Garfene Grandison, Gleaner Writer
Just imagine being able to mix rhythms anywhere and anytime just through your Internet connection without obtaining special software or downloading music. This has become a reality for true for mixing aficionados.
Today, jamaicansmusic.com will be launched exclusively to Jamaicans. Jamaicansmusic.com is dedicated to cataloguing and recording the history of Jamaican music and the artistes who have made this music popular.
From mento to dancehall; the aim of jamaicansmusic.com is to create an encompassing database of Jamaican music and Jamaican artistes.
Features of this site include a brief history of the different Jamaican music forms, artiste profiles (bio, latest tracks, images and links to their social media pages), more than 3,000 videos, Jamaican culture section, a rhythms archive (allowing persons to listen to any of the 300 rhythms currently on the site), Jamaican blackberry wallpapers originally designed, more than 20 live radio stations, more than 300 mixtapes to download, new dancehall and new reggae of the month sections.
The music, stored in the virtual turntable system, will be easy to search by song title, artiste, genre and rhythm.
accessible to fans
Mixtapes and Mix CDs will be made accessible to fans. More than 400 are already on jamaicansmusic.com, with more to come. These make party music easy due to the fact that up to 10 pre-mixed CDs can be queued and set to autoplay for an all-night session.
"Efficiency at its best," Alex Morrisey called it.
"To set up yourself as your own DJ, this revolutionary system also allows you to shop, download, pull up, cross fade, and control volume as you creatively blend music. If a song is available on iTunes, you can select it, pay for it directly and download it to your computer. You can download many songs free - with the permission of the artiste or producer. The cross-fade feature allows you to switch smoothly from one turntable to the other," he said.
On the launch day, 5,000 songs will be accessible. New tracks and rhythms will also be added as they are released.
"Very cool site. I love the player which has a sarato vibes. It's just different," said Don Corleon.
Deejay Chinese Assassin also said: "On July 3, mixing could be within reach of every youngster and will no longer be the domain of those who can afford the thousands (of dollars) for equipment."
A highlight of this service said Morrissey is the fact that for the first three days, the virtual turntables will be free for all users. The site's facebook page http://facebook.com/jamaicanmusic will announce competitions for fans to win a free one-year subscription.
However, monthly users will be asked to pay a small fee of approximately US 25 cents per day to cover the heavy bandwidth costs. The facebook fan page has more than 26,000 fans as well as more than 8,800 followers on twitter.
The plan is for Version 2 of the virtual mixer to be launched on New Year's Day, 2011. V2 will incorporate a record button allowing the mixing session to be saved to the desktop and other new features. Jamaicansmusic.com is currently hit by more than 100,000 visitors monthly - the number increases every month. It is becoming the website of choice for Jamaican music fans all across the world.