Tessanne thrills in Trinidad
Those who still doubt that Tessanne Chin is a megastar need to see a video of her performance at the Aranguez Savannah in the eastern end of Trinidad last Saturday.
And even as you are wooed by the Jamaican songbird performing before an audience that at one time was estimated at 40,000 by organisers, remember that she was performing for persons who had been standing in the sun from as early as midday and had already faced almost seven hours of music and political speeches including an hour-long presentation from the main speaker, Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar.
That would be as if Tessanne was closing Sting after performances from Bounty Killer, Beenie Man, Lady Saw and a host of others, and close it she did.
In an awesome display of her vocal range, the diva had the crowd swaying, jumping and holding close to their partners as she pulled the strings like a puppet master.
Even when they did not know the songs, such as when she did her latest single Fire, Tessanne had the audience spellbound with man, woman and child latching on to her every word.
The crowd ignited as the backing band started the first strains of the Bob Marley classic, Redemption Song, and Tessanne nailed it with her now-familiar version.
Trinidad could not get enough.
Later, with the energy of the crowd beginning to wane, Tessanne called it a night after almost one hour and, despite the buses and maxi-taxis revving their engines, indicating they were ready to go, there were many in the audience who made it clear they would be willing to stick around for more from the Jamaican.
Earlier in the day, reggae artiste Richie Spice gave a brief but energetic performance, hitting the stage between speeches from some of the big hitters of the governing People's Partnership (PP).
Spice added some pepper as he belted out Earth a Run Red, Ghetto Girl, and Brown Skin, which the audience joined in singing line for line, among others.
The two Jamaicans were performing at the final mass rally staged by the PP before today's election, with Tessanne providing the after-rally entertainment. But unlike Trinidadian entertainers, the two stayed away from any political comments or endorsement.