Jamaica will be showing off its rich musical heritage at the forthcoming Caribbean Marketplace 2011 by assembling a top-draw entertainment line-up for the opening and closing nights of the region’s most important travel trade event.
The parties will take place at the brand new Montego Bay Convention Centre, a $45 million, 84,000 square foot, state-of-the-art facility that aims to establish Jamaica as a world-class MICE destination.
The opening ceremony this Sunday 16 January will feature the likes of Montego Bay based female vocalist Karen Smith, as well as the DePass Jazz Trio, comprising Kingsley DePass (violin), Stephen DePass (electric bass) and Jermaine Webb (keyboards).
The line-up will also include the Jolly Boys, a mento band from Port Antonio. The Jamaica Military Band will round out the opening night entertainment package on Sunday.
John Lynch, Jamaica’s Director of Tourism, said: “We anticipate a stellar performance from a number of top entertainers across the island who will showcase the best of Jamaican entertainment during Caribbean Marketplace 2011.
“Jamaica’s hosting of the event in 2005 was hailed as the best ever, and we are excited to continue the tradition and make this year the best yet,” he added.
A Jamaica Night will provide the theme for the closing party on Tuesday 18 January. Reggae singer/songwriter Etana as well as Tarrus Riley and his Black Soil band will entertain the delegates. The closing night party will also feature celebrity DJ Bambino of ZIP FM. Renowned ska, calypso and soca band, Byron Lee’s Dragonaires, will headline the closing night festivities.
The band has provided backing to visiting American performers including Harry Belafonte, Chuck Berry, The Drifters, and Sam Cooke. In 1961, Byron Lee’s Dragonaires received a major break when they performed as the hotel band in the first James Bond film, Dr. No. The group, now performing without their founder, the late Byron Lee, is celebrated for hit songs that include Tiny Winey, Dumplings and Jamaican Ska.