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reggae (7)

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PRINCIPAL DIRECTOR OF THE CULTURE AND CREATIVE INDUSTRIES POLICY DIVISION IN THE MINISTRY OF YOUTH AND CULTURE, DR. JANICE LINDSAY, SAYS A COMMITTEE WILL PREPARE THE DOCUMENTS NEEDED SO REGGAE CAN BE LISTED.

KINGSTON, Jamaica, Tuesday February 9, 2016 – Jamaica’s Ministry of Youth and Culture is moving to have reggae inscribed on the United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization’s (UNESCO) representative list of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.

Principal Director of the Culture and Creative Industries Policy Division in the Ministry of Youth and Culture, Dr. Janice Lindsay, says the ministry has set up a committee to prepare the documents expected to be submitted in March 2017.

“We have so far had one meeting. It has been a robust meeting. Essentially, the discussions have been about how we describe reggae when we put forward that nomination file,” she disclosed on Sunday.

Dr. Lindsay said the global appeal of reggae was why it should be inscribed on UNESCO’s list.

“We need to protect that distinctive history of reggae as an intangible heritage and we need to do this before someone else presents the elements in some other form as theirs,” she stressed, adding that the move would have far more bearing on future generations.

“[The young ones], 50 years from now, would not have forgiven us if they lived to read in bits and pieces that there was a music emanating from our country and that it was lost over time, because there was no proof of the origin and distinctiveness being uniquely Jamaican.”

Dr. Lindsay argued that important stories of Jamaica’s music must be safeguarded “since it is the only sure way of protecting the integrity of the music.”

 

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Sizzla leads August Town revival

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BY RICHARD JOHNSON Observer senior reporter johnsonr@jamaicaobserver.com

SIZZLA is working to bring cultural and historical awareness within his August Town community through his Sizzla Youth Foundation.

 

The artiste is spearheading month-long celebrations for the August Town Emancipation Birthday, commemorating 177 years since the St Andrew community was officially established.

 

"It is paramount that we remind the youths of the community where they are from and the rich history and tradition which they must uphold. They must be aware of the strong links to the fight against slavery as the original settlers in these lands came from the Mona and Papine plantations... so we just need to re-education the community so they know where they are coming from so as to chart the course forward," said Sizzla.

 

The celebrations started Wednesday with a peace march through August Town.

 

Other events include the unveiling of a wall dedicated to renowned August Town spiritual leader Alexander Bedward. This takes place tomorrow.

 

A Senior Citizens Day is scheduled for August 2. August 6 is Bedward Day at the Bedward Temple in the community. The Greater August Town Violence Prevention Day is set for August 13, while the World of Reggae Concert featuring Sizzla and friends is at the UWI Bowl, Mona, on August 16.

 

The month's activities are completed by the Back-to-School Family Affair and Treat at the UWI Bowl on August 30.

 

According to Sizzla, his foundation which was founded in 2010, wants residents and persons from outside August Town to be aware of the good that has, and can come from, the area.

 

"We want to eradicate violence from August Town. This can only be achieved by instilling values which stress Africa and education. We must rejuvenate the minds and with that we can achieve much," he said.

 

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Duane Stephenson and U.S. Secretary of State, Hillary Rodham Clinton, meet in Washington, D.C. during a World Food Program award ceremony on October 5, 2010.
WASHINGTON, DC - Reggae singer/songwriter Duane Stephenson was recently invited by the World Food Program (WFP) to perform in honor of the United States Secretary of State, Hillary Rodham Clinton. The event took place at the George McGovern Leadership Award ceremony in Washington, D.C. on Tuesday, October 5.
Stephenson was at the tail end of his U.S. tour with the Wailers, and the two parties previously teamed up for a song that manifested a partnership with the WFP. "The Wailers and I are partners with the World Food Program," says Stephenson. "Our song 'A Step for Mankind' has helped to spread the message of the need for more action in addressing the issue of world hunger."


Duane Stephenson and U.S. Secretary of State, Hillary Rodham Clinton, meet in Washington, D.C. during a World Food Program award ceremony on October 5, 2010.

Stephenson was thus invited to perform at the ceremony that included political dignitaries and social activists from around the world at the prestigious event, where Secretary Clinton was presented with The George McGovern Leadership Award for her work to curb global hunger.

Stephenson reveals he is humbled and excited by the experience. "It's so inspiring to be in the company of global politicians and dedicated corporate partners who share the same values and aspirations to eradicate hunger," states Stephenson. "Food is a common bond that unites every single life form on this planet, we all require it to live, yet a billion people each night go to bed hungry and 25,000 of them die."

Stephenson disclosed his work with the World Food Program will continue as he sees the issue of world hunger as one that is very important to him. "I was happy to be there to see Secretary Clinton get this award as she has fought for this issue for years now. Hunger affects a billion of our brothers, sisters and children in 80 countries. This award will bring added attention and raise awareness of the issue."


Duane Stephenson with World Food Program Executive Director, Josette Sheeran, and Ian Barrett (son of Ashton "Family Man" Barrett of The Wailers).

Duane Stephenson just wrapped up touring the U.S. as the opening act for the legendary Wailers, and promoting his sophomore album Black Gold, released by VP Records on September 28, 2010. Black Gold is the highly anticipated follow-up to Stephenson's debut album From August Town, which was released by VP Records in 2007 and was hailed as one of that year's best reggae albums.

Ian Barrett, Hunter Biden (son of U.S. VP Joe Biden) and Duane Stephenson.

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Richie Loop

At 23 years old, one of the newest rising artist Richard ‘Richie Loop’ Webb, has begun to make his audience sit up and take notice as he makes strides toward solidifying his name in the music history. With a budding catalogue, the singer, songwriter and producer, who already has three singles in rotation on radio within the Caribbean and abroad. Born and raise in the parish of Clarendon, Richie Loop attended Clarendon College but has always had a love affair with music and all that it embodies. An entertainer at heart, he dabbled in dancing and acting as a child. Later he pursued studies in Information Technology at Excelsior Community College and upon completion, worked at Gumption Recording studios as a composer. It was while working at the studio that he received the name Richie Loop. Wanting to further his growth, he ventured to Gal A Rush Recording Studios, where he spent five months fine tuning his craft. During that time he was afforded the opportunity to work with veteran reggae artist Derrek Morgan. It was while working with Derrek Morgan that Richie Loop got his big break when he was approached by Robert Livingston CEO of Scikron Entertainment, also known as Big Yard Music Label, and was instantly offered a contract. Richie Loop describes his experiences with Robert Livingston as a critical learning process in his career as a singer, songwriter, composer and producer. He goes on to say, "In my daily musical walk, I am able to learn from one of the greatest manager/producer of all time and continue the legacy of Scikron Entertainment." My main focus is to work on improving my skills by incorporating new styles of beats (a fusion of dancehall, disco, rock and hip hop) and songs that people will enjoy." One of the biggest riddim that consumed the airwaves in late 2009 to date the ‘Brainstorm’ rhythm produced by Richie Loop and D-Lynx, and has followed-up with ‘Maad a Road’ and ‘Sweat Shop’ rhythms. Additionally, he has produced songs on two of the rhythms he brought to life namely - ‘She Wants It Good’ on the ‘BrainStorm’ rhythm and ‘Gal Whine’ on the ‘Sweat Shop’ rhythm. The production of such captivating rhythms have not only gained Loop media attention but it has also allowed him the opportunity to work with notable artists such as Shaggy, Christopher Martin, D-Lynx, Iceman, D-Major, Ce'cile, Voicemail, Red Fox, Lukie D, Tony Matterhorn and upcoming female dancehall artist Rae Tay. In February 2010, Richie Loop stepped behind the mic and voiced what is setting it self up to be a party anthem, ‘My Cupp.’ The single has been an instant catch that garnered attention from radio, disc jocks and various media outlets. This multi-talented phenomenon shows no sign of slowing down as he hopes to work with other Jamaican artists as well as international acts.

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Photo by: GBurkeImages

Una Morgan is the sole female sibling of the Reggae band of this decade, Morgan Heritage. Despite having ten studio albums under her belt with her family band, having performed for stadium-sized audiences across the world, and having garnered much of the success and longevity that many artistes can only hope for, Una took a step back from the limelight in 2006. “I wanted to take time to recreate and develop myself physically, mentally, and spiritually.”

 

 

During this time she also focused on building her production company, SIA Entertainment, strengthening family ties, improving her physical health and connecting with her spirituality. As a true performer, however, Una could not sit back idly. Now as a solo artist she has developed with her own distinctive sound. Una Morgan’s signature sound is a blend of Reggae, Dancehall, Pop, Hip Hop and Soul fused to be appropriately called Raggasoul.

 

With this distinctive sound, an excellent voice, and great studio production, Una’s single ‘Giving’, produced by Lenky ‘Diwali’ Marsden (producer of Sean Paul, Nina Sky etc.) perfectly captures her sound. She is also excited about her contribution made on the ‘Tribute to Haiti’ track produced by the great Handel Tucker (producer of ‘Close to You’ and ‘Just a Little Bit Longer’ by Maxi Priest, ‘House Call’ by Shabba Ranks and various hits with Sly and Robbie and Beenie Man).

 

Una is also working with acclaimed local and international producers on her debut solo album. She is very excited about working with multi Grammy Award winning producers Commission Gordon (credited with work for Lauryn Hill, Amy Winehouse and Joss Stone), a collaboration that was set up by Rubikon ENT, who list Gordon among their clients. Her solo album presents collaborations
with established and new names in the industry. On her album, she worked with other established producers and writers, such as Stephen McGregor, Jimmy Cozier, and Taj from the 90’s group The Boys. Una has also returned to her hometown of Springfield, Atlanta to work with rising stars such as Kiana India, ME, and producer “X”.

 

To address the rumors, Una ensures her fans that her solo venture is not signaling the breakup of Morgan Heritage. “We always knew that we would build as a group, use that foundation to take things to the next level, and then come back to the family.” You can even find some more Morgans on the credits, with brothers Mr. Mojo and Gramps assisting in mixing and production, a true testament to the strong bond that keeps their
family together.

Una performing in Charlotte, NC. Photo by: GBurkeImages

 

Looking to fully capitalize on her groups’ international success, Una has recently signed to Gary George Inc. (GGI) and Rubikon Entertainment management companies to use their pooled wealth of resources for management and legal services to propel her development. Rubikon is a UK-based management and legal firm that provide management and legal & business affairs to a slew of prominent artistes and producers amongst other entities.

 

Miss Morgan, even though blessed, has not let her accomplishments go to her head. She remains humble and has made it her personal mission to use her celebrity status and music to champion issues such as health, weight management, self-esteem, and other issues plaguing women around the world. “I’m very concerned that many young women today are doing things to please everyone else. We need to work on being one with the Creator first, and I hope my music can inspire young women to do that.”

The Raggasoul songstress, Una Morgan, hopes that with her new album, entitled ‘Just Me’, she can show her evolution in music, life, and spirituality, while continuing to uphold her family’s legacy.

 

Source: Gary George Inc/SIA Entertainment

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GBurkeImages Photo
On CIAA weekend in Charlotte, NC. Elephant Man provided his many fans with an entertaining concert at the Neighborhood Theater. The event put on by Brightworks Promotions was well attended and Elephant Man had his fans especially the women rocking to his favorite beats.


To see many more photos of the concert and fans visit: gburkeimages.com

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Students from Winston Park Elementary and Parkway Middle School participated in the Arts Inspire... workshop. FORT LAUDERDALE – The Broward Center for the Performing Arts, designated as the county’s first international cultural embassy by the Broward County Board of County Commissioners, has given students a passport to other cultures through its interactive “Arts Inspires…” annual workshop, which has featured artists such as Romero Britto and Pablo Cano. Recently during “Arts Inspire… Jamaican Rhythms," percussionist Willie Stewart led a drumming workshop for 60 fledgling musicians from Winston Park Elementary and Parkway Middle School. Stewart, who has performed around the world and with legendary performers such as Stevie Wonder, Carlos Santana, Bob Marley, Quincy Jones, Sting and Michael Jackson, educated students on the influence and impact that Africa has had on Jamaica’s people, rhythm/music and culture. The workshop was presented by the Broward Center for the Performing Arts and the School Board of Broward County with participation by the Jamaican Consulate. “With a significant Jamaican community in South Florida, we are pleased to partner once again with the Broward Center to educate, celebrate and promote Jamaican culture to local students,” said Consul General Sandra Grant Griffiths of the Jamaican Consulate. The Abdo New River Room of the Broward Center was the backdrop for the workshop, where students were first introduced to percussion instruments from around the world. They then focused on musical concepts such as rhythm, timing and beat; tonality and harmony; performance techniques; and the role of percussive music forms in ritual and culture. The workshop culminated with a performance by Stewart and the students, who demonstrated the rhythms they learned during the workshop to an audience that included School Board of Broward County members Maureen S. Dinnen, Phyllis C. Hope, and Benjamin J. Williams; The Honorable Sandra Grant Griffiths of the Jamaican Consulate; and representatives from the participating schools. “The School Board of Broward County is committed to educating the total child,” said Maureen Dinnen, of the School Board of Broward County. “The arts are a critical component of our educational programming, kindergarten through 12th grade. In the workshop, we saw students energized, excited and inspired to meet and learn from Willie Stewart. We are proud to participate in such a rewarding program that offers our students enriching and memorable educational experiences.”

L-R: Maureen S. Dinnen, School Board of Broward County; Willie Stewart; Sharon Brooks, Broward Center Director of Education. More than two million students have attended educational programs at the Broward Center through the nationally award-winning Student Enrichment in the Arts partnership program with the Broward Center and Broward County Public Schools. The two organizations also collaborate on initiatives which encourage literacy skills among pre-school and elementary school children. “Collaboration has always been central to the Broward Center’s mission. Our partnership with Broward County Public Schools allowed us to create the “Arts Inspires…” program, which connects talented artists in our community with our students and helps them learn about the rich mosaic of cultures we enjoy in South Florida,” said Broward Center President and CEO Kelley Shanley. “I am delighted that the event focused on the tapestry of cultures that have influenced Jamaican music – and highlighted the richness of Jamaican culture. Our partnership with the Jamaican community, which started with the Jamaican Consulate in Miami and continues to grow, has allowed us to bring many exciting Jamaican events to the Broward Center.”

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