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Freedom Sounds begins with Live Wyya

Published:Wednesday | May 21, 2014 | 12:00 AM
Carl Edwards (right) and Live Wyya in performance. - Photo by Carl Gilchrist

Author and lecturer at the University of The West Indies Dr Dennis Howard is gearing up to host a monthly series called Freedom Sounds.

The series is expected to expose new talent, as well as draw attention to some of the icons of and veteran contributors to Jamaican music.

According to Dr Howard, who recently released a new book called Rantin From Inside the Dancehall, the title for the series carries great meaning.

"Freedom Sounds is the title of a famous Skatalites song which was influenced by John Coltrane's Blue Train, and I love the tune," said Howard.

Bands to be featured on Freedom Sounds this month include Live Wyya featuring Nicky Burt, Black as Cole roots reggae band, Clancy Eccles Jr, and Sound Check.


Dread & Terrible album maker, Chronixx, will also share in the entertainment as a special guest artiste.

Freedom Sounds will be hosted every first Saturday of each month and, according to Howard, the series will continue for as long as funding permits.

He said patrons turning out to the event would not only be treated to good music but also a relaxed vibe.

"Patrons should turn out for great performances, intimate, relaxed vibes, great music, live and recorded, and food courtesy of Jacqui Tyson's From Yardstyle to Gourmet," he said.

In a musical climate infiltrated by a lot of foreign music, Howard believes his event will add fuel to the ongoing live reggae music revival.

"We are being inundated on radio by American EDM music, and the recorded-music scene in Jamaica seems to have lost it way. I am hopeful for the music, as live performances and new bands are flourishing and will mark a new beginning for Kingston's music scene," he said.

In addition to releasing his new book, Howard is working with up-and-coming Jahmento Records-signed reggae artiste dBURNZ and is assisting with the promotion of his debut single, Run Babylon.

Howard is also promoting a one-day music and food festival called Rum, Riddim and Spice.

That event is set for The Waterfront and will be held in the summer.

In the meantime, music for Freedom Sounds is to be provided by Shang-hi Solophonic Music.