The reggae and dancehall music community has high expectations for the next political party that reigns.
With Jamaica’s general election concluded, music artistes are expecting a lot from the winning party. Both JLP (Jamaica Labour Party) and PNP People’s National Party) have made their proclamations and promises, and it’s about that time to bestow the power upon one of them.
The election season saw a ton of support from the local music industry with artists such as Spice, Shenseea, D’Angel, and more lending their voices to campaign jingles and dubplates. Now the industry is looking to the next prime minister and his party to reciprocate that support and help make the dancehall culture more sustainable in the economy.
The STAR spoke with several artistes in the industry who expressed that they are looking for a change with this upcoming election. “As you can see, music was one a di main things inna dis election on both sides (JLP and PNP), and now dem (the Government) see what music bring to the table and how important music is to the people,” said Elephant Man. “Now we need dem fi do supmn fi dancehall. Mi wah dem make sure the artiste dem have somewhere weh dem can go party.”
The government imposed a Noise Abatement Act that has restricted party and event hours for quite some time. In addition to that, they often accuse the dancehall industry of being a negative influence and having no economic benefit. Ironically, the music has put the country on the map more than anything else. D’Angel, who was one of the artiste contributors to the election campaign, says she was glad to be a part of it and hope the support of the culture will continue.
“In light of the recent fanfare with the election campaigns, it was quite refreshing to see the dancehall fraternity being included and bringing a fresh vibe to the atmosphere,” said D’Angel. “I would love to see the recognition continue going forward because we artistes contribute greatly to the economy and the culture.”
We are all expecting that more support and respect will be given to the reggae and dancehall culture and community no matter which party comes out victorious. After the outpour of support the government received from artists for the election, a simple ‘you scratch my back, I scratch yours’ should be the bare minimum.