Sat | Aug 8, 2020

Inspirational set from Jekalyn Carr ‘I Love Gospel Jamaica’

Published:Tuesday | October 22, 2019 | 12:00 AMMarcia Rowe/Gleaner Writer
Patrons take cover from the rain.
MC Markland Edwards interacts with an audience member at ‘I Love Gospel’ at the Constant Spring Golf Club on Sunday, October 20.
At top: Headliner Jekalyn Carr performs at ‘I Love Gospel’ at the Constant Spring Golf Club on Sunday night.
Event organiser, Chozenn, performs.

For gospel singer and motivational speaker Jekalyn Carr, the inaugural staging of the ‘I Love Gospel Jamaica’ concert was yet another opportunity to inspire.

“I believe that my lane is to inspire people. I write music that tells them who they are in God, and what it is that God has for them to operate in as children of God. The power of God is in us all. All they need to do is speak it and it shall manifest.”

No doubt, Carr is an extraordinary minister. She has been a Christian all her life, and began preaching at the age of 13. Indeed, her songs are inspired by experiences and testimonies, and are written according to the will of God; and she delivered them with gusto as she closed out performances at the Constant Spring Golf Club on Sunday.

Songs such as It’s Yours, You’re Bigger and I See Miracles, along with favourite hymns Because He Lives and Wonder Working Power, produced a united force among patrons. And as the young American declared faith-based deliverance from “issues that are hard to overcome”, some patrons were visibly in ‘spirit’, shaking off the damper of a rain-drenched evening.

In fact, Sunday’s weather was not what the organisers had hoped for. Just before the first act, American-based Da Flame, made her entrance to the stage, the clouds released their pent-up moisture, signalling, perhaps, God’s way of testing the stakeholders’ love of gospel. And they passed the test.

As patrons resorted to tents and umbrellas for shelter, Da Flame remained steadfast, delivering a set that uplifted the spirits. Her opening hymn, How Great Thou Art, was followed by a medley of old-school gospel songs, including It Soon Be Done and Real, Real.

As the rain continued, so did the show of love for gospel. Radio personality Brother Gary was next. On his turntable, he had the congregation singing along vociferously to Fill My Cup, My God is Awesome; and on his closing selection, I’m Blessed, the rain stopped.

Different side of Chozenn

Then, Markland Edwards and Ava-Gaye Blair welcomed Chozenn to the stage. He continued the celebration of gospel with songs from his new album, Cultural Invasion. He told the audience, “You are going to see a different side of Chozenn not seen before.” And so it was. His set comprised mainly slow-tempo songs, except for his favourite worship song, Kevin Downswell’s Lights Go Out.

The lights indeed went out for the patrons seated in the platinum section, just before Carr performed. And as has become the norm at gospel concerts, well-established boundaries are dismantled. So it was on Sunday (albeit they were invited to do so). The well-divided – platinum, diamond, gold, silver and bronze – Constant Spring Golf Club venue became a melting pot of zealous Christians.

The supporting vocals for Carr were provided by local acts. Event organiser Chozenn said this was to win souls, to showcase aspiring acts that are doing well, and to cut down on expense.

Adding to the fulfilling gospel extravaganza were Bishop, Corporal, Francis, Lucas Muzix, Dessi-Ann Yetman and Joseph Emanuel. The event makes its next stop in Grand Cayman.