#International Reggae Day - Celebrates ‘From Jamrock to Hip Hop’
Last Friday, International Reggae Day (IRD), the global celebration of Jamaican culture produced annually on JulyOne, had its virtual launch event on VP Records’ YouTube channel. From their Kingston base, the legendary King Jammys sound system rocked the digital space with a slew of hits, which included a segment dedicated to late producer and Jammy’s protege, Bobby Digital.
Under this year’s theme, FromJamrock2HipHop, IRD will highlight the game changers and share the rich history of the genesis and continued connections between Jamaican music and hip hop. DJ Kool Herc, Biggie Smalls, Heavy D, Busta Rhymes, Supercat, Shinehead, Pepa Denton (Salt ‘n’ Pepa), Fugees, Beenie Man, Bounty Killa and Damian Marley are being saluted as IRD 2020 Game Changers.
Among the activities to be showcased during the 24-hour livestream, is the IRD Selecta Pull Up featuring nine selectas/sound systems from various countries in themed sets. Headlining these are the DJ Kool Herc and Shinehead, and also on the lineup are Germany’s Sentinel Sound, DJ Raiz with Ministereo Publico Sound System of Brazil, and India’s Bass Roots Foundation system.
The online event will feature ‘IRD Performances and Shoutouts’ by a mix of established and emerging reggae artistes including Richie Spice, Lila Ike, Sevanna, Jaz Elise, Naomi Cowan, Botswana’s Chantty Natural, Shuga, Hempress Sativa, Gihrl, Yaadcore, Abka Kaba, Australia’s Nattali Rize, South Africa’s Carlos Djedje, Itesman and Don Dadda, Brasil’s Jimmy Luv, Buguinha, Lela Aruda, Miss Ivy and Bangroo, as well as Groundation band from California and Alerta Komarada from Colombia.
The Sunsplash Preservation Society will present a special one-hour broadcast of Dennis Brown In Concert at Reggae Sunsplash on the official website and platform ireggaeday.com. Simultaneous online events on JulyOne will include a festival in South Africa and a concert in Sierra Leone.
Four hourlong IRD panels events will be hosted around the world. They are the IRD Kingston Panel, Rebel Music: Reggae & Hip Hop as the Soundtrack to Global Resistance; the IRD NYC Panel, From Jamrock to Hip Hop in association with St John’s University; the IRD London Event: Marcus Garvey’s Influence on Reggae Music, hosted by British Black Music, and the IRD Washington DC panel, themed Building the Reggae Mecca in a Post-Covid World, hosted by the Jamaica Music Conference and IRIE JAMZ 360.