|(New York, NY) – May 5, 2008, – International Soca Ambassador Machel Montano, took home top honors at the prestigious 27th Annual International Reggae and World Music Awards (IRAWMA) held on May 4, 2008 at the World-Famous Apollo Theater in Harlem, New York. Machel won “Entertainer of the Year”, “Best Calypso/Soca Entertainer” and “Most Outstanding Stage Personality”.
Top IRAWMA nominee Tarrus Riley, took home trophies for “Best Male Vocalist” and “Best Song-She is Royal”, while “Best Recording Artist” and “Best Male DJ/Rapper” titles went to Beenie Man. The Marley brothers, Stephen, Ky-Mani and Ziggy, sons of Reggae legend Bob Marley received IRAMWA nods. Stephen for “Best CD for “Mind Control” and “Songwriter of the Year”; Ky-Mani for “Producer’s Respect Award” and “Most Promising Entertainer”; and Ziggy received the “Marcus Garvey Humanitarian Award” for charitable efforts through his URGE organization. In addition, first-time IRAWMA nominee Sean Kingston earned two IRAWMA’s for “Best New Entertainer” and “Best Crossover Song- Beautiful Girls”.
International singer Billy Ocean(“Caribbean Queen”); Gospel artist Claudelle Clarke; pioneering recording engineer Errol Brown(Bob Marley) and UK Rock Steady crooner Winston Francis(“California Dreamin”) were inducted into the IRAWMA Hall of Fame. Ziggy Marley and Jay Z each received the Marcus Garvey Humanitarian Award for their charitable efforts. The Producer’s “Respect” Award went to Ky-Mani Marley. Herman Hall, publisher of Everybody’s Magazine; songstress Winsome Benjamin and Karl Rodney, publisher of Carib News each received the Award of Appreciation. Reggae legends Freddie McGregor and Dwight Pinkney, each took home the Award of Honor trophy.
International reggae superstar Shaggy tore the house down with the most outstanding performance of the night. Backed by Dean Fraser and the All-Stars, which includes members of Shaggy’s own band, Ky-Mani Marley floored the crowd with a memorable rendition of “Turn the Light’s Down Low”. Dancehall queens Macka Diamond, Ce’Cile, and D’Angel spiced up the night with their colorful, energy-packed songs while Etana and Jadine “The Soca Deva” each upheld the stage with electrifying sets. Other crowd-roaring performances were given by Tarrus Riley, Junior Reid, and Mutabaruka. The grand finale wrapped up the night with a full stage of nominees, performers, and fans crooning Bob Marley’s “One Love” and rocking to calypso song “Hot Hot Hot” with Machel Montano grabbing the mic to lead the crowd.
Entertainers walking the red carpet included: Grammy-winner Shaggy; stage and television actress Janet Hubert(“Fresh Prince of Bel Air”); Ky-Mani Marley, Tarrus Riley, Etana, Machel Montano, Macka Diamond, Lady G, Dean Fraser, D’Angel, Mutabaruka, Ce’Cile, Junior Reid, Shelia Hylton, Dwight Pickney, Camille McDonald among others. In addition, Dr. Una S.T. Clarke, CD, Illinois Appellate Court Judge, Shelvin Louise Marie Hall and her sister, New York State Supreme Court Justice Priscilla Hall were also in attendance.
Other winners included: Etana, “Best Female Vocalist”; Beenie Man, “Best Male/DJ Rapper”; Don Omar, “Best Reggaeton Entertainer”; Papa Wembe, “Best Soukous Entertainer”; the late Lucky Dube, “Best African Entertainer”; Shaggy, “Best Music Video for Church Heathen”; Mutabaruka, “Best Poet”; Buju Banton, “Most Educational Entertainer”; Freddie McGregor, “Most Consistent Entertainer”; Junior Reid, “Most Improved Entertainer”, among others. See attached “Winners List”.
Sponsors for the event included: American Airlines, Carib News, JAMROCK Magazine/LinkUp Media, Carib News, Sam’s Caribbean Market Place/Sams24-7.com, Dr. Roland Rose-Ace Medical, Dennis Shipping, Atlas Vacations, Transcontinental Shippers, CVM-TV, D. Wilshire Tux Rental & Limousine Service, Keeling Records, J & L Tax Consultants, NY Liberty Star Newspaper, Street Hype Newspaper, SARFM Radio, Ideal Health – Toni Haynes, Uptown Juice Bar, Baba Roots-USA, Eye Collection Clothing, Dalhouse Productions, Bennett Bridal/Platinum World Class Limousine, American Academy of Physician Assistants, d. Wilshire Tux rental and Limo, WP 88.7 FM and Sam Ash Music Stores.
WINNERS OF THE 27TH INTERNATIONAL REGGAE & WORLD MUSIC AWARDS (IRAWMA) A Martin’s International & Associates, LLC Event / Held at the Apollo Theater in NYC on May 04, 2008
1. Entertainer of the Year – Machel Montano
Martin’s International & Associates Debbie Bass Anthony Turner Rhona Fox