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In My Opinion!

(Kingston, Jamaica 10-13-10)    2010 has been a challenging year for many Dancehall and Reggae artistes.  The challenges came as a result of various factors including a recession felt across the world, visa woes, gay rights groups’ no-tolerance action, a general decline in music sales, the “watered down” music or the new rhythm fusion that many refuse to accept and the list goes on.  All are debatable issues that have been reasoned in its entirety by individuals and groups but a workable solution to come to a resolve is still yet to be made public.

Usually there comes a time in an organization when management is forced to re-structure and re-vamp its’ businesses in order to remain competitive.  The local industry lacks regulation and need restructuring and revamping.  Most of the current issues existed for years and have now hit rock bottom. The challenges that adversely affect the industry need the careful scrutiny of an Independent Body, Advocacy or decision making group to not only solve issues but implement the necessary measures to counter or prevent those that are needless and basically keep the industry afloat.

We are living in a “digital era” restructuring would involve putting the necessary plans in place to manipulate the use of current technology as other genres have been doing in order to ensure sale of the local product and plan ahead to embrace changes to come in the next ten years. A soundscan report for July/August reveals that Naz and Damian Marley’s Distant Relative album sold 120,000 units and Gyptian’s Hold You album sold 12,000 units but with such a decline in music sales the Rototom Reggae Festival had a reported crowd size of over 130,000 patrons attended that event over eight days.  Like their elders, many local artistes are at a lost as to how they now earn money apart from live performances and will not reap the benefits of their labour in years to come.  Jamaica’s local music industry is suffering from a late start in accepting and implementing cyber world and now plays “catch up” with the worldwide music industry. All the other problems that exist do not amount to the greater need of regulating the local industry; where if resolved will create opportunities and with opportunities comes wealth.