Soaking up Jazz in the Gardens

Basil Walters

Tuesday, January 01, 2013

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THE final Jazz in the Gardens for 2012 took place Sunday at the Pegasus hotel in New Kingston. It came alive with a set to remember by Dwight Richards.

The singing trumpeter mesmerised the well-attended event with an eclectic performance.

He opened with an instrumental rendition of soul singer Chuck Jackson's Willow Tree (which became a rocksteady anthem by Alton Ellis), followed by Fly Me to The Moon and Autumn Leaves which he featured on vocals and trumpet.

He then introduced singer Nickeisha Barnes, who did a splendid performance of Lauryn Hill's version of Marley's Turn Your Lights Down Low. She displayed her rapping prowess to the delight of the audience and closed her stint with a lively medley of ska/folk songs and revival choruses including Carry Go Bring Come, Wings of a Dove, Wash Wash, Fire Falls On Me, I Am Under the Rock, and Amen.

Another memorable performance came from Harold Davis, who impressed on vocals and piano.

He delivered an entertaining instrumental of Walking My Baby Back Home before switching to vocals for Ordinary People, Unchained Melody and a suite of Festival Song winners. Among them Bam Bam, Intensified Festival, Cherry Oh Baby, Boom Shaka Laka, Play Di Music, Give Thanks and Praises, and Land of My Birth.

He closed with Billy Paul's timeless tale of infidelity, Me and Mrs Jones.

Singer Maria Myrie brought the evening to a dazzling end with a magnificent performance of Mr Melody, Can't Take That Away From Me, Kiss Me Honey, I Who Have Nothing, before going into Marcia Griffiths' songbook with Melody Life, Feel Like Jumping, Mark My Word, Truly, then Inseparable.

Myrie also teamed with Davis on the Lord's Prayer — a superb interpretation of this sacred standard.

Other satisfying performances came from the humorous Tomlin Ellis, Jodian Pantry and Nina Karle.




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