McDowell aims to boost nightlife

BY RICHARD JOHNSON
Observer senior reporter
johnsonr@jamaicaobserver.com

Monday, December 18, 2017

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MUSIC insider DiMario McDowell is bemoaning the decline in Jamaica's entertainment nightlife, noting that promoters and patrons have given in to society's unsavoury elements.

It is that thinking that lead him to create Thursday Night Live, featuring DiMario McDowell and Friends, in October last year.

“We can't have such a sector and allow it to die. The world is feasting on the best of Jamaica... our music and our culture, and we are not. So I realised that we have to find the guts to inject some life in our nightlife. The world of entertainment, in all its forms — music, dance, theatre, food, fashion, art — is a great way to build an economy, but many persons are not looking at this. It has to start in small pockets. Look for simple examples and let's rebuild the bustling nightlife which was once a feature of the Jamaican entertainment scene, particularly here in Kingston,” McDowell told Jamaica Observer.

The weekly event features known names in the music industry performing in an intimate setting cabaret held at 2wo A Seafood & Grill in St Andrew. Ken Boothe, Ernie Smith, Judy Mowatt, Pam Hall and Wayne Armond have performed at the venue.

“People are coming out as they find that it offers something for a particular age group. Recently, I had my oldest patron. She was just over 100 years old and came along with her 79-year-old son. There are events happening on a nightly basis but it is all one-sided, and if we want to rejuvenate this entertainment industry we must diversify the offering. Not everyone wants to go out and be entertained by someone playing from a laptop. There is an audience for the live band. Let's expand the breadth of entertainment, widen the age range being targeted, and do away with this narrowness of choice. Create something for everyone; look at a city like New York. On any given night there is something for everyone — a Broadway play, a live performance or a nightclub. What we have is too one-sided and we must do something about it.”

“Generations past were taking in nightly performances at locations such as Glass Bucket Club and The Carib. We must take back our entertainment options, create more spaces for live performances, and show the minority which is intent on preventing us from enjoying ourselves that we have a right to be here,” McDowell continued.

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