July 1, International Reggae Day (IRD)
“This year we are celebrating the 50th anniversary of Rocksteady. We have managed to bring media on board in 35 cities in multiple regions for a 24-hour reggae party. Among the new cities coming on board this year is Beijing, China. We are very excited about this as it joins other new partners from Vietnam, Australia, South Africa, Madagascar, Singapore, Sierra Leone, Ibiza, Belize and three cities in Brazil. The total number of participating cities move from 25 last year and three the year before,” Andrea Davis told the Jamaica Observer.
While earlier years of IRD were focused more on the building of the product in Jamaica, it is all about spreading the wings of the event. There are a number of events from parties, yoga sessions, and concerts to a panel discussion taking place worldwide to celebrating the day. In Jamaica, the day will be celebrated on local media, as well as an IRD conference at the Jamaica Pegasus hotel in St Andrews.
“The morning session will focus on the digital content economy. This will focus on how to make money in this new dispensation moving from downloads to streaming. It’s really a guide to navigating the new landscape. The afternoon session goes to the heart of the possibilities of Kingston as a creative city. We will be looking at the areas which can be developed and what that will mean for Kingston,” said Davis.
In addition, IRD is endorsing a number of events taking place from Thursday through to Saturday. These include The Merritone Rocksteady event at Waterfalls in St Andrews on Thursday, and Vinyl Thursdays in Cross Roads. On Friday, there is also Clarendon Live, which features Duane Stephenson and Etana at the Fyah Side Jerk Bar as well as Trench Town Experience.