Picnic mats and camping chairs. Sun hats and shades. Cold beer and grilled meat. This was the vibe at Jahazi Pier Munyonyo as Roast and Rhyme held its epic 17th edition last Sunday. This being the first edition since the lifting of lockdown in January, the organizers – Swangz Avenue and Bell Lager – came out in a big way with an incomparable all- round experience.
As usual, guests were encouraged to carry their own grills and meat with fire marshals on hand to help them set up, in addition to several food vendors, including the Meat Guy. An exciting cook-off pit two journalists and two members of the public selected at random against each other, with each being given limited ingredients, one type of meat and a trivia question that would earn them a chance to pick any other ingredient, with the winner walking away with a ‘Bell na Nyama’ hamper complete with a brand-new grill.
The emcee, Roger Mugisha, then initiated a Kiss Cam and of the 5 couples selected, only one followed through with the kiss – Bebe Cool and his wife Zuena; another hugged; while the rest simply looked on, clueless about how to go about kissing their workmates or cousins in public. It was very awkward for them, but fun stuff to watch for the rest of the crowd. This being the Reggae Ragga edition, live reggae music filled the atmosphere as Elijah Kitaka and the Lions of Africa band set things off with a performance that included a cover of Koffee’s ‘The Harder They Fall’.
The legendary Tshaka Mayanja and the Black Roots band followed with their lead singer Tonya Ahenda locking the crowd in a trance with her powerful voice covering some of the world’s most iconic reggae tunes. In a stunning feat, Kenneth Mugabi hopped on stage and engineered a masterful mash-up of his ‘Naki’ with UB40’s ‘Cherry Oh Baby’. The event also featured performances from Vinka, Mudra, Winnie Nwagi and Ziza Bafana who performed with a live band. In-between performances and all through to the end of the event, DJs Alisha and Selector Jay entertained the crowd with reggae and ragga mixes.
Overall, the event was the ultimate display of Bell Lager’s Mpola Enjoyments theme, which encourages consumers to have a good time anywhere, at any time with friends, some games, grilled meat and ice-cold Bell Lager. Matilda Babuleka, Bell Lager’s Brand Manager, said, “Bell Lager continues to be driven by the necessity to constantly deliver new and exciting experiences for our customers. With Roast and Rhyme, the sunny weather, picnic vibe and the lakeside breeze come together to deliver the ultimate Mpola Enjoyments.”