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10 for Jamaica International Independence Foreign Song Competition Semi-Final

Semi-finalists for the Jamaica International Independence Foreign Song Competition (JIIFSC) have been announced, with half of the 10 contestants from Georgia.

Fan voting, which ends June 30, will determine the seven finalists. The final is scheduled for July 29 at Shiloh High School Theatre in Snellville, Georgia.

Garfield McCook, founder of the JIIFSC, spoke about the progress of his event which is now in its third year.  “I’m satisfied with where the competition is and that it is growing. We are attracting new artists every year and the fan base is widening. This year we had more artists from Georgia while Tania Lou is a returning artist from Canada. The others are from Florida and Ohio,” he disclosed.

 ‘IRIE’ by New York-based Goddy Son won the JIIFSC last year. Lavie Lujah out of Toronto took the inaugural event in 2021 with ‘Certified Yardie’.

 Prize money remains the same, with the winner receiving US$8,000, runner-up $4,000, and third place $1,000.

The semi-finalists for the 2023 JIIFSC are:

 ‘Jamaica in Mi’ — Leon “Le’Tonick” Denton (Ohio)

‘More Jesus for Jamaica’ — Yvonne Johnson (Georgia)

‘Jamaica Story’ — Bobby Dockery (Florida)

‘Jamaica 61’ — Tania Lou (Canada)

‘A Jamaica mi Bawn and Grow’ — Ernel Earlington (Georgia)

‘Island Life’ — Nikki Spice (Florida)

‘Island Jamaica’ — Marlon Christy (Georgia)

‘Play Ina We Yaad’ — Dex Daley (Florida)

‘Miss Jamaica Bad’ — Pastor Ricky (Georgia)

‘Land of Wood and Water’ — Lee “Priest” Johnson (Georgia).

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