Reggae Sunsplash a brief look at its History

Custom Search

Reggae Sunsplash a brief history on what is consider to be the first Reggae Festival of its kind.

The festival was the brainchild of four Jamaicans - Tony Johnson, Don Green, Ronnie Burke and John Wakeling. The four founding directors created a company called Synergy Productions Ltd, which was responsible for promoting and producing the festival.

Sunsplash first staging was in 1978 it was held at Jarrett Park, in Montego Bay, Jamaica. It ran annually until 1996, after a break in 1997, it was returned for its final event in 1998.

Fron 1978-1992 the festival was held in Montego Bay, the organizer decided to move the festival to Jamworld, Portmore, St Catherine in 1993 leaving a void for a festival of its kind in the western end of the island Jamaica.

That same year (1993) Say the birh of What is now the biggest reggae festival in the world Reggae Sumfest. Reggae Sumfest takes place each year in mid-July in Montego Bay at the Catherine Hall Entertainment center.

In 1997 festival was postponed until 1998 when it was timed to coincide with celebrations of the birth of Bob Marley but more losses were incurred. More futile attempts at recapturing the original spirit of the Reggae Sunsplash festival were never replicated by the Radobar group.

In 2006 the festival was re-established by the Johnson family, but it was not successful. It has not being held again since then.

Here are the DATES and Venues where Reggae Sunsplash used to be held:

1978: June 23-30, Jarrett Park, Montego Bay

1979: July 3-7, Jarrett Park, Montego Bay

1980: July 2-5, Ranny Williams Entertainment Center, Kingston

1981: August 4-8, Jarrett Park, Montego Bay

1982: August 3-7, Jarrett Park, Montego Bay

1983: June 28-July 2, Bob Marley Center, Montego Bay

1984: August 7-11, Jarrett Park, Montego Bay

1985: August 6-10, Jarrett Park, Montego Bay

1986: August 26-30: Jarrett Park, Montego Bay

1987: August 18-22, Bob Marley Center, Montego Bay

1988: August 15-22, Bob Marley Center, Montego Bay

1989: August 14-19, Bob Marley Center, Montego Bay

1990: July 16-21, Bob Marley Center, Montego Bay

1991: July 26-31, Bob Marley Center, Montego Bay

1992: August 3-8, Bob Marley Center, Montego Bay

1993: August 3-7, Jamworld, Portmore

1994: August 1-6: Jamworld, Portmore

1995: July 12-14, Dover, St. Ann

1996: August 1-4, Chukka Cove, St. Ann

1998: February 5-8, Reggae Park, St. Ann

2006: August 3-6, Richmond Estate, Priory, St. Ann

Two of the founding directors, John Wakeling and Tony Johnson died and with the passing of Tony Johnson a number of individuals have tried to claim the rights to the festival unsuccessfully and all have failed to recapture the spirit of the Sunsplash.

Don Green and Ronnie Burke are the two remaining Reggae Sunsplash founders alive (2012).

We value your feedback

Share your views, comments, or your take on this? Share it!

Return home from Reggae Sunsplash page

Articles You Might Have Missed ......

Dancehall and Reggae Music Articles

New! Comments

Have your say about what you just read! Leave me a comment in the box below.
Custom Search
Custom Search


Reggae Sumfest 2017

What's New?

Recent Articles

  1. Damian Marley Album Stony Hill Out July 21, 2017

    Jul 21, 17 11:28 AM

    Damian Marley Album Stony Hill Out July 21, 2017 - After several postponed dates, Damian Marley’s new solo album Stony Hill, is scheduled to be released July 21, 2017.

    Read More

  2. Dane Madden Release Debut Single"Fly"

    Jul 21, 17 10:49 AM

    The Industry welcomes fresh new artist, DANE MADDEN to the scene, with his

    Read More

  3. Prohgres Memory Lane Official Music Video

    Jul 20, 17 11:26 PM

    Prohgres Memory Lane Official Music Video - Fast rising dancehall and reggae music's singjay Prohgres is steadily making progress in the music business.

    Read More

  4. Alkaline Golden Hold Lee Milla Production

    Jul 20, 17 03:03 PM

    Alkaline Golden Hold Lee Milla Production - Alkaline sends social media innna frenzy with release of 'Golden Hold'.

    Read More

  5. Masicka Pulls Plugs On Reggae Sumfest 2017

    Jul 19, 17 10:18 PM

    Masicka Pulls Plugs On Reggae Sumfest 2017 - Masicka pulls plug on Reggae Sumfest by K'Shema Francis July 19th, 2017 Dancehall deejay Masicka may not perform at this year’s

    Read More

Dancehall/Reggae Artiste, Don't Get Rob By Your Manager/Agent.

Man Got Hurt Doing Dancehall stunt

I Octane Finally Admits That He Is The Father of Maliha