Jesse Royal, the reggae singer from Maroon Town is perhaps one of the most underrated artists in Jamaica, but his performance at Reggae Sumfest 2015 served as a clear reminder of his potent talent.
Royal took the stage at 11:45 p.m. and quickly delved into his catalog of hits such as ‘So Long Rastafari Call’, ‘Preying On The Weak’ and the big local hit ‘Modern Day Judas’, which had the crowd singing along.
His stage craft was yet another brilliant example of why he is so highly respected and sought after, especially in Europe, where he spends most of his time on tour these days.
Gimme Likkle Herb, a track which highlights his call for the legalization of ganja, was well received by the masses, while Ghetto Girl, paid homage to love from a girl who lives in an inner-city community.
The consensus from a number of onlookers was that Jamaica needs to see a lot more of Jesse Royal, who remains a major crowd puller across Europe, but who is far less recognized in Jamaica.
Following on the heels of Jesse Royal was Kabaka Pyramid and his blazing performance raised the already sizzling temperature up a notch, to set the tone for US rap artiste Common, who was set to hit the stage after him.
Roots, rock, reggae band Raging Fyah scorched the Reggae Sumfest 2015 stage with a blistering set lasting 25 minutes and left the patrons inside the Catherine Hall Entertainment Centre wanting more.
It was their first ever performance at the summer reggae festival, but one would not know that by their professional approach and solid, authentic reggae sound, which clearly resonated with the patrons.
Their reputation is well known across Europe, and this performance will no doubt heighten their visibility locally, especially after delivering the impactful hit Judgement Day.
The group also dropped Jah Glory and Running Away among several other big songs before exiting to a warm round of applause.
They told 18 Karat Reggae, this was just a precursor to their pending European tour, for which they will leave the island on August 5 for Poland and Austria, among other countries.
On top of all that, Raging Fyah is keeping plans for a new album top secret, hinting however, that it will be for a major reggae label.
“We just want to keep producing authentic roots, rock reggae,” the group said in an interview.
Meanwhile, cabaret singer Kareen enhanced her portfolio with a decent set, with the main feature being well rehearsed dancers. Before her, Dominican reggae act Oriel laid the foundation for the night.