Whether you were in the bleachers, all the way in the ultra VIP, or maybe vibing in the comfort of your home, while watching someone’s Instagram live- there is no doubt that the Chris Brown and Friends’ concert was exceptional. From flashing lights, to pulsating music and dance moves that got everyone jumping in the crowd- the concert was nothing short of memorable.
While many anticipated the performance of international RnB superstar Chris Brown to be the highlight of the night, it was the spectacular performances of local acts that kept the energy high throughout the night.
Gramps Morgan’s Blissful Serenade
Gramps personifies wholesome entertainment, feel-good vibes and he did not disappoint this time around. The smashing debonair, in his red suit, black hat and long-flowing locs tucked to the back gave us endless melodies. From ‘She’s Still Loving Me’ to ‘Psalm 23’, to the uplifting message that transcends, ‘People Like You’ the crowd sang along, swaying on the lawns of the National Stadium like palm trees in the wind. To top it off, he brought along his son – Jemere, making for a sweet father-son moment. It’s clear to see that the legacy of Morgan Heritage still lives on and the smooth tones and cadence melted the crowd.
In true Jamaican fashion, ‘di man mash up di place!’ Aidonia’s performance had everyone screaming- especially the ladies. Dropping the hits that had hips gyrating, the crowd jumping and going as far as serenading a few lucky ladies in the crowd- his performance was a hit. Aidonia delivered high-energy balanced with vulnerability, as he shared his feelings with the crowd about the passing of his son. A mix of raw emotions and pure vibes, truly made this performance memorable. Of course, the cherry on top was when he brought his wife, Kimberly Megan on stage, to share his unending love for her, and announcing that they are expecting another child. The ‘ooos’ and ‘ahhs’ of the crowd could have been heard from miles away.
Jamaican dance culture cannot be spoken about without mentioning Ding-Dong. His performance was a celebration of passion, jubilance and arguably the best performance of the night. The superstar rolled out on a handcart. It literally doesn’t get any better than that. Paying homage to classic dances like ‘Signal di Plane’ to his original dance moves like, ‘Bounce’ to being supported on stage by at least 30 young dancers who gave us nothing but pure energy and raw talent.
Teejay caught the attention of the crowd with the singing of Jamaica’s national anthem to open his set. Then, he gave us drummers, vibes on top of vibes, dancing and top tracks from his catalogue- which certainly had us ‘drifting’ all night long.
This performance was short, sweet and spicy. Valiant captured the crowd with his great stage presence, intense energy and catchy lyrics from some of his hit songs, like ‘Mad Out’. A great moment interspersed between Chris Brown’s set, that patrons really enjoyed.
The Chris Brown and Friends’ Under the Influence Concert was well-executed and arguably one of the best events in Jamaica’s 2023 entertainment calendar.
Photo – Sheldon Levene