Worldwide ~ JulyOne – International Reggae Day 2023 will Celebrate Global Influence of 80s and 90s Dancehall 

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International Reggae Day

Producers of International Reggae Day (IRD), the annual global celebration of Jamaican music culture have announced plans for JulyOne. Under the theme “From Brukins to Dancehall: The Global Influence of 80s and 90s Dancehall” IRD2023 will spotlight this pivotal era that has helped to shape Jamaican music and its impact on global culture.

IRD is an annual 24-hour hybrid global media festival, with events staged locally, internationally and online, anchored at ireggaeday.com and on IRD’s social platforms on JulyOne.  A simultaneous programme of media specials as well as live and virtual events themed around IRD2023 and Jamaica’s musical and cultural influence, is being hosted in participating countries around the world. Media partners in Jamaica and internationally, are invited to spotlight the music and legends of the genre while highlighting the global impact of Jamaican music culture.

Founder and Producer of IRD, Andrea M. Davis, expressed her excitement about this year’s theme, saying, “We are thrilled to delve into the influential era of 80s and 90s Dancehall. This year’s celebration allows us to honour the artistes, producers, sound systems and cultural contributors who have played a crucial role in shaping the Dancehall genre and making it an integral part of Jamaican and global culture.”

The emergence of Dancehall music in the late 1970s marked a turning point in the evolution of Jamaican music, driven by the vibrant sound system culture. Building on the toasting tradition of the 60 and 70s popularised by Daddy U-Roy and Big Youth, 80s and 90s Dancehall defined a new genre in the evolution of the Jamaican sound.

From the sound systems dances to Sting, “The Greatest One Night Show on Earth”, 80s and 90s Dancehall would take centre-stage in Jamaica before making its way around the world.

Lisa-Ann OGilvie, Co-Producer of IRD, noted that, “Dancehall music has had, and continues to wield an immense influence on contemporary music around the world. Through IRD, we aim to celebrate and recognize the impact of Dancehall on the music landscape and highlight the impact on Jamaican music.”

The reach of 80s and 90s Dancehall cannot be overstated, when considering the catalogue, collaborations and careers of artistes like Yellowman, Shabba Ranks, Patra, Beenie Man, Bounty Killer, Buju Banton, Baby Cham, Lady Saw and Sean Paul among many luminaries of the genre, who achieved significant success worldwide.

Characterized by energetic beats, catchy melodies with a digital sound, and provocative lyrics, the influence of 80s and 90s Dancehall continues to reverberate in contemporary music. 

Artistes and DJs from various genres ranging from EDM  to Hip Hop, Reggaeton, Afro Beats and Pop to R&B, frequently incorporate Dancehall elements into their music. Dancehall’s influence can be heard in the rhythmic patterns, melodic structures, and even lyrical flows of these contemporary tracks. This fusion of styles not only pays homage to the genre’s rich legacy but also showcases Dancehall’s  enduring appeal and versatility. 

In addition to the music, movement played a pivotal role in 80s and 90s Dancehall and influenced dance styles globally. The vibrant and energetic dance moves that accompanied the music became an integral part of the Dancehall experience. The popular dance moves of this era, such as the Bogle, Della Move, Butterfly, and World Dance which has their foundation in our traditional folk movements such as Brukins, not only showcased the creativity and athleticism of the dancers but also became iconic representations of Dancehall culture. These dances were a means of expression, celebration, and connection.

Whether it’s a catchy Dancehall-inspired chorus, a Reggae-infused beat, a signature dance move or the incorporation of Jamaican patois, these elements of  the Jamaican music experience have added an undeniable flair and vibrancy to popular music culture worldwide. 

From Kingston to Nassau, New York to London, Johannesburg to Salvador, numerous cities around the world have confirmed participation thus far in IRD 2023. 
For more details visit ireggaeday.com