Wednesday, 24 February 2016

LISTEN UP: Liberty Hall’s Sankofa 10 promises powerful discourse + Damian Marley soon to drop lead single from upcoming album

TAKING CONTROL: Maximizing his full potential through business ventures like the reggae-rific Welcome to Jamrock cruise occupies a lot of Damian Marley’s time these days. A hands-on businessman, he’s involved in practically every aspect of the planning process for the musical cruise, now in its third year. That includes, “choosing the talent, organizing the running order of the performances of each night, approving artwork for flyers, banners and advertisements and in general contributing ideas that add to the overall experience,” he tells YVA Nation magazine. And because the creative juices are always flowing, his music-making prowess never stops. “I am gearing up to release the first song from my upcoming album, which I am still in the studio working on,” Marley says. To keep him focused on creating another classic, he’s been listening to a lot of his own music. “As a musician, sometimes you can be influenced by other people’s music without realizing it,” he points out. “So honestly, I try not to listen too much while working on projects. My playlist is full of unreleased, untitled songs at the moment.”

RACE MATTERS: Every year, the King Street-based Liberty Hall puts on Sankofa, a symposium that tackles key issues of race and identity and Black consciousness, against the backdrop of Marcus Garvey’s legendary teachings. The last three stagings were international in scope. This year’s staging, Sankofa 10, will follow suit. The standard-bearer for their annual Black History Month activities, Sankofa 10 will not be held this month. Owing to the General Elections, it has been shifted to March 2nd. The Jamaica Conference Centre will play host. “We have invited over 350 people, including teachers and sixth-formers to the conference centre, where we will link with high-school students in South Side Chicago,” Liberty Hall curator and chief organizer Dr. Donna McFarlane tells TALLAWAH. “We will be exploring the theme of Black self-identity. What’s happening in the Black community? What’s happening in Jamaica? What’s happening in South Side Chicago? Different place, same issues?” Sankofa was conceived as Black History Month programme targeting, in particular, high schools and teachers colleges. Local and international scholars are brought in to interrogate a certain tops “beyond what Jamaican students today learn in text books.”






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