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Charlotte Amalie
Sunday, April 14, 2024


The good vibes continued Saturday between St. Thomas and the 'Bad man who brought an estimated 9,500 soul music fans — most of them from the mainland — to Lionel Roberts Stadium Fridy night.
The crowd, whose biggest complaint was that there weren't enough beverage booths, was "the biggest we've ever had," both Sinbad and his business manager brother Mark Adkins said at a reception for sponsors and the press Saturday afternoon.
That's encompassing four previous years of Sinbad Soul Music Festivals — one each in St. Martin and Jamaica and two in Aruba.
Sinbad said Friday night's turnout was bigger than anticipated, thanks to the enthusiasm of local residents to take part — a phenomenon not experienced at the previous four festivals held on foreign soil.
"You know the music, you know the artists, you know the '70s," he said to sustained applause.
Adkins said they anticipated an even bigger turnout for the Saturday and Sunday night stadium concerts — with tickets still available to both as of Saturday afternoon. Manny Centeno of the V.I. Tourism Department said there would be more beverage and ticket booths for the last two nights.
Centeno said the seven local food vendors, who paid $250 each to set up operations in the stadium, had a field night Friday, serving "over 4,000 dinners." He personally sampled a little of everything and was particularly impressed by "the crab salad — real crab, not that imitation stuff."
Four days into the five-day festival, there have been no changes in the announced entertainment line-up, and there will be none for the last two nights, Tuesday Tate of the public relations staff said Saturday.
Vibes artist Roy Ayers, the S.O.S. Band and DeBarge reunited with original brother El are the Saturday stars. Sunday's show, a tribute to the late Marvin Gaye, has Smokey Robinson and The Gap Band as headliners with El DeBarge, Deniece Williams, Joe, Jon B., Kenny Lattimore, Eric Benet and "surprise guest" Sam Moore, a.k.a. "Soul Man," of the Grammy-winning '60s duo Sam & Dave.
An hour into the reception, Sinbad announced he had to leave to tape promotional video spots at Magens Bay for the Pay-Per-View special on the festival that will air Aug. 20. Before he left, he publicly thanked all national and local sponsors and in-kind contributors and posed for photos with representatives of each.
It was one more example of what Adkins described as the overall idea behind the soul fesitvals: "bringing people together with positive messages."

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