These comments were made by the Director of the festival, Crucial Bankie, while addressing the media on Wednesday morning, (7th September, 2011), at the Ocean Terrace Inn, in Basseterre.
According to the 15 year veteran and leading entertainer, this will be the 3rd Home Grown Festival and once again the committee has decided to make the event one that is free of cost to Kittitians/Nevisians.
Bankie said the idea for the festival was inspired when he produced his album that carried the same title, ‘Home Grown’.
Bankie, whose real name is Ian Veira, said that he is real passionate about the concert and as a musician it is part of his role to contribute to the development of up and coming artistes.
“This is something real passionate to me, looking at the industry from my point of view; I’ve seen where there have been gaps in collectively getting the industry together and really giving our artistes the voice that they need.” He said.
“I want to welcome the people and invite them out to this free event that will feature some of our top talents. We are also moving to make this festival, a day and night event, because it falls on National Hero’s Day. You can bring the family, come and relax and enjoy the local food, drinks and the folklore” said Bankie.
He added that there will be 2 performance stages; a smaller stage that will be used in the day time and the bigger one mainly in the night.
“We have 2 stages because we realize that we have lots of up and coming artistes; that is one reason for the small stage. Stage 2 will be for the acts that have one or two songs and this will be in our ‘open mike segment’. Along with the event there’s going to be a dance tent scheduled to ‘kick-off’ after the concert, for the folks who want to stay around and party” Mr. Veira added.
Speaking of the challenges he faced in hosting the event, Bankie said, “Getting on board is a major challenge, getting people to be serious and to understand what we’re trying to do and to understand that music has to be organized for it to go forward, has been difficult.
He also added that people generally follow ‘the crowd’ and look at who is involved.
“Another disadvantage was the time we chose to host the concert, right between, Music Festival, Culturama then into Carnival mode”, Ian said.
Bankie said that he has positive vibe about the future of the festival and said that he sees the event getting bigger and better in the near future.
“This event is also a way to channel negative energy, there is too much negative energy within our youths, and everyone has to be a part of the solution.”
“In every facet, we just have to start looking at ways to get our youths involved and channel their energy in a positive way, this is what home grown is about,” said the Director.
The main sponsor of the festival is the local telecommunications company Digicel.