Contractor gets Billboard plaque
Sean “Contractor” Edwards with his Billboard plaque for the project Tropical House Cruises to Jamaica: The Reggae Collector’s Edition, which hit the charts at 16 in 2020.

Music marketer Sean “Contractor” Edwards is celebrating a plaque for his project Tropical House Cruises to Jamaica: The Reggae Collector’s Edition.

He is credited as executive producer on the set.

“Well, it has become much more difficult to hit Billboard than in previous years because they have diversified the algorithms now to mostly streaming numbers and even incorporating social media activity. So, it was a pleasant surprise to hit it with this album,” he told the Jamaica Observer’s Splash.

Edwards received the Billboard plaque two weeks ago for the compilation which hit the charts at number 16 in 2020. It had taken just six months to be completed and made its debut in 2018.

The Tropical House Cruises to Jamaica: The Reggae Collector’s Edition also charted on several iTunes charts globally, including in Ghana, and it also made the top-10 of the sales-driven US Current Reggae Albums chart.

Edwards added that the compilation — which features music giants such as Capleton, Sizzla, Peetah Morgan, Singing Melody and Wayne Wonder, as well as dancehall stars like Vybz Kartel, Skillibeng and Tommy Lee Sparta — was aimed at appealing to African consumers.

“The concept of the album was to open the African market with reggae and dancehall by using one of their own artistes — Shatta Wale from Ghana — as the face of the album,” he explained.

The music executive added that it would take a lot of work to establish local recognitions akin to the Billboards because the younger generation is only focused on what is popular globally, and not solely in the Jamaican musical arena.

“Jamaican charts are based on what’s popular and not really any numeric sales data. So, because of that, the young audience uses the YouTube trending video charts as a benchmark for what’s hot out there,” he said.

In the meantime, Edwards is hopeful that there will be more Billboard plaques to come.

“This is my fourth Billboard charting album. Billboard is based in America and Canada. We need to stream and sell much more in other countries as a genre, and then we can truly compete. My confidence his high that when we work together we can achieve much more,” he said.

Kediesha Perry

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