Members of the media and invited guests attending the launch of the 13th Annual St. Kitts Music Festival were treated to two electrifying musical performances – the singing of one old favorite and one specially written new song – when they gathered for the announcement of the line-up of artists for the St. Kitts Music Festival, June 25- 27, 2009.
First, Regina Belle, who will be performing on Saturday night, called into the press conference and was persuaded to sing a few lines from her hit single, “Make It Like it Was.” As she sang, talented musician Frank Owen joined in live to provide her with impromptu accompaniment on the piano.
When a member of the press asked about her upcoming appearance at the St. Kitts Music Festival, Regina Belle responded, “Am I looking forward to coming? Yes. […] I’m looking forward to […] doing some of the stuff that you know, maybe some of the stuff you don’t know from the latest CD, ‘Love Forever Shines.’”
Following the call-in from Regina Belle, the line-up of artists who have been confirmed to perform at the 13th Annual St. Kitts Music Festival this year for each of the three nights was unveiled:
Thursday June 25th
- Nu Vybes Band International
- The Grand Masters Band
- King Konris
- Lord Nelson
- Lejah Band featuring BiggieIrie
- Edwin Yearwood & Claudette Peters
Friday June 26th
- Odisi Band
- Beres Hammond
- Burning Spear
- Stephen Marley
Saturday June 27th
- KC5 & Shakki
- Regina Belle
- KC & The Sunshine Band
Taking the floor next was the eminent actor and vocalist Keith David, the St. Kitts Music Festival’s first celebrity guest host. He greeted the audience with a smile, speaking fondly of his Kittitian roots and his first visit to the island for Thanksgiving two years ago.
Then to the crowd’s total surprise and delight, he shared a special song that he was inspired to create just for St. Kitts! Accompanied by his musical director Frank Owen on piano and Eli Fontaine on the conga drum, he serenaded the group in his deep and distinctive baritone voice, ending the formal portion of the press conference.
“St. Kitts is a mighty beautiful place with its own special charm,” said Keith David. “You’ll want to experience the uniqueness of St. Kitts.”
Rockefeller Center, one of New York City’s main tourist areas, set the stage for this exciting event. A colorful backdrop displayed the St. Kitts logo and photos of various island attractions while handfuls of St. Kitts & Nevis national flags stood at every table in the room. Flyers for this year’s St. Kitts Music Festival were laid out for press to take, along with St. Kitts’ press kits and promotional materials from tourism partners. Throughout the event, a video showing an overview of the island’s tourism product played on the large LCD screen. Journalists were all given gift bags, each of which contained an authentic Kittitian sugar cake, two mini bottles of Brinley Gold Rum, a batik bag containing fragranced Caribbean soap from Island Hopper, a logoed eyeglass cleansing cloth from Christophe Harbour and a DVD of the History of St. Kitts.
Now in its 13th consecutive year, the St. Kitts Music Festival has become a well-established Caribbean and International event attracting international visitors as well as locals with a mix of musical styles on the popular market, including R&B, Jazz, Hip-Hop, Reggae, Soca, Calypso, Gospel and Contemporary music while reflecting a uniquely Caribbean flavor. Past artists have included such prominent acts as John Legend, Billy Ocean, Michael Bolton, Wyclef Jean, Ne-Yo, Mario, Air Supply, Dionne Warwick, Kenny Rogers, Boyz II Men, Brian McKnight, Ashanti, Shaggy, Eve, Bobby Caldwell, DMX, Hugh Masekala, Xtatik, the Temptations, Chaka Khan, Maxi Priest, Ronald “Boo” Hinkson and Busta Rhymes.
Tickets to the 13th Annual St. Kitts Music Festival are US $50.00 per person, per night and will soon be available for purchase on www.stkittsmusicfestival.com.