Jazz rocks under the sign of Virgo

Richard Johnson

Monday, January 28, 2013

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THE final night of the Jamaica Jazz and Blues Festival in Trelawny would see a continuation of the sterling performances by Jamaican acts.

Leading the charge was Romain Virgo.

The youngster from Stepney in St Ann, would stamp his class on the jazz stage, delivering another workman-like performance.

Taking the stage at 7:30 pm, Virgo took charge from the very first note and sustained the momentum throughout his 45-minute set.

Dressed smartly in an electric blue suit, Virgo showed his maturity and connected with the predominantly female audience through his popular tracks, Live Mi Life, Can't Sleep, Who Feels It, Rain is Falling, Love Doctor,

Rich in Love and The System.

His gyrations during his rendition of Marvin Gaye's Let's Get it On, indicate that Virgo is no longer the shy teenager who won the hearts and votes of Jamaicans on Rising Stars.

He was preceded by the fast-rising Chronixx. The young chanter delivered an entertaining stint and showed why he is getting adoration from local audiences.

His was another tight set comprising biting social commentary as well as stories of love and relationships. His playlist included Start a Fire, They Don't Know, the ballad Somewhere, Love for Granted, and Don't Give Up.

Dionne Warwick definitely earned her place on the festival's roster with a classy set.

Miss Warwick simply stepped on stage and gave a healthy dose of the tracks which have made her an icon for 50 years.

Backed by a quartet dressed in tux and ties, she effortlessly thrilled with Walk On By, Anyone Who Had a Heart, Alfie, Heartbreaker -- which was a special request from the audience -- Way to San Jose and What The World Needs Now.

Warwick would be joined on stage by her son David Elliot for an updated take on Say a Little Prayer, followed by Elliot on Besame Mucho before returning to close with That's What Friends Are For.

Singer Monica enjoyed her stint on stage, taking patrons through her popular tracks especially Angel of Mine, which was very well received.

The task of closing the night and the festival was left to KC and The Sunshine Band -- a formidable task considering the impressive showing by the preceding act, John Legend.

However, for those who remained, the band which was popular in the 1970s and 1980s, tried their best to put a good foot forward.

It was only when they began tracks that many had the 'aha moment' and recognised the songs.

Shake Your Booty, Saturday Night Fever, Hey I Love You So, Boogie Man, Keep It Coming Love and the popular That's The Way I Like It wrapped the 2013 festival.


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