The Buzz at the show - ICM


By: CJ
YardFlex Florida

Wayne_Wonder_on_stag.jpgAt least 7 to 8,000 people turned up to see this year's ICM Fest in downtown Miami. It could have been a better turnout but a lot of things were happening that day. After all, it was Miami Carnival Weekend, the Miami Heat had an event at the Continental Arena, trust me, the Magic City was popping over the weekend.

The YardFlex crew was in the house, with the boss lady, Debbie Cole, new YardFlex writer CJ, photographer Marcus, and the rest of the entourage showing up to take over the backstage area. Yea, it was all about us.

First of all, I must say that even though the organizers never had any running order posted in terms of which artistes were performing when, you would never have known. Sting got stung, but ICM had a much better turn out. Differently, the artistes gave stellar performances and the production was very tight. The sound, the lighting and the overall setup of the venue, including the nation of Islam security team, exceeded expectations.

The timing of the show, the band changes, it was a job well done, separate and apart from those who got too much time like Tami Chynn and Jovi Rockwell.

For one, Jovi shouldn't even have been placed in Prime Time, and it worked ouyt that it caused the more established artistes like Sizzla Kalonji to get a shorter time in which to deliver. Sizzla only got 11 minutes, imagine that. 11 MINUTES! One Caucasian male fan beside me said: "I waited five years to see this and I only got 10 minutes." I merely corrected him and said it was "11 minutes well done, Kalonji yu wicked under pressure'. The man agreed. Sizzla was mad! He had the crowd going, and when Babylon intervened, he told

Of course artistes like Alison Hinds, Machel Montano and Bunji Garlin energized the crowd and represented for the soca massive. Red Rat, with his rat-a-castle entourage, gave the crowd some old favourites such as 'Hey you girl'.

Dave_Kelly_ICM.jpgAccording to the boss of Yardflex, Debbie Cole "di gyall dem get inna spirit fi Wayne Wonder when him start give it to dem". Wonder's set was short but sweet and when he did 'No Letting Go', of course di gyall dem neva did a let go. Black Chiney did their thing but Bobby Chin was missed. Special props to MC Super Hype who held it down and Pappa Keith who repped the Magic City and 'nice' up di place. Everybody start hold a medi when Morgan Heritage touched the stage while the emcees chanted 'meds up di place'. As always, they gave an impeccable performance although sister Una Morgan, who is taking a year off from the road to tend to her family, was absent.

They gave us hits like 'Don't Haffi Dread to be Rasta', 'Best Friend' and 'She's still loving me'. Then of course they had to buss the place with their new chune 'Brooklyn and Jamaica', which basically stated "don't ask me about life on Miami beach, ask me about life on my streets", as Peter aptly put it. "it's not a pretty life when yu living the ghetto life'. The crowd was very receptive to their brand new mid-tempo reality 'chunes' but was disappointed when they had to leave the stage so soon.

Sizzla 'mash up' the venue fi eleven minutes before they turned off the mike on him. He came on stage at 12:01am and gave powerful snippets of hits like 'Standing Firm', 'Show us the way', 'Smoke the herb and get a humble thought', 'Good Ways', 'Got it right here', 'Solid as a rock' and 'Haffi get the nookie (but mi nah rape'. Sizzla gave a tremendous performance in 11 minutes and no doubt the bobo's and flagmen were there showing Kalonji MAD LOVE.

Among the VIPs were Tony Kelly, Homer (Ceo) of Cooyah, Delano, Dre, and Jazzy T from Renaissance, Allison Hinds, (she was there to the end), Delly Ranks, Papa San bredda, Brian San, and Wayne Wonder's band. Miami's Puff Daddy, Screechy Bop O.D.

It was a busy night in the Magic City. In addition to ICM Fest, there was Stone Love at Peppers in a party called Deja vu and hosted by Wee Pow and Shug Shady, then last night, Mr. Whisky's Mansion Party that was relocated from the South Beach mansion to Solo's on the Bay.

Then we had Blink, Miami's top-a-top uptown session, and then Remixology, Jamrock Magazine's After Party and then Bongo's, and then Metropolis. The weekend was off-the-chains. Watch this space for more event reviews in the upcoming days.

YardFlex have South Florida locked.