As the summer winds blow through the city, the streets of Port-au-Prince are alive with color: green and gold. Brazilian flags stream from the motorcycle taxis, full-sized flags are strapped to the hoods of cars while green and yellow plastic bottles hang on cords over the roads.
Green and gold bandanas and t-shirts clothe the Haitian people, unified with each other and the world as the football celebration continues.
In Petionville, in the tent camp crammed into the center of the city, crowds of people gather around old TV's. They score!! And the whole city comes to life cheering, cars honking, flags waving.
At night, flying down the crumbled streets, three-deep on a moto-taxi, the bars and clubs are back up and running. Kompa blares from the “discos” dotting the main streets of Port-au-Prince.
A bright moon hangs over the mountains shrouded with fast moving clouds, a stunning backdrop to the neon-signed venues, brimming with hope and weekend celebration.
It is Saturday night, and we are headed to a grand celebration of Haitian Reggae artists. The show is lead by the band Y'isreal, whose lead singer “Rebel Lion” is well known in Asheville from his live, online performance at the White Horse Haiti benefit last March. Giant posters promoting the event dot the streets as we head to the club.
The band plays backup for four other vocal-groups, performing their Haitian Reggae interpretations. The sound is clear, there are colored lights, a fog machine and a solid crowd, (dressed to the nines, of course) swaying to the music.
Toward the end of the evening an unmistakably French man, named Pascal, stumbles in, grinning. In the blink of an eye he is onstage, harmonica in hand, blaring the lead of a Marley tune.
He loves life, he loves music, and clearly, he loves Haiti.
But, as always, Rebel Lion steals the show, his energy and smooth Rasta vocals keep the crowed cheering for more. This band - make no mistake - this band is going places.
Come hell or high water.
*On Sunday my grandmother passed away. She was an incredible inspiration as a strong, classy and independent woman: a true pioneer of her generation. Her generous final wishes will go towards the purchase of a vehicle for Unsung Media Productions in Haiti.
Mesi anpil, grand-mere.Read the full article