John Legend at Tobago Jazz Experience - And what an experience it was!

And it's on tonight
How about we go and save the night
I can see you want it and so do I
How about we go and save the night
Let's save the night
- John Legend (Save the Night; off the album, Love in the Future)

And save the night he did. Friday April 25, 2014. Pigeon Point, Tobago. Me. John Legend. Me blocking out the rest of the world. Me singing with my eyes closed. Lost. In complete utopia.

If you did not know it yet, I am a MEGA John Legend fan. When he was announced as the top billing for the World Music Night at the Tobago Jazz Experience, my friends and family did not even have to ask, cause they already knew I would be going. I literally got the first VIP ticket from the allotment sent to the outlet where I purchased my ticket how many weeks ago. I booked my flight, hotel and rental car weeks ago. I was not in the last minute scramble. I was ready.

That was the disclaimer to this review. My TT$900 was always going to be a full on investment in John and my night with John. I would pay anything for John, once it meant I would be stage side. While I did not really have an emotional investment in the other perks of a VIP ticket, I still paid mih money...

But first.

The music. The man. The Legend.
John was fantastic. I may sound biased but I can be objective even with John. I thought he was 100% amazing. He walked on that stage in his white jacket (I was also in white...lol) and it was just him, the piano and the people. Some were disappointed he did not come with the full band. I was not. I have seen him in concert before, and always with the full band, so this stripped down performance would be my first with John. I loved it. It was a real moment for lovers, but also for the single hardcore fans. Perfect delivery every time and you just got lost in the music, in his voice, in his everything. My one negative would be that he did not do enough from his latest album, and he did not do some of my all-time favourites. I was jonesin' for "Save the Night", "This Time", "Show Me", "I Love, You Love". He did do "So High" and a lot of songs off "Get Lifted", which many argue was his best album and I would not disagree, but I missed a lot of the other hits. He also did not invite anyone on stage. I guess
1) being tied to the piano all night left no room for a Trini wine session
2) the mood was not for that
3) Chrissy
4) the last 2 volunteers at the last 2 concerts were whack and
5) he saw how cute I looked and felt I should not have to scramble over the other ladies in mih nice dress to catapult myself over the barrier and on to the stage.

Sigh.

John was simply AWESOME!!!



The other artistes. So the other artistes on the night were Brandy and local band, Dil-e-Nadan. I was not really annoyed that Bunji and Fay Ann had pulled out of the show. I do agree with them 100% for doing so because T&T needs to show our local artistes some damn respect. But I really did not pay mih money to see them. One less band meant less fillers which meant John would be less of a wait. Sorry, Bunji. Is a love still.

Brandy. Not a fan. Never was a fan. She never won the crowd over and not for lack of trying. That girl tried but as one woman said to me - Brandy is a has-been. She is not a classic entertainer like an Earth, Wind and Fire or Lionel Richie who not really hot now, but you will pay money to see them anyway. She tried with her new songs - bad move. Noone knows them so they flew over our heads. She tried with her old songs - meh. Her voice was inconsistent. Her accompanying music too loud. I mean, when Brandy asked her guitarist "They looked bored, don't they?" I almost peed myself. That was a sign. But she tried and I do appreciate her working for her money and giving us a show, whether we liked it or not.

Brandy at Tobago Jazz Experience

Dil-e-Nadan. Not a fan. Never was a fan. Hate cover bands. HATE. So when I saw them in the line-up I sucked my teeth. Why? But I will say, that performance was the BEST Dil-e-Nadan performance I have ever seen. It was also the best Raymond Ramnarine has ever looked. He did not look like a Salvation Army charity case, but like a performer. The band has some solid vocalists. Oh gorm - write a few original songs nah. Do something with your lives besides singing songs from the Casey Kasem era. I liked their performance based on the strength of the vocalists and timing etc, but...I still went to the bar during it, and still took a selfie. lol

The other "perks" of being a VIP, or even in General. The perks associated with just paying yuh money!!!!

I need to start this on a whole new line. So from the beginning...

We were told we had to park in Store Bay or at Bon Accord and we would be shuttled to and from the venue. Noone was going to be allowed to park inside Pigeon Point, where the show was being held. Knowing the venue, this was a good idea cause the congestion would be astronomical. I put on my nice white maxi dress and my bejewelled flip flops - lol - bejewelled. Hey, I was not going to be THAT girl wearing heels on the beach like an ass. Jumped in my rental early o'clock and made my way to Store Bay. Traffic as soon as I turned off Shirvan and I sucked my teeth, but I put on some Machel and wined in the seat until I got to Store Bay. Shuttles were there in abundance at that time, and I got in safe and sound - no problem. VIPs were scuttled off to their "special" entrance, and here is where the commess start.

So your girl went to the food line first before heading to the seating area cause girl was hungry. Line long as rain, and not moving cause 2 women were trying to serve hundreds of people. Fail. While waiting I strike up conversation with 2 women and after the oohing and aahing over how I look so nice (lol), one of them asked me who was holding my seat for me. Noone, I replied. I came straight to the food line.To which she replied,

Well there are no more seats you know.

My eyebrow touched the sky with that! What you mean there are no more seats, lady? What you talking bout? I paid $900 for a seat!! Sure enough  l turned around and saw men and women dressed to death, STANDING. Naaaaaaaah. I hustled my white maxi dressed ass to the seating area to confirm that there was a seat with my name on it in there somewhere, cause there was NO WAY, I was gonna stand up all night. NO effing WAY.

I did a thorough survey of the crowd, looking for possible victims of my charm. I saw a clearing. I moseyed over with my cute self and with a smile and sweetness, found 2 seats, in the second row I will add, cause their friends were running late and it would not be fair to hold all these seats for them. This act of kindness saved many lives that night. I asked the nice lady to hold my 2 seats for me and headed back to the food line. But how can there not be enough seats? If you sell 10 tickets, should you not have 10 seats, or 11 - one for the handbags?? I could not understand this. Madness. Fail. Later in the evening, VIP was like an all-inclusive - hundreds of people STANDING. Mad-ness. I eventually dragged myself out of the slumber caused by Brandy and found my spot just in front of the stage, where I stood for the duration of John's performance but that was my choice at that time. Don't tell me I have to stand up cause you did not put down chairs for all the people who bought tickets. Mega Fail.

Back to the food line which was even longer than before. Now when we entered the place, we were given 5 chits - 3 for food, 1 for a drink, and 1 specifically for Heineken. Now I do not know or care whether Heineken was a sponsor or not, but you cannot TELL me I have to drink THAT beer, or beer for that matter. And what if I did not imbibe alcohol at all? That meant for the whole evening I would be entitled to one free drink? This pissed me off. I told the bar man I did not want Heineken, and he said I would have to buy something else then. BUY. Now I was in full on John mode, so the normal reaction was diluted but I thought that was nonsense. I had to eventually buy a Malta for $12 when my blood sugar dropped from the hunger, caused by ...

The food now - with mih 3 chits. One would assume that with 3 chits, this meant one had choice, and yes, you did have choice. A choice between bake and shark, bake and salt fish or bake and chicken. I later saw doubles and corn soup and again, diluted reaction. This was the food? Death by bake?? These people had to be crazy! Needless to say I still have 2 food chits and the Heineken chit. I had a bake and chicken cause I do not eat fish (see my predicament with the limited menu?) - bake small as mih hand and what looked like pieces of an anorexic chicken - not even condiments or a fork, or a napkin! Fail-ure!

But the piece de resistance - the shuttle going back to Store Bay. Or should I say, the lack of shuttle. Remember the "no parking in Pigeon Point" rule? Lie. Clearly, friends and family of the organisers got the bligh - hundreds of them. When I walked in and saw how many cars were in there, I knew how the evening would end. But I did not predict that I would have to take myself and my white maxi dress and bejewelled flip flops and effin walk from Pigeon Point to Store Bay. The outbound traffic was a nightmare. The shuttles were all full. Some were stuck in traffic going out. Others tried to fill up and turn where they were to avoid making the entire circle and ending at the back of the traffic, but the road is narrow and it was congested. You could not after that get a shuttle to save your life or the hem of your maxi dress. The only consolation was snickering at the girls ahead of you hanging on for dear life as they tried to navigate the terrain - a combo of sand and rocks. Walking from Pigeon Point to Store Bay is not the workout I was hoping for. It was the worst. By the time I got to my car, I was a hot mess - hot being the operative word. The humidity on the night killed what little energy I had left. Feet covered in sand. Toe nail gone. Nice. Thanks, THA. Thanks eh. And on an empty-ish stomach - because there is only so much bake one can really eat! Thank God for my $12 Malta - the one my Heineken chit would not get me. Brilliant. And even walking at 2km/hr, I still made it out before the shuttle. FAIL! FAIL! FAIL!!!

So when I say, John saved the night, this is what I meant. I need to find a way to bring the happy vibe at the start of the entry back, cause I found typing that last paragraph made me so vex, I forgot about the happiness in the early paragraphs. So I will end with this...John, you will have me as your side piece for life!

Come back soon!


8 comments:

  1. Glad that you still have positive memories of John Legend despite the other hassles of the Tobago Jazz experience. I saw him perform in St Lucia - and he was the only artiste - and it was beautiful. I believe that nothing can get me to spend my hard-earned dollars to patronise Tobago Jazz. It is just too poorly organised. Tis pity. . .

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. THA needs to understand that if the event management talent is not on the island, it is okay to outsource to Trinidad or wherever. Quality over friend ting.

      Delete
  2. WOW!!!!! I am so glad that you got up close and personal with JOHN!!! The rest seems that it needed to suck IT!!!! I had never been to a concert until a few months back, it was amazing. Not a band I follow, but fun anyways..... The whole walking two miles back to my car would have %&$%&$(#) Me off.... :) Have a great Sunday night!!!

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  3. Hahaha, good thing I came and read this. Loved it ! Still laughing . Bake? Wham to those peeps?

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  4. You captured everything perfectly!!

    The Legend as always, saves the day!
    His performance was flawless. Loved it and love him!

    (yes, I may need the exercise, but would have preferred it on my own terms ..*sigh*..)

    Great seeing you tho :) :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It was nice to see you too!! We must do it again...but planned. lol.

      Delete
  5. Uhm, how can they not offer enough seats to fan?! That is CRAZY to me! Glad you were able to get so close to your man ;) Awwww, and you guys were matching! How cute!!

    Yea, Brandy... not a fan either. That's pretty bad that she noticed the crowd was just as bored. You said it: She is a bit of a has-been.

    ReplyDelete

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