Staff writer – Kerran Monroe

This year is an Olympic year.  It is one of those years when Jamaica gets put in the spotlight and for very good reasons.  It is one of those years when Jamaicans get excited and Jamaican flags are attached to almost every vehicle and Jamaicans at home and abroad feel a sense of national pride.

Our athletes display the best Jamaica has to offer in athletics and the world looks on in awe and envy.  It is that time again when the Jamaican government officials/ministers get to go ‘palave’ in the name of brand Jamaica, and introducing brand Jamaica to the world.

Yes it it’s that time again when the athletes and their success get exploited by every Jamaican trying to make a dollar.  Whether it is big established companies flashing congratulations across the television screen after each medaling performance or just the average man or woman in the street, selling buttons bearing the images of the popular athletes and selling Jamaican flags and other items bearing the national colours.

Photo courtesy getitwrighthere.com

With all the celebration and exploitation taking place, the dancehall and reggae artists are not to be left out.  They too take their slice of the national pride cake.

Around this time, the artists are known to make songs, celebrating the success of the athletes at these games.  At the last Olympics, Konshens, remixed his song ‘winner’ to make a tribute to the athletes.  Other artists also made their songs giving tribute to the athletes and their successes.

However, in everything there is good and bad.  So while some artists make songs for this season which are successes, there are those songs that totally miss the mark.  Exhibit A:  Vybz Kartel’s tribute to Usain Bolt.

This Olympics I’ll watch to see which artists will take the opportunity to exploit the successes of the athletes in London.  Especially with this year being a special year for Jamaica, we just might see more than the usual number of athletics related songs coming out of Jamaica.  Let’s wait and see.