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Kingston, Jamaica’s legendary Alpha Boys’ School, a school for disadvantaged youth that has been a powerhouse in training reggae musicians, is seeking funding for a radio and music studio and media lab to be constructed on the campus of the historic school in the summer of 2014. For more information about this amazing project > click here <.

The $23,000 goal will go towards the construction of a radio on-air/recording facility. This will allow the boys to record audio and “go live” from the campus. They will learn about music and media in a safe and secure environment.

Why Alpha? Without Alpha, reggae as we know it today would not exist. Since 1880, Alpha has cared for the development of children in need in Jamaica. In the 1960s, Sister Mary Ignatious thought it’d be a good idea to teach popular music at the school. Musicians trained at Alpha have appeared on some of the biggest tracks by artists like Bob Marley, Burning Spear, and the Skatalites.

In the words of The Telegraph (UK), Alpha Boys’ School “helped release the spirit of one of the most musical islands in the world.” Recent Alpha graduates work with award-winning reggae ambassadors Damian Marley, Jimmy Cliff, Beres Hammond and Beenie Man, to name just a few.

Why Kickstarter? Government support covers less than half Alpha’s annual budget. The balance is made up by donations and entrepreneurial self-help initiatives linked to vocational programs. This Kickstarter campaign will create important, real-world training and employment opportunities for students like them interested in media production, promotion or presentation. With your help, hundreds of students will have the opportunity to learn the new skills necessary to join the global marketplace that is today’s music industry.

Why now? Alpha has a radio station online. It plays music that has been created with the contribution of Alpha grads. But it’s only automated. With the support of Seton Hall University, and WXGR Radio in the USA, the school has started to acquire the equipment necessary for live broadcasting. This Kickstarter campaign will support the construction of the studio in an existing building. Specifically, this campaign will underwrite the cost of construction, preparing the room for live broadcasting and vocational training, installing the equipment and purchasing the programming to run on them. If we can reach our stretch goals, the campaign will also build workstations for graduating a generation of new musical ambassadors trained audio production.

absr skatalites
alpha boys school radio absr logo
absr joeharriot

About Kickstarter
Kickstarter is the world’s largest funding platform for creative projects. Since its launch, more than 5 million people have funded more than 50,000 projects. People who support Kickstarter projects are offered rewards and special experiences in exchange for their pledges.

About Alpha Boys School
Alpha Boys School is a non-profit residential vocational school in Kingston, Jamaica serving at risk boys 8 and 18 years old. Children are assigned to Alpha by the Child Development Agency after the child is determined to be in need of services by the family court system. Founded in 1880, Alpha has been administered since 1890 by the Religious Sisters of Mercy, a catholic order of nuns. Best known for graduating Jamaica’s most pioneering musicians, in addition to music, Alpha offers vocational training in agriculture, tailoring, wood working and screen printing.

About Alpha Boys School Radio
The radio station is fully automated 24 hours per day, 7 days per week broadcasting to 60,000 unique listeners per month around the world. The Alpha Boys’ School Radio format plays the best of ska, rocksteady and reggae music. All of the music heard on ABSR has at least one graduate of Alpha Boys’ School on the track. Alpha Boys School Radio was created by Alpha Boys School and is managed by WXGR FM, a USA-based non profit radio station founded by Michael Wadleigh, the 1970 Oscar winning director of the documentary film, Woodstock.

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