Mon | Feb 24, 2020

Rebel Salute 2020 | Chi Ching Ching shows and tells what it means to 'Love Life'

Published:Saturday | January 18, 2020 | 4:23 PM
Chi Ching Ching during his high-energy performance on night one of Rebel Salute 2020.

Stephanie Lyew/Gleaner Writer

Chi Ching Ching might have missed out on performing at Rebel Salute last year, but there was nothing holding him back early Saturday morning as he delivered a set which left no room for disappointment.

“I was angry when I never got to perform last year due to limitations with time, but I never said anything about it. So all the anger … was stored up inside of me and I transformed it into love that was dashed on the audience and venue this morning,” Chi Ching Ching told The Gleaner, after performing on night one of the festival.

There was no indication that the dancer-turned-deejay, who was smartly dressed in a Spokes Apparel-designed suit accessorised with a bow tie, had any bottled up emotions, but as he jumped to the front of the stage, pent up energy was released with great intensity.

Supported by dancers Energy, Gabbidon and Kool Kid, 6 ft 7 in Chi Ching Ching educated the audience on the movements that matched his most popular tracks – as he and the dancers made their way over the wooden barrier that separated the media and VIP areas.

Chi Ching Ching said presenting his catalogue of dynamic music was the only way he knew to manage all emotions. He had both the young and the young at heart doing the dances to Way Up N Stay Up, Get There, Rope, Roast or Fry (Breadfruit) and Rock Di World across the grassy field of Grizzly’s Plantation Cove. 

During his performance of Callaloo, the dancehall ‘giant’ invited up-and-coming act Ras Ajai, to give the audience a sample of Di Hot Ras, recorded on the same rhythm. He also welcomed Queen Omega, who according to the original running order was expected to come out strong at 9 p.m. The female reggae artiste from Trinidad did not disappoint as she made every effort to match her male companions as they moved to the beat.

“My set,” Chi Ching Ching said, “always keep people happy, and sometimes a person is happy fi a second but when them go through a door and close it, them start to face them demons again.”

With cheers from a large section of the audience for the “bad dancer-deejay” to give them more, Chi Ching Ching made it clear he was not through.

“I figure if I can point a person to the direction of loving life through my music, then that is what I will do,” he said.

He then performed one of his latest singles Love Mi Life, recorded on the Dutty Rock Productions No Caption Riddim, and despite the deejay’s reserved tone on the track, persons still found ways to express themselves through dance.

He told The Gleaner, “I am a young man who has seen a lot of young men dying because them don’t have anything. Nuh true you nah nuh money, life is the greatest thing a person can have, while money is the root of evil … . And I know not every one of them can find a nine-to-five to mek it inna life or going find someone to help them like how someone help me in my life.”

“My album Turning Tables means coming from nothing to something and that was possible because mi love mi life. I give great thanks to people like Popcaan, Sean Paul, Munga, Gyptian and the whole of Stony Hill community for the motivation and I am here trying to be motivation for other youths now,” he concluded.

Tonight’s acts will include Richie Spice, Akeem Campbell aka Chronic Law, Jack Radics, Jahbar I, George Nooks, Anthony B, The Meditations, Queen Ifrica, Mortimer, I Octane, Jesse Royal, I Wayne, Louie Culture, Lady G, Mikey Spice, Errol Dunkley, Jack Scorpio, Steven Blake, Tony Tuff, Wayen Wade, ImeruTafari, Hopeton James, Rhoda Isabella, Leba Hibbert, Benjy Myaz, Mischief, Dynamyq Sound and Tafasta.