Debbie-Ann Wright, News Editor
The Gleaner/Power 106 News Centre
Veteran musician Asley 'Grub' Cooper has said the $1.7 million which the Jamaica 50 Secretariat has said it spent on a song produced by Orville ‘Shaggy’ Burrell is excessive.
Yesterday, the head of the Jamaica 50 Secretariat, Robert Bryan, said the secretariat paid about $1.7 million on the song ‘On a Mission, which is to be used for the Jamaica 50 marketing campaign.
He said that money was for studio time, editing and mixing of the song and refreshments for the artistes on the single, as the performers had given their time free of cost.
However Grub Cooper, who is a founding member of the band Fab 5 and a veteran in music production, said even if he inflates the prices attached to producing a single, the cost would still be less than $450,000.
Cooper said on average such a song would not require more than 24 hours of studio time, which at most would add up to $70,000, with another $100,000 for editing and mixing.
He said it could cost another $100,000 for musicians, if live music is used, and a similar figure for arranging the song.
Cooper said the government will have to explain what accounted for the additional costs, noting that he does not believe the entire figure went into the actual production.
Controversy has surrounded the Shaggy-produced song ever since it was launched last week.
There has been heated debate about whether ‘On a Mission’ or the Micheal ‘Mickey’ Bennet-produced ‘Fly the Flag’ should be the official song of the Jamaica 50 celebrations.
However, the Jamaica 50 Secretariat has said it has not designated any song, as the official song and said members of the public will be asked to vote on the songs they think are suitable to be recognised as part of the Jamaica 50 celebrations.