Jamaica Observer http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/ JamaicaObserver.com, the most concise and in-depth website for news coverage on Jamaica and the Caribbean. Updated daily 7 days a week, 24 hours a day en-us copyright Jamaica Observer, 2011 Great sets at PAN outing http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/entertainment/Great-sets-at-PAN-outing_72307 By Kevin Jackson Observer Writer Gospel artiste Kevin Downswell and dancehall acts Ding Dong and Busy Signal were the entertainment highlights of last Saturday&rsquo;s staging of PAN 2016 Regional 1. <br /> <br /> Held at Independence Park, Black River in St Elizabeth, the threat of rain did very little in keeping patrons away.<br /> <br /> Downswell&rsquo;s performance was felt across the venue. Patrons sang along while others took out their Bibles and held them high in reverence.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;Hearing the patrons singing every one of your songs, including the new ones, was a blessing. My heart on the stage was simply to send a message and obviously the message got there,&rdquo; Downswell told the Jamaica Observer shortly after his performance.<br /> <br /> His set included Stronger, All the Way, and One Day which assisted Downswell&rsquo;s mission of spreading the gospel.<br /> <br /> Ding Dong and his Ravers Clavers crew brought the dancehall vibes which the teenagers and young adults in the audience seemed to appreciate. They danced to hits such as Shampoo, Syvah, Gas, Holiday, Bad Man Forward, Bad Man Pull Up, Skip to Ma Lu and his current chart hit, Wul Up. <br /> <br /> Busy Signal capped the day&rsquo;s proceedings with a workman-like performance. He reeled off the hits Jail, These Are The Days, Born and Grow, Missing You and One More Night, which kept patrons on a musical high.<br /> <br /> Prior to the main performers, emcees Dufton Shepherd and Badda Bling got the crowd going with giveaways and various competitions.<br /> <br /> PAN 2016, formerly known as CB Pan Chicken Championship, is a culinary extravaganza which saw 30 competitors representing the parishes of Hanover, Clarendon, St James, St Elizabeth, Manchester and Westmoreland. <br /> <br /> The respective parish winners were: Manchester, Dianca Spencer; Clarendon, Hodain Huie; St Elizabeth, Rickardo Eulette; St James, Oliver Madourie; Hanover, Vandyke Bernard; and Westmoreland, Annette Holt. Bernard was also the winner of the Miracle Tallawah Sauce competition.<br /> <br /> Alicia Bogues, brand manager for CB Foods, said it was the first time the competition was being held in Black River. &ldquo;It was a very welcoming vibe. Black River people are very warm and accommodating. We plan to come back next year because we are about bringing vitality and prosperity to the areas,&rdquo; said Bogues.<br /> <br /> The next event on PAN 2016&rsquo;s calendar is Regional 2, which is slated for Folly Oval in Portland, on Saturday September 24. http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13248881/225267__w300.jpg http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13248879/225268_w300.jpg http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13248876/225269_w300.jpg Local Entertainment Monday, August 29, 2016 12:00 AM Top musicians on It&rsquo;s A Family Affair http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/entertainment/Solid-soundtrack_72297 BY BRIAN BONITTO Associate editor — Auto and Entertainment bonittob@jamaicaobserver.com FOR his upcoming movie It&rsquo;s A Family Affair, veteran film-maker Lennie Little-White draws on the talents of an all-star cast of Jamaican musicians as well as some emerging acts for the soundtrack.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;A soundtrack helps to establish the mood and ambiance of the whole movie. Besides, in our film, some musical selections help to tell the story by the use of lyrics directly connected to a particular scene or situation,&rdquo; Little-White told Jamaica Observer.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;There are a multiplicity of producers on this project,&rdquo; Little-White told the Observer.<br /> <br /> The 14-track set boasts production works of Grammy-nominated duo Sly & Robbie, Dean Fraser, saxophonist Tony Green, Chris Birch and Steven &ldquo;Lenky&rdquo; Marsden.<br /> <br /> Sly and Robbie&rsquo;s Unmetered Taxi and Taxi Connection; Green&rsquo;s Reggae Mambo and<br /> <br /> Green Pastures; Military by Birch; and Marsden&rsquo;s popular Diwali make the cut.<br /> <br /> Little-White said he was approached by an emerging Clarendon act Celcius, who eventually did the set&rsquo;s title track Rich Pan Mi, which is on Fraser&rsquo;s instrumental It&rsquo;s A Family Affair.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;Celcius (given name Richard Sewart) approached me with a demo track of his original song titled Rich Pan Mi. I reworked the lyrics and entered saxophonist and super-producer Dean Fraser, who did a new arrangement and recording of the title song using Celcius himself to revoice the new lyrics. The result is a reggae orchestral piece that meanders seamlessly through the movie,&rdquo; said Little-White.<br /> <br /> Actors Brian Brown (who plays United States-based bassist Andre) and TV personality Emprezz Golding (who plays his girlfriend Maya) also share vocal and production credits.<br /> <br /> Golding&rsquo;s vocals are featured on To Jamaica and Kiss Me. She is credited as producer of the latter. Brown is singer and producer of Man of Steel.<br /> <br /> Slated for a fall release, the low-budget It&rsquo;s A Family Affair is a comedy examining converging cultural differences when a Jamaican man and his wife renew their wedding vows at a reunion and invites his sister and brother from Britain and the United States, respectively.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;An interesting tangent of the movie is the story of studio musician Andre, who wants to be the next Robbie Shakespeare. He sees himself as a clone of Shakespeare and uses him as his main inspiration. At his side, his girlfriend Maya is an emerging model and singer,&rdquo; said Little-White.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;Not to be outdone is the lead actress Dahlia Harris, who demonstrates her versatility as a singer when she appears as a clone of Jamaica&rsquo;s most colourful dancehall diva. Dahlia not only performs as a singjay, but she also demonstrates her prowess as a dancer in the dancehall genre.&rdquo;<br /> <br /> It&rsquo;s A Family Affair also features actors Ian &ldquo;Ity&rdquo; Ellis, Tony &ldquo;Paleface&rdquo; Hendriks, Bertina Macaulay, and Leonie Forbes. <br /> <br />   http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/12866607/197259_w300.jpg http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13248821/225259_w300.jpg http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/12614795/182359__w300.jpg http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13197365/220749__w300.jpg http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13248820/225258__w300.jpg Local Entertainment Monday, August 29, 2016 12:00 AM Winners in Sandals Ochi Festival of Arts selected http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/entertainment/Winners-in-Sandals-Ochi-Festival-of-Arts-selected_72149 Sandals Ochi Beach Resort crowned its Festival of Arts winners at the resort in St Ann, on Thursday.<br /> <br /> The competition is aimed at providing exposure for the large number of talented performers among the ranks of people at the various Sandals and Beaches resorts.<br /> <br /> Garett Bailey, entertainment division manager at the resort, said he was impressed with the standard of the competition and was looking forward to the regional and national finals.<br /> <br /> The entertainment department&rsquo;s Rosane Murray and Romario Brown from housekeeping walked away with the two Male Model slots, while Althia Sinclair and Hannah-Kay Smith, both from entertainment, wowed the judges in the Female Model segment.<br /> <br /> The vocalist categories were the most competitive of the evening. However, the front office&rsquo;s Neisha Henry and Patrice Byfield from EPIX Photo Studio emerged the top performers in the Female Vocalist section. Akeen Fennel from the bar and entertainment department&rsquo;s Ricardo McCook were judged top Male Vocalists.<br /> <br /> Chad Roache, another member of the entertainment department, won the Solo Dance category, thanks to his artistic and intricate movement which had the audience roaring in appreciation. That department&rsquo;s Shavaughn Sewell and Renaldo Gray emerged victorious in the Group Dance category while Sigail Raymond, from Club Sandals, was star in the Spoken Word category.<br /> <br /> The Ocho Rios Regional Finals will take place on September 1 at Sandals Ochi, with contestants from Beaches Ocho Rios, Sandals Royal Plantation and Sandals Ochi vying to represent the regional in the national finals. http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13248874/225024__w300.jpg http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13248880/225023__w300.jpg http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13248883/225022__w300.jpg Local Entertainment Monday, August 29, 2016 12:00 AM Bucky Ital salutes the working class http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/entertainment/Bucky-Ital-salutes-the-working-class_72153 Singjay Bucky Ital salutes the Jamaican labour force in his upcoming song, Work Hard, produced by Michael Fairman for Vision House Records.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;Is about working class people who do dem juggling, anything positive to mek money. Dis is a soundtrack for the working class,&rdquo; he said.<br /> <br /> Clear Glass, another song produced by Fearon, is also expected out soon. Both will be part of his second EP, scheduled for release late this year.<br /> <br /> Born Uhan Pearson, the 33-year-old artiste is originally from Shrewsbury, Westmoreland. He learned the music ropes when he moved to Kingston and lived in Arnett Gardens.<br /> <br /> Influenced by Sizzla, Bounty Killer and Buju Banton, Bucky Ital began recording in 2013, Do A Thing For The Poor being his first release.<br /> <br /> That was also the title of his first EP &mdash; produced by Isaac Faith &mdash; which was released the following year.<br /> <br /> &mdash; HC http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13248875/225271__w300.jpg Local Entertainment Monday, August 29, 2016 12:00 AM Runkus conquers Europe http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/entertainment/Runkus-conquers-Europe_72177 In June, the Jamaica Observer presented a series looking at reggae artistes going on tour. We follow up with some of those acts.<br /> <br /> Runkus was one of the young reggae turks who made their European festival debut this summer. He performed on three shows: Summerjam in Germany, Belgium&rsquo;s Reggae Geel, and Rototom Sunsplash in Spain.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;It was crazy-wicked, a good experience. Europe has a different form of energy,&rdquo; said the 22-year-old singjay.<br /> <br /> He told the Jamaica Observer that he was surprised fans at the events were familiar with his songs, such as<br /> <br /> Victims and Move Yuh Foot.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;Dem move dem foot to the bassline, which show dem know the songs. Yuh get dat in America too, but in certain places like &ldquo;Cali&rdquo; (California) or Colorado where there&rsquo;s a Rasta vibe,&rdquo; Runkus explained.<br /> <br /> He was accompanied by his six-piece Old Skl Band.<br /> <br /> Runkus (given name Romario Bennett) is the son of singjay Determine of Kette Drum fame. His introduction to touring came through his father, who has a strong following in Europe and on the United States West Coast.<br /> <br /> In Europe Runkus promoted Move In, a seven-song EP produced by German company K-Jah Records.<br /> <br /> Victims and Move Yuh Foot are on the mini-set.<br /> <br /> This is the roots artiste&rsquo;s second overseas run in consecutive years. In 2015, he performed alongside Ky-Mani Marley in Colombia and in December, toured the US South and Midwest.<br /> <br /> &mdash;Howard Campbell http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13181998/219492_w300.jpg Local Entertainment Monday, August 29, 2016 12:00 AM Ronnie Davis gets unplugged http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/entertainment/Ronnie-Davis-gets-unplugged_72176 Veteran roots reggae singer Ronnie Davis, known to many as a member of The Itals, flies solo for Iyahcoustic, his latest album.<br /> <br /> The unplugged set was released August 19 by Skinny Bwoy Records, an independent label based in Chicago.<br /> <br /> Iyahcoustic was recorded in Jamaica at Grafton Studios and Anchor Recording and is produced by singer Henry &lsquo;Sadiki&rsquo; Buckley Jr, owner of Skinny Bwoy Records.<br /> <br /> It is Davis&rsquo; fifth album and first in over 20 years. He is accompanied by guitarist Mitchum &lsquo;Khan&rsquo; Chin on songs such as No Weak Heart, False Leaders and Got to Go Home.<br /> <br /> Davis, 66, said it was Sadiki&rsquo;s idea for him to record him in an acoustic setting. <br /> <br /> &ldquo;It&rsquo;s kinda different an&rsquo; unusual, but still have the reggae flavour,&rdquo; he said.<br /> <br /> Davis is from Westmoreland. Before joining The Itals, he was a member of The Tennors, best known for the rocksteady songs Pressure And Slide and Ride Your Donkey. During the 1970s, he found worldwide fame withThe Itals, whose biggest hit is In A Dis Ya Time. http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13123703/214328_w300.jpg Local Entertainment Sunday, August 28, 2016 12:00 AM Deer makes debut http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/entertainment/Deer-makes-debut_72170 By Richard Johnson Observer senior reporter johnsonr@jamaicaobserver.com WHEN Dope Fiend premieres at Newark International Film Festival in the United States on September 9 and 10, viewers will see local actress Sakina Deer, who assumes the production&rsquo;s female lead.<br /> <br /> Deer is familiar to Jamaican audiences for her recurring stage production roles by the Jambiz International outfit. She can currently be seen in Blindspot, now showing at the Centrestage Theatre in New Kingston.<br /> <br /> She attributes her debut film role to former co-star Shayne Powell, with whom she shared the stage in the musical Last Call. Powell has since migrated to the United States.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;The director, Ron Elliott, was striving for a very true representation of every aspect in the film, and so when the role called for a Jamaican woman, he asked Shayne to help him with casting. He asked for a few Jamaican actresses to audition. I almost didn&rsquo;t make it, but Shayne kept pressing me to give it a go. I recorded my audition on my iPhone one night after we finished on the stage at Centrestage.... and as they say, the rest is on paper.&rdquo;<br /> <br /> The film also stars Malik Yoba (Cool Runnings, Empire, New York Undercover, Why Did I Get Married), Hisham Tawfiq (<br /> <br /> The Blacklist), Andra Fuller (The L.A. Complex) and Tobias Truvillion (Law and Order: Special Victims Unit, Empire) Deer plays Isis, the pregnant widow of a murdered drug kingpin who takes matters into her own hands to avenge his death and reclaim turf.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;It is a very strong female character... all about woman power. One of my big scenes was firing a gun on a New York City street. The entire area had to be locked down for us to shoot, and it was really empowering for me. The whole experience was really serendipitous as I almost didn&rsquo;t make it due to my hectic schedule here. However, they were able to reschedule the shoot to accommodate me . It was shot in November last year while I was in rehearsal for The Duppy Whisperer. So I took five days off to shoot all my scenes. Once I landed, it was literally straight to the set. The whole experience was awesome and I was able to meet some really great people in the world of film,&rdquo; she told Jamaica Observer.<br /> <br /> Having tasted acting for the big screen, Deer is not too hasty in giving up her work on the boards.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;The stage will always be my first love... I will never give up stage. Film is running a close second &mdash; it will have to be content to be my man on the side. Shooting the film was fun and I thoroughly enjoyed the experience. This opportunity has even opened more doors for me as I have shot another film, a minor role, but I can&rsquo;t talk about that just yet. But the film process is very different. Just take learning lines. For stage, for example, you have to learn 30 pages and try not to mess up, whereas for film, you get a one-pager and you can do as many takes until you get it right... I find that way easier. &ldquo;<br /> <br /> Deer also credits the work she has done in theatre in Jamaica for giving her what she needed to tackle her maiden film project.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;I went in with a bit of self-doubt... not sure I could stand up to what was required of me. But once I got there, I realised that the on-the-job training I received from Trevor (Nairne) and Patrick (Browne) at Jambiz was preparation for this. The experiences on stage, the character work over the years have given me what I needed,&rdquo; mused Deer.<br /> <br /> She recalled some of the experiences on the set of Dope Fiend.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;The film was shot in November, but the story is set in the summer, so we we had to dress for summer during late fall, early winter... and it was cold. They had to put warmers in our pockets to keep us warm. There is a scene where I had to be on the ground and it was freezing, but I could not shake, even though I was shivering. I also could not exhale as the mist would appear on camera.&rdquo;<br /> <br /> Deer is thankful to her agent Nadean Rawlins of Raw Talent Management for handling negotiations and the team at Jambiz, who she said, have always been absolutely supportive of her endeavours.<br /> <br /> She can currently be seen on stage in Blindspot with her Jambiz mates &mdash; Glen Campbell, Sharee McDonald Rusell, Camille Davis, and Courtney Wilson.<br /> <br /> There is no date yet for Dope Fiend to play in Jamaica, but Deer assured that there are plans to bring it to local shores. http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13247112/225055__w300.jpg http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13247114/225052__w300.jpg http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13247113/225053__w300.jpg Local Entertainment Sunday, August 28, 2016 12:00 AM Basil Watson honoured by National Award http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/entertainment/Carved-to-Order_71820 By Richard Johnson Observer senior reporter johnsonr@jamaicaobserver.com COME Heroes Day, October 17, sculptor Basil Watson will be among several Jamaicans receiving National Awards at King&rsquo;s House in St Andrew. <br /> <br /> He will receive the Order of Distinction in the Rank of Commander (CD) for his outstanding contribution to Jamaican art. <br /> <br /> &ldquo;It is not something I event worked for. I do what I do simply for the love of it, but for it to be recognised by my country and people, I can truly say there is a feeling of pride... I am indeed proud to be recognised,&rdquo; Watson told the Jamaica Observer.<br /> <br /> The 58-year-old graduated from School of Art at Edna Manley College of the Visual and Performing Arts back in 1980 and has been working as a sculptor since. Being the son of master painter, late Barrington Watson, he said the work of his father definitely had an influence on him.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;I can see the evidence in my own grandchildren... growing up surrounded by artists must have its effects, but I guess as a child I really took it for granted. I remember being interested in the work he brought home and I have been told that as a youngster, I would sit and watch him work. But he never personally directed our choices one way or the other,&rdquo; said Watson.<br /> <br /> Today Watson said he can clearly see the influences of his father in his work.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;I can clearly see his appreciation of the human figure in my work; his love and fascination with drawing, which was my first passion. His observation and stimulation by the human form has influenced me stylistically,&rdquo; he said.<br /> <br /> And what of criticism of his fascination with the human form?, Watson responds: &ldquo;It is a natural progression to go there. When we break down humans, we become nude. That is where we find anatomy, beauty and energy. We are born naked; clothes is a contemporary state of mind... nudity is timeless.&rdquo;<br /> <br /> Watson now calls the United States of America home, having made the decision to migrate 14 years ago in an effort to have a greater impact on the wider world.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;As much as we live in a globalised world, in Jamaica I felt as though I was in a small pond. I needed to connect with the art market to make an impact. I was doing well at home but needed a greater challenge. I needed to test myself with new challenges. So once the opportunity came I took advantage. The experience has been eye-opening and I have grown tremendously as an artist and person. Of course, there have been hard time and struggles. For one thing, it would have been better to make that move as a 24-year-old rather than at 44. But what I had done in Jamaica put me in good stead,&rdquo; he said.<br /> <br /> Looking forward, Watson sees the need for state and private sector involvement in the art world to keep it afloat.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;The Jamaican art movement was at its peak in terms of connectivity with the community in the 1970s and 80s &mdash; we have lost that connection. Back then, there were a number of private galleries, the economy was better and there were a lot more people supporting art. There is a greater need for public art. Corporate involvement in art needs to increase and government policies to support art is required. Happily, the National Gallery is growing and moving in wider directions. We must maintain our connections with our Jamaican art history and ensure that the work of the early artists is not forgotten.&rdquo; http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13247101/224422_w300.jpg http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13247104/224420__w300.jpg http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13247102/224421__w300.jpg Local Entertainment Sunday, August 28, 2016 12:00 AM Wailers war on http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/entertainment/Wailers-war-on_72175 RICHMOND, Virginia (AP) &mdash; Former members of Jamaican reggae band The Wailers, which played alongside Bob Marley, are going to court to try to stop the group they left from performing under the same name.<br /> <br /> Aston &ldquo;Family Man&rdquo; Barrett and other ex-Wailers members said in a petition filed in a Virginia Beach court this week that the reggae group currently performing as The Wailers is a sham because it includes no members of the original band. They&rsquo;re asking the court to act quickly and block the band from using the name, noting that it is set to play in Virginia at the Lockn&rsquo; Festival this weekend.<br /> <br /> The court set a hearing for August 31, said attorney Stephen Screnci, who is representing Barrett and the others. Asked if that meant the band would still be allowed to play this weekend, Screnci said he didn&rsquo;t know for sure.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;There&rsquo;s a lot of people buying tickets that think they&rsquo;re going to see The Wailers and they&rsquo;re not,&rdquo; he said of the current band in general. &ldquo;If you advertised as The Beatles and you showed up and there were no Beatles, I think you&rsquo;d be disappointed,&rdquo; he said.<br /> <br /> Al Anderson, Tyrone Downie and Earl Lindo, who each joined the band in the &rsquo;70s before Marley passed away in 1981, are also joining Barrett in the case.<br /> <br /> Michael Jones, who currently manages the band that performs as The Wailers, said Thursday that he hadn&rsquo;t yet read the filing. But he said that dozens of musicians have played under the Wailers name over the years. The current band is &ldquo;what&rsquo;s left of the same band that has played continuously since 1981,&rdquo; Jones said.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;It&rsquo;s a revolving door of musicians that have played with The Wailers. It always has been,&rdquo; Jones said. &ldquo;We have a wonderful band that is recognised worldwide as The Wailers.&rdquo; No one responded Thursday to an email sent to Monterey International, a booking agency named in the filing.<br /> <br /> Barrett, who joined The Wailers in 1969 as its bassist, left the group several months ago, but the band continues to use his name and likeness in promotional materials, the petition for injunctive relief says. Barrett and the others accuse the group of deceiving consumers and concert organisers by leaving the impression that original members are still part of the band.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;Not only is defendants&rsquo; use of the name damaging to plaintiffs in terms of profits illicitly gained by defendants, every poor performance by the sham Wailers and every poor experience a consumer has with defendants reflects negatively on the plaintiffs, especially for consumers that attend defendants&rsquo; shows expecting to see members of the original band The Wailers,&rdquo; the filing says. http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13247107/225064__w300.jpg Local Entertainment Sunday, August 28, 2016 12:00 AM Phillye&rsquo;s hoping to Get It http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/entertainment/Phillye-s-hoping-to-Get-It_72157 PHILADELPHIA-born singer Phillye is hoping her latest single Get It will give her the big break on the international music scene.<br /> <br /> Recorded on the Pull Up rhythm for Head Concussion Records producer Rvssian, Phillye said the dancehall song came as a surprise to many, as she is known for her sultry reggae and R and B crossover singles. <br /> <br /> &ldquo;I have fans all over the world. They communicate with me well online, but I want to really start reaching out to my fans more and giving them the opportunity to hear a more versatile me, so I have done this with Get It,&rdquo; she said.<br /> <br /> She recalls working with several Jamaican producers, but was elated when she was approached by Rvssian. <br /> <br /> &ldquo;I met him online but I know his rhythms are always very creative, so I was elated to get this opportunity to try a different genre,&rdquo; she said.<br /> <br /> Phillye, whose given name is Sonya Dixon, hails from Willow Grove in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. She said she got her stage name while at a Kingston studio in Jamaica by top-shelf drummer Sly Dunbar, who described her as a &ldquo;fine filly&rdquo;. <br /> <br /> &ldquo;I started listening reggae music from an early age and just knew that the genre was my calling,&rdquo; she said.<br /> <br /> In 2014, she released her debut single called Live Your Life. This was followed by other songs such as Jah Jah Light and Its All Up To You.<br /> <br /> http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13247059/225000_w300.jpg Local Entertainment Sunday, August 28, 2016 12:00 AM On set with Johnny Mathis http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/entertainment/On-set-with-Johnny-Mathis_72166 with Sheryl Lee Ralph Greetings from Santa Fe in New Mexico, where the dirt is a warm pink, the sky is a turquoise blue and the phone reception is just a little bit better than Jamaican land lines after Hurricane Gilbert. <br /> <br /> Yes, I am still here making a movie (which shall remain nameless), but forgive me I&rsquo;m a little on the groggy side because my pickup this morning was 5:25 am. No matter how glamorous you think movie making is, we all usually get up with the sun and work a minimum of 12 hours a day.<br /> <br /> By 7:35 am this morning, I was bejewelled and bedecked in a body-hugging leopard sheath complete with six-inch pumps, and as I sauntered onto the Christmas ballroom set, ready to hear the word &lsquo;ACTION!&rsquo; I hear music. The film, which takes place during the holiday season, would not be complete without a few holiday songs. You cannot imagine the thrill I felt at seeing none other than the iconic, incomparable Johnny Mathis walking onto the set and singing Winter Wonderland. People, it is not even 8:00 am and I am living a dream!<br /> <br /> His voice still dark and sweet like aged red rum. Even at 80 years of age, he still has the grace of a man who has not seen 60. Yes, and after spending the day talking in between shots and takes, I learned that he is a walking entertainment encyclopedia or better put, a singers Google! <br /> <br /> The stories he shared about Nat King Cole, Nina Simone, Frank Sinatra and so many more: so candid, so clear of thought, and so to the point. He answered all of my questions with patience and thought.<br /> <br /> This year Johnny Mathis celebrates 60 years as the Voice of Romance with a tour that most teenagers couldn&rsquo;t handle. He is travelling the world singing his classics Misty, Chances Are, Wonderful Wonderful, It&rsquo;s Not For Me To Say, and I could go on and on with a list of songs your parents and grandparents listened to and loved. I still see his albums in my parents&rsquo; record collection.<br /> <br /> Yes, I spent a long but wonderful day between both Johnny Mathis and Morgan Freeman on the set of the movie, which I still cannot tell you much about, except that Mr Mathis will be seen in the movie singing some of his most popular Christmas songs and you are going to love it, almost as much as you&rsquo;ll love seeing me in the movie.<br /> <br /> Well, I must end this quickly because I have another rising with the sun call time in the morning and I am really tired. This is Reel Hollywood and I am really tired! <br /> <br /> Sheryl Lee Ralph is an American actress, singer, and activist with Jamaican roots. She also originated the role of Deena Jones in the Broadway musical Dreamgirls. Her website: SherylLeeRalph.com; twitter: @THESHERYLRALPH; and Instagram: @DIVA3482<br /> <br /> http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13247139/225046_w300.jpg http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/12605385/182442__w300.jpg Local Entertainment Sunday, August 28, 2016 12:00 AM Fade to black http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/entertainment/Fade-to-black_72040 Tony Robinson My grief&rsquo;s so great<br /> <br /> That no supporter but the huge firm earth<br /> <br /> Can hold it up:<br /> <br /> Here I and sorrow sit.<br /> <br /> &ndash; Shakespeare, King John, III, 1<br /> <br /> A few weeks ago, I was speaking with a young lady who I&rsquo;ve known from birth, as her parents and I were very good friends. We lost contact due to migration so naturally, I enquired about them, not knowing that her mom had passed away.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;So how are your mom and dad, still holding those parties?&rdquo; I asked. &ldquo;Well, mommy passed away a few years ago in the US, and since then, daddy has simply faded to black,&rdquo; was her reply. For those in the film industry, or even avid moviegoers, the term fade to black is not unfamiliar. It&rsquo;s used to describe a scene that slowly dissolves from picture to infinity, slowly disappearing until only blackness remains on the screen.<br /> <br /> This time, however, was the first time that I had heard it used when referring to a living person, and it not only piqued my interest, but also made me a little sad. It was brilliant in its description and led to my writing this today.<br /> <br /> We&rsquo;ll see where &lsquo;Fade to Black&rsquo; takes us, right after I segue to these responses to OCD &ndash; Obsessive Compulsive Disorder.<br /> <br /> Hi Tony,<br /> <br /> I know a guy with that malady. He would keep checking the lock on his front door incessantly, always making sure it was locked, turning the key several times. He would greet other people, not by shaking hands, but doing a fist bump. He didn&rsquo;t like being touched, caressed, kissed, and God forbid, actually having something as messy as sex. I can only imagine what he would constantly be washing under those circumstances.<br /> <br /> Carlton<br /> <br /> Teerob,<br /> <br /> I know of what you speak brother, as I&rsquo;m married to the original textbook OCD person. As she walks through the door she starts to dust and clean before she even puts down her handbag. Not a speck of dust must be on the floor, every cushion must be in place, every curtain and towel must be perfectly aligned. All this is done before she even reaches the living room. As for sex, ha! I better be operating-theatre clean before I can touch her. OCD to the max.<br /> <br /> Winston<br /> <br /> When a movie fades to black, it ends, goes to oblivion, leaving what may come only to the imagination of the viewer. It&rsquo;s usually sad, and many moviegoers prefer happy endings anyway, as it leaves a sense of fulfillment, satisfaction, order. That&rsquo;s why most cowboy shows of old had the star riding off into the sunset, sometimes with a girl, as that was more positive, optimistic, filled with hope and a bright future. <br /> <br /> &ldquo;And they rode off into the sunset and lived happily ever after.&rdquo; They call them &lsquo;feel good&rsquo; movies, and they&rsquo;re usually fiction. The difference between fiction and non-fiction though is that fiction has to make sense or people won&rsquo;t like it. &ldquo;Star cyaan dead til last reel, or the show nuh good.&rdquo;<br /> <br /> Well, in the very same way that movies fade to black and end with no hope, people also fade to black, as they simply give up, sink into a chasm of despair, mired in the quicksand of hopelessness. <br /> <br /> There is a song by the 70s group War that addressed that&hellip;.Slippin&rsquo; into Darkness.<br /> <br /> Slipping into darkness<br /> <br /> Take my mind beyond the dreams<br /> <br /> I was slipping into darkness, yeah<br /> <br /> Take my mind beyond the dreams<br /> <br /> Slipping into darkness, yeah<br /> <br /> All my troubles so I choose<br /> <br /> I was slipping into darkness<br /> <br /> All my troubles so I choose.<br /> <br /> Slipping into darkness is pretty much the same as fading to black, I guess, and it affects more people than you may think. For many, the reasons are apparent, for others, it&rsquo;s a mystery. Even from my childhood I was exposed to examples of people fading to black. There was this girl &mdash; the sister of one of my teenage friends &mdash; who for most of her high school days, would come home from school, go to her darkened room, and remain inside until the next day.<br /> <br /> Summer holidays when we were out gallivanting like giraffes, gambolling like gnus, and leaping like leggo beasts, she would stay locked in her room, in the dark. There was a deep depression, akin to a sinkhole, in her mattress due to her laying there so much. We found her behaviour amusingly weird, and laughed it off as such. You know how cruel children can be. &ldquo;Hey Patrick, how come yuh sister so strange, she demented? Hahahahah.&rdquo;<br /> <br /> Little did we know that even from an early age she had faded to black, having no friends, no interaction with others, literally giving up on normal life, preferring to seek solace in the confines of her sad mind. No one knew why, as her siblings who lived in the same environment as her were all quite balanced and okay.<br /> <br /> That was decades ago but I never forgot her, as her behaviour haunted me. Fast-forward to my good friend who lost his wife overseas a few years ago. He truly loved her and they were not only soulmates, but worked together as well. <br /> <br /> Now, this was a man who was exuberant, ambitious, humorous and filled any room that he walked into. He was larger than life, as the saying goes. That&rsquo;s how I remembered him. But now, according to his daughter, he&rsquo;s given up on life, stopped working, turned down job offers, stopped seeing people, and faded to black. Loss and grief can do that. &ldquo;Give sorrow words: the grief that does not speak whispers the o&rsquo;erfraught heart.&rdquo; &ndash; Macbeth.<br /> <br /> Since then I&rsquo;ve spoken to several people about this malady and learnt that it is not uncommon. &ldquo;Plenty people simply give up on life when they see no hope on the horizon,&rdquo; said this clinical psychologist. &ldquo;It&rsquo;s usually associated with loss.&rdquo; <br /> <br /> Older people in the media may remember this prominent Jamaican journalist who took his own life many years ago because of what he perceived to be the terrible state of the world. The deluge of bad news simply got to him and he not only faded to black, but shut down the cinema permanently. <br /> <br /> Not all who fade to black are suicidal, but it&rsquo;s often the beginning of that sad slide down that slippery slope to oblivion. For many, they die a thousand times, as they exist in a state of constant despair and depression, drowning in their sorrow and rarely coming up for a breath of fresh air or to let the sun bathe their skin with its warmth. Some embrace this condition so much that they actually grow to love it and feel comfortable within its confines. It&rsquo;s their norm.<br /> <br /> Perhaps men tend to mask it a bit more, and may drown their sorrow in demon rum, while it may seem more obvious in women, who tend to wear their emotions on their sleeves. Many women who have experienced broken relationships suffer from this, as they fade to black, often never to recover. They sink into a deep depression, ebbing and flowing from melancholy to sadness and underlying anger. &ldquo;She lost her man and lost her mind, gave up on life and faded to black.&rdquo;<br /> <br /> I hope I&rsquo;m not perceived as being melancholy, maudlin, morose, mirthless, this week, but I was really moved to hear of my once-upbeat friend who has now disappeared from society, from family and friends, and simply faded to black. <br /> <br /> I have done research on the subject and discovered that in many cases there is also self-loathing, anger, guilt and self-pity. Oh yes, there are people who are so wracked with guilt that they hate themselves and either take out this anger on others, or fade away into the dark recesses of their mind. They live in their own self-imposed prison and if you&rsquo;re close to them, they&rsquo;ll drag you in too, making you an unwilling cellmate.<br /> <br /> Very often, people who try to save drowning victims get pulled under by the very same person they&rsquo;re trying to keep afloat. Dark as the future may seem, there is usually a light to combat that depressing fade to black. <br /> <br /> More time.<br /> <br /> seido1@hotmail.com<br /> <br /> Footnote: The Olympics in Rio, Brazil, really lived up to expectations and even moreso, dispelled the prophecy of the naysayers, doubters and &lsquo;doom merchants&rsquo;. It was truly a fantastic spectacle and once again, this tiny nation showed the world how big we really are, punching above our weight class and triumphing. <br /> <br /> The media coverage was great &ndash; print, radio and TV. On the electronic side, our own<br /> <br /> TVJ was outstanding, with great panelists and presenters. Great FLOW multi-package and fantastic Digicel-Play instant rewind feature. Congrats to all. <br /> <br /> I would have loved to have heard live commentary from Hubert Lawrence, Lance Whittaker and Olympian Juliet Cuthbert. That would have been the icing on the cake. We must thank our coaches and athletes, Usain Bolt, Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, Elaine Thompson, Omar McLeod, and others for blessing us with their prowess. We should be grateful. We will never see another Bolt in our lifetime. <br /> <br /> http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13247071/224814__w300.jpg Local News Sunday, August 28, 2016 12:00 AM Popcaan&rsquo;s Love Yuh Bad takes flight http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/entertainment/Popcaan-s-Love-Yuh-Bad-takes-flight_72097 BY KEVIN JACKSON Observer Writer Popcaan&rsquo;s Love Yuh Bad is enjoying much attention on the international scene. The song is sampled in Drake&rsquo;s Too Bad, which features Rihanna.<br /> <br /> Love Yuh Bad is featured on Popcaan&rsquo;s 2014 debut album Where We Come From, released by Mixpak Records and produced by Dre Skull. The album reached number two on the Billboard Reggae album chart and has to date sold over 7,000 copies.<br /> <br /> This is not Popcaan&rsquo;s first international run. He has charted in the United States with Only Man She Want which reached number 88 on the R&B Hip Hop Songs chart in 2012. In the UK, he charted with two singles: he is featured on Aluna George&rsquo;s 2016 hit<br /> <br /> I&rsquo;m in Control which reached number 39; and a number 10 on collaboration with Melissa Steele entitled Kisses for Breakfast in 2014.<br /> <br /> Popcaan won the MOBO Award for Best Reggae Act in 2015.<br /> <br /> Too Bad is featured on Drake&rsquo;s multi-platinum selling album Views. The song has been certified gold in Sweden (20,000 copies); gold in New Zealand (7,500); gold in Italy (25,000 copies); platinum in Australia (70,000); and platinum in the United Kingdom (600,000).<br /> <br /> The song was produced by Nineteen85 (who has Jamaican parentage) and Jamaica-born Dwayne &lsquo;Supa Dups&rsquo; Chin-Quee. http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13246539/pop-in_w300.jpg Local Entertainment Saturday, August 27, 2016 2:00 AM Beenie&rsquo;s Unstoppable hits snag http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/entertainment/Beenie-s-Unstoppable-hits-snag_72130 Unstoppable, Beenie Man&rsquo;s first studio album in 10 years, has been delayed until September 16.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;The album was due for release on Friday (yesterday) but we didn&rsquo;t get clearance for some of the songs in time,&rdquo; said Rohan &lsquo;Blue&rsquo; Smith, Beenie Man&rsquo;s manager in a statement.<br /> <br /> &lsquo;&rsquo;We had to pull it because we had two must-have tracks that needed to go on the album,&rsquo; it continued.&rsquo;<br /> <br /> The album will be available worldwide on all digital and streaming platforms.<br /> <br /> Full digital album pre-order will start September 2 on iTunes worldwide.<br /> <br /> Beenie Man held a listening party for the album earlier this week. The 22-track album features production work from Mario C, Major Lazer, Tony Kelly, Don Corleon, Seanizzle, Jeremy Harding and Jordan McClure, among others.<br /> <br /> Among the artistes featured are Bounty Killer, Agent Sasco, Christopher Martin and Verse Simmonds. http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13239668/224328__w300.jpg Local Entertainment Saturday, August 27, 2016 2:00 AM Busy treats students http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/entertainment/Busy-treats-students_72111 DANCEHALL deejay Busy Signal is pleased with the inaugural staging of his back-to-school community fun day at the Buxton All-Age School in St Ann recently.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;Many lives were touched and this event has set a platform for greater things in the future. We made over 200 presentations during the course of the day,&rdquo; he told the Jamaica Observer.<br /> <br /> The event, staged through his Busy 2020 Helping Hands Foundation, saw children being presented with much-needed school supplies.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;My expectation was to assist as many children as possible with a back-to-school package, as well as to treat them to a fun-filled day before school reopens. So yes, I think my expectations were met and somewhat exceeded as the sponsors assisted with toys, gift bags, and phone credit for prizes throughout the day,&rdquo; said Busy Signal, who hails from the community of Buxton.<br /> <br /> Sponsors include Pepsi Jamaica, Chancellor Insurance Agency, Bahia Principe Resort, Island Leisure Tours and Excursions, All Signs Ltd, Spicy Nice, Wild Rides, Vivid Pixx, Mr Nash Stores, and Fontana Pharmacy.<br /> <br /> The dancehall act said he is hoping to make the event an annual one.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;For the next event, we would love engage more sponsors, not just to make donations, but to be physically present at the event. We are definitely looking forward to making this annual event as I feel honoured to be able to do something like this for my home community of Buxton,&rdquo; he said.<br /> <br /> &mdash; Brian Bonitto http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13245435/224980_w300.jpg http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13245432/224979_w300.jpg Local Entertainment Saturday, August 27, 2016 2:00 AM Aug 31 funeral for D&rsquo;Angel&rsquo;s dad http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/entertainment/Aug-31-funeral-for-D-Angel-s-dad_72120 The thanksgiving service to celebrate the life of Noel &lsquo;Clive&rsquo; Downer, father of recording artiste Michelle &lsquo;D&rsquo;Angel&rsquo; Downer, will be held on Wednesday, August 31, at the Cathedral of St Jago de la Vega in Spanish Town, St Catherine.<br /> <br /> The occasion is slated for a 12 noon start. <br /> <br /> Interment follows in the Dovecot Memorial Park.<br /> <br /> Downer, an entrepreneur, died in hospital on August 9 from injuries sustained after being hit by a motor vehicle on the Old Harbour main road in St Catherine. He was 70.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;My father always wanted to be a singer, but he shied away from the spotlight, so he was immensely proud that I took the baton from him, in a sense, and he was able to realise that dream through me,&rdquo; she said.<br /> <br /> In a joint statement from his daughters; Nadine, Joan, Peta-Gaye and D&rsquo;Angel, he was hailed as a loving and supportive father.<br /> <br /> D&rsquo;Angel also expressed her heartfelt thanks to the music fraternity and colleagues for their outpouring of support during her time of grief. http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13245433/173676__w300.jpg Local Entertainment Saturday, August 27, 2016 2:00 AM Deejay Triga Finga bashes badmind http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/entertainment/Deejay-Triga-Finga-bashes-badmind_72087 Emerging Japanese deejay Triga Finga has released his latest single entitled Badmind People.<br /> <br /> Released in August, the track is produced by Valentine Lawrence on the Reality Rhythm. <br /> <br /> &ldquo;It&rsquo;s a conscious song. All over the world you have badmind people, and dat cause a lot of problems,&rdquo; the 28-year-old said.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;We haffi fight against badmind, and show dem seh wi still a make progress and still have success even when dem fight we. We can&rsquo;t mek badmind win,&rdquo; he continued.<br /> <br /> Born in Saitama, Japan, Triga Finga found his calling in music in 2005 and got his name from Jamaican singer Anthony Red Rose, based on his lyrical dexterity. He has been performing in Japan since 2007.<br /> <br /> His producer, Lawrence had high praises for the Japanese act.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;I see him as a man of change. He found himself in the Jamaica music industry and he is here to make a stamp and show that you can make a difference. A lot of people can relate to the song because it signify how badmind people operate, so I know people will love it,&rdquo; said Lawrence.<br /> <br /> Triga Finga&rsquo;s other single is Kick Out with dancehall act, Popcaan.<br /> <br /> He also spoke very highly of dancehall acts Aidonia and Chi Ching Ching.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;&ldquo;They don&rsquo;t discriminate; mi a Japanese and they don&rsquo;t care, dem know mi say dancehall and reggae, and dem treat mi good,&rdquo; he said.<br /> <br /> Triga Finga is preparing a 15-show tour of Japan from September 2 to October 24 and is confident for the task ahead.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;I am happy for the experience. I get success inna Jamaica so that&rsquo;s why people want to see mi. Mi want deliver the real thing in Japan and come back in October to continue mi journey here,&rdquo; he said. http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13245162/224929__w300.jpg Local Entertainment Saturday, August 27, 2016 12:00 AM Phantom IMC making a name http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/entertainment/Phantom-IMC-making-a-name_72098 Switzerland-based Phantom IMC is enjoying good vibes after only 18 months as an artiste. His single, Nuh Give Up, is getting its share of attention thanks to exposure on the Reggaeville.com website.<br /> <br /> Nuh Give Up has racked up over 50,000 views on the popular German site. That&rsquo;s not bad going for the deejay who previously managed Cali P, another artiste who lives in Switzerland.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;Artiste management was never my thing, I had just wanted to help a friend (Cali P), so I brought him to Jamaica to promote a song that I had produced for a ski movie soundtrack. I was all over the island promoting the artiste but after one year I realised that his intention was not what I thought it was, so we parted ways,&rdquo; said Phantom IMC.<br /> <br /> Last December, he released his The Beginning EP which includes the song, True Gyalist. It was released by his Inspired Music Concepts.<br /> <br /> Phantom IMC (Anil Montague) has other songs for release soon. They include One Step Ahead and Her Body featuring Portuguese artiste Evang. http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13245431/224905__w300.jpg Local Entertainment Saturday, August 27, 2016 2:00 AM PAN 2016 heads to St Elizabeth http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/entertainment/PAN-2016-heads-to-St-Elizabeth_72096 Popular dancer/deejay Ding Dong, gospel singer Kevin Downswell and dancehall artiste Busy Signal comprise the entertainment line-up for Regional 1 of PAN 2016 slated for Independence Park, St Elizabeth, today.<br /> <br /> The family event is scheduled for a 12 noon start and the admission is free.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;There&rsquo;s amazing pan chicken, of course, as well as bar deals courtesy of Pepsi and Red Stripe. And the entertainment is an important part of all our events. In fact, starting 2013, we began to incorporate more variety in our performers to ensure there was really something for everyone,&rdquo; said CB Foods Brand Manager Alicia Bogues.<br /> <br /> Comedian Dufton Shepherd and disc jockey Badda Bling are also billed for the event.<br /> <br /> Red Stripe said they were pleased to be part of PAN 2016.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;As a major manufacturer in Jamaica, Red Stripe supports the growth of entrepreneurship as an economic driver. A major component of PAN 2016 is the facilitation of the growth of this uniquely Jamaican enterprise. The iconic Red Stripe brand, which represents the pride of Jamaica, stands staunchly behind initiatives such as these. We are proud to be associated with PAN 2016 and laud the continuous efforts of the organisers of this staple, calendar event,&rdquo; said Michelle Cunningham, assistant brand manager at Red Stripe.<br /> <br /> The culinary extravaganza will see PAN chefs compete in a live 60-minute cook-off. A winner and runner-up will be chosen from each parish to advance to participate at the grand final on October 30.<br /> <br /> Thirty participants in Regional 1 will represent the parishes of Clarendon, St Elizabeth, St James, Hanover, Westmoreland and Manchester. <br /> <br /> Armed with hit songs including Shampoo, Syvah, Low Mi, Holiday and his latest chart topper<br /> <br /> Wul Up, Ding Dong will no doubt have patrons in a dancing mood.<br /> <br /> Busy Signal,known for his usual electrifying performances, is sure to drop hits including Text Message, Born and Grow, Step Out, Jail, What If and the international smash Bumaye (Watch Out Fi Dis).<br /> <br /> Downswell, who recently released his third studio album All the Way, will bring ministering to the proceedings. With songs such as Stronger and All the Way, patrons will no doubt leave the venue feeling blessed. http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/12500142/175567_w300.jpg http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13143288/202418__w300.jpg http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/12476587/173925_w300.jpg Local Entertainment Saturday, August 27, 2016 2:00 AM Damell pins hope on Money Nuff http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/entertainment/Damell-pins-hope-on-Money-Nuff_72088 Buoyed by a hot video and consistent airplay, Money Nuff has proved to be singer Damell&rsquo;s breakout song.<br /> <br /> Released on the Drugs rhythm for Chase Mills Records, the song is distributed by Zojak World Wide.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;The feedback has been great so far; whenever the song plays on the radio, my phone blows up like &lsquo;wow&rsquo;!&rdquo; Damell exclaimed.<br /> <br /> Damell (born Damell Williams) is from St Ann. He began singing in church as a member of the Sunday school choir.<br /> <br /> After living in St Kitts for a while, he returned to Jamaica in 2013 and released the song, Whine Yuh Waist, produced by Carlington Wilmot.<br /> <br /> Last year, Damell said his best effort was Digging Deep for his Touch Road Records. http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13245006/224930__w300.jpg Local Entertainment Saturday, August 27, 2016 2:00 AM Calgary Reggae fest was a blast http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/entertainment/Calgary-Reggae-fest-was-a-blast_71938 After heavy rain put a damper on last year&rsquo;s show, promoters of the annual Calgary Reggae Festival were uncertain there would be a 2016 staging.<br /> <br /> The show&rsquo;s 13th renewal took place August 18-20 at Millennium Park. According to Leo Cripps, a co-founder of the event, outstanding performances by a strong cast made it arguably their best year.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;The fact that we had a festival this year was extremely special because it shows the resiliency of the organisation. That we could lower our ticket costs and give away hundreds of free tickets was amazing,&rdquo; Cripps told Splash. &ldquo;Attracting the acts that we had on this year&rsquo;s festival and presenting them, even though we were financially challenged, was by far very, very special.&rdquo;<br /> <br /> Glen Washington, Anthony Cruz, Warrior King and Toronto-based Razor B were the main attractions. All delivered in a big way, Cripps reported.<br /> <br /> Promoters also reached out to new fans, including 25,000 Syrian refugees the Canadian Government granted asylum last year.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;Our theme this year was &lsquo;Uniting Cultures with Reggae Music&rsquo;. We wanted to expose our festival to people of other cultures [because] we recently had a huge influx of refugees and newcomers to our city,&rdquo; he explained. &ldquo;We decided to give complimentary tickets to organisations that support and assist newcomers. We felt we broke new ground by reconnecting with our community through our generous gestures.&rdquo;<br /> <br /> The Portland-born Cripps has lived in Calgary for over 25 years. He has played a major role in developing the city&rsquo;s reggae scene.<br /> <br /> &mdash; Howard Campbell http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13242936/224518__w300.jpg http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13242938/224519__w300.jpg http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13242935/224521__w300.jpg Local Entertainment Friday, August 26, 2016 12:00 AM Gay group puts heat on Sizzla http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/entertainment/Gay-group-puts-heat-on-Sizzla_72019 BY SIMONE MORGAN-LINDO Observer staff reporter Sizzla&rsquo;s first United States tour in eight years has hit a snag. Promoters of his September 23 show at 1015 Folsom in San Francisco (SF) have switched the show to nearby Oakland after protests by a gay rights group.<br /> <br /> The group, Queer Humboldt, launched a campaign detailing Sizzla&rsquo;s previous anti-LGBTQ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer) statements.<br /> <br /> Their outcry immediately put pressure on promoters at 1015 Folsom in Humboldt County, and Petaluma&rsquo;s Mystic Theatre, another venue in the region Sizzla was scheduled to perform.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;We have worked to educate people on &lsquo;murder music&rsquo; and we have had lots of success. Therefore, we will continue to educate where we can so that venue owners can understand and will not accomodate entertainers like Sizzla, who seek to bring violence upon gays and lesbians via their music,&rdquo; Queer Humboldt&rsquo;s Todd Larsen told Splash.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;When we reached out to 1015 Folsom, which has supported the LGBTQ community for decades, to inquire as to why they booked the show, they were surprised. An employee told us he wasn&rsquo;t aware of Sizzla&rsquo;s anti-gay sentiments,&rdquo; Larsen added.<br /> <br /> According to Larsen, he and his team are determined to educate promoters who have booked Sizzla for shows about his aggression toward gays.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;We are even very surprised that he got back his visa,&rdquo; he said.<br /> <br /> 1015 Folsom had advertised Sizzla&rsquo;s upcoming appearance on their Instagram page. Their website shows that Andrew Luce and Vincent will replace him on September 23.<br /> <br /> Yesterday, owners of 1015 Folsom announced through their Facebook page that the Sizzla show has been moved to a new venue.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;Due to community concerns, the San Francisco Sizzla concert at 1015 Folsom is being moved to Venue Oakland. All tickets from the SF show will be honoured at the new location. There will be a one-week window to claim a refund, closing on August 31 at 11:59 pm. Beyond that window, the show will have a no-refund policy,&rdquo; the post read.<br /> <br /> Sizzla recently performed on the Sierra Nevada World Music Festival in Northern California, his first performance in the US since 2008.<br /> <br /> He and several dancehall acts, including Buju Banton, Capleton and Beenie Man, have been targeted by gay groups in the US and Europe. http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13218600/222554__w300.jpg Local Entertainment Friday, August 26, 2016 12:00 AM Mama Love does it for Bryka http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/entertainment/Mama-Love-does-it-for-Bryka_71929 Newcomer Bryka has reason to celebrate this week. He occupies the number one spot on the More Fire Top Ten Regga e Chart in Japan with the song Mama Love , produced by Markus Myrie.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;Is a joy to know that di hard work that I have put in is finally paying off. Mi jus&rsquo; feel good to know that di song is doing well outside of Jamaica,&rdquo; Bryka said.<br /> <br /> The singer has strong music genes. His uncle is Buju Banton and Myrie, his cousin.<br /> <br /> Originally from rural St Andrew, Bryka resides in Portmore. Recently, he has enjoyed steady radio rotation with songs including I&rsquo;ll Be That Man, Shall And I Will, Real Youth and Journey Goes On.<br /> <br /> His interest in music started in the choir at Beulah Missionary Church of God in Golden Spring, St Andrew.<br /> <br /> To capitalise on his Japanese breakthrough, Pay Day Music has produced a four-song EP by Bryka titled<br /> <br /> Survivor, which will be released in Japan.<br /> <br /> Bryka is booked for shows on October 28 in Canada and London the following day.<br /> <br /> &mdash; Kevin Jackson http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13242896/224492__w300.jpg Local Entertainment Friday, August 26, 2016 12:00 AM Ele makes Billboard trek http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/entertainment/Ele-makes-Billboard-trek_71954 By Simone Morgan-Lindo Observer reporter morgans@jamaicaobserver.com Less than three months after getting back his United States work permit, dancehall artiste Elephant Man is counting his blessings. He has found his way on the Billboard Hot 100 chart.<br /> <br /> Hips Sing, a collaborative effort with United States-based DJ/producer DJ Sultan, made its debut on the charts three weeks ago and is currently at number 10.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;It&rsquo;s a really great feeling and we just got to give God thanks. I feel really good to be representing for dancehall music. We never stop working and to see the work being appreciated is a good thing,&rdquo; he said. <br /> <br /> Released in June, Hips Sing was recorded in Jamaica and mixed in Chicago by Engineer Eric Yoder.<br /> <br /> A music video for the single is in the works.<br /> <br /> Elephant man (given name Oneil Bryan) has hit the Billboard Hot 100 chart twice with singles Jook Gal, which peaked at 57, and Pon Di River which peaked at 86.<br /> <br /> Elephant Man first came to prominence during the late 1990s as a member of the Scare Dem Crew, which included Nitty Kutchie, Harry Toddler, and Boom Dandymite.<br /> <br /> They had measured success and it was not until he went solo that Elephant Man&rsquo;s stocks soared. At the peak of his popularity, he was signed to Bad Boy Records, owned by hip hop mogul Sean &ldquo;Diddy&rdquo; Combs. http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13143625/216006_w300.jpg Local Entertainment Friday, August 26, 2016 2:00 AM Wormbass hits the road http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/entertainment/Wormbass-hits-the-road_71936 Bassist/singer Wormbass continues promotion for his Reggaeman album tomorrow with a show at Roots Bamboo in Negril.<br /> <br /> It is the fourth gig of his &lsquo;Dance a Yard Before Yuh Dance Abroad&rsquo; tour of Jamaica.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;Wi have to mek people in Jamaica know what wi up to. Wi not depending on radio...wi jus&rsquo; tek di music to di people,&rdquo; Wormbass told Splash.<br /> <br /> The &lsquo;Dance A Yard&rsquo; series kicked off at Jamnesia in Kingston on August 13. Next was King&rsquo;s Plaza three days later, also in the capital.<br /> <br /> The previous show was at Ocean Eleven in Ocho Rios last Sunday.<br /> <br /> Reggaeman is Wormbass&rsquo;s (real name Delroy Nevin) first album. Driven by the lead song, it was released in February.<br /> <br /> The lanky musician made a name as bass player and band leader of Blaze, which toured with Beenie Man for several years.<br /> <br /> &mdash; HC http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13091822/211478__w300.jpg Local Entertainment Friday, August 26, 2016 2:00 AM