One of Montserrat’s most iconic personalities recently turned 50 and used the occasion to raise funds for several local charities.
A day wasn’t enough for ZJB Radio’s morning show host Basil Chambers to celebrate his birthday. And so he commandeered from Friday July 1 to Sunday, July 3, his actual birthday for the festivities.
Last Friday a block party was held in Salem in his honour. On Saturday evening a few hundred people came from across the island and the waters to party with the man dressed in blue and white. The all night jam session featured an eclectic music mix. Local performers included, Idol winners and performers Tomeika, Toya, Chef, Prince Romeo, and Martin Dawson. Calypsonians Tabu, Maggie D, Sylk and De Bear also sang. The audience got a very rare musical treat with an appearance by Quasi. Teacher Edith Duberry was surprisingly quite entertaining and had the crowd in stitches as she gave the “real” version of events we often hear Basil share of his past on radio. A high energy routine from the Matrixxx Dancers led by Basil’s daughter Bianca was also part of the night’s entertainment.
Before the main acts, the audience took the time to countdown to Basil’s birthday at midnight then lined up to greet him. He thanked his friends, many of whom had travelled from the US, UK and Antigua for the event. He didn’t ignore the fact that a significant number of people wanted to attend but could not due to a lack of no ferry.
The night got even hotter with a remarkable performance by Asher Otto and Itchy Feet. For more than 90 minutes she sang some of her original numbers including the popular track Come for Me, along with covers she’s made popular such as Take Me to Church and Get Lucky. The band gave stunning renditions of classic reggae and soca hits.
By the time soca diva Claudette Peters hit the floor it was pretty close to 3 AM. However, the energy of the audience didn’t waiver and they joined in as she did a swift move through some of her biggest hits. Accompanied by TJDaDJ they brought the crowd up to speed with her new 2016 tracks.
DJ House Rat and others took the crowd the rest of the way until the sun came up.
Collection of funds all weekend, including at Sunday’s charity cricket match between Basil’s 11 vs Police and Fire, raised $1500 for Meals on Wheels and $600 for the Senior Citizens Associations. The Red Cross also made close to $500 from its fundraiser at the cricket match.
Discover Montserrat wishes Basil another 50 years of making people smile and sharing his love for music with the world.
Check out photos from #50NeverLookedSoGood on our Facebook page.