Jamaica’s Reggae Sunsplash posthumously honors reggae icon Dennis Brown

Jamaicans walk in front of a mural of reggae singers Denis Brown (L) and Bob Marley in Kingston, Jamaica.
Associated Press/Jorge Silva, file

Jamaica’s ground-breaking Reggae Sunsplash festival returned last weekend for the first-ever virtual staging of the event featuring a special tribute honoring the late Reggae icon, Dennis Emmanuel Brown.

According to the Jamaica Tourist Board (JTB), The Dennis Brown tribute was aired during the first night of the online festival, which brought​streaming on the official Reggae Sunsplash YouTube channel on Friday, Nov. 27 starting at 5:30 p.m. ET.

The live 20-minute salute to Jamaica’s renowned “Crown Prince of Reggae” included video clips of Brown’s legendary appearances at previous Reggae Sunsplash events in addition to performances by fellow musicians, a heartfelt video featuring the Dennis Brown Family and inspiring messages of remembrance from artists featured on the Reggae Sunsplash 2020 lineup.

Brown was a true Jamaican icon and was one of the first musicians to join the original lineup at the inaugural Reggae Sunsplash festival in 1978,” said Donovan White, JTB director of tourism.

“He helped shape the festival and it is only fitting that Reggae Sunsplash honor his legacy as the event returns this year following a 14-year hiatus,” he added.

During his prolific career — which began in the late 1960s when he was just 11 — Brown, CD, recorded more than 75 albums and was one of the major stars of Lovers Rock, a subgenre of Reggae.

According to Wikipedia, the free online encyclopedia, the legendary Jamaican reggae superstar Bob Marley cited Brown, CD — who was born on Feb. 1, 1957 and died on July 1, 1999 — as his favorite singer, dubbing him “The Crown Prince of Reggae.”

“And Brown would prove influential on future generations of reggae singers,” Wikipedia said.

Audiences from across the globe tuned in to the high-energy Reggae Sunsplash 2020 virtual festival on Nov. 27 and 28 “to enjoy can’t-miss performances from dozens of leading Reggae and Dancehall artists,” JTB said.

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