GREAT BAY – The multiple award-winning singing sensation, Bracket, whose hit “Yori, Yori” has become an Afro-beat anthem, arrived Sunday, April 24, on the island for what they promise will be a “great experience” when they take to the Festival Village stage on Tuesday, April 26, for the African Flavor Concert. It is the first time in the history of Carnival on St. Maarten that an “African Night” is being offered.
The Nigerian duo will share the stage with Trinidad’s soca maestro Benjai “Phenomenal,” who arrived here Saturday, April 23. It will also be the first time Benjai will perform on St. Maarten.
“There is a lot of energy here and I’m here to share in it and give back a lot of good vibes in return,” Benjai said.
The concert also features Oswald, who will be performing his latest release, and King Timo who said he has been preparing for this show with a lot of excitement. Roxy from Anguilla adds the feminine touch to the roster, with Fred York and the Musicologists backing the artistes.
President of the African Flavor Entertainment Foundation Melissa Webster, organizers of the concert, said Carnival lovers should expect a “unique African experience.”
“This is not just a music show, this is going to be a cultural experience, with the Nirvana dancers also lighting up the stage. In fact, we’re encouraging everyone to come in their African wear because apart from the two tickets to Nigeria, which is the grand prize of the raffle, we will also be giving prizes to the best dressed male and female in African attire worth a combined US $1,000, and a weekend stay at the Towers at Mullet Bay,” Webster stated.
“To win the raffle prizes, you have to have bought a ticket and be inside the Village when the raffle is drawn,” Webster explained. Complimentary ticket holders and those with passes do not qualify to participate in the raffle.
“There will also be a special welcome drink of palm wine, which unfortunately only the first 100 men to attend the concert can taste,” Webster said.
Palm wine is a natural sap from the palm trees of the palmyra or date specimens, which is sometimes called the “wine of the gods.” It is used in social and cultural events and in spiritual ceremonies and is considered a very potent aphrodisiac, according to some African folklore.
“We urge the public to come ready to change into their J’ouvert outfits because from Yori Yori, it is straight into J’ouvert morning,” Webster said.
Tickets for the African Flavor concert are available for US $40 at Van Dorp (both locations), Adolphus Richardson on the Pondfill, Ikemba African Gallery on Front Street, Artsen Gas Station in Marigot, and from the organizers. They will cost US $45 at the gate.