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JaRIA Awards on March 5

Observer senior reporter

Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Despite government's announcement of the Gold Awards to celebrate the 50th anniversary of reggae music, the Jamaica Reggae Industry Association (JaRIA) will go ahead with its annual honour awards ceremony.

This has been confirmed by JaRIA chairman Michael “Ibo” Cooper, who noted that both events will be part of celebrations for Reggae Month which is observed during February.

“The Golden Awards being organised by the Entertainment and Culture Ministry will not be an annual event, but rather specially being staged for Reggae's 50th. This will be held on the last Wednesday in February. Our event, the JaRIA Honour Awards which recognises those who have contributed to the growth and development of the local music industry, will also be held. However, it will be held at the Little Theatre; a little outside Reggae Month on March 5. The reason for this is that all the venues in Kingston are booked and we could only fit in on this day. So both awards will take place this year,” Cooper told the Jamaica Observer.

He said the categories for this year's JaRIA awards have been decided and everything is in motion for the ceremony, which usually closes the organisation's Reggae Month celebrations.

Cooper did not disclose this year's recipients.

Last year, Entertainment and Culture Minister Olivia “Babsy” Grange and deejay Rodney “Bounty Killer” Price topped the list of honorees. Grange received the Lifetime Achievement Award for her dedication to the music industry as a producer and manager, while Bounty Killer was recognised in the Extraordinary Impact on the Reggae Industry Mentorship category.

Other recipients were singers Burning Spear, Nadine Sutherland, Frankie Paul and Brent Dowe; deejay Big Youth, engineers Barry O'Hare and Lynford “Fatta” Marshall; producers Bobby “Bobby Digital” Dixon and Geoffrey Chung; musicians Jackie Jackson and Dean Fraser; harmony group The Tamlins, British reggae band Steel Pulse, gospel acts Rondell “Rondell Positive” Allen and Sam Wisdom, and media manager Ken Williams.