The theme of the indaba is the Role of Reggae Music in the Promotion of Social Cohesion and Solidarity in South Africa and the African Diaspora post 1994.
It hopes to broaden the scope of reggae music in the mainstream music industry as an art.
Reggae has elements of R&B, jazz, calypso, African music and much more.
The genre is unique to Jamaica; it became popular in South Africa in the 1970s. It is especially popular among the Rastafari community.
James Mange was the first Rastafarian Prisoner on Robben Island.
“Reggae music is a mirror of what happens in society at a particular time and reggae music has the unfortunate element of being so truthful because it presents things the way they are,” says Mange.
The aim of the Indaba is to use reggae to promote social cohesion and cultural exchange.
Lucky Dube was known as South Africa’s own Peter Tosh. His peers want to revive the love for reggae. Thuthukani Cele is a former band member of Lucky Dube.
“They don’t play reggae during the day. During the week, they just play reggae music during reggae programs where it looks like it’s being isolated,” says Cele.
The SABC says there is a need for a revival of reggae music, as musicians no longer produce more in the genre.
“The SABC still continues to deliver between 5 and 10% of reggae music throughout the month across all radio stations but we are still lacking in terms of fresh music. We still have to play your old Lucky Dube music you still have to play your old Bob Marley and stuff but we are urging them to produce more fresh music and we’ll continue to play our part and give them the necessary airplay,” says SABC General Manager in the Western Cape, James Shikwambana.