Kingston, 12 February 2019 – As part of its ongoing programme of support to the development of local community radio, the Jamaica National Commission for UNESCO (an agency of the Ministry of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport) and the UNESCO Caribbean Office recently sponsored a 3-day training workshop for volunteers of the Accompong Maroon community radio station, Abeng 88.7 FM.
Conducted under the theme: ‘Building a Sustainable Community Radio Station’, the participants received training in news and script-writing, programme production, interview techniques, digital editing, on-air presentation, and studio equipment maintenance.
30 volunteers from the Accompong community benefitted from the training.
Station Manager for Abeng 88.7 FM, Mrs Norma Rowe Edwards, said the training of the station volunteers was timely and welcomed as it equipped them with important skills and techniques they can use to better contribute to the work and functioning of the station.
“As a community radio station, volunteer effort is essential,” Mrs Rowe noted, adding that “the training of the volunteers forms an important part of the strategy towards making Abeng 88.7 FM a viable community radio station.”
The Honourable Olivia Grange, Chair of the Jamaica National Commission for UNESCO and the Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Culture, underscored the commitment of the Commission in building a sustainable Accompong community radio station.
Minister Grange said,
“The capacity of the station has been strengthened as a result of the training and the people of Accompong and adjoining communities can anticipate not only better programmes but greater people participation in creating content for the radio station.”
Secretary-General, Everton Hannam, said the National Commission remains committed to supporting the further development of Abeng 88.7 FM so it can become a model station within the UNESCO family of community radio stations.
The station was set up two years ago with funding from UNESCO.
Kingston 10 February 2019 – The Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, the Honourable Olivia Grange, has congratulated Jamaican superstar Shaggy and his English collaborator Sting on their 2019 Best Reggae Album win at the Grammy Awards taking place in Los Angeles this evening.
Minister Grange said:
“I’m very happy to send congratulations to Shaggy and Sting for winning the Grammy for Best Reggae Album. Well done to them both for continuing the tradition of producing high quality Reggae music.”
The title of the winning album is 44/876 which refers to the area codes of the UK and Jamaica.
“In a way the title tells a bit of the story of our Reggae. It is a unique Jamaican creation, made on our island by our people. Reggae is a gift from the 876 to the people of the world who have embraced it in several ways, even as practitioners of the music,” said Minister Grange.
Minister Grange has also congratulated Black Uhuru, Etana, Ziggy Marley and Protoje who were in the running for the Grammy Award for Best Reggae Album.
Kingston 5 February 2019 – The Chairman of the Entertainment Advisory Board, Howard McIntosh, is calling for “global support of Reggae Month by Jamaicans at home and abroad.”
McIntosh was speaking after the well-attended Reggae Month Church Service at Fellowship Tabernacle on Sunday.
He said he hoped to see “hundreds of thousands to visit our shores in February next year consistent with our objectives to have 5 million tourists visit our shores annually.”
McIntosh also encouraged the local media to support Reggae Month by playing more Jamaican music during the period. “We need to celebrate our music legacy in as many ways possible,” he said.
The Entertainment Advisory Board was appointed by the Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, the Honourable Olivia Grange, as part of her programme to establish the appropriate infrastructure on which to construct a viable and vibrant creative economy.
Kingston 5 February 2019 – The Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, the Honourable Olivia Grange, has expressed sadness at the passing of the Reggae singer Joel ‘Bunny’ Brown.
During his career, which began in 1968, Brown was a member of several groups including The Wildcats, Mighty Mystics, Dynamic Vision, The Falcons and Chosen Few — with whom he recorded the hit ‘Queen Majesty’. He also backed Luther Vandross, The Blow and Lisa Fisher.
Minister Grange said:
“It is with a heavy heart that I learnt of Bunny Brown’s passing. He was an ambassador for our music for 50 years. At this time when we celebrate Reggae Month and the pioneers of our music, we must remember and honour Bunny Brown’s contribution. I convey deepest condolences to his family and friends.”
Kingston 1 February 2019 – The Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, the Honourable Olivia Grange, has announced financial support for local Premier League teams.
Minister Grange said she had “heard the cries of the clubs that are struggling financially and we have been able to arrange a special, one-off grant, in the sum of J$7.2 million dollars through the Sports Development Foundation to the 12 Premier League clubs.”
Each club will receive J$600,000 in total to be paid in monthly instalments of J$150,000.
In addition, the Premier League Clubs Association will receive a similar amount of J$600,000 to assist with Administrative Expenses during the season.
“The payments will begin immediately,” said Minister Grange.
“I believe that this special grant from the SDF will ease the pressure on both the clubs and the PLCA and ensure that we have a successful league season,”
added the Minister.
Kingston, February 1 – The Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, the Honourable Olivia Grange is urging young and upcoming recording artistes to build on the legacy of pioneers such as Dennis Brown.
The Minister said that it is important for them to do so especially in light of the recent inscription of Reggae to UNESCO’s list of Intangible Cultural Heritage.
“I must appeal to our young people to place special emphasis on creating music at a standard that will last and that will keep the legacy of Dennis Brown and countless others going forever,” said Minister Grange.
The Minister was speaking today at a ceremony to mark the 62nd anniversary of the birth of the “Crown Prince of Reggae”, Dennis Brown at National Heroes Park. The occasion was also used to mark the start of Reggae Month 2019.
“Generations change and we know the inevitability that comes with that. But we can build on what has been done over the past 50 years since Reggae Music was started.
We have the talent and the expertise and so I encourage the elders who are here today to take the youngsters under your wings. Help them to see that this Reggae Music of Jamaica is not to be taken lightly; help them understand that it has been and continues to be a powerful force for good in the world, driving economic, social and political liberation,” the Minister added.
Minister Grange also encouraged Jamaicans to “get out” and enjoy all the planned activities for Reggae Month which include a church service (Sunday, February 3), the showing of a series of Reggae Films at Emancipation Park, a Reggae music exhibition at the African Caribbean Institute (all month-long), Concerts, the Global Reggae Conference and nightly entertainment events across the country.
Reggae Month celebrated annually in February, is being organised jointly by the Ministry of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport and the Ministry of Tourism. It is being celebrated under the theme, Celebrating Reggae’s Legacy.
Kingston, January 24 – The Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, the Honourable Olivia Grange, has announced that Jamaica will establish a National Anti-Doping Compliance Committee as part of measures to enhance the national programme to keep sports clean.
The Committee will ensure that Jamaica conforms to the World Anti-Doping Agency’s code and UNESCO’s International Convention against Doping in Sport.
“We want to ensure that our athletes are playing clean and fair,” said Minister Grange who made the announcement at a symposium organised by the Jamaica Anti-Doping Commission, an agency of the Ministry of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport at the Jamaica Conference Centre on Thursday (January 24).
According to the Minister, the establishment of the Committee will among other things “improve information sharing, promote planning, design and delivery of joint initiatives and enhance the anti-doping programme’s impact and effectiveness.”
She said that the Committee will also ensure a more comprehensive response to the national compliance report to be submitted to UNESCO.
“I am confident that Jamaica will be ranked compliant, however, in order for Jamaica to be successful, there has to be the collaborative effort of all entities and stakeholders in the fight against doping in sport,”
Minister Grange said.
Under the International Convention against Doping in Sport Jamaica has a responsibility to report bi-annually on its efforts for a doping free environment in the country.
The National Anti-Doping Compliance Committee will include representatives from the Ministry of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, the private sector, tertiary institutions, law enforcement and health.
Kingston 23 January 2019 – The Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, the Honourable Olivia Grange, has welcomed the announcement of the Minister of Tourism, the Honourable Edmund Bartlett, that his Ministry is providing J$25 million towards the further development of the Jamaica Music Museum, also referred to as the Reggae Museum.
The Jamaica Music Museum, which was launched by Minister Grange and brought into operation in 2009, is a division of the Institute of Jamaica — an agency of the Ministry of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport.
Minister Grange said the support of the Ministry of Tourism will fast track the development of the Jamaica Music Museum which is “now housed in the corridors of the Institute of Jamaica”.
Minister Grange said:
“The inscription of the Reggae Music of Jamaica to the UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage list makes it even more urgent for us to intensify our work on the Jamaica Music Museum as a major resource in promoting and preserving our music, and this support from Minister Bartlett will go a far way in helping us to establish, in a short period of time, a museum befitting Reggae’s global status. This is a great example of Ministers, Ministries and Agencies working together for the benefit of the people of Jamaica. It goes to show that when you put us [Minister Bartlett and I] together, nobody can beat us.”
Minister Bartlett said support for the further development of the Jamaica Music Museum will be provided through the Tourism Enhancement Fund. He said the sum of J$25 million has been set aside for the further “scoping, design and the development of the concept of a physical museum… then you give us the budget for what is required for the rest of it.”
Minister Bartlett explained that the investment in the Jamaica Music Museum is part of a broader strategy to develop the Reggae product. The strategy includes investment in the development of trails to sites that are significant in the history of the music and the use of Reggae in a new advertising campaign for the Jamaica Tourist Board.
Ministers Grange and Bartlett were speaking at the launch of Reggae Month 2019 on Sunday.
Reggae Month, celebrated annually in February, is being organised jointly by the Ministry of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport and the Ministry of Tourism.
Kingston 21 January 2019 – The Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, the Honourable Olivia Grange says the Thanksgiving Service for the late Troy Caine is set for February 2, 2019.
The Minister is organising the service for Mr Caine who was a member of the Board of Management of the National Library of Jamaica, an agency of the Ministry of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, at the time of his passing.
The Thanksgiving Service will be held at the Holy Cross Catholic Church, 77 Half Way Tree Road on Saturday, February 2, 2019, starting at 11:00 am.
The renowned Political Historian and Analyst died suddenly on January 10.