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Intimate set from Jimmy Cliff at Musical Enchantment - Singer completes therapy after accident

Published:Tuesday | February 11, 2020 | 12:19 AMYasmine Peru/ - Senior Gleaner Writer
Jimmy Cliff.
Jimmy Cliff.

Dressed in a canary yellow outfit, topped with a black cap, reggae legend Jimmy Cliff totally ignored the stage and, instead, stood directly in front of the first row to deliver his intimate, but too-short set at the Stella Maris auditorium on Sunday evening.

The event was trumpeter and vocalist Dwight Richard’s annual Musical Enchantment, and it’s safe to say that Dr The Hon Jimmy Cliff was enchanting. His signature Many Rivers to Cross and Sitting Here In Limbo numbered among his song selections, and his voice was rich and popping, and the full house audience was ecstatic. Richards had remarked earlier in the evening that the doubting Thomases had said that Jimmy Cliff would not appear on the show, and had insisted that the reggae icon would be in the house. “I am a part of his management team, and part proceeds of this event will go towards the Jimmy Cliff Foundation. He will definitely be here,” Richards stated more than once. It was therefore a triumphant Richards who met Jimmy Cliff as he walked to his own centre stage to deliver his sweet, abbreviated performance.

It cannot be ignored that Cliff’s performance appeared a bit subdued for him; however, it probably had to do with the fact that he has just completed therapy for an injury he received last year.

Richards shared with The Gleaner that Jimmy Cliff had undergone surgery last year after the accident, but would not reveal details. “He’s doing very, very well. He’s fully up and running now,” he said.

On December 19, Cliff had posted a picture of himself and his band on social media with a caption thanking the people of Reunion for their warm welcome, adding, “I just had surgery that’s why I couldn’t stand up. I enjoyed the show. Thank you to La Reunion St Joseph team and audience. Love you ! JC and his band.”

In a short post-performance interview, the singer and actor told The Gleaner that his entire life is a stage, and although he was performing before his ‘home’ crowd, he added that “home is where the heart is”.

Regarding upcoming shows, Jimmy Cliff will be in St Kitts and Barbados in April, and will be going off on a US tour after.

Come June, he will be one of the acts on the seventh edition of the UK’s longest-running artiste-curated music festivals, scheduled for Southbank, London. Festival Meltdown 2020 is curated by Jamaican music, film and fashion icon Grace Jones. For her line-up, Jones brings together artistes from across the globe, and along with Jimmy Cliff, there will be Solange, Peaches, Skunk Anansie and Baaba Maal. Festival Meltdown is packaged as an event set to showcase boundary-breaking artistes and international legends.

“It is a great pleasure to announce my participation to the Festival Meltdown 2020!” Cliff told his fans via Instagram.