Now that all of the hoopla has worn off Reggae Lane, it interests me to see how the process going forward is used to elevate or even showcase reggae talent currently residing in Toronto and even those outside of Ontario? That for me is imperative! Is this another lip service, pat on the back as it usually is and has always been or is it a movement towards a reggae growth for the participants? I am forever grateful for the Reggae Lane concept, preserving what was yet it should be noted that none of those honored have been properly paid by this genre here in Canada. Ever!
What some of the veterans speak of is that reggae as a business, is carried on daily in France, Belgium, Germany, Japan and places like that, but not so much here in Canada. Folks wake up daily , go to work on the business of reggae and it is how their living is made, 365 days of the year in many spots around the globe...but not so much in Canada.
Reggae Lane should exemplify and encourage that going forward!
Local, national and international bands / acts should be part of a 'happening' off Reggae Lane. We should be having the types of historic events that other countries brag about "that happened down Reggae Lane".
There are a fragmented group of us working for, with, about and around Reggae Lane so it will be interesting to see if there is any synergy amongst us to make this a significant reggae source to planet earth. In my mind, this is how I view the opportunities that Reggae Lane can present to Little Jamaica, Tourism Canada, Reggae Canada and the positive impact that it can have on the economy. I see great fiscal possibilities for Reggae Lane's contributions from the powerful reggae performers here in Canada as well as worldwide.
What do we do to bring a Canadian vibe and style to the world wide contributions for reggae music?
"Self praise is no recommendation" is the term that is used to instill humility in all individuals yet as a genre that concept needs to be blown out of the water! WE NEED TO SCREAM from the top of Scarborough Bluffs, to Malton, to Woodbridge, to Jane and Finch, to Regent Park, to Eglinton west, Brampton. Sauga, the Junction, Bayview, Liberty Village to Calgary, BC, Manitoba, Halifax, Vancouver Island, Montreal that reggae in Canada is prime time ready. It has been so since the 1960s to the 1970s to the present day yet many honored on Reggae Lane, internationally known artists, getting paid in other countries get the significant pat on the back with Reggae Lane yet still not paid for their contributions to the planet earth. Sad state of affairs in colonial Canada that many pretend does not exist. The plantation mentality is alive and well in this country and has always been thus.
There are many successful events, radio stations, festivals, and parties occurring all across Canada that generate reggae / Canadian dollars to the province and to these successful promoters' coffers yet none put back into a developmental fund for homegrown artists' performances or careers. Here since the 1960s, it would be prudent for the reggae genre to bond together to produce 'something' but as usual we have more 'chiefs than we have indians'. Everyone is an 'expert', smarter and better than the next yet many stuck in the same barrel. All wish to lead more so than work as a unit to develop a music that we love and an industry that is a necessity, developing jobs and generating capital to the provincial and federal economy.
I as usual have many observations yet no solutions! But as I write I formulate thoughts and plans of how to change the present circumstances, so that this vibrant, uplifting musical genre may hold its own and break through the colonial block that is placed on the genre and its participants.
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