- Screening to celebrate Kingston's 140th and Ja's 50th anniversaries
Davina Henry, Staff Reporter
Marley: The Definitive Story documentary, is slated to premiere tonight on the lawns of Emancipation Park.
Speaking at a press briefing yesterday at The Jamaica Pegasus hotel, Jacqueline Lynch-Stewart, general manager of the Bob Marley Foundation, said the documentary would really show more about Bob Marley, the man, rather than the musician. According to her, individuals who have already seen the documentary describe it as very emotional.
The documentary will be released on April 20 in the United States, but members of the family decided to do its first major premiere in Jamaica because of Bob Marley's roots.
According to Lynch-Stewart, the Marley family wanted to expose the film to as many people as possible because it "recognises and respects his heritage." The Emancipation Park showing of the film is in celebration of Jamaica's 50th anniversary and Kingston's 140 years of existence.
Newly appointed mayor of Kingston, Angela Brown Burke, in her address, said that Bob Marley was loved across the length and breadth of not only Jamaica, but across the world. She said Marley's message "transcends the world. It has no limitations."
The documentary is the first film to premiere in Emancipation Park. Paula Pinnock-McLeod, sports sponsorship manager at Digicel said her organisation was proud to be associated with Bob Marley, his family and his foundation. "Digicel has a long-standing partnership with the Bob Marley Foundation. For us to do another initiative that allows people to feel more connected to Bob Marley meant something to us. We've staged two shows in Emancipation Park centred around Marley so this meant alot to us," she told The Gleaner.
Rohan Marley said he was pleased with the documentary. According to him, "I felt that Kevin (Macdonald, the director) did a wonderful job conveying the message of a real man. My father had a lot of struggles from childhood and onwards, and no matter how great or successful he was, he still had struggles, but he conquered them. It's good that this documentary was made."
Former minister of youth and culture, Olivia 'Babsy' Grange, also echoed this sentiment. "I am quite familiar with the documentary from its early stages. I am looking forward to seeing it. It's the first film totally endorsed by the family who was also fully involved in it. It's a true story of Bob Marley. I'm happy to be associated with the premiere. Jamaica gave the world a musical icon and we are a blessed country to have produced a son of the soil from the parish of Marcus Garvey," she told The Gleaner.
The documentary will premiere at 8 p.m. and is free to the public.
Veteran dancehall artiste Snagga Puss, aka Di Herbal Man, is hoping to make a comeback to the local dancehall scene. According to the artiste, who also operates a herbal medicine production business, he feels he has become more conscious and better at his musical craft than ever before.
Snagga Puss revealed that contrary to what his critics may think, he is still very much into dancehall and reggae music. However, he only took some time off to study.
"Mi neva give up pon music, mi did just park music to study about health. I went to Germany and spent five years studying biochemistry and a scientific course on the human biological structure. I have now mastered that art and now I am ready to channel that knowledge and energy into music," he said.
Snagga Puss added that his herbal products can enable him to help others, and that his lyrical content will reflect what he learnt in Germany. This he believes will help musicians and the society on a whole to learn about good health practices.
"So much great musician die and we don't know why. So I study health because I want to help others to know about their health and how to treat their bodies, know what to eat and what to drink and that will be reflected in my new music," he said.
The upcoming album from Snagga Puss will be produced by his own label called Snagga Spragga Records and will be released in coming months.
According to the artiste, the anticipation is already high and the album will take his career to a new level.
Snagga Puss also has a new dance move called the NBA which he plans to expose to the dancehall. The artiste also revealed that he has been working with some local dancers to expose the dance move.
"The dance will be out soon and I have some dancers like Lizard Man who will promote it. My album will feature Mickey General and at this point I just feel re-energised. I believe at this stage I have the talent and skills necessary and I have more to offer than ever before, my motto is 'The older the moon the brighter it shines' and once yu know yu body you can do wonders," he said.
The entrepreneur also had some advice for other artistes who he believes will be a good developmental investment.
"It is important for artistes to engage their full heights, we were born with 360 degrees of talent and some people only use two per cent of that. As artistes we need to do other things to occupy our time so that when the music slows down we have other things to fall back on," he told THE STAR.
Snagga Puss says he also plans to embark on an islandwide promotional campaign to promote his new music, and added that he will distribute his 'Snagga Spragga Nile Valley' herbal products worldwide when he has completed his negotiations with the relevant local authorities.
Johnson said that the SCDF has looked at every facet of Carnival and continues to make the necessary improvements in the "people's festival." Much effort has gone into the marketing of St.Maarten's Carnival on a larger scale, SCDF continues working on promoting its name amongst influential stakeholders both locally and abroad, and has fostered a relationship with other Carnival committees in the region, such as Aruba, Curacao, Trinidad, Anguilla, Miami, St. Eustatius and Saba.
This year SCDF has focused strongly on the marketing aspect of carnival by placing a heavy emphasis on the marketing of local events as well as the general season of carnival. One of the major marketing aspects which the SCDF continues to be a welcoming addition is the three year agreement signed with Tempo Music Network.
"We feel proud of this agreement as it is a solid medium for the further promotion of St. Maarten's Carnival product," Johnson said. He emphasized on the carnival experience on St. Maarten is like no other, especially with our Festival Village and our line-up of activities which has a duration of two weeks.
The business sector has also shown a confidence and commitment to SCDF however, the operational cost of hosting our annual event exceeds the sponsorships received. "We've been able to work well with our corporate sponsors this year again because of the exposure opportunities they are receiving throughout our celebration."
"Much appreciation goes out to Minister Franklin Meyers for allocating Naf. 500,000 for the marketing of Carnival as well as the representatives of the Tourism Department for their unconditional support in this regard," Johnson said. May-Ling Chun and her team received high praises from the SCDF and hopes for a long standing working relationship continues.
Johnson minced no words in his appreciation towards Minister Rhoda Arrindell for her support to our annual celebrations especially with the participation of the Public School's carnival troupe for the Junior Carnival Parade. SCDF is also grateful for the support received by Minster Hiro Shigemoto and Minister Ronald Duncan.
"Carnival belongs to the people and it's time they take ownership to their festival. On that note, all businesses should sponsor and decorate their respective establishments during this special time of the year." Carnival benefits the community; businesses; directly or indirectly, everybody benefits from Carnival. And that is why we want to continue to develop our product, promote it and in the end a successful carnival season benefits everyone," Johnson said, noting that SCDF is always open to new ideas once it serves toward the betterment of our events.
SCDF is working on a five year plan which would comprise of the general vision for Carnival, key areas of further development and a marketing outline amongst others. By means of the social media such as Facebook, SCDF's fan page gets over 2,000 hits weekly. "Technology is connecting St. Maarten to the rest of the world, and for Carnival this means everyone can feel some of the vibes they're missing on," Johnson stated. He went on to say, that the live broadcast of our events such as the Calypso Eliminations and Finals as well as the Grand Parades is an opportunity worth embracing if you're not on St. Maarten.
For this Carnival season, six legendary calypsonians and one mainstay of the calypso art form on St. Maarten has been chosen to be honored this year. The SCDF will present special posthumous honors to the families of The Mighty Greg and The Mighty Cat, both former Road March kings. "These men were great entertainers and Carnival lovers. Cat stayed active with Carnival through his photography and producing songs such as the iconic Village anthem "Welcome to the Village. Greg's voice could never be forgotten and he grabbed every opportunity to sing when he wasn't competing. They are both missed and both deserve recognition," Johnson said.
The last person the SCDF intends to honor on April 20 is the Philosopher of Humor Fernando Clarke, not for his singing talents, but for being "The King of Calypso MC's". Johnson explained that MC means to "move a crowd" and added that there is none better than Fernando.
Johnson just over one year in the presidency looks back at the previous carnival season as a great learning experience, which will be valued for life, even in his professional career. He went onto say, "it is evident that the planning of Carnival is a year round activity and support must be given to the SCDF throughout the year." Currently the SCDF has over twenty members and twelve youth wing members which support the initiatives of the nine member board. He added, "In just one year we've done so much but there is always more to be done as we celebrate in grand style for 2012."
"The SCDF group is a vibrant group of individuals which comprises the board, the general membership and the youth wing," Johnson said. The SCDF executive board consists of President Stuart Johnson, Vice President Martin Wilson, Treasurer Erno Labega, Secretary Michael Granger, Assistant Secretary Vida Boyard and board members, Ronald Romey, Hazel Kishna, Hubert Pantophlet and Ewardo Radjouki.
"We encourage everyone to come out and participate in Carnival 2012 while having a safe and enjoyable time. Happy St. Maarten Carnival 2012 St. Maarten and long live St. Maarten Carnival," Johnson concluded.