Wray Residency – Celebrating 60 Years of Jamaica’s Independence With Wray & Nephew

Wray Residency - Celebrating 60 Years of Jamaica's Independence With Wray & Nephew

Wray Residency – Celebrating 60 Years of Jamaica’s Independence With Wray & Nephew


Wray Residency - Celebrating 60 Years of Jamaica's Independence With Wray & Nephew

Marking six decades of independence for the sunshine island, Wray & Nephew UK centred their latest Wray Residency on celebrating 60 years of Jamaica’s independence. The event included a variety of music showcased from dancehall classics being played by DJ Shayna Marie, performances from Miss La Familia and D Double E being joined on stage by Novelist, Footsie and MC Bushkin.

In between performances the crowd was kept entertained by lively host Silky and were able to enjoy Wray & Nephew rum punch cocktails – guests were given tokens for complimentary drinks at the Hoxton Docks venue and were able to get a ‘taste of Jamaica’ with a meal after the event from Belly’s in Hoxton with a choice of Curry Goat, Jerk Chicken, Callaloo and sides.

“For nearly 200 years, Wray & Nephew has been close to the beating heart of true Jamaican culture: creativity. Even in 19th century, Jamaican born founder John Wray was sharing his best blended rums at his Shakespeare Tavern, keeping patrons of the Theatre Royal next door entertained with his jammin’ tipples. Two decades of success later, John Wray brought in his young nephew Charles James Ward, making him partner and as a result producing the iconic name and brand that we still know and love today. Ward went on to develop his legacy into one of Jamaica’s most premier companies and the number one producer of quality rums on the island. Ward was a great philanthropist, The Ward Theatre being his most significant donation to the people of Jamaica. This tradition of giving continues today with the J. Wray and Nephew Foundation.” – straightfromyard.co.uk


After more than 300 hundred years of British colonial rule, Jamaica gained independence on August 6, 1962. The road to independence was long and hard but with prominent and instrumental figures such as Sir Alexander Bustamante and Norman Manley, Jamaica gained its freedom for self-governance. Becoming independent, Jamaica’s locally drafted Constitution came into effect on August 6, 1962.

An Independence celebration committee was commissioned to plan and organise special activities in celebration of the newly independent Jamaica. Several events were organised to celebrate the jubilation spanning from July 30 to August 12 1962, one such activity was the independence state banquet.

The National Float Parade and Flag raising ceremony were two of one of the most significant activities which occurred. On Sunday August 5, 1962 at 11:59 pm, the National Stadium went dark for one minute with only the flag staff highlighted. The Union Jack (British Flag) was lowered symbolising the end of the British rule over Jamaica and Jamaica’s new flag of colours black green and gold was hoisted to the sound of jubilant cheers and fireworks signalling the birth of a new nation, “Jamaica land we love.”Celebrating 60 Years of Jamaica’s Independence With Wray & Nephew

wray and nephew jamaican independence

I got myself to the front with Sophie, London, Chris and Benji – my rum punch cocktail was in hand whilst Miss La Familia was bringing the vibes with some unreleased material and then performing some of her most popular tracks including big big track ‘Monsta‘ that features Jamaican artist Popcaan. Miss La Familia also gave an opportunity to any aspiring rapper in the crowd to get on stage with her and freestyle, the spot was taken by Nics who brought bars and energy to the Wray Residency. Make sure you check out his latest #CammyRiddim

Miss La Familia performing at the Wray Residency

Independence is celebrated every year and continues to be a well anticipated season which both reminds us of the significance of political freedom and signals the possibilities of a brighter future.

He’s widely regarded as one of the most distinctive UK MCs of all time, he’s been a core member of N.A.S.T.Y Crew and Newham Generals and he’s been spitting bars since before grime even had a proper name…. Having a career spanning more than two decades that’s seen him get more reloads than most MCs could ever dream of. His arsenal of absurdist catchphrases/ad-libs (bluku, jackuum, bud-a-bup-bup) alongside his East London patois and whip-smart wordplay, make him instantly recognisable…

D Double E energetically entered Hoxton Docks and took to the stage with DJ Sir Spyro, blessing us with some grime classics including ‘Street Fighter’ and ‘Bad To The Bone’ whilst incorporating some of his most notable bars with some jungle/ drum and bass beats. We saw MC Bushkin and Footsie join the stage briefly and were treated to surprise guest Novelist joining D Double E for a live performance of their brand new record ‘PACE’ taken from his brand new EP Bluku! Bluku! 2 which is out now.

D Double E Ft Novelist ‘PACE’

“Respect the Wray. A likkle bit of Wray goes a long way.”
Please drink responsibly.

Wray Residency - Celebrating 60 Years of Jamaica's Independence With Wray & Nephew sammi swinton miss la familia

Stay safe and take care,

Sammi xx

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