A quick scroll down the live chat of Beres Hammond’s historic live stream last Sunday night (28th Feb) and you’ll find examples aplenty of the massive fan appreciation and demand for a performance of this kind. With more than 130,000 concurrent attendees on the Livestream presentation, the 90-minute concert was a parade of hits new and old by the “G.O.A.T (greatest of all time)”, legendary crooner, who is celebrating a 40-plus year career as Jamaica’s forefather of the song. Special guest performances from Marcia Griffiths, Buju Banton, and Popcaan underscored the timeless quality of the Beres Hammond stage show and cemented for many that they were witnessing the best in the business.
During his performance, Hammond shared that his time not spent on the touring circuit and away from fans “hurt,” and the occasion of Reggae Month in Jamaica presented the opportunity to connect with fans again, albeit virtually. Beyond the success of his performance, the event garnered millions of impressions across social media and streaming platforms.
The concert, which posted the largest live-streaming numbers from the VP YouTube channel (over 100,00 concurrent and 600,000 post-event views the first day), earned the show the #2 Trending spot on YouTube’s LIVE page. Social media engagement was also at a high, with the term “Beres Hammond” trending #8 on Twitter. “The engagement from fans throughout the week and especially Sunday night, was a real joy to witness,” said Christopher Chin, executive producer of the event and CEO of VP Records, “this was a moment of pride that everyone could share.”
The broadcast was produced through a partnership with Harmony House Music, VP Records, and Frame By Frame Productions, in association with the Reggae Month Secretariat in Jamaica’s Ministry of Culture, Gender, Entertainment, and Sport. Minister Olivia “Babsy” Grange, who herself was a part of the VIP Zoom party viewing the Concert online, had nothing but praise for Beres. “Jamaica is truly indebted to all our artists and their support teams for giving so generously of their talent and services to make Reggae Month 2021 a resounding success. When the likes of Beres Hammond steps forward in this way, you know we are doing something right. This kind of collaboration is good for the music and Jamaica, and his inspirational and uplifting performance was just what the country needed at this time”.
Reggae Month, the only month-long Reggae Festival in the world, got going on January 31 with a church service at Kingston’s Fellowship Tabernacle, led by the affable pastor Al Miller. Since then, it has seen a rich diet of roots, rocking Reggae activities on Sundays from 3pm and Mondays to Saturdays from 6pm each evening. Activities throughout the month included Reggae Symposia (under the banner – Reggae University Series), Mega Concerts, culturally themed presentations, and Awards Ceremonies.
The schedule of events was presented by the Ministry of Culture, Gender, Entertainment, and Sport in collaboration with the Ministry of Tourism. Leading partners were the Chase Fund, the Jamaica Tourist Board, the Tourism Enhancement Fund, and the CPTC with additional support from international media partners Reggaeville, Reggae Festival Guide, Surf a Reggae, and Riddim Agency. Media Entities in Jamaica led by the RJR Communications Group, Gleaner, Observer, and Irie FM gave invaluable support to Reggae Month.