EST. 1971
Joensuu Finland 17.–19.7.2015

Beres Hammond spread some lovin’ around Rento Stage

The honey-voiced Jamaican singer, also known as the king of lovers rock arrived in Ilosaarirock to spread the message about the importance of love.

Beres Hammond lauloi tiensä yleisön sydämiin. Kuva: Markus Korpi-Hallila

Beres Hammond sang his way into the hearts of the audience. Photo: Markus Korpi-Hallila

The king of lovers rock, Beres Hammond, has come to Ilosaarirock to spread some love – something that he has done for three decades already. And love does he spread indeed. His album, One Love, One Life, has been his most successful one, nominated for a Grammy award in 2014.

The gig is about to start but there are only a few people in front of the stage. The instruments are out of tune so it takes a while for the gig to start. Time goes by and more and more people are gathering around the stage. The band plays a couple of instrumental songs and the audience dances to them.  True to the Jamaican, relaxed style of life, the audience seems satisfied – just chilling and dancing on the beach that’s basking in the evening sun.  No-one’s complaining about the delay. Finally the artist starts, about thirty-five minutes late. He appears on the stage looking laid-back, wearing regular blue jeans, a grey hoodie and a white cap. Looking like an average Joe.

As soon as Hammond starts singing, the charming, 59-year-old artist fills the stage with his presence. He doesn’t have a lot of time left to perform but it doesn’t seem to bother him or anyone else. No apologies needed for the delay, he sings his way to the audience’s heart with the first song, No Goodbye, a quite fast-paced song about a troubled relationship.

Yleisö tanssi Beres Hammondin tahtiin. Kuva: Samu Hintsa

Beres Hammond spreading the love. Photo: Samu Hintsa

The king of lovers rock, however, is at his best in romantic ballads, such as Step Aside, a song about the importance of respecting your woman.

Step aside now, let me show you how to treat a woman.
She needs a tender touch,
She needs loving, oh oh, so much.

The crowd, which is varied in age, style and ethnicity, swings to the gentle Jamaican rhythm. Smiles can be seen in many faces. The rhythm is contagious. Love has been spread around Rento Stage.

Text: Suvi Keturi
Photos: Markus Korpi-Hallila and Samu Hintsa

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Joensuu Pop Musicians' Association · P.O.Box 240 · FIN-80101 Joensuu · Finland       Ask about Ilosaarirock Festival: if.kcoriraasoli@ofni