MASERU — They came. They played. They mesmerised.
That’s City Kay — the French reggae group that wowed dozens at Maseru Sun on Friday night.
The six-member band’s performance was probably the first in decades in Lesotho by a foreign reggae group.
And City Kay’s two-hour show will remain etched in the memories of many.
Lead vocalist Jay Ree told Xpress People the band’s tour of southern Africa — organised by Alliance Française South Africa — had been quite an experience.
Maseru was the band’s seventh stop after dates in Cape Town, Johannesburg, Pretoria, Durban and the Angolan capital Luanda.
Ree said before the tour they had a wrong picture of Africa but they were surprised to see many places that “looked like Europe”.
“Angola, our virgin country, gave us the real African experience,” Ree said before the group went on stage in Maseru.
“The feedback was unexpectedly huge in almost all the countries.
“We were the second international band to play in Namibia in 20 years and the fourth to play in Angola since history and people really loved our music.
“We hope Lesotho people too will love our performances and we hope to tap in to the Maseru reggae culture before we leave.”
Enjoy, the revellers at Maseru Sun did.
A local Rastafarian who gave his name only as Rasta Soul said he was glad he got a chance to watch a live reggae music performance.
“We are a very small group in Maseru and we don’t have initiatives like this,” he said with reference to the Rastafarian community in the capital.
“I am very happy that I got to watch and enjoy reggae music live.
“It was a very beautiful experience and I hope it can be done again to help build the momentum of the reggae culture in the country.”
Graziella Laude, the development and cultural co-ordinator with Alliance Française in Maseru, last week said the tour was aimed “promoting cultural diversity, urban cultures and artistic exchange between France and the African continent”.
Ree said the band had attracted throngs of reggae music lovers as well as aspiring artists.
“Many Rastafarians travelled long distances to come watch us,” he said.
“We even had a chance of recording aspiring reggae artistes in Cape Town where we performed at the Cape Town Festival.”
The other band members are drummer Saymon, bass guitarist Peter Pat as well as guitarists Major Yo and Aurel Dread.
Keyboardist and vocalist Mael completes the line-up of the Brittany-based group.
The group leaves Maseru today for their next performance in Maputo, Mozambique.