For Caribbean people – especially Trinis – Christmas is not Christmas without the sweet sounds of parang music.
So last Sunday, Los Amigos held the first major parang show for the season in Toronto. And Oh, what a Night! Hundreds of parang lovers made their way to Rembrandt Banquet Hall in Scarborough to spree and support their top paranderos and headliner Sharlene Flores, Queen of Parang from Trinidad and Tobago.
The show began with a crowd favorite, Tony Maestre and Friends, led by the father and son team Tony and Miguel. They warmed up the crowd and had patrons moving and swaying to their blend of traditional and contemporary parang music.
They were followed by MC Dick Lochan aka Juiceman who kept the audience laughing as usual. Next was Connector, Los Amigos and June Smith; they all gave good performances.
The second half of the show opened with Flores, known for her lucid expressiveness, distinctive mellow voice and captivating stage presence.
A former member of the famous San Jose Serenaders and now a member of Flores de San Jose, Flores opened with her big hit Bendita Tu Eres, followed by Vamos Vamos Vamos. A great set for the Queen and at the end, cheers from the crowd. She was followed by Guney Cedeno, and Los Pajaros.
All in all, despite the challenges of the sound system, props to Los Amigos for a successful evening.
Photos by Peter Tang (www.TangCanada.com)