Entertainment

Mr Reggae Ambassador - Copeland Forbes to release four-volume book on Reggae

Copeland Forbes to release four-volume book on Reggae

Sunday, June 26, 2011    

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COPELAND Forbes is ready. The renowned music industry player feels the time is now right for him to release the first of the four books he is writing.

Forbes made his announcement at a ceremony held in his honour at the Courtleigh Hotel on Monday where he was presented with a lifetime achievement award from Toronto International Jamaica Day and Ottawa Reggae Fest.

According to Forbes the book was long in coming and he was just waiting for a "significant and special occasion," for its release.

The perfect timing for the book will be next year when he celebrates 50 years in the business working as a tour manager and reggae ambassador.


In discussing his upcoming project Forbes says it will not just be "any book". "Unlike the Marley and Me and other books I don't want people to read my book and put it down, they should keep going back to its pages again and again," said the widely-travelled Forbes.

The book will be more like an encyclopaedia with interesting facts and information on both artistes and the music business.

Topics that will be explored in the book are: How to negotiate a good contract; how to plan a tour; budgeting among other helpful information to which artistes and anyone from the industry can refer.

Of course there will be some entertaining contents for readers as Forbes shared that he will be sharing amusing anecdotes from some of his travels and being on the road with artistes.

"Gregory Isaacs was something else, he was fun," reveals Forbes hinting that he will definitely sharing some of the moments with the late Cool Ruler.

With a chuckle Forbes says he has already been warned by reggae crooner Beres Hammond about sharing some of their experiences in the book. "Beres warned me that I must show him what I am going to write before I print it!"

There will definitely be a lot of fun and off guard stories to tell on some of the acts he has toured with over the years.

His book — still untitled — will also offer history on some of the artistes and his journey through the years with them on the road.

In elaborating on the book Forbes says he will also be sharing some memorable experiences he had while touring, one such is the royal treatment he and Peter Tosh received when they went to Swaziland, Southern Africa. "Our vehicles had our names on the license plates," that was something he reminisced.

Next year when he launches the first of the four-volume series Forbes says he will be kicking off the promotion with a special lecture tour with a few artistes he has worked with over the years.

Copeland Forbes's journey through the music industry started as a member of the group Harmonicats. He has served not just as a tour manager, but he has also serves as an unofficial ambassador of Jamaica, taking goodwill from the island to scores of countries around the globe. He has represented many of the top reggae acts in the genre including The Wailers, The Mighty Diamonds, Peter Tosh, Jimmy Cliff, Black Uhuru, Sly and Robbie, Third World, Dennis Brown, U-Roy, Marcia Griffiths, Frankie Paul, Morgan Heritage, I-Threes, Luciano, Sizzla, Ziggy Marley, Andrew Tosh, Freddie McGregor, Beres Hammond, Chaka Demus and Pliers, Junior Reid, Sugar Minott, Mutabaruka, Half Pint and Maxi Priest.

— Cecelia Campbell-Livingston

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