A cut above the rest

Last weekend’s Girls Night Out concert by FC International was a star-studded affair.

Two of Jamaica’s renowned reggae artists hit the stage at the Lions Centre Friday night 29 July in front of an eager crowd.

Lady Saw and Cecile energised the masses with their powerful words and heart-thumping beats.

Both artists performed a collection of well-known, raunchy dancehall anthems for the ladies.

Throughout the night local DJ Super C was at the helm, keeping the crowd on a high, running the rhythm step-in-step with the vocalists.

The gates opened at 9pm and the concert started at midnight.

It was announced that the long wait was due to the late arrival of the stars.

However, the late start did not stop hundreds of people showing up and chilling out.

Relaxed revellers waited outside the gates, lounging out by their cars with reggae blaring out of their sound systems.

Up until 1am droves of partygoers were still filing in. The Jamaicans came out in full force to support their local talent.

Caymanians could also be seen in the crowd, checking out what was going on and waiting anxiously for the main event.

The bar kept the crowd’s thirst for fun at bay, serving ice-cold drinks.

Elite Security was also out in force, armed with clubs and other weaponry just in case things got out of hand.

The concert kicked off with a bevy of local acts. Among them were Val-Train, Ally B. Gramaton and Valentine.

They came on and whetted the appetites of those gathered for the onslaught of juicy songs to come.

At about 12.45am Cecile came on stage to cheers and screams from the crowd.

And she didn’t let anyone down, keeping everyone entranced with her alluring presence and seductive songs.

The audience, a fair mix of men and women, was totally hyped with Cecile’s chants of female empowerment.

Songs like Hott Like We, on the Red Alert Riddim, and Can You Do the Work featuring Sean Paul got everyone rocking on the dance floor.

Love mi punaany quickly became the anthem for all the ladies, while ‘Nothing For Free’ had all the guys shaking their heads and covering their mouths in shock.

Cecile also had an unexpected act up her sleeve. She brought out Jerry D from backstage and danced with him while singing Give It 2 Me Baby and Can You Do the Work.

Soon afterwards, at about 1.30am, she went backstage and left the microphone onstage for the MC. He introduced the one and only Lady Saw herself.

To a backdrop of yells and hand waving, Lady Saw wasted no time giving the fans what they had paid for.

She went straight into one of her classic tunes Least of My Problems and hit the crowd again with another timeless record entitled Under the Sycamore Tree.

Lady Saw interacted well with the crowd. At one point she tried looking for a single man in the audience to get up on stage and dance with her.

Later she flung off her shoes saying: ‘Unna kno say me na like shoes.’

The reggae vixen stayed true to her ‘bad gal’ reputation. Her songs, as she put it, were X-rated. Her crude and blunt talk about how women control men kept the audience well aware of who they were dealing with.

Her freestyles and talk about what she would do if anyone took her man asserted just who the dominant force was on the night.

Nevertheless, Lady Saw was not as wild as she could have been.

She admitted to the audience that she could not be as ‘live’ as she usually was. She could not use all the words she wanted to, but, even so, was still noticeably vulgar.

She used an array of rhythms. These included the Take Body, Junkin’ Punny riddims. A wide variety of songs were put on the rhythms including Pretty Nookie.

Lady Saw gave the audience value for their money. She sang Dreaming of You using the On Steps riddim. Man a Di Least on the Fiesta riddim and her duet with Cecile called Loser made the crowd break out into all-out grinding.

She also had an unexpected guest when a female artist Gypsy came on stage.

Gypsy hollered and hooted in classic Jamaican fashion for a while as Lady Saw stood by.

Unfortunately, Remy Martin from the New York rap group Terror Squad could not attend. It was said her rap sheet was too long.

According, to Lady Saw, Remy had to be of a certain character to be able to perform here. It was said that Remy was too much of a bad girl to attend.

The announcement of Remy’s no-show had droves of disappointed fans heading for the exits and the concert ended suddenly at around 2.20am.

The crowd departed with mixed reactions. Young Caymanian Lydia said it was stupid, but Harold, a middle-aged Jamaican national, who remarked was far more positive.

‘I thought it was wonderful. There needs to be more events that represent us, the Jamaican community, here in Cayman,’ he said.