Sat | Mar 25, 2023

Errol Dunkley's birthday concert takes J'can roots - Event done without sponsorship

Published:Friday | March 30, 2018 | 12:00 AMMel Cooke/Gleaner Writer
Errol Dunkley
Pam Hall
Carl Dawkins

"There is a lady we paid to get sponsors and nothing happened. The agent just said she can't get any sponsors and gave us back our money," Dunkley said.

Having staged the event from 2016 out of personal funds, without corporate backing, Dunkley said "it is very hard, but it is my life. I am not afraid to invest, it is my career."

This year Dunkley is slated to do a 40 - 45 minute set in which he intends to include a couple of the tracks from the new album he is working on. While those songs will be introduced (Dunkley is mulling naming the album Cool Runnings after a track he believes the tourism powers would be interested in), there are many well established songs which the former child star has in his arsenal. Among them are OK Fred, Movie Star (done over by Wayne Wonder, with Buju Banton deejaying in the combination version), You're Gonna Need Me (among the hits he had as a 14 -year-old, after starting out professionally at 11 with Prince Buster as his producer) and You'll Never Know.

The full line-up includes 'Pam Hall, Gem Myers, Natty King, Jackie Parish, Merciless, Kojak, King Evrol, Dennis Walks, Hopeton James, Carl Dawkins and special guest from London, Jah T. Lloyd Parkes and the We The People Band will support the vocalists. Dunkley said that in putting the line-up together, one of his considerations was presenting persons whose songs were well known, but not necessarily the performer to the same extent. There is a connection with his special guest, around the birthday celebration, Dunkley saying that he used to go to England annually for his birthday concert in which Jah T was involved. With it now being held in Jamaica, there is no England celebration.

"After the concert, it is back to work on the album," Dunkley said.