May 2019

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High Expectations For Sumfest 2019

Published: Thursday | May 16, 2019 | Janet Sivera – Gleaner Writer
Royalton’s Stayce Ingram (left), Island Strains’ Christopher Gordon and his wife Maria, were spotted out and about with the effervescent Richard Ferdinand of the Tryall Club (right).
Royalton’s Stayce Ingram (left), Island Strains’ Christopher Gordon and his wife Maria, were spotted out and about with the effervescent Richard Ferdinand of the Tryall Club (right).

Unlike previous years where the launch of Reggae Sumfest took place inside a conference room or an amphitheatre in Montego Bay, the promoters took to the beach for the 2019 launch of the Reggae music festival.

The stretch of sparkling white sand of the Iberostar resort in Rose Hall, formed the perfect setting, delighting the scores of Montegonians and their counterparts from Kingston and other places who streamed into the venue for an evening characterised by delicious Jamaican faire, dancehall music and a cocktail bar, where bartenders served up juices and concoctions made from some of the most sought-after top shelf liquors.

Head honcho, Joseph Bagdanovich of Downsound Entertainment, was his usual upbeat self, heaping praises during his address on Sumfest founders Johnny Gourzong, Godfrey Dyer, Robert Russell, Mickey Morris, whom he said, along with their other collaborators made a “great team”.

“The joy it brings to fans across the world is more than enough to make you want to do it all over again as long as you can, and for this I give thanks,” Bagdanovich said.

Bogdanovich also disclosed that a new section dubbed the Golden Triangle, will now become a feature of the festival, which according to Scatta Burell, would host the festival’s most honoured guests.

“It’s gonna be at the top of the top; it’s gonna hold maybe 50, 60, 70 people and it’s gonna be the bomb,” Bogdanovich said.

Reggae Sumfest will be staged in Montego Bay from July 14 to 20. The event gets underway with Mawnin Medz Beach Party, marshalled by Stylo G and Skinny Fabulous at Tropical Beach, followed by the Street Dance at the Old Hospital Park on the Jimmy Cliff Boulevard on Monday, closing out with the likes of Buju Banton and Beres Hammond on Saturday, July 20.

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“Veterans support International Reggae and World Music Awards – IRAWMA”
by K’Shema Francis May 13th, 2019
Industry players and mostly veteran entertainers turned out Saturday night at the 37th International Reggae and World Music Awards at the Jamaica Pegasus Hotel in #Kingston.
Reggae Sumfest was named concert of the year, Notnice scored Record Producer of the Year, and Stone Love took the title for Best Sound System or Deejay.
RitaMarley, Minister Hon. Olivia “Babsy”Grange, Freddie Mcgregor, The Heptones, Stone Love’s Fada Pow, Copeland Forbes, Clyde McKenzie, Capleton, Bounty Killer, Beenie Man, Queen Ifrica, Nadine Sutherland, former dancehall Queen Carlene, Jahvinci, and Downsound Records‘ Josef Bogdanovich were some of the celebs in attendance.

Koffee who hosted the awards along with Tony-Rebel, won three of the four categories she was nominated in. She walked away with trophies for Best Female Vocalist, Best New Entertainer, and Best Teen Entertainer.

Bounty Killer copped the Marcus Garvey Humanitarian Award for his work through his Bounty Foundation. During his acceptance speech, Bounty Killer urged his peers to support IRAWMA. While Beenie Man copped the Award for Best Caribbean Entertainer.

Spice walked away with female Deejay of the Year, and Wayne Marshall’s Glory To God was named Song of the Year.

Incarcerated by not silent, Vybz Kartel was named Best Male Dancehall Deejay of the Year. He also copped the title for Best Song for Underwater.

Popcaan nabbed the Bob Marley Award for Entertainer of the Year and his album Forever, was named Best Album.

Freddie McGregor took the award for Most Consistent Entertainer, Chronixx was named Most Cultural or Educational Entertainer and Cherry Natural copped the Mutabaruka award for Best Poet or Spoken Word Entertainer.

Tony Rebel, Mutabaruka and Boris Gardner were inducted in the IRAWMA Hall of Fame.

Live performances came from Capleton, Spice, D’Angel and others.

Under the theme “TheReggae50”, the International Reggae and World Music Awards closed at around minutes after 12.
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May 10, 2019
Buju Banton (right) performs with the legendary Beres Hammond at the Long Walk to Freedom concert in March.
Buju Banton (right) performs with the legendary Beres Hammond at the Long Walk to Freedom concert in March.

When it was announced that Buju Banton, Beres Hammond and Chronixx were the headliners for this year’s staging of Reggae Sumfest, the reaction from the public spoke volumes as to the amount of support the festival would receive this year.

With just over two months to go before the event gets under way, checks with several hotels in the parish of St James have revealed that most of the rooms have been fully booked until the end of July.

Reggae Sumfest’s chief organiser, Joe Bogdanovich, believes there is a direct link between the festival’s line-up and the sold-out hotels.

Pointing out that ticket sales have been going well, Bogdanovich said that he thinks the Beres, Buju and Chronixx combination is one of the main reasons hotels have been booked out this early in the season.

“Reggae Sumfest is usually a sold-out show. Hotels in the Montego Bay area usually see an increase in bookings around the period the show is being held, but this year, I know for sure the demand has been greater,” he said.

“I am not surprised some people can’t get hotel rooms right now, because based on the ticket sales, the demand for the show this year has been overwhelming. It is the best I’ve seen it since I took over the festival. I think the B.B.C line-up has a lot to do with it. Beres, Buju and Chronixx are three of the biggest artistes on the local music scene, and I think people really want to see them in action,” he said, adding that Beenie Man and Bounty Killer are expected to give legendary performances on the Friday night.

TICKETS GOING

According to Bogdanovich, tickets for this year’s festival are going so well that he and his team are thinking of adding another section to the grounds to meet demands.

“I am now thinking of building a whole new seating area, and it’s gonna be called the Golden Triangle. It will be for the more luxurious crowd. But all that will be discussed in another week or less because we are in the designing phase right now. I think we’re attracting more people this year than any other year, and we want to be prepared for that.”

Bogdanovich’s points are supported by statistics presented by Delano Seiveright, senior adviser/strategist in the Ministry of Tourism.

Seiveright told THE WEEKEND STAR that he has already seen increases in the number of hotel bookings for this year compared to the same period last year. He also said there has been an increase in the number of tourists who have booked flights to the island this summer.

“It is important to note that seat capacity for the destination this summer is 1,400,371 which is 108,872 or 8.4% more than 2018. The biggest growth is from the United States, which shows an increase of over 100,000 seats for the summer period (May through August 2019), compared with the same period in 2018,” he said.

“Jamaica has been experiencing very strong growth in tourist arrivals in recent times. This as a result of the multiple strategies pursued by the Ministry of Tourism and its agencies. Sumfest this year is mega, and already many hotels and other accommodations are reporting very high bookings, some of which is attributed to Reggae Sumfest.”

And for those who are yet to book hotel rooms, Seiveright is encouraging them to explore the Airbnb option and look beyond Montego Bay for accommodation.

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Reggae Sumfest 2019 Has a Pure Fyah Line-Up for Both Festival Nights! It doesn’t get much hotta than this all-star line-up of international #Reggae and #Dancehall superstars. Thousands flock from around the globe for the world’s biggest week-long reggae party in paradise…Pre-Events + The 2 Nights of Music make #ReggaeSumfest 2019 one for the Reggae Record Books!
Friday, July 19th’s Line-Up: Chronixx – Beenie Man – BountyKiller – Spice – Agent Sasco – Dexta Daps -Squash 6iix Boss – SpraggaBenz – ElephantMan – Munga Honorable – Govana – DoveyMagnum – Shane E – Chronic Law Jahvillani  Shauna Chyn

Saturday, July 20th’s Line-Up: Buju Official – Beres Hammond – Protoje – Romain Virgo – Christopher Martin – Jah9 Dalton Harris – Etana

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