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Reggae star poised to perform amid COVID-19 fears

Reggae star poised to perform amid COVID-19 fears

Reggae Superstar, Jah9, is moving forward with her first ever Ethiopian concert in Addis Ababa tonight, inside Villa Verde Restaurant. This comes amid such public gatherings are being cancelled or postponed fearing the spread of the coronavirus that has overwhelmed the world, and Ethiopia confirming the first positive test for it yesterday.

“The safest place to be in at the moment, if you fear the virus is to be in the (African) continent and I am happy to be here in Ethiopia,” she said at a press conference held on Thursday inside Diamond Hotel in the capital.

The certified yoga instructor star held a yoga session, “Yoga on Dub,” she calls it, inside Marriott Apartment for participants, who had lined-up early in the morning on Friday. In addition to her concert this evening, she is also due to release her new CD – Note to Self - following her last CD which was released in Nairobi.

“It was important for me to release my album in the continent and I am happy to do the latest release in Ethiopia,” she told The Reporter.

Born in Montego Bay, Jamaica, she is known for her catchy, self-conscious singles, such as the hit, “Avocado” and “Legitimate” and released her first album in 2013. Since then, she has gained fame for her sound that is often compared to the likes of Ella Fitzgerald.

The 36 year old, Jah9 (Janine Elizabeth Cunningham) is also set to visit several parts of Kenya, as part of a nature tour, in which she calls, “an opportunity to travel inward, while exploring the Kenyan landscape.”

Reggae music in Ethiopia continues to have a growing following. When Damien Marley came to Addis Ababa in 2017 for instance, thousands of people attended the concert inside Ghion Hotel and many more were turned down, after it sold-out days ahead of time in record time.

Many were forced to buy from scalpers at an exaggerated amount of money.  

Popular and best selling artists such as Teddy Afro and Jah Lude are known to incorporate reggae style in their own musical sound.