Review by TERRY JOSEPH
FRIDAY’S fete to launch Peter Minshall’s Picoplat which boasted soca bands Blue Ventures and Charlie’s Roots attracted no more than 200 patrons even at its most populated period.
The evening rain, some said, may have been responsible for the poor showing.
Others felt Minshall had waited too late to premiere his pictures, only to fall short of popular expectation.
Now, in terms of creativity, Minshall has never played to the gallery, preferring to develop original concepts and reduce those thoughts to graphics but even so, there were those who argued that the drawings for Picoplat triggered memories of his revolutionary 1975 creation, the Hummingbird.
Indeed, all 18 sections of Picoplat are based on the winged theme, with headpieces more easily reflecting the bird. What is different is the combination of colours that, given the kinetic energy which brings Carnival costumes to life, will undoubtedly lend fresh life to his portrayal.
The music didn’t help much either. For all the energy supplied from the stage, Bobby Quan’s Blue Ventures did all the popular songs, but failed to get the party really jumping, perhaps because patronage never quite achieved the critical mass required to ignite a proper jump up.
With an army of frontline singers (including Lima Calbio, KV Charles and former road march monarch Sanell Dempster), the band offered “Jump” and “Hairy Bank”, Shadow’s “Stranger” and Kevyn Little’s “You Turn Me On”; all failing to purchase otherwise predictable response.
Militant joined the crowded stage to render “Hot and Groovy”, which got a small spark, before we heard “Sugar Factory”, which really brought out the cleanliness of Blue Ventures’ horn section.
With coconut water going at $8 per cup and ice running about 40 cents per block, those who came to Mobs2 must have expected more by way of entertainment. Not that US Embassy Charge d’Affaires David Stewart had any less of a good time, as did several persons who danced through the night regardless.
According to reports filed later that night, it clearly was not the band’s fault, as the arrival of David Rudder and Charlie’s Roots made no significan’t difference in the level of crowd enthusiasm.
Roots had been made to wait for more than an hour, while Blue Ventures dismantled, the Laventille Rhythm Section did their set and Woodbrook Playboyz delivered an extended jam.
Something went wrong in the Roots band, causing high-profile vocalist Kerwyn Trotman to walk off the set during Rudder’s performance. Sources close to the band said he may have been upset by not being afforded an opportunity to render his songs.
Whatever the cause, it merely added to a night of anti-climax that for some went until well after 3 a.m.
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