Tag: Caribbean


Networking A Priority At Sumfest’s Reggae Symposium

Published:Friday | June 28, 2019 | Kimberley Small/Staff Reporter

The synergy between cannabis and Jamaican music; the relevance of radio in the advent of social media; the technical art of sound engineering; the question of appropriation or misappropriation and the correlation between music and violence are all topics to be tackled during the Reggae Symposium, on July 12 at the Mona Visitors’ Lodge on The University of the West Indies, Mona campus.

As part of Reggae Sumfest’s expanded week-long activities, the symposium casts a more scrutinizing gaze on the local music industry, with the hope to facilitate networking and learning opportunities for aspiring music business professionals.

Though he was not a participant for last year’s inaugural symposium, music scholar Clyde McKenzie revealed that he was present at the genesis of the idea to introduce elements that extend Reggae Sumfest into a form resembling major international music festivals.

“The trend is for festivals around the world to encompass as many different features as possible. In discussions with Joe Bogdanovich, I said that a symposium would be a nice feature. He was in agreement because his mind seemed to be going in that direction,” McKenzie told The Gleaner.

He continued: “Joe and Sumfest should be applauded for this initiative because it is another facet of a festival that we need to highlight. You need to be entertained, but you also need to be informed. The aim is for younger people in the business to get the opportunity to network with and learn.”

Free of charge, the symposium only requires online registration for attendants. “There is not a cent charged for it, and we’ll be making sure there will be refreshment and snacks so people are comfortable coming there. There is limited space. There are opportunities to register via the Reggae Sumfest website. First come, first served,” McKenzie said. kimberley.small@gleanerjm.com

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Bounty Killer is really feeling himself right now and rightfully so.
The dancehall kingpin says he is proud of the fact that three years shy of 50, and after more than 27 years in Jamaica’s music industry, he is aging like fine wine. “Gyal dem say mi aging gracefully; handsome dem wah hold mi ransom and 47 fit me better than 27,” the Killa declared recently in an Instagram post, which attracted more than 10,000 and hundreds of comments from adoring female fans.

Bounty Killer, born Rodney Pryce in Kingston in 1972, grew up in the battle-hardened community of Seaview Gardens in Jamaica’s capital, Kingston. He celebrated his 47th birthday two weeks ago on June 12, 2019.

The artiste, who stands at six feet two inches tall, has credited the practicing of good eating habits learned from his late mother Miss Ivy, as well as doing push-ups, for his sleek form and youthful appearance.

His tendency to spend copious amounts of time with his own children, as well as chilling with, and mentoring other youngsters through his foundation, may also be having some impact on the Killer maintaining his youthful looks.

Less than two weeks ago, he was in the company of several at-risk boys in Kingston, providing motivational talks as a part of #OurSons – an interactive session for boys and young men under the Bounty Killer Foundation.

The doting dad was also recently captured in a photo, sitting in the stands at one of his younger daughter’s school’s sports day where he took time out to give her his undivided support.

The self-proclaimed Poor People Governor shot to prominence in 1992 and became a household name following the legendary clash with arch-rival Dancehall artiste Beenie Man a year later at the Sting 1993 show, at Jamworld in St. Catherine.

This year at Reggae Sumfest, Bounty will square off with Beenie Man, in a much-anticipated friendly musical rivalry stint on Friday night, July 19, at the Catherine Hall venue in a segment dubbed ‘One night, one stage, two legends,’ a performance the artiste has predicted will be explosive.

His almost three-decade musical span has seen the release of iconic tracks such as the sound-system clash classic, Dub Fi Dub, Copper Shot and Spy Fi Die in his early Dancehall days, appearances on Multi-platinum discs, recording with some of the biggest names in world music, a joint Grammy and a plethora of other accolades.

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Chronic Law Drops Feel-Good Single “Live Life”
by J.D. Smith  June 26, 2019
Chronic Law drops a new track “Live Life” listen to it below.

Here we go again another Chronic Law another BIG SONG. “Live Life” his new track outlines the changes his life has gone through over the years. “But my life change up perfect, Nuffa dem seh mi aguh dead early, Nuffbwoy mi see hype and when dem reach up high dem drop like bird sh*t.” This track distributed by Johnny Wonder’s 21st habilos distribution is primed for DJ decks this summer. Another one in the theme of summer happiness has entered the dancehall sphere.

Chronic Law is one of the new breakout acts in dancehall this year. He is aligned with the new 6ixx crew headed by Squash. Law will be taking the stage at Reggae Sumfest in July when the 6ixx crew is expected to close Dancehall Night.

Gwaan do it Law Boss, Live Life!


Daddy 1 ready to prove lyrical potency
by Stephanie Lyew – STAR Writer
June 20, 2019

Another name coming from the famed dancehall alliance known as the 6ix is Salt Spring native Daddy 1.

Armed with a story and catchy chorus lines, Daddy 1 says he is ready to prove himself lyrically loyal to the 6ix and worthy to dancehall fans worldwide.

Daddy 1, given name Adrian Bailey, is the youngest member of the alliance, next to Bobby6ix, brother of frontman Squash.

“We grew up together in Salt Spring and ever since then Squash has been like a brother to me, and in 2016 him give me a chance to start do music,” Daddy 1 shared.

The 20-year-old says he received the name from his mother.

“From them hear the name, them say it different and all that was left to do was show that I am different; I always knew I would get a buss because my style is different and because of the love and determination I have for music,” he told THE STAR.

The newcomer has already released more than five tracks in 2019, some of which he said, “Like Next Level, Custom, Out Here and Anthem are attracting dubplate business from selectors and sound systems as far as Japan; although new to this, money can be made.”

He said that people have become more curious about him since hearing that the 6ix will be on Reggae Sumfest.

“Dem want to know what this young deejay bringing to the stage but it’s a great feeling to even know we going be at this event, and me want the people know me have it under control,” he said.

With a personal style Daddy 1 describes as ‘cool and deadly’ in the way he dresses and how his lyrics are constructed, he believes there is potential for a Grammy as a trap-dancehall artiste.

His most recent release, Women’s Empowerment, is a female anthem and possibly one that will have females, new and old, in the music industry going wild.

Daddy 1 gives respect to his own mother Shelly, while in the same breath ‘bigs up’ artistes and disc jockeys like Shenseea, DJ Sunshine, Koffee, and Jada Kingdom, for being independent.

“Ah just two girl me hear ah talk weh never even know me a Daddy 1, and me squat ah listen and one a dem say she don’t want no man unless them say 6ix and me go write the song Anthem – is just music,” he explained, “and the females deserve it once them a put in the work.”


Published:Sunday | June 23, 2019 | 12:16 AMSade Gardner – Gleaner Writer
Ian Allen

Elephant Man is a music junkie, period.

A saunter through his mansion in Havendale, St Andrew, revealed stereos blasting local radio station ZIP 103FM near the poolside while music from a flatscreen TV filled the halls of the main floor.

Ele himself is a walking music library. For almost every life experience he recalled, he trailed off in a beat, thumping his chest, snapping his fingers, and deejaying his best impersonation of Bounty Killer, Shabba Ranks, Beenie Man, Mad Cobra, Simpleton et al, with joy in his eyes and gratification on his face.

He attained no formal training for a talent that would earn him scores of chart-topping singles. Instead, the Seaview Gardens-bred artiste honed his craft by toasting among friends and isolating himself in a room with Celine Dion on repeat, as he taught himself to reach challenging notes.

“Musically, mi did always know a waa gwaan. My house did deh two gate from Shabba Ranks’ house. Bounty Killer live bout five minutes up the road. Ninjaman never come from Seaview, but anytime him come, we run up the road and look pon him from head to toe cause a our god that. We learn from them man deh, even Supercat. Dem tek music serious and nuh play round wid performance,” Ele told The Sunday Gleaner.

‘We’ included childhood friends Nitty Kutchie and Boom Dandimite, with whom he would later form Scare Dem Crew, with Harry Toddler from Waltham Park Road, Kingston.

Though he had an endorsement from Bounty (he even got a gig cutting grass for his mother, Miss Ivy), Ele’s mother did not approve of his musical ambitions.

Given name Oneil Bryan, the Norman Manley High School student earned his moniker through his ‘Dumbo’ nickname derived from his sizable ears. First deejaying on ‘Vietnam corner’ in Phase One, the 16-year-old took his skills to the neighbouring Waterhouse community at King Jammys studio, where things took a new turn.

“Jammys and everybody start record Killer, and Killer seh him buss, but him friend dem still deh deh. We seh come mek we start Scare Dem Crew cause we nah go buss solo,” he said. “Killer used to call we out pon shows, and a so we start get recognised.”

Ele fashioned the idea of members dyeing their hair to distinguish themselves from other crews, and Toddler was game. Kutchie kept his hair black, but Dandimite later got on board. With tracks like Many Many, Nuh Dress Like Girl, and Girls Every Day, the group bore success before disbanding in 1999.

Dancehall was on a new wave by the new millennium, and the following year produced Elephant Man’s solo album debut, Comin’ 4 U, on Greensleeves Records. His biggest record is the 2003 dance number Pon De River, Pon De Bank, which spearheads a slew of dance hits like Signal the Plane, Blase, Scooby Doo, and Fan Dem Off complementing earlier tracks Online and Log On.

His catalogue supports his affinity for music, with a range of sampled works like Bad Man a Bad Man, remixed from R. Kelly’s The World’s Greatest; Willie Bounce, sampled from Gloria Gaynor’s I Will Survive, and Bun Bad Mind, a take on the gospel single Hear My Cry Oh Lord by Marvia Providence.

His star factor was supported by his signature lisp, spirited performances, and variegated outfits, and it did not take long for international acts to notice. His collaborative projects boast names like Janet Jackson, Busta Rhymes, Mariah Carey, Lil’ Jon, and Kat Deluna. He also did a stint at P Diddy’s Bad Boy Records, which released his Grammy-nominated album, Let’s Get Physica l, in 2008.

Growing fame accompanied some bumps in the road. Father to 20 children, Elephant Man’s personal life has been blasted in the media, with claims that he is not an active father. Then there were the court cases, a repossessed car, and other rumours swirled. “We’ve been through it. When you’re a likkle youth coming from nothing to something, people a go talk things, but at the end of the day, never mek a rumour be true,” he said. “Me take care of my kids, but sometimes you and the mother have a dispute, and you know how that go. Memba mi deh ya good one time and dem seh Ele have AIDS. Me seh, weh dat come from? Mi nuh dead, mi deh ya. That’s how people is. Me stay strong cause the fittest of the fittest shall live, and God nuh waan no weakness inna Him camp.”

Now 42 years old, he recently completed a European tour and is getting ready for festivals like Reggae Sumfest and Reggae Rotterdam in July. He still assesses the dance circuit and gives kudos to artistes like Ding Dong and Chi Ching Ching for continuing to spread Jamaica’s dance culture.

And for that little kid or music fanatic who happens to stumble across the history books of the entertainer’s life, he hopes to be immortalised as “that hard-working dancehall artiste who took dancehall to that level like the Reggae Boyz. Just like yuh can pick out the footballers who did certain things, when it comes to dancehall, you should be able to pick out Ele in the top five and say he did this or that. I’ve gotten a fair run. Me sell gold, me get Grammy-nominated, me fanbase large, and there is proof to show it.”

With thousands of music-lovers attending reggae festivals, activists have long worried about the environmental impact. From hundreds, to hundreds of thousands of guests, festivals of every size create many forms of waste, stress the environmental infrastructure of an area, require mass amounts of energy, increase emission levels and pose potential damage to the festival site. Reggae festivals across the globe have implemented similar programs – recycling, reducing single-use plastic products, using compostable materials, providing reusable water bottles, hosting educational forums, requiring pack-in/pack-out policies, offsetting carbon emissions and more – to shrink their footprint on the environment.
( Originally printed in the “Reggae Festivals Go Green” article in Reggae Festival Guide 2019 Magazine by Jessica Farthing and Irene Johnson)
Reggae Festival Guide is thrilled to see that the world’s premier reggae festival – Reggae Sumfest, is now “Going Green” with support from the Queen of Caribbean Radio #NikkiZ Nikki Z. They recently posted this caption on their Instagram:
Go Green with Sumfest as we partner with the @RecyclingPartners and @alligatorheadfoundation for the 27th staging of this festival. 📷
Here’s how we will be playing our part:
@RecyclingPartners will be managing collection of plastics for the week of Sumfest July 14-20 to ensure that proper recycling practices are met.
@alligatorheadfoundation will be showcasing how recycled plastic can be used to create useful items facilitated by the use of a 3D printer
We and our partners will be doing at least two beach cleanups. One before the festival and one after the festival – let us know if you’d like to help
So Go Green 📷 with Sumfest this year …Recycle and Reuse. Let’s save our environment and our beautiful island 📷
Reggae Festivals are one of our favorite things in life, however, the waste that accumulates from these huge gatherings has become quite an issue. We at RFG commend Reggae Sumfest for taking the initiative to recycle + upcycle plastics and do beach cleanups. To learn more please visit reggaesumfest.com

“Elephant Man returns to Sumfest after five years”

Sade Gardner – STAR Writer
June 19, 2019
It has been five years since #ElephantMan touched the Reggae Sumfest stage, but his zestful performances have not changed. The full force of the ‘Energy God’ will be on show when he makes his return on Festival Night One at the Catherine Hall Entertainment Complex in #MontegoBay, St James, on July 19.
“We always bring a good and crazy show for the people dem. The ‘Energy God’ never change. We still a climb on stage. We still a jump inna di crowd. We still a do all of that,” he told THE STAR.
“The last time we do all of that, dem seh dem a sue me fi mash up dem instruments. So we nah go bring it to da level deh, where we a mash up nothing or hurt nobody, but yuh done know we giving the people the energy non-stop.”
The Crazy Hype deejay was a staple performer on the show, making appearances for 10 consecutive years, before deciding to take a step back. His decision was motivated by a few reasons, including wanting to create a demand and longing for his interactive sets.
“I’ve been doing it for so long, and sometimes you have to give it a breather. Nobody nuh waah drive one car for 30 years. You a go want a change. So me just seh, mek me give it a break and mek the people see me fresh again,” he said.
“They called me two times after the last time I performed, but the price never did too ‘hundred’ for me, and the next time dem call, I had different obligations. Even concerts like Best of the Best I used to do every year and stopped. Yuh nuh want it reach a point where when you go on stage, people seh dem tired fi see you and dem see you last year, the year before and the year before. No. Yuh fi mek dem embrace back yuh presence and seh, we haven’t seen you for a while on the stage.”
Since his last appearance, the festival was acquired by businessman Joe Bogdanovich from previous principals Johnny Gourzong, Robert Russell and Tina Davis. Elephant Man commended Bogdanovich for altering the festival nights – excluding the former international nights to highlight more local acts.
“Me like the vibes and direction weh Joe take it to. We might not have no international artistes, but him put out a 100 per cent fi di Jamaican artistes and make it our festival, and that is good,” Elephant Man said.
“Him captivate the people from abroad wid the grass roots and let dem know you’re not coming here to see Akon or Mariah Carey. You’re coming here to see nothing but dancehall. If you look on the line-up, it’s all ‘gas pedal’ non-stop. There is a different variety of artistes, and everybody is excited for Reggae Sumfest, so it’s gonna be crazy.”

Reggae Sumfest (c) Jamaica Tourist Board

The highlights of the event week are the two festival nights on 19 and 20 July. These evenings feature some of the island’s biggest stars – from contemporary roots reggae such as Protoje or Chronixx to dancehall greats like Govana to music legends like Beres Hammond.Things are getting hot again in Montego Bay: From July 14 to 20, 2019, the well-known holiday resort on the Caribbean island of Jamaica will be host to the largest reggae festival in the world for the 27th time – the “Reggae Sumfest”. More than 50,000 visitors are expected.

Reggae is far from the only one, but the most famous style of music in Jamaica. He developed in the late 1960s from his predecessors Mento, Ska and Rocksteady. Through musicians like Peter Tosh, Jimmy Cliff and of course Bob Marley, the reggae became world famous and also influenced international pop culture.

Because of its key role in Jamaican society and its spiritual importance to the Rastafarian community, the Reggae 2018 was included by UNESCO in the list of intangible cultural heritage.

Many young Jamaicans today prefer the harder and electronic “riddims” of the dancehall. Nevertheless, reggae is and remains an integral part of Jamaican identity. The “Reggae Sumfest” is just one of many opportunities on the island to meet this unique style of music.


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06/08/2019 by Press Release

The Global Soundclash event prior to Reggae Sumfest’s Main Nights features Selectors from around the World!
From Japan: YARD BEAT
from Canada: KING TURBO (World Clash Champions)
from Germany: WARRIOR SOUND
plus Jamaican heavyweights: RICKY TROOPER and PINK PANTHER!
Jamaica’s rich music and culture which have impacted and infused itself throughout the world also produced the soundclash, which is one of the many musical standouts which originated in the country that birthed reggae and dancehall. More classically defined, a soundclash is a DJ battle (mostly in reggae and dancehall) where two collective sounds – consisting of one or more selectors (or DJs as they say in the U.S.) – go tune for tune. They often use custom remixes (aka dub plates) featuring drops from marquee artists to win over the audience.
On Thursday, July 18th, Jamaica’s largest music festival Reggae Sumfest brings back the Global Sound Clash again this year to Pier 1. At 8pm the nail-biting competition begins between leading sounds from Jamaica, Japan, Germany and Canada – Ricky Trooper, Pink Panther, Warrior Sound, Yard Beat and King Turbo.
Following the packed and riveting World Clash 20th Anniversary Sound Clash of Reggae Sumfest 2018 at Pier One [VIEW THE PHOTO REPORT HERE!], the 2019 All-Star Global Sound System Shoot-Out promises to be an exciting competition.

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LA Lewis ready to answer Sumfest call

June 10, 2019
LA Lewis
LA Lewis

Dancehall artiste LA Lewis believes that his Sumfest debut is imminent and could happen as early as next year.

“Me and Joe (Bogdanovich) always have a good relationship and he’s always boosting me to go in the music business. Every year, Trillionaire Records and LA Lewis play our part in promoting Sumfest, but next year certainly, I’ll be booked for it,” he said. “This year we’re supporting Sumfest behind the scenes and on the ground but next year, we a run the stage. It’s going to be a star time when the ‘seven star general’ touch Sumfest stage. You know I’m incontestable so there’s nothing to contest wid me.”

The entertainer revealed that despite making strides in the music industry in recent times, he believes the timing wasn’t right for him to introduce himself to the Sumfest audience and so even if he was offered a spot, he would have declined.

He added that having laid a solid foundation over the past five years, he is now ready to put his 100 per cent behind solidifying his music career.

“Over the years, LA Lewis was always in the marketing side of the industry and the promotion side. I’m the guru, the god of social media, the street god. Me did a make me name in the streets and build mi ting a certain way before me come out there wid di artiste thing serious, serious,” he said. “My company Trillionaire Records is up fully now … so we’re heading into the music business fully now. We even have a new artiste name Shynetyme from MoBay that we’re working with, and we a work wid artiste like Lybran and the 6ix dem also.”

The artiste also congratulated Reggae Sumfest on its 27th anniversary, stating that as the birthplace of reggae, he is proud that Jamaica has managed to sustain a show of Sumfest’s magnitude for so long.

“Sumfest are the ones holding up the dancehall and the reggae music industry, not only in Jamaica, but the world. Everyone knows that Jamaica is the factory, so any time the factory bruk dung, the whole world a go bruk dung. Me affi thank Joe for carrying on this, and Mr (Johnny) Gourzong dem for holding it out over the years. The thing is on a next level now.”

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