Jamaica's reggae music industry's consisting of several artists, composers, and promoters were awardees of the Reggae Sumfest's inaugural Inspire Awards, which were held in a grand red carpet affair at the Iberostar Rose Hall in Montego Bay on last Thursday, July 19 2018.
The Reggae Sumfest Inspire Awards are intended to honor selected individuals and groups who have contributed significantly to the growth of Reggae Sumfest over the years and to the development of Jamaican music in general.
Among the winners was the legendary lyricist, songwriter and singer Bob Andy. Andy was praised for having inspired the sounds of many artists and for being one of the best musicians in Jamaica.
Halfway through the event, he thrilled the audience in a superb set singing some of his hits like Too Experienced and I've Got To Go Back Home.
Chris Blackwell of Island Records was applauded for his stellar contribution to what has become the international recognition of Jamaican music, including Ska, while his colleague Copeland Forbes, was recognized as one of the longest-running artists' directors in the industry of Jamaican music that, among other things, influenced the careers of a large number of Jamaican musicians such as Bob Marley, Third World and Black Uhuru.
The Riddim Twins, Sly and Robbie were cited as two of the most outstanding talents that emerged from the Jamaican scene in the last 40 years.
The two Grammy winners were inevitably absent, but they expressed their gratitude through a video message. The Lifetime Award was awarded to the undisputed king of Lovers Rock, Beres Hammond "for his lifelong dedication to Reggae Music and his contribution to the development of the Jamaican music industry for 40 years."
On the other hand, the juvenile Chronixx, also absent, was named Reggae Sumfest's Rising Star, which is an award given to an artist under 30 who "shows dedication and motivation that has acted in Reggae Sumfest at least once".
King of the Dancehall Beenie Man received the title of Sumfest Legend and responded with delight, while the Golden Pen Award was given to journalist Patricia Meschino, who has consistently advocated reggae music for over 22 years and has written some of the most memorable articles in Jamaican music