Tuesday evening was spent at Lobsters Alive, the restaurant on the way to Bridgetown. A return visit after a fabulous Sunday there. But I could not bring myself to be responsible for one of these gorgeous lobsters in the tank, so I had tuna instead and it was melt in your mouth delicious. Art, the Australian owner, flies to the Grenadines and brings the lobsters back fresh.
Once again, the smiles of the team there were welcoming and friendly and the jazz quintet started playing later.
The baby of the band is Roger Gittens, the piano/keyboard player. Born here in 1964, his Mum sent all the children to piano lessons and that’s where it all began. Roger is now a music teacher and lives nearby with his wife and 2 boys. He can surely do magic with the ebony and ivory keys!
The bass player is Elvis Edwards, who was born in 1961. Elvis used to be in the Police Force and he started his musical career when joining the Police Band as a clarinet player. He switched to playing the bass guitar and strums those strings beautifully. He and his partner have a small farm where they grow ‘erbs such as, majoram and thyme.
We mustn’t forget the drummer ~ Vere Gibson. Great guy with one of the most contagious laughs I have ever heard! Vere was born on this island in the year 1939 and he’s still got the mischievous little boy inside him! His family lives in Vermont and he says they come over to check him out every so often! His ability to stroke the skins to drive the beat is memorable, but it is the irresistible smile and chuckle that I shall remember most ~ and the twinkle in his eye!
And, last but by no means least, is Lord Jenkins – Stuart to his friends. Born in England in 1933, Stuart went to Art School, and, when a student, lent £5 to a classmate, who was then unable to repay the debt. He gave Stuart his trombone instead and as he says, what good is a trombone if you can’t play it? So he taught himself, which was made easier by the fact he was musical and could play the piano. Later, he was given a government contract to establish Art teaching at the Bridgetown community college for the ‘A’ level Art exams and has lived here since. His three children live in Germany, Crete and Barbados, respectively.
With four great players, the band should be good anyway ~ but add that ingredient of joy and there is magic! Two of them play on a Thursday evening, along with Art (a pianist),and others, at the Waterfront Cafe in Bridgetown ~ they are called the VSOP band. Very Special Old People ~ how great is that?