Elevation DMV Weekend
Miami Carnival is usually the last big soca party weekend in the United States. Socaholics are forced to wait until February for Trinidad Carnival. Since I was unable to go to Miami, I was thrilled when Full Stop Entertainment intervened and provided DysChick with one more fete-portunity (sure, that's a word now). The weekend consisted of a kickoff, main event, and cool down party that brought top artists and deejays from around the world to the DMV (DC/Maryland/Virginia area).
Tremors was the after work event to kick off the party weekend. The Shadow Room had the typical lounge setup: dark lounge, full bar, and long, leather couches against the walls, oh, and a full steel band. The full Pan Lusion steel orchestra played everything from traditional calypso to "Ducking" by Fadda Fox and I found myself feeling like I was at a panorama lime.
Once the band concluded their performance, DC's DJ Bimshire turned up the vibes. It is always good to see deejays enjoying what they do and he seemed to be having a ball, which made people get up from their seats and hit the dance floor.
Tremors offered a comfortable vibe and good music, and served as a good warm up to the rest of the weekend.
The highlight of the weekend was Elevation fete on Saturday night. Full Stop Entertainment not only brought out top deejays from Toronto, New York, and Trinidad but also Shal Marshall, Skinny Fabulous, and the Queen of Bacchanal, Destra, to shut down the DMV!
For such a well-publicized event, I was shocked to see the Cococabana almost empty two hours into the party. The few people that were there seemed intimidated by the open space and so they sat nursing their drinks at the bar. I was concerned that this party would be a flop.
Oh well. It wouldn't be the first time I wrote a bad review. Since there was no coat check at this time (it opened later), I went upstairs to VIP to rest my coat and to observe the room. People began trickling in an hour later and, although they were timid at first, Toronto's Dr. Jay and Miami's Barrie Hype managed to get them moving.
Then it was showtime. Shal Marshall led the acts and performed his hits "Motorbike," "Motivation," and even took it back with "Police." Skinny Fabulous turned the fete into a madhouse when he belted out "Awwwwooooah!" as he took the stage.
There was a brief delay before Destra appeared and the anxious crowd began chanting her name hoping to cajole the QOB to come out. In typical Destra fashion she began with some groovy tunes before encouraging everyone to mash up everything. As a veteran in the industry, her performance would not be complete without singing some old favorites.
Although the party ended at 1am, which is early by New York standards, I could barely walk to the parking lot to meet my Uber driver at the end of the night. I will attribute this to a good time and not to my age.
After a night of shaking it at Elevation, I remained in the DMV for this cool down party. The goodbye fete at The Old Engine 12 Restaurant featured a myriad of local and out-of-town guests. D'Enforcas from Canada, Chucks from Trinidad, New York's DJ Spice, Barrie Hype from Miami, and DC's own DJ Hazzard, as well as an energetic live performance by Kerry D Drummer (sorry ladies, he kept his shirt on this time).
I admit that I had my reservations about a party weekend in the DMV since I had previously terrible experiences with DC Carnival, but Elevation DMV turned out to be the place to be. Artists and deejays who were not scheduled to perform still came out to be a part of this experience.
If you plan to come out next time, pay attention to the Full Stop Entertainment website for information. They do a good job of explaining how to make your reservations to take advantage of the deals they have with hotels and Uber. Organize yourself early and leh we go!
Click here for photos!