Son
Kevin Downswell (left) and Donnie McClurkin.
Papa San closes Jamaica Fun in the Son 2018 in stirring fashion.
Marion Hall in glowing form at the National Heroes Park, Kingston, on Saturday during Jamaica Fun in the Son 2018.
An exultant man praises the Lord at Jamaica Fun in the Son 2018.
Part of the large cerowd at Jamaica Fun in the Son 2018, in the fading daylight on Saturday.
Dancers show moves and expression at the National Heroes Park on Saturday, as they perform at Jamaica Fun in the Son 2018.
Carlene Davis performs at Jamaica Fun in the Son 2018, held at National Heroes Park, Kingston, on Saturday.
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Jamaica Fun in the Son continued to be a magnet for believers and non-believers on Saturday at National Heroes Park, Kingston. The usual slow early support blossomed into a packed evening, fuelled by powerhouse performances from some of Jamaica's finest gospel vocalists. The venue was marked by a patchwork of neatly arranged tents, complemented by colour coded T-shirt clad groups of volunteers. The early arrivals were treated to performances from up-and-coming gospel artistes, along with face painting and rides for the children.

Sometime after 5:00 pm the main concert got going with Carlene Davis. This was a signifier of the quality acts on the programme. Davis gave her expected fantastic performance, interspersing songs with words of encouragement. Her set included 'Dis Island Needs Jesus'. She returned twice in cameos with Donnie McClurkin and then Marion Hall.

Hall became a Christian convert in 2015 and her love and passion for Jesus was evident in her performance. She was engaging from the start to the end of her set. And the response from the audience indicated that her commanding testimony, told through singing and the spoken word, was more than relatable.

"I know you expect me to sing songs, but I am going to do something different." McClurkin greeted the 'congregation', indicating that he would be delivering the message for the event. He was on point as he addressed the gathering. He also targeted the "religious" who choose to scorn and reject the non-believers. "You cannot scale a fish before you catch it." he implored, while sharing that he prayed with artistes such as Snoop Dog and Beyonce. But the American singer could not stay "different" for long infusing some songs into his sermon.

Prodigal Son, not seen on the gospel circuit for some time, was also in action. He had the audience stirring up the already dusty venue with 'Ketch A Fire' and 'I Wish'. Rondell Positive, sporting a red jacket, kept the spiritual fire going with 'The Purpose' and his new single 'Leggo the Stress'.

The musical ministry continued into the late evening with performances from Kevin Downswell and Papa San, the curtain closer. 'Get Something and Wave' and 'Jesus Mek Me Smile Again' were among the titles he used to work the audience into to frenzy. Downswell, boasting a new fashion design, got going with Yes Jesus Loves Me' before bringing on McClurkin with 'You Lift Me Up' and closed with 'If It's Not You'.

The amazing concert also had performance from I. Dance Company. Their piece was choreographed to a medley of genres of music. Hosts Nadine Blair, Ian 'Ity' Ellis and Markland 'Action' Edwards were entertaining and effective. And for Maurice Johnson, who attended and remained unconverted to Christianity, "it [the concert] was really good. I like the vibes of the performers. They interacted with the crowd really well."