Bianca Noons Tribute Concert Next Friday at Bar Rio

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Neutral Sisters Kyra and Bianca Noons

Bianca Noons, who passed away peacefully November 29 after lying in a diabetic coma for a year, was half of Houston sibling reggae duo the Neutral Sisters, memorably profiled by the Press' John Nova Lomax in a 2003 cover story.

"Two African-born, white-skinned Jamaican sisters leading a reggae band is something new, and it would be easy to write them off as a novelty act until you hear them," he wrote shortly before the Sisters' debut Live & Direct was released. "Bianca's raps, Kyra's elegant alto, the seamless harmonies and sharp lyrics elevate them out of that ghetto."

Noons, 30, worked as a DJ in Houston even before graduating from Bellaire High School in 1995, and worked as an accountant while she, sister Kyra and father/manager Tony tried to jump-start the Sisters' musical career.

Though they never became a household name, the duo's talent was sufficient to convince reggae legends like rhythm section/producers Sly & Robbie and guitarist Ernie Ranglin to work on Live & Direct - and to convince Jamaican stars like Ky-Mani Marley (son of Bob) and "Heels" vixen Timberlee to perform at Friday's tribute show alongside local reggae lights like Major Riley, Supa Neil and Kyra, who will no doubt perform the song she wrote in Bianca's honor, "Hold On" (above). - Chris Gray

9 p.m. Friday, December 19, at Bar Rio, 6400 Richmond, 832-251-9600. See here for ticket information, and www.neutralsisters.com for donation information.

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