When Reggae Sunsplash arrived in Montego Bay in 1978 those who were interested in Reggae Music flocked for the seven nights of sound, sea, and sex.
Many couples came, but there were also unattached women. It didn’t take very long for the ‘Rent a Dread’ industry to start.
Maybe in the first year there were unexpected hook ups between locals and foreigners, but soon it became ‘organised’ Swarms of white women came to hear the music, and they wanted their own Rasta.
Many Jamaican men grew their hair and played Rasta as they hung around the venue and hotels to do the smile and ‘hi nice lady’ so as to be picked up and get an all expense paid ‘vacation’ for the length of the ‘goose’s’ stay.
The mentality of Jamaicans was different from that of the Bajan Beach Boy. The predatory nature of the Rentadread was poorly hidden. His idea of being ‘the man’ was not easily discarded.
As the females were often the same age as the males the possibility of a ‘real’ relationship existed.
Many Rentas has their lives, their women, their children in some other part of Jamaica and would go to Sunsplash to make money and have free sex.
Some had other plans.