Good evening. Welcome.
The Honourable Olivia Grange, His Worship The Mayor Senator Councillor Delroy Williams, distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen….
DSE became an owner of Reggae Sumfest officially in May, 2016 a little over two years ago.
Local audience attendance in our first year increased substantially from the previous year. We also introduced our Live Stream that connected fans globally opening our gates to hundreds of thousands.
2017 local attendance increased significantly with fans on Dancehall Night remaining well into daybreak to near capacity. This was a sight witnessing the power of Peace & Love and has been etched in many fans memory, perhaps forever.
Our streaming attendance transformed Reggae Sumfest into a truly
international festival with an international live fan attendance close to a million and in our aftermath literally 10’s of millions watching on line and increasing daily. This says a lot for the concept “Our Music, Our Festival”.
2018 looks to be even more promising. This year’s line up is simply awesome. We have expanded the festival to 8 days with 7 preview and post events and 2 weekend live stage shows.
Last year we introduced the food court which was a hit and this year we are introducing the Merchandise Mall featuring 18 local vendors with their goods.
We have also introduced a daytime Symposium appealing to local folks who want to learn more about the industry and how to get involved. This Symposium will also embrace ideas in support of the intellectual cultural experience that many abroad thirst for. Reggae Sumfest – something for everyone. I also want to recognise the addition of three new sponsors Master Card, Jet Blue, NCB and Grace.
And now for the reality that I’m sure is on peoples minds. The state of emergency order that began in January of this year and has been continued to August 2nd has returned peace and tranquility to Montego Bay. Over the months I think it’s now safe to say that a wave of fresh air has returned to Montego Bay where people feel safe and the smile of optimism can be seen on many faces. I have been told that tourism numbers continue to increase and from the looks of things July will be another bumper month for the city, the festival and the country. I and other team members are in discussion with the police and the government and I believe we all recognise the positive energy that Reggae Sumfest brings to the people of Montego Bay and to the country. I’m confident that the government will do the right thing and I’m confident that the people will do the right thing. Let’s celebrate together, Our Music, Our festival – Reggae Sumfest. Thank you.
I think that all who have shared in the Reggae Sumfest experience over the last 25 years will agree that the promoters have got it just right.
This is indeed the greatest Reggae festival on earth.
I am proud to see the continuation over the years and the value that Reggae Sumfest has brought and continues to bring to Jamaica’s music industry.
Before Reggae Sumfest, there was Reggae Sunsplash and I want to pay tribute to those who gave of their time and effort to make it a reality. That event gave birth to a large number of festivals around the world including Rottotom Sunsplash, Reggae on the River and numerous others across all continents.
So it is time again to experience “Our Music” right here at home. Reggae Sumfest 2018 in Montego Bay!
I have so many fond memories of this festival since its beginning in 1993. I applaud the work of the production teams past and present and I commend the vision of Joe Bogdanovich. He has moved Reggae Sumfest further into the technological sphere while keeping it authentically Jamaican.
Personally, I am looking forward to the “World Sound Clash” event on Thursday, July 19 featuring Tony Matterhorn, Mighty Crown, Pink Panther and Ricky Trooper.
The Street Dance on Monday, July 16 on the Hip Street also taps into our authentic Jamaican culture which so many visitors crave and travel to experience each year.
The Breakfast Party fits into an evolving 24-hour party vibe that is becoming quite popular in our entertainment landscape.
The best artistes in Reggae and dancehall will be on show come July 21 and 22. Based on the line-up, this may be one of the best years of Reggae Sumfest.
This evening, I also want to speak to you a little about the importance of sustaining festivals such as Reggae Sumfest that highlight Jamaican music and culture. We know for a fact that worldwide it is the Culture and Creative Industries that are leading the growth of the economies of many countries.
In addition, within the creative industries, it is the festivals, and what is now dubbed “the Festival Economy” that are providing economic sustainability across the world.
I am determined that our festivals, particularly our music festivals, will play a significant role in building the economy. So many people benefit from our music festivals — from the big executives, to event planners, to production teams, to artistes and performers, to vendors, to the peanut man, to the dressmakers, to taxi operators.
There is space for everyone to earn in the festival economy.
On June 13, the Ministry of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport will partner with the British Council and the JCDC to host an all-day seminar and workshop called “Festival X”, to equip our festival organisers with the information, technical support and seed funding to ensure that we “up di ting” in professionalism and creating unforgettable experiences.
In applauding the Reggae Sumfest Team, I wish to pay tribute to Robert Russell for his commitment to Reggae Sumfest, working along with Joe who has put his money were his mouth is.
My Ministry is working to unearth and develop creative talent and business capacity towards building the festival economy and delivering prosperity to our people.
Congratulations again and I anticipate another wonderful staging of the greatest Reggae show on earth — Our Music, Our Festival.
Patoranking: Taking Jamaica by storm ON JULY 29, 2017
By BENJAMIN NJOKU
Saturday, July 22, would remain significant in the annals of history, not because it was the day the biggest reggae festival in the world- the Reggae Sumfest shut down Jamaica. But importantly,the day Nigerian dancehall star, Patoranking broke the record as the first African artiste to perform at the festival. The ‘My Woman, My Everything’, singer took to his Instagram page to express his happiness. He said his unborn children would one day learn about his legacies as the first African artistes to perform at the reggae festival. ‘My kids will be taught in school how their father was the first African artiste to perform at the biggest reggae festival in the world. If you believe it you can achieve it…I pray for my colleagues/African artistes to experience the same open doors.’ ‘I may never have come this far if I don’t have doubting Thomas dem/haters but please don’t stop doubting or hating I really need more of that. Am already in 2018 and my New video just dropped….Welcome to my World,’ he wrote.
Patoranking Expressing further excitement, Patoranking, who performed alongside Jamaican great reggae stars such as Alkaline, Mavado, Bounty Killer, Dexta Daps, Spice, and Tommy Lee Sparta at the historic festival, narrated how he sang ‘Alubarika’, the song that changed his life to over 20,000 people in Jamaica. Sharing his excitement with Jamaican Splash, in an interview, 27-year-old, Patoranking whose real names are Patrick Nnaemeka Okorie, said:
‘I can’t find the words to accurately express how I feel… it’s a dream come true for me, a really big deal. But first and foremost, this one will go down in the history books and this is something I will tell my kids — that I was the first African artiste to perform on the Reggae Sumfest stage in Jamaica. I am so happy to be here in a country I have dreamed about so much, sharing in this vibrant culture and learning more about these beautiful people.”
Patoranking couldn’t wait to excite Jamaican audience with his electrifying performance. His hit My Woman, My Everything, has truly earned him a legion of fans in Jamaica, with his recognisable dancehall flavour on top of a undeniable Afrobeat rhythm.
“I have always wanted to be the voice of the voiceless. So my music and lyrics must always say something for those who can’t speak for whatever reason. With My Woman, My Everything, I strongly believe there is someone… a taximan, a bus driver and conductor, who needs the words to express himself to the woman in his life, and this is the perfect track. I have to give big respect to Wande Coal who collaborated with me on that track and provided such a great hook. For Jamaicans to know and love my track is just another amazing thing for me. I grew up on reggae and dancehall music. I knew them before I knew about hip hop. I knew of Jamaica before so many other countries in the world. So for my music to be available to Jamaicans is just another moment for me.”
Patoranking’s hit song ‘My Woman, My Everything’, reportedly has earned him a legion of fans in Jamaica, with his recognizable dancehall flavour on top of a undeniable Afrobeat rhythm. “I have always wanted to be the voice of the voiceless. So my music and lyrics must always say something for those who can’t speak for whatever reason. With My Woman, My Everything, I strongly believe there is someone… a taxi man, a bus driver and conductor, who needs the words to express himself to the woman in his life, and this is the perfect track. I have to give big respect to Wande Coal who collaborated with me on that track and provided such a great hook. For Jamaicans to know and love my track is just another amazing thing for me. I grew up on reggae and dancehall music. I knew them before I knew about hip hop. I knew of Jamaica before so many other countries in the world. So for my music to be available to Jamaicans is just another moment for me,” he said.
Since the first edition of the festival in 1993, Reggae Sumfest, “the biggest concert festival in Jamaica”, has attracted top artists in the genre including Beenie Man, Elephant Man, Damian and Stephen Marley and others. Pop acts 50 Cent, Usher and Rihanna have also performed at the festival. Patoranking, who took the Nigerian music scene by storm in 2015, with his hit ‘ Alubarika’ has continued to be a force to reckon with, in African music scene. He is a judge on the singing talent show The Voice Nigeria.
Read more at: http://www.vanguardngr.com/2017/07/patoranking-taking-jamaica-storm/