On the eve of May 25th, the East Side Tavern witnessed the confluence of myriad cultures in a musical event featuring talent and splendour. It was truly a glorious experience that took the audience on a journey across a world where boundaries ceased to exist and music was the universal language. With fluorescent disco lights bouncing off the bar’s wooden interiors, feet tapping and hips swaying, the atmosphere abounded in dollops of energy.
The evening commenced with 11 Shamrock’s performance of upbeat Spanish tunes. 11 Shamrock is a Dublin based quartet whose repertoire consists of rhythms such as Flamenco, Rumba and Latin as well as Reggae and Ska music. Their expository piece “Cava Guapa”, which translates to “Beautiful Face” was a vibrant initiation into an evening full of dance and celebration. Their next piece “Luna” had the audience grooving to its enlivening beats. Their song “Felicidad” (Happiness) was as buoyant as its name and was successful in maintaining the rhythmic note on which the evening began. Their subsequent pieces maintained the tone and pace of the music that bore testimony to their talents, leaving the crowd panting but eager for more.
Next in line was Mel Leone, a Brazilian artist whose sensuous voice held the listeners in thrall. From quick-paced rhythms to soft, romantic ballads, Leone’s versatility as a musician remained to be seen. Her first track “Made For” had the audience wearing their dancing shoes out. Following a few more tracks, namely “Hum” and “Feels Like”, Leone performed her very first musical demo “Follow U”- an enchanting symphony about falling in love. Most of Mel’s songs are from her album “Time Machine”- a compilation of all her musical recordings. Her performance, much like her own musical journey from her childhood, was riveting, mellifluous and intensely pleasurable.
Leone’s tunes were followed by the quintet Fever Solstice- a band that is as eclectic in its musical styles as it is in its range of songs. While traversing a wide array of genres such as rhythm and blues, funk, soul, jazz fusion and hip-hop- true to its name- the band raised the excitement in the room to fever pitch with its musical rendition. Fever Solstice performed three covers, namely “What a Man”, “Good Times” and “Everyone’s a Winner”. The thumping beats of their final song “Without a Place” left the audience breathless from ceaseless dancing.
An apt conclusion to the evening was Kiruu’s performance, which captured in entirety the essence of the event in its multiculturalism. Much like his background, Kiruu’s music is a mosaic of different musical traditions from East Africa, Ireland and Spain. His performance of his first single “Siochain” (Peace) was reflective of his aspirations for a brighter future for humanity. Kiruu’s melodies from diverse cultures- strung together in symphony- symbolized how music can restore harmony amidst chaos.
As the evening drew to a close, there lay forged an unspoken camaraderie between ecstatic listeners and sensational performers drawn together by the universal language of music which diminished all borders.