Reggae fest in Dubai

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DubaiROOTS singer Junior Reid is the headliner for the inaugural Dubai Reggae Festival which takes place on November 7 in the oil-rich city.

Reid will launch his Junior Reid: The Living Legend album two days before the event. Singer Wayne Wonder, who has previously performed in Dubai on the popular Reggae Beachfest shows, is also confirmed for the festival.

So too Barbadian soca artiste Rupee, Jamaican deejay Rasta Rocket, and Kriss Darling of Kenya, one of Africa’s leading reggae acts. DJ Justin (Justin Morin), a Jamaican sound system selector who lives in Dubai, is also part of the festival.

Kenya Don, the promoter responsible for introducing reggae/dancehall to Dubai, was the man behind Beachfest which was first held in 2013. He described the Dubai Reggae Festival as an expansion of Beachfest.

“It’s a blessing to do the first reggae festival in the Middle East. We’re moving from one artiste each month to a major show,” said Kenya Don.

This year, several dancehall/reggae acts performed in Dubai on Beachfest. They are Mr Vegas, Diana King and Red Rat and Elephant Man. The Kenyan-born promoter staged similar shows throughout Africa before getting involved in booking artistes for dates in Dubai, largest city in the United Arab Emirates and home to a large expatriate community.

He has promoted shows in other Middle East territories, namely Bahrain and Qatar.

— Howard Campbell


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