Festival Review – Nevis Blues Fest – Part II
Nevis Blues Festival – April 16 – 18, 2015
My next day in Nevis for the Blues festival was Friday April 17th and the fun continued. After another great breakfast at
Our hosts from the Nevis Tourist Authority (NTA) took us to a different hotel for the last 3 days called Golden Rock Plantation Inn.
We then left for lunch at a place called Wilma’s Diner on Main Street next door to the police station in Charlestown for lunch where I tried a local favorite called goat water, Goat water is a delicious soup made with goat, spices and vegetables. Tasty stuff! We hung out in Charlestown for awhile before heading back to our new lodging for an afternoon rest before a great dinner at the Golden Rock dining area.
After dinner we headed over to Oualie Beach Resort www.oualiebeach.com for night two of the festival. On the second night of the festival the crowds were bigger due to the weekend and the fact that another international star was scheduled to perform tonight. A star born on the island of Nevis, Denise Gordon.
The evenings entertainment started off with a local artist that we unfortunately missed called Garry Knight. As we arrived the second act, Asher Otto & Itchy Feet, began performing. http://asherotto.com/ Asher was born on the Caribbean Island of Antigua and is well known by many Nevisians. She had a great band that played mostly pop and some old time rock and roll which the crown seemed to enjoy.
Then Ian Siegal and his band hit the stage for a few numbers before calling out Denise Gordon to join them. http://www.denisegordon.co.uk/ Denise is a powerful singer. She showed she was fluent in Blues, Jazz and Gospel. And the crowd loved this hometown lady too.
A bit later Zak Harmon came on stage for a few songs too.
The final act for the night was a local act called ODISI, They played some rap and some funk, all with lots of Caribbean influence to close out the night and we headed back to our lodging amongst the trees for the evening.
Saturday was the last day of the Nevis Blues Fest but before the evenings music the NTA took us to Pinney’s Beach for lunch at Sunshine’s Beach Bar. Then it was off to the Four Seasons Hotel to go for a ride on a Catamaran for a snorkeling trip. The crew served us anything we wanted to drink and we sailed off to St. Kitts for a couple of hours of ocean fun.
After a trip back to the Golden Rock to freshen up, we headed out to Oualie Beach Resort for a great dinner before the final night of music at the fest.
We arrived in time to hear a couple songs from a group called Shakal & Friends.
Then Ian and his band came out for a few songs before Justin Merrick hit the stage like a tornado. He was doing Little Richard and Elvis better than the originals and the crowd loved it. Next it got even better as a young group of singers, the NEPAC Choir came out and joined in. WOW what a great sound. Denise Gordon joined in too doing some great gospel with a full backing choir.
After the choir left the stage something happened. Not sure what or why but I swear that Ian, Denise and Zac suddenly got the spirit and started doing old Muddy Waters, Howlin’ Wolf and Etta James songs and man they were ON FIRE! It was a mini 30 minute set of some of the best Blues I have ever heard. Everyone on Nevis who came to their first ever Blues Fest got a taste of some killer REAL blues. The Evening ended with Kore Band with special guest Meeko.
So ended the first Nevis Blues Fest. But not before the promoter of the event, Richard Pavitt of Nugene Records announced to a cheering crowd that there would be a 2016 Nevis Blues Festival.
In summary, I have to thank Richard Pavitt of Nugene Records, Devon Liburd and the Nevis Tourist Authority, John Hartanowicz and The Portfolio Group and all the wonderful people of Nevis for one of the best festival trips I have ever experienced.
So should you go next year? Well if you like great tropical weather, an island in the Caribbean with some great sights, lodging and food without a ton of people around you, then you’d best get your reservations now as there are only about 400 rooms TOTAL on Nevis! That is exactly the whole thing about this unique event. It will never be a BIG festival, and that is what makes it so special.
So mark your calendars for April 14 -16, 2016 and get there! Tell them Bob sent ya!