June 10, 2022 | By Supa Pea | Each year, Jamaicans including past Festival song winner Abby Dallas, looks forward to a new Festival Song winner who will lift the nation’s hopes and gives its people a sense of pride and patriotism.
The Festival Song Competition which started in 1966-four years after Jamaica gained independence, had prominent winners Toots and the Maytals “Bam Bam,” Eric Donaldson “Cherry O Baby,” and Roy Rayon “Give Thanks and Praise,”
Abby Dallas, who gave the nation ” Real Born Jamaican” in 2012, hopes of singing to this year’s festival song was short-lived with the announcement that the traditional Festival Song Competition will not be part of this year’s 60th anniversary.
The news came from Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sports the Hon. Olivia “Babsy” Grange, who explained that her decision comes squarely on this year’s poor quality of entrants. However, two of the songs from a list of one hundred and twenty- three entries, will be incorporated in this year’s celebrations.
This had not gone down well with many Jamaicans who believe the nation’s interest in its culture is waning.
Abby Dallas born Abbygaye Dallas, one of the youngest female to lift the Festival Song trophy, is one such person who is disappointed.
“Not having the Festival Song competition this year on the 60th anniversary of Jamaica independence is very disappointing, seeing that each year patriotic Jamaicans look forward to associate themselves with a song that best give them a sense of pride to brag and boast that they are a real born Jamaican ( the title of Abby winning song).
“However, if Minister Babsy Grange felt that the songs for this year’s Festival Song Competition wasn’t good to present to the nation, I believe she made the right decision
“The Festival Song Competition is known to cultivate a certain calibre of artiste who can represent our culture well. I think over the years these so-called song competitions are set to help to establish artistes who are up-and-coming.
“If the objective is more of focusing on the hype than the artiste talent then the very talented artiste will not want to be on such competition platform.
Abby Dallas born in Duhaney Park, Kingston grew up in Portmore, St. Catherine. She made her mark in music having won the Best Junior soloist in the JCDC (Jamaica Cultural Development Commission) 2005 competition.
This landed her a scholarship at the Edna Manley College of the Visual and Performing Arts.
She later created history being the youngest female to win the JCDC Festival Song Competition with entry, “Real Born Jamaican” in 2012.
She has released over 100 songs, including “One and Only,” “Gold Digger,” “No Ice Cream Love” a combination with deejay Shaka Pow and “He’s Just Not Into You.”
The girl with the golden voice is presently promoting two songs, “Poppy Show” and “One and Only.”