AFROBEAT is taking over the world. Major record companies from the United States have set up divisions across Africa to capitalise on the success of Afrobeats artistes including WizKid, Stonebwoy, Davido, Burna Boy, Mr. Eazi, Tems, and Bujy TYE.
The Afro World Festival is slated to make its debut on local shores from May 26-31. Scheduled for Negril, the festival will feature, among others artistes, performances by Beenie Man, Davido, City Girls, Moneybaggyo, Orezi, Emma Nyara, and Poni Capri.
Netherlands-based Deni Sheriff — a well-known music video director, artiste manager and event planner — is one of the forces behind the staging of this festival. His partners include Ife Ade Tokan and Toba Abiodun.
“The intent of the festival is to expand Afrobeat to all parts of the world — and Jamaica plays a very big part in Afrobeat. Our objective is to connect and bring everyone together as one big family and have a good time,” said Sheriff.
He said events will take place at several locations in Negril, including Wavz Beach, Margaritaville, Woodstock, and the Jungle Nightclub.
Asked if he felt that the success of Afrobeat globally is a recipe for the success of his event in Jamaica, Sheriff said: “Yes. It will be a success. In fact, we are looking forward to making this and the next events to come surpass all previous events held.”
He shared what people can expect at the event.
“They should expect the best from the best. You can tell based on previous Afro World Festivals and [us] wanting to make this extraordinary, they should expect nothing more than mind-blowing entertainment.”
Born in Liberia, Sheriff has been involved in the staging of Afro World Festival in several countries including Spain, Dubai, Mexico, England, Portugal, Turkey, Ghana, Greece, Cyprus, and Amsterdam.
Forthcoming Afro World Festivals are scheduled for Greece and Amsterdam (June), Portugal and Barbados (July), Turkey (August), Kenya (September), Cancun, Mexico (October); and Dubai (November).
Said Sheriff, “We already expanded the festival to include dates in other countries and now it’s Jamaica’s time. We definitely have some more countries that it will be held in.”