Black History Month: Where’s the Love in Lovers’ Rock?

Thursday 14 October 2021

Examining the role of women and gender within Lovers’ Rock reggae music


As part of De Montfort Universities Black History Month programme:

A research presentation, conversation and musical performance by The Queen of Lovers’ Rock Sandra Cross.

Dr Lisa Amanda Palmer will present her latest research on the complexities that exist within the Lovers’ Rock reggae scene in relation to the cultural politics of gendering and love.

Sandra Cross will join her in conversation alongside poet, author and musician Carol Leeming Mba, FRSA, and share her perspective as a female artist with 40 years’ experience in the industry. Also joining the conversation will be poet, author and musician Carol Leeming, MBA who will discuss her involvement in sound system culture, lovers rock and dub.

The conversation will be interspersed with a live performance by Sandra Cross.

About the speakers

Dr Lisa Amanda Palmer, serves as Deputy Director of The Stephen Lawrence Research Centre at De Montfort University. Her research focuses on Black feminism, Black cultural politics and the intersection of race, racism, gender and sexuality. Her writing covers a broad spectrum of fields including the gendered politics of lovers’ rock music, the production of local community archives and the misogynoir faced by Black women in British public life. She is the co-author of the book Blackness in Britain (2016) and is currently writing her book on Black women in the UK’s Lovers’ Rock reggae scene.

Lisa has written extensively on the Lovers’ Rock genre. Her book, Men Cry Too: Black Masculinities and the Feminisation of Lovers Rock in the UK (Ashgate, 2014), discusses the gendered and politicization lyrical content of Lovers Rock music which shapes the genre.

Sandra Cross, the Queen of Lovers Rock and the UK’s top Lovers Rock performer is regarded as one of the most respected and pioneering voices of the music genre. At the tender age of 14, Sandra co-wrote and recorded her first hit I adore you which went straight to number 1 in the UK reggae charts.

Her first solo release was a remake of the Stylistics’ Country Living in 1985 which held the number 1 spot for 10 weeks in the UK and European Reggae charts. She went on to top the British Reggae charts with four more number one hits.

Carol Leeming is an international award winning artist and an elected Fellow of the Royal Society for the Arts. Carol received an MBE in 2019 for her contribution to arts and culture in Leicester as a poet and playwright. A Leicester local, she is most recently known for her choreopoems The Loneliness of the Long Distance Diva, which featured as part of the 2012 Cultural Olympiad and Love the Life you Live…Live the Life you Love.

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