Two-Day Bahamian Independence Concert Announced

Nassu, The Bahamas - While using musical terms, Minister of Youth, Sports and Culture the Hon. Iram Lewis, announced, on July 8, 2021, an initiative to showcase Bahamian musical artists during the current Independence month.

"Today, I wish to acknowledge the dynamics of the Music and Creative Arts community," Minister Lewis said, during a press conference at the Ministry.  "The fortes (louds) and allegros (hype) have made for an extremely agitated symphony.  We hear you.  On behalf of the government I am here to provide a cadence that will be dolce (sweet sounding) to everyone -- a two-day event scheduled for Friday July 30th and Saturday July 31st, in keeping with our independence theme. Let’s celebrate 'Freedom'."

(BIS Photo / Eric Rose)

Also present from the Ministry were Permanent Secretary Eugene Poitier; Under Secretary Montez Williams; Executive Director of Culture Rowena Poitier-Sutherland; Assistant Director of Culture Portia Sands; Senior Cultural Affairs Officer Sonovia Pierre, and Junior Junkanoo National Coordinator Henry Higgins.  They were joined by a representative group of Bahamian musicians including Wendi Lewis-Knight; Julien "Believe" Thompson; Dillon "D-Mac" McKenzie; Ericka “Lady E” Symonette; and "Shine".

"It would be awesome if we could include everyone in this venture; but 48 artists representing our 48 years of independence will be chosen from around the length and breadth of the Bahamas, so that all islands will be represented," Minister Lewis added.  "Through the miracle of media, the event will be live streamed and recorded for rebroadcast."

(BIS Photo / Eric Rose)

Minister Lewis noted that the Ministry was a "dynamic" entity that focused on providing opportunity and access for all.

"Inclusive of those in the areas are youth development, sporting excellence and most definitely cultural expression," he said.  "The incredible cohort of creatives that exist in our small archipelago loudly proclaims that our cultural and artistic expression is growing daily in leaps and bounds."

He added that, in his humble opinion, Rake n Scrape, Junkanoo and Goombay represented the traditional Bahamian genres.

(BIS Photo / Eric Rose)

"However, we acknowledge that Culture is ever evolving, he said.  "Our artists express themselves through A variety of musical forms and genres. The Papa Smurf and Bahamian Tray with authentic Bahamianese through Rap, Judah The Lion and The Late MDeez through Reggae, and the list goes on and on with artists that identify as Bahamian, but embrace other genres."

Minister Lewis thanked Prime Minister the Most Hon. Dr. Hubert Minnis and colleague members of The Cabinet for their consideration and understanding for the arts and advocates of Bahamian culture and entertainment.

"Under his direction and leadership, we will continue to work with the creative community to provide encouragement, resources and opportunities for ongoing work to be done in the arts," Minister Lewis said.

(BIS Photo / Eric Rose)