By Marjorie Flash
This year’s Reggae Culture Salute presented by the Coalition to Preserve Reggae (CPR) proved to be as gratifying as it had in prior years. Luciano”s highly-energized performance conveyed a clear message that he was back.
Backed by the multi-talented Anthem Band which included members from Japan, Haiti, Guyana and Trinidad, Luciano dug deep in his treasure chest to deliver some soulful, spiritually uplifting hits to an eager and excited audience hanging on to every note. A riveting dance routine by eight-year-old Douglas Baldeo, on his way to being the next Ben Vereen, got everyone’s attention.
The roots and culture show kicked off with well-received performances by Nyabinghi drummers Ark Angels, Tayazawan from Trinidad & Tobago, Jamaica’s Major Daps, Sister Cindy and Major One. Roots reggae artist Ossie Dellimore, who hails from St. Vincent and the Grenadines, with his band Soldiers of Justice gave an enjoyable set of conscious roots music reminiscent of Bob Marley’s style.
Luciano, already honored with multiple awards, was presented with a Congressional Proclamation -- the highest honor that the U.S. Congress bestows on an individual, by U.S. Rep. Yvette Clarke. Jamaica Consul General Herman LaMont, and the Hon. Dr. Una Clarke.
CPR president Carlyle McKetty also presented Luciano with the organization’s hoghest honor, the Pinnacle Award, for his years of dedication, consistency and commitment to spreading the positive message of roots reggae music.
At the end of the award ceremony, a surprised and speechless Sharon Gordon was also presented with a Congressional Proclamation for the many years of dedicated service and commitment to CPR’s preservation of reggae music.