The International Reggae Day (IRD) London, UK hub  event mix of talks and music will takes place online on Wednesday July 1, 6-10pm (UK GMT +1) via Zoom and Mixcloud Live.

Jamaican High Commissioner to the UK and Ireland H.E. Seth George Ramocan will formally open the second talk session. He will speak to ‘The Influence Of Marcus Garvey On Reggae’ theme. Also contributing will be veteran producer and manager Mikey Campbell.

This session marks Marcus Garvey/UNIA-ACL 80:100, which commemorates the 80th anniversary of the passing of the pan-Africanist icon in London in 1940 and the 100th anniversary of his UNIA-ACL (Universal Negro Improvement Association-African Communities League) group’s first convention in New York in 1920. It will feed into the 24-hour global online output generated from the Kingston, Jamaican-based main IRD promotion company Jamaican Arts Holdings. Music Congress founder Kwaku, who is the co-ordinator of IRD in the UK, will moderate the two talk sessions.

The first talk session, ‘State Of British Reggae: The Solutions Forum’, aims to avoid focusing on problems and challenges. Instead, industry practitioners such as Colin Brown of Reggae Fraternity UK, Ariwa Sounds owner and producer Neil ‘Mad Professor’ Fraser, and Back2DaFuture Music Ltd owner Kennedy ‘Prezedent’ Mensah, will provide practical solutions to issues around lack of mainstream radio support, and engaging with streaming services and royalty collection societies.

The audience can contribute from the floor and submit their solutions through the chat facility. Also, virtual presentations of the IRD UK Award will be made to promoters of reggae in clubs, concerts and festivals.

The event will end with ‘Celebrating The Diversity Of British & Global Reggae Music’, a two-hour online disco available on the BBMed Mixcloud Live page.

Kwaku BBM (BBM/BMC) will play a tribute set in honour of recently departed artists, including Delroy Washington, Millie, Bob Andy, Majek Fashek, and Principal Root. Geoff Parker (Catch A Fire) will focus on reggae anthems. Junie Rankin & DJ Ade (Nzinga Soundz) will focus on female acts. Cee Bee (UK Reggae Expose Show) will play new British releases. Prezedent (Back2DaFuture Show) will highlight continental African reggae, and Roy Forbes (Hawkeye Sounds) will focus the elders and foundation artists.

All the DJs will end the evening playing two of their favourite Dennis Brown tracks, to mark the death of Brown, who passed away on July 1 1999. It will include a contribution from Brown’s daughter and singer Marla Brown.

Virtual presentations will be made to IRD UK 2020 Awardees in the house, for their contribution to the promotion of reggae in the UK, be it concerts, festivals or club wise.

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