KES paints Beach J’Ouvert with sound

Kees Dieffenthaller
Kees Dieffenthaller

St. MARY, Jamaica – KES the Band, fronted by lead singer Kees Dieffenthaller, put down an amazing performance to seal the deal at last Saturday’s Beach J’Ouvert at James Bond Beach in St. Mary.

“What I love about Jamaica that differs from Trinidad is their appreciation for the classics,” Dieffenthaller told the Jamaica Observer.

KES the Band, which has been part of Jamaica’s carnival scene since 2000, ran through their immense back catalogue of hit songs much to the delight of the massive crowd.

KES the Band
KES the Band

Many covered from head to toe in the ritual Beach J’Ouvert paint danced to the likes of Million, Fallin, Wotless and the EDM-infused General Don. They also showed their versatility by singing several other 2015 soca staples, such as Ricardo Drue’s VagaBond, Kerwin Du Bois’ No Apology and Phenomenal by Benjai.

KES has been enjoying the heightened awareness of soca on the international scene, constantly touring. The group has already recorded their 2016 soca songs and plans to release an album at the start of summer.

“Don’t want to give out the album name just yet,” teased Dieffenthaller.

KES’ set was even more significant given the strength of the DJ line-up that preceded them.

The T&T Duo Nuphoric warmed up the partygoers who came out early in their droves. Following was Walshy Fire, one-third of EDM masters Major Lazer, who put his own twist on soca.

After KES left the stage there was still more to come from DJs Smoke, Richie Ras and Bambino, who combined their skills to rock Beach J’Ouvert into the night.

The event itself promised more paint, more fete and more bacchanal, easily delivering on all fronts.

“We had fantastic weather, a great crowd, and one of the best performances I’ve ever seen from KES,” said Michael Ammar Jr., a Bacchanal Jamaica director.

Ammar Jr. explained that Beach J’Ouvert had been slightly revised to take into consideration the younger crowd now frequenting carnival. In addition to the paint throwing, there were hoses spraying even more paint and water as well as a foam pit, all of it adding to the excitement of the party.

From the Jamaica Observer