Sat | Apr 4, 2020

300 hit songs, Garvey’s son for Rebel Salute opening night

Published:Friday | January 17, 2020 | 12:50 AMCarl Gilchrist/Gleaner Writer
Treesha, reggae singer from Kenya, performing at the Rebel Salute international launch.
David Hinds of Steel Pulse performing at Rebel Salute’s international launch.
Dr Julius Garvey speaking at the Rebel Salute international launch.
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The artistes billed for the opening show of Rebel Salute 2020 have, according to promoter Tony Rebel, more than 300 hit songs combined to deliver and will perform before an audience that includes Dr Julius Garvey, a son of Jamaica’s National Hero Marcus Garvey.

Tonight’s line-up also includes comedian Christopher ‘Johnny’ Daley, who’ll be there to inject humour into the proceedings.

At Wednesday night’s international launch of the 27th edition of the festival at Jewel Dunn’s River hotel in St Ann, Rebel said that acts such as Steel Pulse, Toots and the Maytals, Sanchez, Beenie Man, Singing Melody, Papa Michigan, Leroy Sibbles, General Trees, and Lone Ranger, among many others, are expected to treat patrons to a treasure trove of Jamaican hits this weekend.

Garvey’s attendance is important, Rebel pointed out.

“We have a foundation that gives scholarships to students at Marcus Garvey Technical High School. Dr Garvey is a direct descendant of our first national hero, so it couldn’t get more direct than that. And we revere Marcus Garvey, who we think is one of the greatest philosophers in the Western Hemisphere over the last century.”

Away with slackness

Garvey will not only be enjoying the music, but will speak at the festival.

“The culture that is being honoured, and way of life, is simple and is natural, and developing that among our youngsters, I think, is very, very important,” he said.

“You do away with the slackness, you let them understand that they have to discipline themselves in terms of diet and in terms of who they are and their function within society. So in that sense, I’m joining forces with Tony Rebel.”

The launch on Wednesday included snippets from artistes booked to perform on the festival, including Steel Pulse’s David Hinds, Abby Dallas, Papa Michigan, The Meditations, Treesha from Kenya, among others.

“Patrons can look to see a great show from The Meditations on Saturday night,” Ansel Meditations told The Gleaner after exiting the stage. The Meditations are known mostly for their huge ’70s hit Woman is Like a Shadow.

Hinds of Steel Pulse, a band that last performed at Rebel Salute 10 years ago, said patrons could expect the group to draw from their collection of hits over the years. These include Rally Round the Flag, Stepping Out, Chant a Psalm, along with new tracks from their Grammy-nominated album, Mass Manipulation.

And according to Singing Melody: “Friday night (tonight) will be alive and kicking!”