PRIDE OF A NATION: It goes without saying that the upcoming Jamaica 55 celebrations could raise the bar way above what we experienced at the height of the Jamaica 50 festivities back in 2012. For now, the plans are being kept under hush-hush, but impeccable TALLAWAH sources say we’ll hear what’s in store for the year-long celebrations when the Jamaica 55 press launch is held in early March. The JCDC’s Stephen Davidson hinted in an interview earlier this week that the organizing committee is planning activities for “a global celebration,” starting April 1, that will encompass the Diaspora far and wide. “It’s a significant year,” Davidson reminds us, “so we’ll definitely be celebrating all things Jamaican.”
MUSICAL SALUTE: Every year activities to commemorate the birth of reggae king Robert Nesta Marley generates feverish excitement. This year is no exception. In celebration of #Marley72, the JCDC is putting on free lunch hour concerts in select locations across the island on Monday, February 6. While the Morant Bay Primary School in St. Thomas will play host to a concert in the east, the Bank of Nova Scotia in Spanish Town, St. Catherine, will host another. Arriving and departing passengers will be treated to performances by award-winning JCDC Festival performers, singer-songwriter Everton Pessoa, and the hyper-rhythmic Pembroke Hall High School band at a concert inside the outdoor visitors’ lounge of the Norman Manley International Airport, being organized in partnership with the Airport Authority. On Sunday, February 5, a mammoth turnout is expected in Half-Way-Tree for the grand Redemption Live concert, featuring performances by Beenie Man, Ky-Mani Marley, Ikaya, Bob Marley Museum ambassadors, among others.