Mr Vegas jams up the streets in Kampala
Mr Vegas kept revellers’ heads high at his second show in Kampala. Last Saturday, unlike his July 16, 2009 show, was one with a good, bubbly crowd as he sampled from a collection of his Jamaican dancehall tunes, most of these club anthems in town.
Unlike Sean Paul who performed his tracks in full measure Mr Vegas perhaps had too many songs to be singing all tracks from beginning to the end and it ended up being a sample of his big hits, plus rendition of Bob Marley and Chaka Demus and Pliers.
In a green shirt, black pants and adidas footwear adorned in Jamaican colours Mr Vegas exhibited some energy, occasionally jumping to the thudding sound of his music and then pausing to send out shout outs. “When Aly picked me from the airport, I told him wow, Uganda has so many hot Ugandan girls. I have told him I want to find a house in Uganda,” he smilingly said before performing Black & Proud , a song that celebrates African pride.
This was at the Club Silk Street Jam held on First Street, Industrial Area outside Cub Silk. In a matter of 40 minutes the 38-year-old agile dancehall star ran frenzied fans through a number of song, both recent like I am blessed, Pull up, Bruk it down, to his ‘old skool’ numbers like Heads high, Top shutter, among others.
Halfway through his performance he unbuttoned his shirt as drops and threads of sweat moved on his tattooed body. Finally, he went shirtless and the crowd emulated, rocking and getting down to the groove of tunes, the way Jamaicans do their pasa-pasa style, a style used in street dance festivals, with bare chests and people gyrating close to each other.
“I am here because of Bob Marley and I want to ask every one of you to pray for my brother Buju Banton who is in jail. He is the father of dancehall music,” Mr Vegas appealed before asking for a moment to pray for Banton, an iconised dancehall star who is serving a five-year jail term on drug charges.
Earlier in the programme, some up-and-coming acts displayed a lot of potential and managed to justify their appearance at the annual event. These included AK47, Gravity Omutujju, General Mega Dee, Viboyo Oweyo, Michael Ross and Sheebah Karungi. Popular artiste Jose Chameleone also put up quite the performance. Uganda Police was on high alert, with police officers, patrol trucks and a fire truck on stand-by.
But the show did not go without sour notes as the sound got a bit messy with annoyingly echoing microphones prompting the celebrated Jamaican star to ask his engineer to rectify the sound problem. The show kicked off at a quarter past 11pm and progressed until five minutes to midnight, a period some felt was too short.