Chad Bryan, Gleaner Writer
Scores of patrons filled the Karram Speid Auditorium of the Merl Grove High School on Constant Spring Road in Kingston, lifting hands of praise and dancing to the Spirit-laced songs belted out by various gospel-recording artistes at the Jermaine Edwards and Friends concert.
The event, which was sponsored by Digicel in association with Island Worship, had a dress code of red, white and black.
Several artistes such as Carey Sayles, Kevin Downswell, Rondell Positive, I-Worship, Judith Gayle and DJ Nicholas and the man of the hour himself, Digicel brand ambassador Jermaine Edwards, among several others, performed crowd favourites and delivered high-impact performances.
Numerous patrons could be observed leaving their seats and flocking to the front of the stage where there was ample space to sing and dance with their favourite artiste, offering their sacrifice of praise on to God.
Songs such as Holy Ghost Gym, Him a mi Daddy Oh, What You Think About Jesus, Why, Help, One Touch, Take it by Force, You Feserve all the Glory Lord, and Jesus, first in my life were just some of those that whipped the crowd into a frenzy.
Manager and promoter of Jermaine Edwards, Philbert Ward Jr explained the nature and vision Edwards had for staging the concert.
"The focus here is basically to raise funds to purchase a box truck with state-of-the-art equipment so that we can go into high schools across the island and depressed communities to minister," Ward Jr said.
"Overall, we are trying to raise between two and three million dollars to offset this project. It will not only be from this concert but we'll be seeking help from elsewhere," he said.
During the event, which was hosted by Love 101's Nadine Blair and Basillia Barnaby, several giveaways were made in the form of Digicel call credit and a cash prize, which was shared by the winner among five persons, in keeping with Digicel's 'Share a Smile' Christmas campaign. A Huawei tablet was the gate prize.
Tahnida Nunes, Digicel sponsorship manager, expressed delight at supporting brand ambassador Jermaine Edwards in his endeavour.
"Jermaine Edwards has been a brand ambassador from 2010. We were looking for the next big thing in gospel music and he was it. We are happy to support him, whatever he does as our brand ambassador we support him and whatever we do he supports us. It has been mutually beneficial," she said.
Jermaine Edwards brought the concert to a close along with DJ Nicholas and Kevin Downswell performing Naa Bow.