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Third instalment of Rodney Small’s Steel Expressions show hailed a success

Third instalment of Rodney Small’s Steel Expressions show hailed a success


Tributes were paid to legends living and dead, foreign and local, as the third instalment of Rodney Small’s Steel Expressions show took place last Sunday night.

The Michael Findlay pavilion at the Arnos Vale Playing Field was transformed into a theatre of sorts, as Small, along with other local acts,{{more}} paid tribute to some persons whom the young maestro credited for his musical development over the years.

The audience, in the almost filled to capacity pavilion, were very much a part of the 2014 presentation, dubbed ‘I Am Legend’, as most could be seen toe tapping, finger snapping, clapping and singing along to the favourite and familiar songs that were played out on steel or sung by the performing artistes.

Patrons saw and heard local acts Jarrod James, who delivered spoken word poetry, dub poet Prince Marcus, a dance routine by Arabesque Dancers, as well as drumming by one of Rodney’s legends, David “Darkie” Williams.

The early performances set the stage for homage to musical legends, the likes of Bob Marley, Stevie Wonder, Michael Jackson, Whitney Houston, Aretha Franklyn and Tina Turner, among others, by pan and vocal renditions.

Small showed his versatility by playing his own interpretation of songs from most of the artistes, and even hosted an impromptu session with fellow pan men Johnny “JP” Pompey, Jomoro Francis and up and coming pannist Kasique Oliver, each performing a solo set, much to the delight of the spectators.

Vocalist Keido Foster, a staple of the Steel Expressions franchise, graced the stage with Small, as the duo acknowledged the musical contribution of reggae legend Bob Marley.

Foster would return later on in the programme for a duet of the Michael Jackson hit ‘The Girl is Mine,’ in which Small also sang vocals, but with the aid of auto-tune.

Other local acts sharing the spotlight were Hance John, who sang along with Small on Michael Jackson’s ‘Human nature;’ Kelsie Haynes, singing Aretha Franklyn’s ‘Natural Woman;’ Shania Webb, doing ‘I wanna dance with somebody,’ originally performed by Whitney Houston; as well as Danielle Veira, who sang ‘What’s love got to do with it’ by Tina Turner.

Two other legends that were acknowledged on the night by Steel Expressions were there in person to perform their own songs.

Cultural ambassadors Rondy “Luta” McIntosh and Alston “Becket” Cyrus wowed the crowd with medleys of new and not so new songs from their inexhaustible repertoires, including ‘Busy Tone,’ ‘Tight Spot,’ and ‘Chikungunya’ from Luta, and ‘Love is the Answer,’ ‘Hezikiah,’ and ‘Teaser’ from Becket.

A number of surprises were in store for patrons, as some of the Steel Expressions fans received gift vouchers from sponsors of the event.

Sunday’s event received rave reviews from patrons and performers alike, and Small was lauded for the initiative.

He was credited for producing the show, which gives him and other local performers an opportunity to showcase their talents.

Patrons of the show say that they are looking forward to the 2015 production, which Small hinted was already in the planning stages.