The dancehall community is outraged about the planned Jamaica 50 celebration concert series for this summer.
Recent reports suggest that there are no artists from the dancehall genre on the roster for the concert. This has not gone down well with some dancehall artists.
The Respect Jamaica 50th concert series is scheduled to take place from July 25th to August 6, around the time of the 2012 Summer Olympics in London. It’s conceptualized via AEG Live and will see reggae fans in their thousands flocking the O2 Arena in the English capital.
Dancehall star Konshens says it is a slap in the face to all artists of the genre.
“I think that’s a slap in the face to all Dancehall artistes,” Konshens told the Gleaner. “Whoever a organize dat nuh appreciate wah Dancehall do over the years. Dem nuh respect Dancehall artistes fi wah dem do over the 50 years since Jamaica got Independence.”
Dancehall icon Bounty Killer also echoed the same sentiments.
“God go wid dem. Jamaica land we love same way, big disrespect that still,” Bounty Killer said.
Despite the outcry from dancehall artists, AEG Live president, Rob Hailett, insists that Dancehall music doesn’t work in every environment.
“I’m very pleased to see Reggae coming back with the reaffirmation of Morgan Heritage, young bands like Raging Fyah. I think it’s a good thing for the music globally because Dancehall doesn’t really work everywhere. I, personally, love it, but it’s not the kind of music that is consumer-friendly as a Raging Fyah who, to me, follow in the footsteps of Bob Marley,” Hailett said.
Veteran Entertainer Tony Rebel says there are positive aspects of dancehall that can be represented.
“Dancehall is a product of Jamaican music. Those who exclude dancehall are very wrong. There are positive aspects of dancehall and it should be represented in the show. It looks like the era of the 1980s-2000s are missing from the line up. I would have loved to see Cocoa Tea, Lt Stichie, Admiral Bailey and Tony Rebel on that show,” he said.
Do you think dancehall music should be represented at the Jamaica 50 Celebration?
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