Last weekend the 10th edition of the Montreal International Reggae Festival (MIRF) reached new heights of popularity. Held from Friday, August 16, to Sunday, August 18, it attracted a sold-out crowd on Saturday night. On Friday and Sunday selling 97 per cent of the total site capacity of 10,000 seats was taken.
Friday night's performers included Morgan Heritage, making a remarkable return to the MIRF stage for the third time. They performed all their greatest hits as well as extracts from their new album, Here Come the Kings. It was a dynamic set despite the absence of Una Morgan,who fell ill after arriving in Montreal, Canada.
Traditionally known as dancehall night, Saturday featured some of the most relevant artistes on the scene currently. They included Toronto's Dahlia and Jamaica's Mr Vegas, who performed his hits over the past 15 years.
Also featured at the event was Kes The Band, which brought out many of Montreal's Eastern Caribbean revellers. Shaggy was also in top form as well as an electrifying musical doctor, Beenie Man.
The legendary King Yellowman also gave a lively set, setting a high bar for young sensation Serani and singer Alaine. These performances were very good, but proved an icebreaker for the magical performance of iconic reggae artiste Cocoa Tea.
The festival was closed by Freddie McGregor and his Big Ship Crew, who performed a plethora of his timeless hits.
The only downside to this year's Montreal International Reggae Festival was the cancellation of Luciano's scheduled appearance, following a visa problem that was beyond the control of MIRF.