Christmas Extravaganza was held on Friday, December 22 at Independence Park, Black River, St. Elizabeth. The show, which was promoted by popular radio personality GT Taylor of IRIE-FM, featured some good performances, as well as some lukewarm ones.
Among the performances that stood out were by Tanto Metro and Devonte, Morgan Heritage, George Nooks, Ninja Man (he got the biggest forward for the night), Beenie Man, Elephant Man, newcomers Silva Kid, Danny English, Bling Dawg among others.
This annual event was held at the Fort Clarence Beach in Portmore, St. Catherine on Saturday December 23. Beenie Man provided a bit of excitement and novelty as the show’s emcee.
His fellow Shocking Vibes stable mate Bling Dawg a.k.a. Ricky Rudie, growled onto the stage at minutes to 1 a.m. and barked up a storm with a medley of hits. Alley Cat struggled to get a reasonably good cheer from the crowd, while DJ Gringo warmed up the crowd in a blistering 5-minute segment.
Ward 21, Kiprich, Wayne Marshall and Barrington Levy also thrilled the crowd, so too did Bad Boy recording act Shyne. Sean Paul also performed, while Nemesis Disco, DJ Khaled from Miami, Tony Matterhorn and Firelinks blazed the venue with their dub plates and specials. Attendance at the event was way below normal expectations.
REGGAE RAM JAM
After a 2-year break, Reggae Ram Jam returned to May Pen on Sunday, December 24. The event was well-attended and featured credible performances by Ninja Man, Hawkeye, Mr. Vegas, Cocoa Tea, and Elephant Man. The usual bomb rushing of stage shows is a nasty disease that promoters need to address, as it is happening too frequently.
RED STRIPE HOT SHOTS
Christmas Eve in New Kingston was hot with the staging of the RAS Promotions event “Red Stripe Hot Shots.” R&B singer Carl Thomas was a no show, but rapper Mystikal, dancehall prince Baby Cham, new Reggae singer Christopher, deejay Delly Ranks, international deejay Shaggy (with his crew: Rayvon, Brian and Tony Gold, Redd Foxx and Ricardo “Rik Rok” Ducent) made sure that patrons got their money’s worth of entertainment for the night. Sean Paul and Mr. Lex also performed. The event was well attended and incident free.
WHITE RIVER REGGAE BASH
The annual event, which is promoted by Jamaica’s top Reggae radio station IRIE-FM, was held at the White River Reggae Park on Christmas Day. Another one of the better-attended shows during the holiday season, it featured good performances by Madd Anju, Cocoa Tea, Beenie Man, Danny English, Ghost and Elephant Man. However, the crowd gave it very hard to Hawkeye, Alozade and Mr. Vegas.
SADDLE TO THE EAST 2000
Promoted by ace deejay Bounty Killer, the annual Saddle to the East show, which was held at the Caymanas Polo Club in St. Catherine, drew out a massive crowd of dancehall fanatics.
Elephant Man, Freddie McGregor, Richie Spice, Barrington Levy, Morgan Heritage, Luciano, Lady Saw, General Degree, Cobra, Ninja Man, Bling Dawg, Vibes Cartel, Delly Ranks, singer Christopher, General B, and Bounty Killer, all delivered nick performances which the crowd hungrily absorbed.
SOME GOT STUNG AT STING
Sting 2000 Red Hot pulled the curtains down on the flood of stage shows and events held during the festive season. On Boxing Day, December 26, the event held at Jam World in Portmore brought out the dancehall massive in droves. An estimated 15,000 concert-goers jammed from 11 p.m. until 7 a.m. the next day.
At the end of it all, the much-anticipated clash between Ninja Man and Merciless saw Merciless coming out on top, and earning a batch of new stripes among the hardcore dancehall fanatics.
Unbelievably, Merciless conquered Ninja Man (who for many years was dubbed “Mr. Sting”), and Bounty Killer in the process. Beenie Man who also got embroiled in the drama, was spared any form of damage brought on by the venomous Merciless.
Everyone knows what Sting has been noted for (namely the clashes and verbal profanity), so shocking events should come as no surprise to any avid show goer. Newcomer Alozade got into the hype and clearly demonstrated how “explicit and derogatory” he can be. Gay bashing is nothing new in Jamaica, and almost every deejay seems to have gotten caught up in the euphoria.
Aside from the bad, there were brilliant moments at Sting 2000. Mr. Lex a.k.a. Lexxus, Elephant Man, Junior Kelly, Captain Barkey and Wickerman, Chuck Fender, Frisco Kid, Bling Dawg, George Nooks and Paul Elliott made patrons feel good about forking out $1000J to enter the show. Among the unpopular were CeCile, who was rousingly booed, along with Egg Nogg, Mad General, and Major Brandish.
US rapper DMX was in fine form and the teenyboppers especially enjoyed the professional performance he delivered.