World Creole Music Festival (WCMF) fans were thrilled to have star of the band KASSAV, Jocelyne Beroard as she delivered an excellent performance on night two of the festival.
The sound of KASSAV has become a staple of the WCMF which was conceptualised to promote creole music and culture.
While Dominica Festivals Committee has embraced a wide range of genres under the umbrella of creole, the sound of Zouk, Compas, Cadence and Bouyon continue to be the signature of this unique music festival in the region.
This year, the lineup lacked the usual zouk medley of performers from the French West Indies, but Beroard’s mesmerising performance made up for this lack as even as a solo act she fiercely represented the high standard and energy for which KASSAV is known.
The group has been on a hiatus since the passing of Co-founder and Leader, Jacob Desvarieux who died of complications from COVID-19 in 2021. His passing is a great loss for zouk music. Beroard says while she misses Desvarieux, she is strong and continues to press on in his honour.
“I have learned early, that you never know what day you have to go and when you go those who are staying would have to face that because life continues. If Jacob could see me, he wouldn’t like to see me weak because he never saw me weak, so I had to be strong. I was hurt but I don’t have to show, I still have to rise every time.”
She sang in honour of him during her performance.
Until the band reunites for a concert in Desvarieux’s honour in July of 2023, Beroard says she will continue to perform solo. She will also be promoting her new book written during the pandemic.
Performing solo gives each artist in the band an opportunity to shine she explains. It’s a strategy the band adopted to give fans a taste of the zouk style of each of the five singers of the group.
“We needed the sound to be heard by many…KASSAV had the idea to take the elements of KASSAV…so this would help KASSAV to show the different style of Zouk that the people could relate to but we all knew that we were a part of KASSAV so what we are doing should never do wrong to KASSAV.”
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