First Post - 2015 - Band Launch - Island Gems - Ancestors of the Caribbean

Its Full blast band launch season and this is my first post! Yeah I'm slacking. I need an intern...
but on to the post..

Today's Review is Island Gems Band Launch

Island Gems is not new to the Miami Market. Its Fronted by a husband and wife duo Lesel and Peter who graciously invited me to their launch.

This group has grown exponentially over the past few years starting of as section producers and finally establishing their own band.

Their launch was at a venue that was new to me -.Studio 504.  I arrived on Island time to be met by the Soca Ranch Truck outside [thank god Shrimp Burgers] and fairly quiet parking lot However as we went inside the venue cleverly camouflaged the size of the venue and its set up. A large dance floor and stage at the end of a hallway - intersected by the bar and small waiting /admission area. Quite Nice - except it was a little hot when the room filled up. Maybe it was a ploy to sell more drinks - I think it worked.

Any way.. on to the costumes. Designed by Mas Brothers - an already established entity in Miami Carnival - known for their traditional designs, attention to detail and clean execution.

Their presentation is Ancestors of the Caribbean  and they are an all inclusive premium band.

African Pride

there is is still one section that has not been revealed that is being designed by local Doshynko.

What I especially love about this band, is that in an era of nakedness, and barely there, of bling and feathers - this band caters to all sizes, shapes, all levels of maturity, all levels of reveal. The designs really encourage all ages and sizes to come play mas. There is an option for every body type. Its an amazing spirit of inclusiveness.

I must also say that from the minute you entered the event there was a feeling of family and togetherness from the staff. From the DJ's to the Hype man to the costume assistants to the committee members. Everyone - This felt like an old school family band and I hope it continues to translate that way to their masqueraders.


Designer; Mas Brothers and Doshynko
Instagram: None
Registration Status - Open
Extras - This band has regular Fish Friday Events that I have heard are worth the trip.
Other Ventures:  Jouvert Band - Mischief Makers
Candid Pics from the Launch can be seen in our Costume Gallery Here:



Just In Case - I See You.

To the mas makers...

The old timers and the new.

To those who have to decide if they will pay their bills late this month versus ordering that braid that you MUST have for the backline costumes...

To the moms who have to do the day job and  THEN go home and make dinner and THEN do homework, and put the kids to bed and then go do social media, and work on the website, and check on the orders, and cover the wire for the headpieces. And wake up and do it all again the next day....

For the people in relationships who want to go to that movie, or that party, or to dinner but those back packs not gonna make themselves....

For those living on cafecitos and Red Bull at work..who have to master the art of multitask...cause you can't mess up the nine to five although the rest of the hours are your passion...

To the promoters - who want to see their vision come to spite of the risks to themselves and their well being..and strained friendships..

To those who do this every year, barely making a profit, NEVER making a profit....

If no one ever says this to you...

I acknowledge this personal sacrifice for your culture. I know this is more than profit, than fame or acknowledgement...

You are not invisible. Your efforts and energies are appreciated. I See you!

Thank you.


and just like that. Im Back...Late..but Im back!  


FEVER!!! is at a NEW VENUE!! this Wednesday Night.




"Ah feel me temperature rising"
Miami Carnival is here the madness starts. Can you keep up?

Wednesday October 8th, 2014


Your Physicians for the night:
Barrie Hype, Ryan Sayeed,  Jester and Dj Stephen
System Powered by SoundRev MediaGroup

Door: $15 and includes a FREE drink!
Dress code: Men NO shorts, No sports wear, White T's
Age: 21+
We reserve the right to refuse entry


One Island Band announces its secret location for Day Break! The attached press release was forwarded to us today!.

                                                                                            Media Contact: Sandro Solon

For Release Date: October 3rd


Miami Carnival Goers – Talk about Trick or Treat.  Masqueraders, the wait is over.  Friday, October 10th at 8:00am, the long awaited location for Day Break Miami: A Breakfast on Da Beach will be held at the North Shore Bandshell located on the beach on 7275 Collins Ave Miami Beach, FL.

Since the release of their Carnival weekend line up, the talk has been about this secret location.  At the Bandshell, party goers will get to experience live performances by Sizewe, Wildfire, Young Voice, Mr. Killa, 5 Star Akil and more surprise artists.  The Sunset Miami fete will also be held at the picturesque venue just a few days later in honor of One Island Band and DJunction masqueraders.

Day Break: Breakfast on Da Beach is a unique breakfast party that highlights our collaborative effort with Greater Minds Inc., a charitable outreach program based in Ft. Lauderdale. Proceeds from this event will be donated to the charity.  Caribbean menu consists of tasty Trini treats like bake and shark/saltfish, corn soup with mimosas & sangria as complimentary upon entry. Get your $40 tickets now as the price will go up as of midnight tonight.     

More treats than tricks, One Island Band has included a packet with pick-up and drop-off times for the convenient Miami Carnival Bus Ride.  Chartered busses will transport masqueraders and spectators from the Deauville Beach Resort directly to the parade. Pricing is at $25 round trip (Trick or Treat Masqueraders or Deauville guests through One Island Mas) and $35 for non-Trick or Treaters. For details, seat reservations, or bookings please visit The packet also includes the route of Carnival.

The bus will leave the Deauville Beach Resort 12:30pm sharp and returning from the parade at 11:15pm

For additional information, to purchase tickets please visit, email, or call: 718-812-8323, 646-382-6110, 917-570-8654 or 212-844-9418

Big and Strong Promotions’ brand of sophisticated cultural events has brought “The Ultimate Experience” to clients in the New York region and beyond. Celebrating its 13th year, Big and Strong's subsidiary One Island Body Paint Band, is the largest NY based Carnival bands to participate in South Florida's annual Caribbean Carnival.



Weekend Recap.....

Guys, this weekend was quite busy in Florida for band launches.  Unfortunately I couldn't personally attend ANY of them....smh, but based on social media [call it internet stalking] I could tell that all events were well attended and appreciated. It is the season!!

First up was the launch of Injection Promotions Jouvert Band " Water Colors" on Friday. I stalked the owner  of Injection promotions Pinky via IG over the weekend, and noticed injection shots, a swinging crowd, body paint!!

This is the band's second year in the Jouvert scene and their energy is obvious!! Check out their website here . Or follow on FB or IG.

Look out for a feature on Pinky on the blog soon!!

Next up was Mascots' band launch of their 2014 Presentation - "Mi Vida Caribena." I must say that Miami costumed bands  are doing SO very well this year. And Mascots is making it very difficult for people to make choices as to what band  to play in. Mascots formula has always been consistent - gorgeous costumes, and a family vibe...It seems like that they have done the same this year.

While their website is not displaying 2014 costume information yet, based on social media..[call it what you like] the costumes literally wowed the attendants. I must say too that their website presentation really creates some anticipation for visitors. Well played!  While you cant see the 2014 costumes yet the use of the video and images from previous carnivals  was a great move.

One of their sections, however - Bloom Carnival - is up and running with their own website.

These images are from their website:

I'm so excited to see the other sections in their photo shoot glory. I was able to score one picture from social media of the other sections.

[sourced from FB profile of committee member Sadie Sankar]

It does not disappoint!  

Make sure to sign up at the bands website so you can be alerted of updates and registration information. Check out their IG , FB and Website

Next up was the launch of  veteran Band Generation X's Presentation " Poseidon's Kingdom".You can see pictures of the launch here courtesy of Islandbox. As always Generation X offers three options for their female section - Backline - Front line and Section Leader

These are pics I found on their IG

 Ocean Waters
 Poseidon's Lust
 Sea Coral
 Sunken Treasure

My favorite of course is the yellow...but I'm biased when it comes to that color..!

While the gallery of costumes on their website hasn't been updated - their online shopping cart for costumes is UP and running - some saying SOLD out! This has been a tactic of Genx for years. If you must have the costume try to contact the specific section leader. #BGITR Tip. Please check out their website.

Like I said - Bands have really stepped up their game and are making it quite difficult to decide where you will play this year.

On top of that MBOC has allegedly managed to actually give us some real TRUE ROAD to play on....not just around and around in a circle. We have ROAD!

Have you chosen your costume yet? Did this post help or hurt? Soon we will have close up images of these costumes - especially for the out of towners - to help with your decisions.

Stay Tuned!



Band Launch Review: Unleash - D'Junction Mas

First let me apologize for this really late post. My job has NO chill these days. I would like to thank D'Junction Mas for allowing us access to their costumes before presentation so that we could get some close ups. It's not always that bands are receptive to allowing access prior to showing

D'Junction presented "Unleash" at the Entertainment Warehouse and they unleashed a WHOLE SET of sexiness. I love that the costumes have so many intricate details. I love that, in my opinion they have gone another step forward than their debut year in design and intricate details. One thing for sure is that there is a lot of sexiness. The options for cover is SLIM to none.

By now you would have seen most the costumes. If, for some reason you have not, check out our facebook page of some close ups: D'Junction Costumes

Their 2014 presentation consists of 6 sections. 5 made by returning designer Rawle Permanand and another section by Clivia of Carnivaldiva.







Love Birds





Pic taken from Strikah Poze

Midline (SOLD OUT)


Pic courtesy of Strikah Poze





Frontline & Backline

I am very pleased with D'Junction Mas' presentation this year. I think for their 2nd year they have really shown improvement in their design concept. After Saturday's presentation I walked away totally excited about Savage Beauty Frontline but now over the week Cobra frontline is also really catching my eye. AND I AM NOT A FRONTLINE GIRL!

Costume prices start at $280 and run up to $450. Djunction is an all inclusive band with a host of djs.

I see my top 10 costumes for the season  post being a difficult one with many other bands still to launch.

For prices on Costumes/Band information and Registration:



Band Highlight: Euphoria Mas - Let's Dance

We were unable to physically attend Euphoria's launch as we had to head out of the country quickly. Thanks to our friends at Official Vibes who very nicely shared their pics with us.

The thing I love though about Euphoria is their organization. I cannot vouch for the on the road experience as I have not played with them, but if their on road experience is anything like their band launch presentation to on site registration then I see no worries there. Euphoria ALWAYS has their website up and ready to go coinciding with their launch so we were not left to wonder about costumes.

Euphoria is a feteing band so this year's presentation falls aptly in their area. With costumes designed by Richard and Anthony, it was no surprise that after the launch there was a sold out section.

They are presenting Let's Dance for Miami Carnival 2014 with 6 sections.

Sweet Soca: (Sold out)



Sexy Samba






Swan Lake



Cabaret: (Sold Out)







Each sections has a male costume. Prices for Euphoria costumes range from $230 or backline to $380 for Frontline costumes. Males are $195.

My favorite costume, after much back and forth is Flamenco frontline. I love love love the bra detail on that costume. Swan Lake and Sweet Soca frontlines are not far behind.

I'm very glad that Euphoria as kept their standard up as it relates to costume and design and expect them to continue to grow as a brand and a band in Miami.

They are also doing double duty since they also have a J'ouvert band this year dubbed "Dutty Pleasures". Anyone who registers to play "pretty mas" and also play with them for j'ouvert will get a discount.

For more information on Euphoria Mas Let's Dance and their J'ouvert band "Dutty Pleasures, check them out everywhere:

For more pics of the launch check out this album from Official VibesEuphoria Mas Band Launch Pics