Dawn Penn

Dawn Penn

Trenchtown

Dawn Penn will be performing with Earl Gateshead and Soom T.

Dawn Penn is one of the original queens of reggae music. A native of Kingston, Jamaica, she grew up in a musical family, studying piano, classical violin and performing with her sisters Pat and Audrey in churches. Her first recording was “When I’m Gonna Be Free” in 1966. She was then recorded by the legendary Coxsone Dodd at Studio One and her first hit came in 1967 with the title “You Don’t Love Me – No, No, No”, one of the most famous reggae hits of all-time which has since been covered by countless artists around the world including Beyonce, Rihanna, Sean Paul, Wu-Tang Clan, Eve, J Millz, Mims, and Lily Allen to name a few.

Over the next few years several singles were released including three: “Blue Yes Blue”, “Here’s The Key” Long Day Short Night” "Blue Yes Blue and "Are you There" on Prince Buster’s Label. In 1987 Dawn re-recorded her single "You Don’t Love Me” No, No, No,with Steelie and Cleavie. The track was released in 1991 to commemorate Studio One’s 35th Anniversary, it was a crossover hit in the mainstream pop charts and was picked up by Heartbeat in the U.S. King Jammy’s recording that was done the year before with Bounty Killer, Dennis Brown and Ken Boothe, under separate recording on the Greensleeves label became a dancehall smash.

In 1993, Big Beat (Atlantic Records) signed Penn to an 8-year album deal, and by the following year she was back on the charts with her re-recorded dancehall version of “You Don’t Love Me – No, No, No”. The single charted in 68 countries, reaching no. 1 in Jamaica and no. 3 in the UK charts. It was featured in advertisements for Nissan and Churchill and the album was nominated for a Grammy Award. In 1995 she produced and recorded her original track “What Do You Do?”, followed up by Delroy Williams and herself producing the album called “Come Again” on Trojan Records which sold close to 110,000 copies. Her 2000 single “Never Ever” was released on Jet Star, becoming a smash hit on BBC Radio 1.

In 2001 Dawn was honoured with the “Martin Luther King Award” by Caribbean Images in recognition of her contribution to Jamaican music. From 2002-2004 she collaborated with top U.S. hip- hop artists including John Forte of the Fugees on (“What You Gonna Do” and “Mercy pon we”) culminating in the release of the R & B Album- “Never Hustle The Music”, touring extensively across Europe. In the US, Cocoa Brovaz (“Spit Again”) was a Project on Rawkus.

Dawn now tours extensively performing her classic tunes to audiences and festivals all over the world. A highlight from 2017 was a live performance of “You don’t Love me” at the Royal Festival Halls in London, backed by a full orchestra.

Artists