Rebel Salute ends on a high

Observer senior reporter

Monday, January 15, 2018

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IT was dubbed mud splash.

This was due to the heavy showers which were dumped on Saturday's final night of Rebel Salute at Grizzly's Plantation Cove in Priory, St Ann. This left the massive compound saturated resulting in thick layers of mud everywhere.

Entrepreneurs started a quick business outside the venue selling 'reggae shoes' — black shopping bags $100. Entertainers such as Elephant Man and I-Octane performed barefooted as they combated the mud which did not spare anyone.

Mud aside, the 25th staging of the festival ended with a raft of strong performances at near 11:00 am on Sunday.

Just as he has done for the past two stagings of Rebel Salute, singer Sanchez was the toast of the final night.

A sizeable audience waited in the mid-morning sun for the lanky singer known for reggae covers of R&B hits, and he delivered.

Celebrating 30 years in the music business, Sanchez gave them just what they waited for — albeit too short a set due to time constraints.

With the showers early on Saturday night, the show ran off schedule for the more than 30 acts billed for 'Night Two'. Some acts need to take pages from the books of performers such as Freddie Mcgregor, Romain Virgo, and Elephant Man, who delivered rapid-fire sets... no time-waisting with useless banter, just the hits.

Rebel Salute veteran Luciano fell victim to this and diminished the potency of his set as well as his message of peace and unity. He did manage, however, to squeeze a cameo out of reggae royalty Beres Hammond who gave the audience a taste of Double Trouble.

Other strong sets came from Egyptian, Barrington Levy, I-Octane, I Wayne, Queen Ifrica, Capleton, Ding Dong and his Raver Clavers crew, who had the park dancing... in the mud!

The set by Bernard Collins gave that nod to reggae's history and he performed the iconic track Satta massagana.

Seventies duo Althia and Donna proved to be somewhat ring rusty and, as such, failed to ignite the park. Their monster hit Uptown Top Rankin however, went over well.

Patrons showed that, despite the rains, Rebel Salute continues to provide wholesome entertainment which should not be missed. Tony Rebel and his team can take kudos for another great year.

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