Promoter Promises to “Learn From His Mistakes” at BOTB 2014: Reggae & Soca—but NO Hip-Hop

For the past eight years Best of the Best has been a fixture of Memorial Day Weekend in Miami, a big outdoor reggae and soca show that normally features top hip-hop acts as well. But this year, Reshma B caught up with Jabba who explained that this year he’s “learned from his mistakes” and made BOTB 2014 a 100% Caribbean festival. That’s right, for the first time the festival will feature reggae and dancehall and soca but NO hip-hop. “Me get back to my roots,” say Jabba. “This year we involve more soca into the show more than just keep mixing the hip-hop and the reggae, because it come in like oil and water. We notice it’s eight years going in. When I first begun I just, you know, coming from a big urban radio station, I feel like hip-hop is part of my culture as well. Because you done know is a Jamaican man who started hip-hop in the Bronx—Kool Herc big up yourself anywhere you deh. So I felt like I can take that mission to a next level and just know say, Hear wah gwan now, let me mix up hip-hop onto reggae on the next level like it’s never been done before. And big respect to all the rappers, but it come in like the worst idea we coulda ever do. But you learn from your mistakes. Because when you come to a Caribbean culture festival, nobody no wan’ hear say “Yo, turn the motherfuckin mic up!” and  “Where’s my niggas at?” You understand?” Video After The Jump…

As an on-air personality for New York’s Hot 97FM, Jabba and Bobby Konders have held down a weekly reggae show with a slight blend of R&B and hip-hop for many years. Jabba’s annual concert, which has no connection with the radio station, has traditionally featured a similar blend.  This year Jabba also promises “no slackness, no out-of-orderness” and says “even certain reggae artists I don’t even have pon the show like one time. Until they understand themselves and know the direction of the music where it’s going, I cannot hire you. Cause I’m dealing with straight positive-ness.” Jabba says he has totally cleaned up the concert this year. “It kinda hurt me for two years. But now me build it back and me get back to my roots. And me know myself. And you always learn by your mistakes. So the hip-hop acts I used to use, I kinda shove them to the side and say bring in some soca. So that’s the reason for Bunji—to replace the-hip-hop acts I used to put—and we get the Destra, the Edwin Yearwood, and so much more. So we’re just planning and we’re growing, and I just hope to see that one day my children can take it over when me retire and know say Best of the Best, the 35th Annual, and know say the youths have it under full control.”

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