An International Reggae Music Festival at the Astrodome in Pototan town, Iloilo this coming December 10, 2023 ushers the return of the much missed and hankered for Parayan Festival in the same municipality.
This was announced by international balladeer and Parayan Festival Foundation chairman Aristeo Demavivas who expressed gratitude to Pototan Mayor Enrique “Adi” Parcon Lazaro and the municipal council for paving the way for the return of the Parayan Festival in February to March 2024. Ending more than a decade of hiatus after its inaugural celebration in the early 2000s, the Parayan Festival is not just a single event but a series of activities celebrating Pototan as the Rice Granary of Western Visayas and, hopefully, the future reggae capital of the region.
Demavivas said the Reggae Festival will top bill Joaquin “Quino” McWhinney, frontman of the internationally reknowned reggae band, Big Mountain.
Big Mountain is an American band known for its remake of Peter Frampton’s “Baby, I Love Your Way”, which became a top 10 hit single in the US in early 1994, reaching No. 6 on the US Billboard Hot 100, No. 1 on the Mainstream Top 40 and No. 2 in the UK. Although Mexican/Irish in heritage, Quino tuned into reggae after seeing a documentary about Bob Marley and Rastafari.
Joining Quino on stage will be a number of bands and performing artists who have their own cukt followings in the country’s reggae community – Cebu-based Sheiulah Dub Warriors, Bahaghari and Kultura who are much in demand in Bacolod and Manila, Rolly Maligad of Cocojam.
Iloilo’s homegrown Reggae Artist, Raffy Benavidez of Inday and Aton Gid Ini (Iloilo Supermart) fame will also be there as well as another Ilonggo millenial and social media celebrity, master rapper R. Dawn.