Patrons were treated to an evening of relaxation, dance and an array of music at the event that kickstarted this year’s Tobago Jazz Experience, Jazz on the Waterfront on Thursday evening.
Young and old gathered at the Scarborough Esplanade from as early as 4.30pm and didn’t seem bothered by the ongoing preparations and microphone checks to start the 6pm show.
The three-stage setup, which included a calypso stage paying tribute to Winston “Shadow” Bailey, was enough to sustain the rich energy of the event as patrons were seen moving through the Esplanade to get a piece of each of the performances, which included headline artistes Sharlan Bailey, son of Shadow, reggae artiste Caleb Hart, and Isasha.
The show was also a mixture of artistes from Trinidad and a few known Tobago-based entertainers such as artiste Xavier Edwardz, who brought a different style to his performance with a mixture of soul, jazz, hip hop and R&B. The Tobago All Star band, which will also be performing at the TJE International Night alongside Toni Braxton and Michael Bolton on Sunday, soothed the audience on the calypso stage.
There were also performances from Tobago calypsonians Leslie-Ann Ellis and Shamika Denoon.
It was talented young soprano Leandra Head whose powerful and soulful voice with her clear, pure and soothing vocals caught the attention of the audience, even those enjoying other performances at the two stages. The crowd was moved by her jazzy R&B arrangement of local soca tunes Iron Local and Savannah Grass. Her performance was well received and the audience appreciated her acoustic tribute to the late Aretha Franklyn.Head was not only outstanding but was clearly a crowd favourite and received a standing ovation.
Caleb Hart,a Tobagonian living in Canada, gave a memorable performance, singing a few of his original pieces including Always Remember. Hart’s energetic performance got the audience out of their seats dancing. His interaction with the audience during his performance quickly changed the mood of the event.
Bailey undoubtedly left the crowd stunned after his performance as a replica of Shadow, and offering a tribute to his late father by singing some of his hit calypsoes.
The band Rebel, featuring saxophonist Ricardo Seales, delivered another outstanding live set. There were also performances by violinist David Frank and Unity Drummers, who ended the show with a bang.