Buju Banton Removes Infamous Homophobic Song from His Catalog

March 25th, 2019

Reggae icon Buju Banton banned his 1992 dancehall hit, “Boom Bye Bye,” from his music catalog, according to UrbanIslandz.com.

Although the Jamaican-born artist has not performed the song since 2007, the anti-LGBT song has been at the center of several debates on its language. On the recording, he raps “boom bye, bye inna batty bwoy head,” which translates to putting a bullet through a gay man’s head.

via Buju Banton Removes Infamous Homophobic Song from His Catalog.

VP Records Opens “A Reggae Music Journey” in Jamaica

February 14th, 2019

VP Records, a reggae music company, along with artists Christopher Martin, Raging Fyah and Kemar Highcon, took part in a ribbon cutting ceremony opening "A Reggae Music Journey" at Jamaica’s Sangster International Airport. The multi-media exhibit is part of the label’s yearlong celebration of its 40th anniversary and chronicles its history of working with some of the biggest artists in reggae music. The grand opening included impromptu performances by Christopher Martin and Raging Fyah, as well as remarks by Chief Executive Officer of MBJ Airports Limited, Dr. Rafael Echervarne, and VP Records Co-founder Patricia Chin. 

via VP Records Opens "A Reggae Music Journey" in Jamaica | Travel Agent Central.

More than a music festival – Rebel Salute ready to set the tone for the next 25 years

January 18th, 2019

After a quarter of a century, Patrick ‘Tony Rebel’ Barrett is still intricately involved in organising the hallmark event – Rebel Salute. Held this year under the banner of ‘The Preservation of Reggae,’ Tony Rebel and the Organic H.E. A. R. T. Group of Companies have developed the event into much more than a reggae music event.

Speaking to The Sunday Gleaner earlier this week, Rebel was occupied with meetings at the St Ann Parish Council, readying the town for the influx of patrons to Grizzly’s Plantation Cove on Thursday and Friday January 17 and 18. Settling in a quiet area, he revealed exactly what is to be expected from this year’s signature event and for the next 25 years."We need to set the precedent, not just of a show – but a holistic festival, where people come for everything – camaraderie, food, art, entertainment, knowledge of the herbs, reggae music, and culture – and to preserve it more than what UNESCO has said. That is the tone we’re setting," he said.

via More than a music festival – Rebel Salute ready to set the tone for the next 25 years.

Sister Carol: “Reggae Inna Mi Blood”

November 12th, 2018


Sister Carol, respectfully and affectionately known as the “Black Cinderella” and “Mother Culture,” is both a pioneer and pillar of reggae music. The last of three female reggae artists to ever be nominated for a Grammy award, Sister Carol is one of the most highly accomplished, glass ceiling-shattering, charismatic, and unique figures in the entirety of reggae’s rich, robust history.

I was fortunate to interview Sister Carol after she headlined the first ever L.A. Reggae Vegan Fest, held on the first Sunday in October. The many topics we discussed included: veganism and living an “ital” lifestyle; Jamaica and some of the problems it’s confronting; marijuana; different “mansions” of Rastafari and the diversity that exists in Rastafarian beliefs and practices; respect for women; her fondest memories of late reggae superstars Dennis Brown and Sugar Minott; and much, much more. What follows is a transcription of the interview, modified only slightly for clarity and space considerations.

via Sister Carol: “Reggae Inna Mi Blood” .

Fourth Annual Jamaica Food & Drink Festival

October 8th, 2018

It’s that time of year again when we just have to give in to the fact that we all have to buy ‘roomier’ clothes once October is over. The fourth annual Jamaica Food & Drink Festival JFDF runs October 20 – 28, and this year promises more deliciousness and support for Kingston’s tourism sector.

JFDF 2018 officially kicked off with a media launch Thursday last at the University of Technology UTech Jamaica School of Hospitality & Tourism’s hotel facility.

via Fourth Annual Jamaica Food & Drink Festival.

Sheldon Senior cancer free and in pursuit of reggae stardom

September 23rd, 2018

Now cancer free and fully devoted to his career, Sheldon Senior has landed the cover of one of the world’s most reputable reggae magazines: IRIEMAG. In a nine-page spread, the aspiring reggae artiste recalls his odyssey from Mandeville, Manchester, to the United Kingdom and back; the balance between teaching and recording music; and his battle with lung cancer.

Based in California, IRIEMAG covers the happenings in the reggae industry. Reggae artistes like Iba Mahr, Protoje, Jah9, and Kabaka Pyramid have been featured in the publication along with other musicians, engineers, and music industry professionals. "I feel blessed and honoured. I have worked hard for years, and it’s truly rewarding to see a magazine such as this take the time to introduce my work," Senior told The Gleaner.

via Sheldon Senior cancer free and in pursuit of reggae stardom.

In Misty’s footsteps

August 5th, 2018

American ballerina Misty Copeland continues to inspire young girls of colour worldwide to achieve the highest in the world of ballet.

That story rings true for 19-year-old Erica Lall, a dancer in the corps de ballet of the prestigious American Ballet Theater (ABT), the same company for which Copeland is currently a principal dancer.

Lall, who was this year named among the ’25 To Watch’ by the industry glossy Dance Magazine, was born in Cypress, Texas, a community in Harris County just outside Houston in the United States, to a Jamaican mother and a Trinidadian father. Her mother, Hermoine White, is originally from Linstead, St Catherine, but grew up in Kingston.

via In Misty’s footsteps.

Reggae music takes over Downtown

August 5th, 2018

Hundreds of music lovers packed Albee Square in Downtown Brooklyn to watch reggae band Meta and the Cornerstones perform on July 28. The band was the musical entertainment of Downtown Brooklyn Partnership’s pop-up beach party — a beach-themed outdoor event at the center of Fulton Mall. The event attracted coastline fanatics, music enthusiasts, and even passerby in the area, said one woman.

“We were actually Downtown to see a movie and when we came out we bumped into the show,” said Ilka Selby, who was with her daughter Mia. “We saw the crowd and heard the music and stayed because the music was really nice.”It was her first time hearing music from the reggae roots band, and she was amazed with their performance and style.

via Reggae music takes over Downtown.

Reggae Label Trojan Records Details 50th Anniversary Releases

May 20th, 2018

Founded in 1968 by Lee Gopthal and Chris Blackwell, two Jamaican ex-pats living in London, Trojan helped introduce an array of reggae artists to mainstream audiences. The label’s catalog includes music from Lee "Scratch" Perry, Desmond Dekker, Jimmy Cliff, the Pioneers and the Maytalls, while its Upsetter imprint was responsible for releasing much of Bob Marley and the Wailers’ music in the U.K.

Trojan’s upcoming 50th anniversary release itinerary includes the three-disc Ska and Reggae Classics collection (out May 25th), the two-CD sets This is Trojan Roots and This is Trojan Dub (June 22nd) and the coffee table book, The Story of Trojan Records (July 5th). Laurence Cane-Honeysett wrote the The Story of Trojan Records (he previously chronicled the label in his 2003 book, Young, Gifted and Black), which also contains illustrations, photographs, record sleeves and other previously unseen archival material.

via Reggae Label Trojan Records Details 50th Anniversary Releases – Rolling Stone.

What to Do (and Wear) in Jamaica’s Coolest Beach Town

May 20th, 2018

Negril — a laid-back Jamaican coastal town — has everything you’d want from an idyllic island getaway.

There are long stretches of sandy beach lined with restaurants, bars, and vibrant street vendors; cliffside hotels and restaurants overlooking glittering Caribbean waters; and, of course, Bob Marley’s greatest hits playing around every corner.

Whether you’re looking for a weekend of romance or partying, Negril can offer both.

Below, we round up the best things to do and what to wear for a perfect weekend in Jamaica’s coolest beach town.

via What to Do (and Wear) in Jamaica’s Coolest Beach Town.