Rihanna’s Homecoming

Part of the large crowd on the ground of Kensington Oval who attended the Rihanna concert

They came from near and far, young and old, White and Black, rich and poor to be part of the historic homecoming performance of Bajan international pop star Rihanna. The Westbury girl did not disappoint!

A crowd estimated to be about thirty thousand people endured the opening acts and a lengthy delay which preceded the entry of Rihanna on stage well after her scheduled time. The wait was not in vain. She delivered a performance which was emboldened by dancing, fantastic use of stage lighting, use of props and excellent accompaniment by back-up singers, band and other support.

Rihanna’s frequent references to Barbados and use of the national colours during her performance should make Minister Richard Sealy and  Chairman  Elcock of the Barbados Tourism Association   believe they got 4 million dollars worth of publicity.The video of the performance should ensure that Barbados enjoys a legacy benefit for years to come.

The world maybe about to totter into another recession which is not good news for the tourism dependent Barbados. Rihanna’s homecoming is anticipated to provide a needed boost to the tourism product by giving her island home a piggyback ride on her global popularity.

0 thoughts on “Rihanna’s Homecoming

  1. Congratulations to the Tourism Ministry and Rihanna for finally ensuring that Barbadians experience a live performance which I believe was long overdue.

  2. Why was there not even a pic of people entering kensington oval last night on TV? Why the near media blackout on areas tangential to the show itself? Why no human interest stories? Surely security issues could not entirely trump the expected media input?

  3. Well done to all. I did not attend, but I am pleased, for Barbados and Rihanna, with the success. Hopefully, however, the Barbados Government and business community do not expect this young woman to bail them out, not when we pay so many highly educated people to find ways of doing that. Possibly, if alike Rihanna, some of them, who are in a position to do so, put Barbados before self, Barbados will do much better. In contrast, there is another young woman, who, apparently in her opinion, is very well educated and, from listening to her on Brasstacks, seems unable to relate to anyone that is not as well educated. Now, to the budget…

  4. Greatest show. Thanks Rihanna thanks Minister Richard Sealy.Thanks Government of Barbados. Lets do it again soon.

  5. I cringe every time I read the word legacy. Where is the “legacy” from the Cricket World Cup? Where is the legacy from the SIDS conference? Rihanna came home and showed her people what a high class concert is like. Legacy….well.

  6. @Ping Pong …my daughter went and I asked her she said no.

    My daughter said that the show was AMAZING and the most SPECTACULAR show she has ever been to. She said that Rhianna was phenomenal performer ! Rhianna Welcome Home! I raise my glass to you!

  7. Dear Alien:
    The commenters on media take out are just a bunch of haters who are too poor or too cheap to afford a ticket to a Rihanna concern

  8. Hmm

    let’s see…show sponsored with public funds, held at a state owned venue …in Barbados with a Barbadian as the featured attraction and … no anthem played at the start. Oh well, it doesn’t really matter. Barbados is incidental to all of this. It was a great show and us small islanders were in awe. We couldn’t get enough. Barbadians are just grateful that Rihanna mentioned us and waved the flag because before Rihanna, Barbados was nothing. Thanks Minister Sealy and all other Government officials, you continue to do us proud.

  9. Are international concerts anywhere opened with national anthems? I dont think so. Love our anthem but dont believe that was the place for it. Rihanna exeeceded all expectations the girl is a bona fide world super star. the Queen of Bim killed off the haters who claim she cant sing. way to go Ri.

    • @Pong

      If it is any consolation the DJ played ‘ I am a Bajan‘ by Rupee which got a roaring response.

      Correction, the show in Barbados is part of Rihanna’s Loud world tour.

      A three year agreement with Rihanna gave the opportunity for Barbados to get in on the tour by underwriting 4 million in production costs according to Minister Sealy.

  10. My children, step children, sister, nephew and their spouses and friends all went (10 people in all from the family, and ranging in age from 18 to 56) some of them paid for $500 dollar tickets and some paid for $75 dollar tickets, and they all thought it was an amazing show, and excellent value for money. And they were all blown away by the excellence of the performance.

    They think that Rihanna should do an at-home concert every 2 or 3 years.

    People were at the concert from all over the world, so it was a good tourism/economy boost.

    My sister who is 50+ said the show was so good and Rihanna’s “thank you Barbados” from the edge of the stage gave her goosebumps of pride and joy.

  11. Rihanna is an industrious young woman who take pride in her work. She is doing for Barbados what the West Indies team did for us back in the day when they were industrious and took pride in her work.

    If only Rihanna can keep at the top of her field for many more years and if only the West Indies team can regain theirs.

    Big up the Bajan Star Girl.

  12. Ping Pong I think that we play the National Anthem way waaaaaaaaaaaayyy too much. It should only be played at the start of official government functions. People who are holding private functions should not feel obliged to play the anthem at the start of ever show.

    After all I did not play the National Anthem at my wedding.

    Did you play it at your wedding Ping Pong?


  13. Hey Ping Pong, not public funds, not a state owned venue (the state owns nothing) the people’s funds, the people’s venue, and the people 30,000 of them turned out and had a night of great fun with their favourite performer Ri-Ri. And the people were only too happy to pay for their tickets, and really enjoyed themselves.

    This business of seeing the state, the party or the politicians as great benefactors has to stop. The people worked hard all week or all month and the people took a break to have fun. The state doesn’t do the people any favours, THE PEOPLE SUPPORT THE STATE, not the other way round. You ever see the state in the hot sun stirring concrete, or weeding the road, or scrubbing hotel toilets, or busting its a** in a freezing cold air-conditioned office all day long yet?

    The state, the party (s) and the politicians should be grateful that the PEOPLE give some of their money (taxes) to the state.

    Ya poppit.

    What’s wrong with you? Are you one of those people who don’t like fun, and who don’t want anybody else to have fun either?


  14. @ Ping Get a life!!. A National Anthem is for national events. When the world is your stage what national anthem would you play? ….. the USA? China? Barbados?
    Rhianna is no longer a ‘Bajan’ she now belongs to the world. ….just be proud that she originated, and was educated here.

    @ David
    Do you think that Bajans are beginning to get an understanding of what excellence means?
    …of what ‘world class’ is?
    …of what we need to demand of a government and people who sing about ‘pride’ and ‘industry’?

    What does this all say about what can potentially come out of Barbados?

  15. I don’t listen to Rihanna’s music. I am 59 years old. I would not go to her concert but I have seen a few of her performances at award shows on TV.

    Rihanna is true superstar in her genre of music and her performances are spectacular.

    While some of you don’t seem to know much about the value of advertising
    surely you can go online and understand that Rihanna is one of the most popular artiste around the Globe.

  16. @miserable old Bajan man wrote “Rhianna is no longer a ‘Bajan’ she now belongs to the world.”

    Rihanna is 100% born Barbadian. De rest of the world just adoptin she fuh now.

  17. Dear Hants one of the Canadian nieces brought the album on which “Man Down” appears for Little Johnnie last Christmas. If you haven’t bough it yet you should.

    You’ll love it as I do even though we are both 50 nuff. It is sweet, funny and real, real. I haven’t seen the video. I prefer my music the old fashioned way, primarily for the ears, without visual distractions.

  18. @ Hants. You said:- “Rihanna is 100% born Barbadian. De rest of the world just adoptin she fuh now.”
    Correction. . . . . . only 50% de edder 50% is Guyanese! 🙂

  19. @Alien
    Do you see how easily flustered she gets. She is an emotional bomb in a desert. She cannot relate to teh simplest ideas and is not intune with everyday happenings in Barbados. Cant wait for Tony Marhsall (my darling) to return. He is not the best but at least he has some real educated understandings about some things. Cant wait to hear our girl spwe some hot air from her emotional eruption

  20. @David re Roy Morris.

    Why are you surprised ?

    More importantly, we at BU can draw on our experts to explain.

    I know that as a Canadian citizen, you must live in Canada for half the year to maintain your Health insurance etc.,doesn’t matter whether you own a House in Barbados or a condo in Miami.

    I am sure one of the BU family will tell us what the law is as it relates to this issue

    • @Hants are you sure about Canada?

      Is it not 3 months and doesn’t it vary by province?

      In the UK as far as understood all UK citizens are eligible for healthcare without restriction without restriction.

  21. David wrote “Is it not 3 months and doesn’t it vary by province?”

    I only know about the province of Ontario and I was told that you must be resident in Canada for 183 days per year to maintain your benefits, OHIP etc.
    Perhaps other CanaBajans can inform us.

  22. Bajans have no pride! Imagine a sell-out concert for American culture.No artiste singing Bajan music could have gotten this response. There will be those who will say that it is international and we must now see what being internatinal is. What is it? Paying $500 to see a show and today you only have a memory. Nothing else, nothing tangible.From the look of things i agree VAT should be increased to 20%. I love Rihanna but not at any cost. How many of you would have paid $500 for Joseph Niles?

  23. Dear Str8up:

    Barbados is a capitalist market.

    Everybody charges what the market can bear, EVERYBODY, the coconut vendor, the doctor, lawyer, carpenter, the whores up by the Garrison and the public library.




    Only sweet David still gives us this BU for free.

  24. David quoting the foreign blog referenced by Roy Barbados Today and by you”

    “A moderator of the site going by the pseudonym “Serendipidy” said one airline out of the UK was “advising passengers at Gatwick that Barbados Immigration had requested that people only be able to buy three month tickets from UK to Barbados”…”In fact, a friend of mine had a six month ticket and was told by…staff at Gatwick that, because she did not have official status in Barbados, they would need to reduce the ticket to three months.”

    And this business of requiring people coming to Barbados to have a return ticket is bare nonsense. Just because a person has a return ticket does not mean that they will leave Barbados. If they want to say on illegally having a return ticket won’t stop them. They will just “tear up the ticket” or since tickets are all electronic anyhow, they will just just not use it.

    We, Cabinet, MP’s, civil servants, and the rest o’ we need to come up with public policy that works (instead of for instead of for instance spraining our brains worrying about how to stop homosexuality, which we can’t stop anyhow)

    Our public policy must charge foreigners who live here part time, or who are holidaying here a reasonable actuarially decided fee for accessing health care, education etc. and we must put procedures in place to collect such feee, and we must issue a secure document to show that the fee has been paid and for what period. We are a tourist economy, we CANNOT close our borders.

    So we have to find a way that everbody who is here for X amonka o’ time pay their fair share. But the foreigners can’t pay if we do not put an office in place to collect such fees

  25. I stand in awe at all those who ate humlle pie.I had no doubt that Rhiana would have delivered.This is her time and so all asundry should support her victories. The late Prime Minister Mr.David Thompson did good to honor her prior to his passing.And so we all should! So Ri Ri! Doan give two wuck ups!

  26. @Str8 Up

    There are a few economists who come on this board they will tell you the price of tickets for a Rihanna concert is all about supply and demand; the demand for tickets far outstripped the supply and that contributes to the price of $500.00. If it is not your cup of tea you did the right thing by staying at home. Bajans pay mucho dinero to see second rate or washed up American performers on stage so I consider it an achievement when a native born artist could command top dollar..

    Your comment reeks of sour grapes

  27. Str8 Up | August 6, 2011 at 4:35 PM | …”How many of you would have paid $500 for Joseph Niles?”

    Not fuh shoite ….waaittt he still living bout hey?

  28. @Random Thoughts | August 6, 2011 at 12:56 PM |

    i agree with u. this hype about playing the national anthem at everything? stupessssssssss. i idiot from way back when comes up with that idea and fools buy into it. when will people start thinking for themselves? it is not necessary at every function pleasssssssssssssssse. one of these days so jack-robinson will come up with some other ingrunt idea and followers will jump on the bang wagon saying yes,. Ping pong, grow up will ya

  29. @Str8 Up | August 6, 2011 at 4:35 PM | …”How many of you would have paid $500 for Joseph Niles?”

    why not tell that to the politicians who travel on ‘government’ business for 3 days at tax payers expense, for $100,000? what is in it for us? or the ones who spend $5,000 on lunch and call it ‘work conference’ at tax payers expense? we get nothing. why should anyone pay $500 to see joseph niles? does he command that level of national or international ‘repaitoi’?

  30. @David

    Off Topic

    Stop being so thin skinned, if Roy wants to link with another forum that’s his decision.

    Anyway your query sent me to Barbados Today and I saw a story about 18 Jamaicans
    ( and 2 Bajans) on a CAL flight who were detained at the Airport because they were transporting drugs. Is any of this being reported in the Jamaican papers or is the story not as “sexy” as the Myrie one?

    Some years ago I heard that the authorities in Canada had revoked landing rights to Air Jamaica because too much drugs was coming in on the flights. The drugs were carried by individuals as well as being secreted on the planes, I think the authorities should start searching those planes out of Jamaica very thoroughly.

    Another story was about Gabby apologizing to the mother of “Tassa” Forde because he had the audacity to include a coffin in his act. Apparently she was overcome with grief at seeing a coffin on stage.

    First of all it is hard to lose a family member or friend but……. What was Gabby apologizing for? What happens if she sees a hearse? Drives past a graveyard? Hears a death announcement on the radio? I think all the people responsible for any of the above should start apologizing now.

    Common sense is so uncommon.

    • @Sargeant

      Not being thinskinned, only pointing to a glaring hypocrisy of Barbados Today.

      On the Jamaica issue you raised, why isn’t the local media belting this stroy so that the regional media can be sympathetic to the cause given what transpired before with the Myrie story?

      Barbados media is not wired that way is all that can be said.

  31. @ Sargeant. That 18 +2 Drug mule case has been reported in both the Gleaner and the Observer, taken straight from the Nation News, but so far they do not seem to entertain any comments on this issue.
    Do you think that the Red man will accuse us of frustrating the entry of their products into the island?

  32. Hi you guys be proud of these artist. Outside of them we in the west indies are unknown. Remember G.S. Sobers. He was known all over the cricketing world. Did us proud. They do not know our politicians but they know these artist world over.

  33. I went to the show out of share respect. Rihanna hardly had to sing a word, the crowd did it all for her, and that was awe inspiring… total and complete appreciation!

    The anthem was not played. I was also at the Earth WInd and Fire show and the crowd decided that they would sing the anthem by themselves, seven thousand strong, without prompting. Now that too was awe inspiring … what a show!

    Big disappointment to see that there was more than enough space on the turf to hold another two or three thousand people as the stage was set right back to the Eastern perimeter. Those additional ticket sales would have pushed the BTA over the top.

  34. One of the good things too that could be taken away from the show was that there was NO Master of Ceremonies …. Praise the Lord … Down wid Mac Fingall and Alf Padmore … (Stale as shite!)

  35. In Al Gilkes’ article in the Sunday Sun today suggested that government personnel who have declared government’s cost to produce the Rihanna Show will be 4 million dollars are incorrect. He based his conclusion on years of experience as a promoter.

    We know there is a confidentiality agreement which binds government and Rihanna to non disclosure of the agreement. The question which some are now forced to ask is what about the non production costs? The 4 million we assume is direct costs related to Rihanna and not park and ride and other ancillary cost. Certainly a declaration of these costs is a reasonable expectation by taxpayers.

  36. oh jeez.. we party and then in the midst of the hangover, we want to know how much we spent.. good artist , great show but something is odd here. when politicians , in a particular, throw around words like ” a few hundred thousand ” and “money well spent” and “incalculable value ” then it is time to pay heed..
    @ david.. a declaration of the costs ( audited ) ? might be reasonable to both of us .. but let’s wait and see

  37. Alien,
    the new moderator tries very hard to convince us she is intelligent in fact so hard that she ignores or belittles those who have alternative views, which speaks of issues of insecurity of who she really is.

    Congrats on a world class show put on by BTA.

  38. Funny how we rate moderators.When father Hatch was in the chair he regularly treated callers with scant respect,and many of them invariably concluded by saying. “Thank you Father Hatch, keep up the good work.”
    When Mr Marshall went off the air ,the call-in programme was dead, until Miss Holder Came along.

  39. Rihanna in a Bob Marley swimsuit holding a BANKS BEER.

    Did they pay her to do this. If not, Banks just got serious free advertising.

  40. Government has a duty to tell TaxPayers how every cent of Taxes are spent.

    This should not cloud the fact that this show was hugely successful as a vehicle to profit from Rihanna’s worldwide recognition as 1 of the top pop music stars.

    Do the audits but this show was a huge success.

  41. Hants

    In reality the deal was so one sided that the producers were virtually handed a blank cheque. This speaks to the negotiating skills of our BTA CEO who was the only person in Barbados in direct contact with Rihanna’s people. His contract will soon end and it will be curtains for him, of course to be replaced with a similarly ‘competent’ person …! You will NEVER get the details of the deal, other than the fact that RiRi asked for nothing, the BTA got Nothing as well (broadcast rights etc), but I sure as hell got a good time!

  42. Colonel Buggy

    Is there such a thing as a good moderator in Ba’bados? How could you possibly rate Marshall so highly? Are you perpetually pregnant?

  43. @ BAFBFP next time you are in Toronto ask a few people these questions.

    1. where is Barbados?
    2.Who is the Prime Minister of Barbados?
    3.Who is Rihanna?

    I respect you bloggers who are demanding accountability from this government.

    Did you see the post above with images advertising BANKS Beer?

    Word to the BTA.

    The current generation of Canadian twenty something year olds do not know about Barbados like their parents did.

    That is why Rihanna is a good investment.

  44. @BAFBFP

    One sided in whose favour? If Rihanna did the show gratis who stands to make money?

    The Minister did meet with Rihanna and her people don’t know if this was to seal the deal or whether he was part of the negotiating team but Sealy and by extension the Gov’t would have to sign off on it, so if you want to be critical of the CEO of the BTA try another angle.

  45. @BAFBFP
    hmm. negotiating skills ? the collection agency in California cometh for the BTA.. not very good PR.
    @hants.. wouldn’t it be better to get all the numbers (audited) before declaring success. The show in itself was great but i would just hold off just a bit before popping the champagne cork.
    i have a hunch that we will see an uptick in economic activity due to this concert that will find its way into the Central bank report . Economic stimulus program via concert..innovative stuff this

  46. Sarge

    Sorry Padre, my criticism stands! The Minister’s involvement was as always, a photo op.

    But Hants, I wid you …! But young people who are the Rihanna following are not going to drink Banks Beer and they are not going to come to boring old Barbados! So I am just glad I got to see the show, VIP FYI!

  47. This is probably marketing money that would have been spent, overseas, on a few ads to gain exposure. So the money was spent and the exposure was gained, with some added domestic economic activity and an opportunity for Barbadians to see their most successful entertainer. What was the downside?

  48. @Alien the only downside hell only side to BAFBFP is he is an annoying jackass. Why not ban him for awhile David make him return when he takes his medication.Rihanna lifted Barbados in more ways than one Friday night congrats to her and everyone associated with LOUD in BIM.

  49. BAFBFP wrote “not going to drink Banks Beer and they are not going to come to boring old Barbados.”

    Really? I guess they only drink Molsons and Labatts. Next time you in the Tdot visit the entertainment district.

    I can assure you the value of Rihanna’s concert to Barbados will outweigh the costs but you can wait on the experts.

  50. @ Tan
    BAFBFP is an important contributor to BU even if he is a self appointed agitator.
    The blog needs the good the bad and the ugly. rite David?

    • @Hants

      BAFBFP is a bit of a provocateur but makes contributions in his own way.

      Actually he has been a lone voice in Barbados on matters dealing with productivity and diversification of the currency etc.

  51. Have you ever wondered why he is a LONE voice David? The PDC is the lone voice on abolition on taxation too.

  52. Seriously though, I just took the time to re-read ALL of my posts on BU over the years and cannot find one not even one provocative statement … Seriously

  53. Pingback: Barbados: Rihanna Helps Barbados’ Profile · Global Voices

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  55. David

    You speak kindly of me, thank you, but i hope that that does not mean that I will be forced to put gloves on when I respond to comments that you make … If so, I would rather say nothing.

    • @BAFBFP

      Unlike others elsewhere you should know by now we give as good as we take in the BU world.

  56. Quoting smooth chocolate August 6 at 7:21 p.m. ” politicians who travel on ‘government’ business for 3 days at tax payers expense, for $100,000? ”

    How come nobody told me that we were sending politicians to the moon? because only a trip to the moon would cost $100,000 for 3 days.

    David we need that “Freedom on Information Act” right away.

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