Juno-winning reggae musician’s name now graces Brampton park


Published February 28, 2022 at 8:51 pm

Kirk Diamond has helped put Brampton and Canada on the map in the reggae genre, and now the artist and activist’s name is officially on the map in Brampton.

On Monday (Feb. 28), Diamond, Mayor Patrick Brown, city councillors and community members gathered at a Hollowgrove Boulevard space that will now be called Kirk Diamond Park. The decision was made last July in recognition of Diamond’s work as a musician and as an activist.

Diamond, a Jamaican-Canadian who has lived in Brampton since moving to the city as a 10-year-old in the 1990s, has twice been nominated in the Juno Awards for Reggae Recording of the Year. His latest single, Most High, reached No. 1 on Rebel Vibez Top Ten Canadian Reggae chart last month.

In 2018, he won first Juno Award for Reggae Recording of the Year for his EP, “Greater.” Diamond and his band, The Movement of Ahryel, has opened for international reggae musicians.

The 37-year-old Diamond has said that moving to Brampton as a child in the ’90s was a catalytic event for inspiring his desire and drive to make music.

“I was born in Jamaica. Moved to Canada in the mid-1990s. Fell in love with music here,” he told the website V13 in 2021. “Before it was just reggae and dancehall, but Canada being so diverse in cultures, (it become) music in general.”

Diamond has built his activism into his beats. In 2020, in a sociopolitical climate of COVID-19 and the Black Lives Matter movement, he recorded the anthemic “Let It Be Done.” Diamond arranged for the video to be shot in Uganda, which has one of the most repressive political regimes in Africa, although COVID-19 protections prevented him from physically travelling there.

Diamond earned his first Juno nomination for his single Love Inna We Heart, which was produced by Galang Records in 2015. That charted in several nations, also reaching No. 1 on the Rebel Vibez charts in Canada and spending 19 weeks there overall.

Kirk Diamond Park, which is at 65 Hollowgrove Blvd., was previously known as Shields Park.

(Cover photo via City of Brampton.)

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