by Jaz Bowens
The Green, Kimie, and SensaMotion performed at the Blockley Friday night to an enthusiastic and vibrant audience. The doors opened at 8 and by time 8:45 rolled around there was a long line outside. Thankfully, there were still tickets left as people continued to come in throughout the night.
The area in front of the bar, closest to the stage, was for people 18 and under. Behind the bar was for ages 21 and over. The drinks were fairly cheap and quite strong and no matter where someone decided to stand in relation to the bar there was always a perfect view of the stage. The sound quality is great, too, and the music can be heard perfectly throughout the venue, even in the woman’s bathroom where a nice older woman was selling her own merchandise during the show.
SansaMotion, consisting of vocalist Joey Collepardi, Ray Worrick on bass, drummer Mike Crosson, Dylan Farina on riddim guitar, and lead guitarist Henry Wimberg, were the first on stage. Hailing from Atlantic City, NJ, it was easy to tell that they weren’t newbies to the Blockley as scores of their fans sang along and high-fived the band members when the opportunity arose. They sounded seamless live and as a first time listener, I was very impressed.
Kimie came on stage next. I have never heard of Kimie before her performance and I think I speak for many when I say how blown away I was by her singing! Everyone stopped and paid attention once she got on stage and belted out her first word. The Kona, HI native gave such a great performance. She sang a song she dedicated to Hawaii and she even did an acoustic cover of Lauryn Hill’s “Doo Wop” among her other original songs. The crowd cheered and howled as she performed. We couldn’t help but give her a thundering applause after each song. I encourage everyone to check her out.
After Kimie’s set, the anticipation was brewing as everyone waited for The Green to step on stage. Everyone came closer to the stage to either get the perfect picture or be as close as possible to them. The lights got lower and the stage became dark as everyone cheered for The Green. The atmosphere in the Blockley became electric. When the lights came up everyone went wild.
They went right into their Hawaiian chant and then jumped into a song. They all looked comfortable on stage and ready to play. After being on tour and traveling night after night it is easy to see how performing can be second nature to such an experienced band. As almost everyone stood to watch, the floor became a little packed but evenly dispersed as people were along every inch of the venue. Even the little old lady in the bathroom came out to watch The Green.
They played some new song off of their Hawai’i ’13 album as well as some older classics. The audience knew them all. As the night wore on and people continued to sway to the heavy based beats and the smooth harmonies, it was easy to say that The Green’s concert was one of the best I’ve had the opportunity to see (and you can read my interview with them here). As cliché as that might sound, I can honestly say that it was a great experience and nothing beats listening to reggae live. The audience members were friendly and truly came out because they loved The Green. I had the opportunity to speak to a few who told me about the first time they had heard of the band and how they have been hooked ever since. I encourage everyone to check out SensaMotion, Kimie, and The Green. They were great and everyone complimented each other to make a perfect concert for all to enjoy.