NEW YORK, N.Y. – Multiple Grammy winning reggae artist, Damian ‘Jr. Gong’ Marley, whose newest album ‘Welcome To Jamrock’ has made him a household name around the world, was one of the major acts announced last night to perform at the 2006 Red Stripe Reggae Sumfest later this year.
Marley’s addition to the stellar line-up for the July 16- 22 festival was announced by Executive Director of Summerfest Productions, Johnny Gourzong, at the New York launch of Red Stripe Reggae Sumfest on Tuesday, May 23, 2006.
A large crowd of Caribbean and US media, Jamaican entertainment industry professionals and well wishers gathered at the Blue Mahoe on 14th street in Manhattan for an evening of Reggae, good vibes and flowing Red Stripe.
Executive Director of Summerfest Productions, Johnny Gourzong
Announces the addition of Damian Marley to the Red Stripe Reggae Sumfest line-up on May 23, 2006 in New York along with (l.-r.), past chairman, Godfrey Dwyer, current chair, Robert Russell and Marketing Director, Jomo Cato.
Marley, said Gourzong, will perform on the final night of the festival, on July 22. The youngest son of Robert Nesta Marley, Jr. Gong as he’s popularly called, has stated, his new album “is about hope.”
Marley will perform along with with Bajan pop sensation, Rihanna and Jamaica’s own, Beres Hammond and Buju Banton among others. He is set to thrill fans with old and new hits, including the sizzling, ‘Road to Zion’ and of course the title track, ‘Welcome To Jamrock.’
Gourzong also disclosed that negotiations are underway to have top U.S. Hip-Hop performer, 50 Cent and the G-Unit crew perform at the ‘Ignition’ event, slated for July 21. And he urged the more than 100 attendees of the ‘Big Apple’ kick-off launch at the Blue Mahoe restaurant, to become more involved in the build up to the festival and invited those present to visit Jamaica for a “world class event and a true Jamaican experience.”
He added, “The media in the U.S. plays a critical role in the success of Red Stripe Reggae Sumfest. Without the music industry press and the travel media embracing Jamaica and its culture, Red Stripe Reggae Sumfest would not be the success that it is.”
Chairman Russell also extended his thanks to all participants while Marketing Director Cato promised a continuation of world class acts to keep the festival as “the world’s greatest reggae show.”
This year, Red Stripe Reggae Sumfest is being presented under the theme, “Jamaica’s Greatest The World’s Best,” and will be staged in the ‘Vibes City,’ Montego Bay from July 16- 22 this year. Now in its 14th year, the event is recognised around the world as the premier reggae festival on the planet and is Jamaica’s largest and continuously running music event.
Among the other artists set to perform at Sumfest 2006 are the ‘Poor People’s Governor’ Bounty Killa and the self proclaimed ‘King of the Dancehall’ and Grammy award winner Beenie Man as well as Capleton, Buju Banton, Beres Hammond, Elephant Man, Baby Cham, Macka Diamond, Busy Signal and Wayne Marshall, Sizzla, Richie Spice, Mobb Deep, Chuck Fenda, Mr. Vegas, Leftside & Esco, Voice Mail, Gyptian, reggae’s legends, John Holt, Gregory Isaacs and and Pam Hall; Yellowman, Admiral Bailey, General Trees, Pinchers, Frankie Paul, Charlie Chaplin, Peter Metro, Courtney Melody and Flourgon.
Marketing Director Jomo Cato announces the action-packed week-long event line-up.
Additionally, new themes and brand new concepts have been added to the 2006 show, which, kicks-off this year with the all new Vibe Island Beach Party on Sunday, July 16th, featuring Jamaica’s hottest selectors, the “Reggae on the Runway’ fashion segment, and the ‘White House Fish Fiesta.’
The party continues on Monday July 17th with ‘Mad Monday’s Mobay,’ staged in partnership with the Hip Strip community. This event will feature an arts and craft street fair, cuisine sampling for hip strip restaurants, and music from Jamaica’s biggest sound systems.
While on Wednesday, July 19, Summerfest Productions will stage “Top Ranking” a show that will highlight some of the best years of dancehall music. ‘Stormfront – the explosive dancehall night,’ follows on Thursday night, July 20 while the ‘Ignition’ concert will be the pulling card for Montego Bay on Friday July 21. Sumfest will climax with ‘The Summit’ On July 22.
Summerfest Productions has budgeted over $100 million to be spent on Red Stripe Reggae Sumfest this year in addition to the expenditure by the event’s major sponsors.
“Our investment in Western Jamaica is quite significant and translates into hundreds of jobs, new business opportunities and several other economic and social spin offs. As organizers of Jamaica’s greatest and the world’s best reggae music festival, we are proud to know that Red Stripe Reggae Sumfest is contributing to the development of Montego Bay ‘the Vibes city’ and the country’s overall economic progress,” Marketing Director Cato said recently.
Key sponsors this year include Red Stripe, the Jamaica Tourist Board, Air Jamaica, Digicel and Ocean Spray as well as media partners, the Jamaica Observer, CVM TV and Fame FM.
For travel packages and more information, log on to www.reggaesumfest.com.