The local reggae and global music promoter is being inducted into the B.C. Entertainment Hall of Fame this week.
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In a proclamation issued by Mayor Kennedy Stewart, Vancouver music promoter Warner is lauded for his four decades as a concert promoter in charge of Melo Productions. The proclamation states “through his efforts as a concert promoter, (he) introduced new music and sounds to Vancouver’s multicultural tapestry and provided cultural spaces where Caribbean arts and culture has been showcased through his events.”
The host of CFRO Co-Op Radio’s Caribbean Sounds show for over 30 years, Warner is being inducted into the B.C. Entertainment Hall of Fame as a Pioneer at a ceremony at the Commodore Ballroom on June 23. Warner’s name joins the roll of locals whose contribution to B.C. music and entertainment has been key to the vibrant cultural scene here. Naturally, once the induction is done, A Melo Productions presentation of Bob Marley’s legendary backing band The Wailers will get the reggae flowing.
Over the years, Warner has been the premier indie promoter of reggae and other global sounds in Vancouver and beyond, introducing acts from Shaggy and Ziggy Marley to Sean Paul and Chronixx to local fans. He has also played a key role in fostering local talents such as Small Axe, Soul Survivors and more.
A press release issued by frequent co-promoter Live Nation includes a quote from Vancouver historian Aaron Chapman who will MC the induction ceremony: “There aren’t many people who you can point to and say they single-handedly made Vancouver a better place. But Warner as a local concert promoter is really responsible for bringing a lot of reggae and world beat music to Vancouver, introducing new sounds to the city, and taking a chance on some acts when the larger talent bookers didn’t. That might have been easy in a place like Toronto with a bigger Caribbean Canadian population, but here in Vancouver — Warner did it by perseverance and his great taste in music. Other cities were not as fortunate to have somebody like him doing what he was doing at the grassroots level in the city, and we as a city are better for it.”
Congratulations to Warner on a job — still — being well done.