September 2022 Volume 18

Jamaica International Independence Foreign Song Competition Completes Season 2

Staff reporter KC Times
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The Jamaica International Independence Foreign Song Competition (JIIFSC) second season was a great success.

The finals were held at the Shiloh High School Theatre, in Snellville GA with a seating capacity of 450 on July 30th, 2022.

Congratulatory video messages were received from Oliver Mair, Consul General, to the Southern USA and Rudi Page from MCW Network and Fresh FM London.

The Rev Dr Maxine Foster, the President of the Atlanta Jamaican Association read the opening prayer.

The keynote speaker was the Honorable Jewel Scott, Superior Court Judge of Clayton County, Georgia and former Jamaican Honorary Consul to Atlanta.

Phil Watkis, and poet Carleen Streete were the special guest artists.

All seven finalists were in attendance for the live performance. Two finalists were from Canada, two from New Jersey, two from Florida and one from New York.

Shelly Thunder, Wayne Hall, Rica Newell, Dr. Garnet Mowatt, and Twiggi served as the competition’s judges.

The winner was Barrington Burke Green, stage name “Goddy Son”, from New York. His song was titled "IRIE."

Second place went to Laval Wilkinson, stage name Lavie Lujah, from Canada. He is the competition’s inaugural winner. His song this year was “Jamaica Rise and Shine".

Third place went to Nicola Dawson, stage name NikkiSpice, from Florida. Her song was “I Miss You Jamaica.”

The Artists were backed by the SWATT Band and the evening’s hosts were Andrew Lawrence and Jannice O'shea. Parry Hinds was the production manager.

Georgia State Representative, Donna McLeod, presented the trophy and cash prize to the winner.

This song competition for Jamaicans in the Diaspora was launched on December 18, 2020, by Atlanta KC Old Boy Garfield (Gary) McCook who was on hand to provide opening remarks, introduce the Keynote Speaker and announce the winner.

McCook is the Real Estate Broker/Owner of Georgia Dream Homes/New York Dream Homes Realty. He and his wife also own a Personal Care Home.

McCook feels that the Jamaican Diaspora has a wealth of talent to share, and this competition will help to expose that talent.

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