Seven tunes for Red Stripe's 100th - EP from mento to dancehall celebrates beer's anniversary

July 16, 2018
Agent Sasco
Tosh Alexander
Christopher Martin

In celebration of their 100th anniversary, Red Stripe will continue to demonstrate devotion to the isle of numerous musical genres. Taking on the tag line 'Stand Up For Your Stripe', the beer giant has planned the release of the 'Journey With Stripe' EP, chronicling the history and development of Jamaican music from mento to dancehall. The announcement was made last Friday night at the launch of the EP and Red Stripe's new global campaign.

"As you all know, we become 100 years old this year and what better way than launching our new global campaign? First of all, we have our new head of marketing coming straight from South Africa - Nomonde Donsa. This lady made this amazing campaign become a reality," Ricardo Nuncio, managing director of Red Stripe, said. According to Nuncio, Donsa shifted the company's approach to attracting international attention to the brand, particularly by highlighting Jamaican culture.

"We were trying to make a global campaign fit in our global markets and then we were trying to make it work for Jamaica. And when [Donsa] came, she said, 'Guys, you have it all wrong. Jamaica has such an amazing culture, you have so many things to be proud of - you have to root it in Jamaica and it will work globally.' That was the shift that made things possible," Nuncio continued.

Scheduled for release on August 31, the seven-song EP features Blue Glaze Mento Band, Ed Robinson, Tosh Alexander, Chris Martin, Tifa, Agent Sasco and upcoming artiste J-Summa, as well as production by multi-Grammy-winning Jamaica-born musician Pablo Stennett. Save Martin, who is touring, the night saw a series of performances from the featured artistes, who premiered their Journey With Stripe contributions, followed by original material.




J-Summa has a major role in the global campaign as singer of the EP's lead single, Keeping It Up, featured on the beer's brand new commercial. "J-Summa's performance was electric and we are extremely proud of his growth throughout this process working with us. This is just a drop in the bucket to our commitment to endorsing local talent; this is how we stand up for music development," said Nasha-Monique Douglas, senior brand manager for Red Stripe global, domestic and international brands.

"It was a rewarding experience working with top artistes and a musical legend like Pablo. I have to give it up to Red Stripe every time for giving the youths a chance and providing me with this opportunity to set off my career. Overall, I'm just grateful to be a part of the Red Stripe journey," J-Summa said.

As for the commercial, it follows the familiar formula of displaying the greenery and vibrant, partying attitudes of the Jamaican people. Scenes from Cane River Falls, of Fleet Street's now-famous murals, and from the Blue Mountains serve as a backdrop for the global campaign, which is sound-tracked by Keeping It Up, "It's gonna go beyond Jamaica and I'm sure it's gonna stand the test of time. Cheers for another 100 years!" Nuncio said.

Part proceeds from the EP sales will go towards the We Are Tomorrow Foundation, which is focused on nurturing the talents of aspiring Jamaican musicians between the ages of 10 and 19 years. The foundation will focus on young people in Spanish Town, St Catherine, Stennett's hometown. The not-for-profit seeks to impact inner-city youth by exposing them to music, thus reducing the incidence of violence.

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