Saturday, April 20, 2024

Bajan bands hit big

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Barbadian artistes are looking for every opportunity to showcase their talent to the wider world. Sixteen local acts took such an opportunity at the Barbados Beach Club recently when American booking agents Degy International scouted for entertainers to perform on the United States college circuit.
While the names of the successful ones have not been revealed, Andrew Daniel, a director of the Association of Music Entrepreneurs (Barbados) which facilitated the showcase, said that last year’s selectees put on some great performances and were well received at the various colleges.
“Last time we showcased at the Errol Barrow Centre we had about seven people, this year we had 16,”?said Daniel, who produced the latest showcase. “They (booking agents) are almost at a loss as to who to pick based on talent.”
Daniel said the first thing that came to people’s mind about college students was Spring Break, the university recess that occurs in March or April.
“But you have to remember that college students are mainly between 18 and 22 and most of them are not legally allowed to drink . . . the atmosphere has to be a more wholesome [one] so the artistes that you put forward have to have that appeal.”
Daniel said this year’s showcase offered a bit more diversity with gospel and steel pan included.
“They had quite a cross-section of talent to look at. That is what pleased them a lot because it created other possibilities that had not been thought of before.” 
He also said acts could gain more exposure when students used Twitter and Facebook to spread the word to their friends.
“Even for a band like Cover Drive that has done well in Europe, it is still a benefit for them to come into the college circuit because they are playing to a demographic that fits them directly.
“We expect that they will do well,” he added. 
Some of the acts that went before the agents were A Few Good Men, Adrian Clarke, pannists Andre Forde and Ziggy Walcott and Cover Drive.

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