Oscar B bites into the crowd
I may be a little too young to remember the”good ole days”that people talk about when Byron Lee and the Dragonaires rocked New Providence every Christmas with their annual concert. As I was told, the room was packed to capacity, and there was no need to dress to impress as everyone came prepared to dance the evening away. When Byron Lee got sick and passed away a few years ago, the seasonal tradition that belonged to Byron Lee and his Dragonaires stopped, but it was definitely missed.
But I have to thank the principles that make up the Da Dilly Tree for bringing the group’s former 18-year lead singer, Oscar B, to the country for a two-night concert staged as a tribute to the late Byron Lee and in celebration of Oscar B’s birthday. The concert was a hit.
Now, I have been to previous concerts on the island featuring an international artist or two, and thought I had an idea of what to expect–you wait a few hours, some local artists take to the stage to perform for an hour or so–you wait some more, and then the international artist deigns to grace you with their presence, sings a song or three and then leaves. This is not at all what transpired. From beginning to end it was just fabulous.
When I walked in I saw that the venue itself was visually appealing, and the place was packed with a standing-room only crowd. That set the mood for the night. The only thing that put a little damper on the evening for me was that the doors opened at 9 p.m. and the show didn’t start until approximately midnight. But since the environment was nice and the company amusing the wait was not unbearable and well worth the time, because when the concert did kick-off, it did with a bang!
The Extra Band, a local soca band, took to the stage first and sent the crowd into a frenzy with hit songs from all over the Caribbean like”Dollar Wine,””What Happens In The Party”and”Roll it Gal.”They were so lively and entertaining I almost forgot they weren’t the main attraction. After 30 minutes of non-stop performance they were quickly followed up by contemporary Bahamian rake’n’scrape artist Stileeto. If I thought that the Extra Band was good then they had nothing on Stileeto that night.
Once he hit the stage the crowd went even crazier. He did not skip a beat as he sang his hits like”Woman Put that Suitcase Down”,”Girls textin’me’Hi'”and”Rake’n’Scrape”in quick succession. He was very impressive and I admit I did not think I was going to enjoy his performance as much as I did, but he was on point and kept the crowd hyped from start to finish–
Just when I thought it couldn’t get any better, the man himself–Oscar B–hit the stage after Stileeto and jumped right into his performance. He was an explosion of energy all night, singing popular songs from classic Calypsonians, some modern favorites and of course traditional Dragonaire hits like”Tiny Winey,””Kitty Cat,””Plummer”and”Soca Butterfly.”When he sang”Ouch”he really turned the place out. And when he sang the iconic line”Where Oscar Bite You,?”and all the women responded in unison”Right there, right there, right there!”
It was a night to remember. I never saw so many older people really getting down to dance and laugh in one place in a long time. The audience, which was an older crowd, seemed to genuinely have a good time and a lady sitting near me even said that she was glad that a real soca musician returned to the island before she got too old to really enjoy it like she used to. It was a heartwarming night and even though I don’t have the memory of a Byron Lee and the Dragonaires performance to compare it with, but even so, the night was unforgettable.”