Excerpt from Jamaica Observer column
by Jean Lowrie-Chin
|Generous Carmen Rives, Chargé d’Affaires of the Embassy of Spain in Jamaica|
|Classique Sound System's Sister Norma and Dr Joshua Chamberlain|
Downtown came uptown last Thursday with a pulsating dance party Tribute to Rae Town, hosted by Carmen Rives, Chargé d’Affaires of the Embassy of Spain in Jamaica. The Kingston seaside community’s famous weekly event has become a fixture on many visitors’ calendars, and Ms Rives invited the mellow Classique Sound System and Sister Norma to delight guests of various walks of life. It was a memorable evening – such a generous gesture to mark Jamaica’s ‘Emanci-pendence’ celebrations.
My friend Joshua Chamberlain, an instructor at Alpha Boys School organised a live stream of the Rae Town Tribute on the fast-growing Alpha Boys Radio Station. Joshua has made us proud, earning a doctoral degree from the UWI with his extensive research and thesis on our sound system culture.
|Roman Catholic Archbishop Ken Richards (2nd left) with Dr Joshua Chamberlain and Margaret Little of Alpha Institute, and Enith Williams, dynamic volunteer for the Redevelopment of Holy Trinity Cathedral|
|Yours truly with inspiring author and dancehall researcher Dr Sonjah Stanley Niaah|
At PROComm, we can attest to the power of Jamaica’s sound system network. The late President of the Sound Systems Association Louise Fraser-Bennett assisted us in promoting peaceful elections in the late 90s when she distributed an Electoral Office-sponsored song by Tony Rebel, “Peace, Love and Unity”. Louise reported that many a heated moment was cooled by observant selectors who would ‘big-up’ the song and play it in the various communities where political fervor ran high.