YES, he finally came. And perform, he did on Friday at the Lugogo Cricket Oval. It was not just a performance â€“ it was the signature Sean Kingston do, one in which he does not get high, but nonetheless fires up crowds with his somewhat laidback waddle about the stage, his presence so in your face.
The crowd was mammoth â€“ about 3000 energetic revellers.
They had had their share of curtain-raisers for about three hours when Kingston sauntered onto stage at about 10:50pm, to the hit Me Luv.
Clad in navy-blue denim jeans, white T-shirt and red waistcoat atop a pair of maroon sneakers, the 21-year-old sent the mainly youthful crowd into fits of delirium.
For an hour, the Jamaican-American R&B artiste engaged the crowd with 10 beloved hits.
All of them, right from Shawty, Face Drop, Dirty Love, Beautiful Girls; to 911 among others, Kingston sang to a converted crowd.
His main stage man, DJ Twin, complemented him, engaging the crowd with the repeated refrain: â€œUganda put your hands up,â€ to which all followed. Kingston had a short interlude, then reappeared for the last set. His very last,Why You Wana Go, a personal experience song he did to beg his girlfriend not to leave, got fans emotional as they sang along. It is what ended the concert towards midnight, at which point co-emcee J Kazoora swung in with a quick Kampala move. He bullied Kingston into exchanging his very expensive, diamond bedazzled watch with Kazooraâ€™s, which Kazoora claimed he got last year in a swap with American R&B star R.Kelly when he performed in Kampala. But since Kingston grudgingly did the swap, Kazoora later on gave back the watch. The concert, especially to Kingstonâ€™s legion of young fans, was worth every penny.
A few in the VIP area, who claimed they were not moved by the performance, were the 35+ type, probaly those weaned on Lingala music, and attended only because of free invite from sponsor Club beer. No wonder they looked on like bored cows munching grass.
The oldiesâ€™ reviews notwithstanding, it was a well-organised concert with an eclectic mix of talent. Right from local acts like Mun*G, the Good Lyfe Crew, Navio, Cindy, A.K 47, Atlas; to Kenyaâ€™s P-Unit, they all did an amazing job.
Nigeriaâ€™s Mr. Flavour aka Ashawo, however, showed he has more body than voice. Aside from the Noir Baby hit; his attempts to rouse the crowd with other songs fell flat, the songs are not known here.
He even put off his shirt to reveal his toned body to no avail. He probably would have wowed on any other day, not when all waited for Kingston.
If there is any memory he will carry to Nigeria, it is that Ugandan ladies are pathological liars. Because when he asked for any virgin in the crowd to get up on stage, more than 20 women, including a famous Naalongo, (mother of twins), jostled for the chance.
Revellers didnâ€™t seem bothered by any threats, as security went up to the teeth; we even saw Police chief Kale Kayihura camping there with his boys, plus counter-terrorism boss Abas Byakagaba.
Concert crowds at the oval are usually gauged against the massively attended UB 40 one in 2008. Sean Kingston came close to equalising.
To the credit of the event organisers, Kingstonâ€™s engineers gave a thumbs-up after they found the stage, lights and sound devoid of any flaws during the rehearsals, thereby befitting an international star. The event climaxed with an after-party in Club Silk, where revellers partied with abandon.
King-stoned by hits at Lugogo