Expectations high for Reggae Month
Sadeke Brooks, Staff Reporter
With limited funding, Reggae Month will kick off tomorrow but expectations are still high for new Committee Chairman Charles Campbell.
"It's a challenge to do any kind of event, much less a whole month of events, without adequate sponsorship," Campbell told The Sunday Gleaner.
"I see it as a challenge but not a problem because the fraternity has bonded together and provided all sorts of support."
He said the Government has promised to provide technical support and he is still hoping to receive some form of sponsorship from the Jamaica Tourist Board.
Unlike previous years, Reggae Month this year is being planned by industry players and not the government.
Last year's Reggae Month committee chairman, Howard McIntosh, pointed out that "a significant amount of funding is required to make this year more successful than last year".
Planning for this year's celebration, he said, began as early as last May when the new committee was set up.
"The committee was put in place early to give them a longer time to plan. The success of the planning efforts will be shown in how things turn out this year," McIntosh said.
Through collaborations with the Jamaica Cultural Development Commission, Jamaica Reggae Industry Association, Jamaica Association of Vintage Artistes and Affiliates (JAVAA), the film industry and several other organisations, a wide range of activities have been scheduled for Reggae Month.
To kick-start the month, there will be a Dennis Brown Tribute and a Reggae Month Kick-Off Street Party and Concert today in downtown Kingston. Tomorrow will also be recognised as Dennis Brown Day. Throughout the month, there will be events such as a church service, bus tour to Trench Town, JAVAA Tribute to the king and crowned prince, Bob Marley Day, Prime Minister's Reception, Reggae Month Film Series, Annual Bob Marley Lecture, Global Reggae Studies Conference, Fi Wi Sinting, Reggae Month Free Concert, Honour Awards, Jamaica Day and Reggae Village Negril.
The month will also be saluted at weekly events such as Passa Passa, Uptown Mondays and Weddy Weddy. In addition, it will be saluted by Rae Town, Christopher's Jazz Café, Merritone Disco, Jamaica Poetry Society and Jamnesia. The EME Awards and RE TV Awards are also on the calendar of events.
Campbell said he expects the month to go well.
"My expectations are to lay the foundation for Reggae Month to continue to highlight the best that Jamaica has to offer and consolidate that Jamaica is the musical Mecca of the Caribbean," he said.