Sunday, March 31, 2013

Memories of Easter -- Trinidad & Tobago Guardian

Easter and Phagwa in Trinidad (T&T Guardian Photo)
Memories of Easter
. . . weekend of prayer and fun
Published: Friday, March 29, 2013
Peter Ray Blood
As a child, Easter was synonymous with many fun things—church, sea, kite-flying, fish, bobolees and hot cross buns. I remember my mother waking early on Good Friday morning and making hot cross buns for us, and my favourite was eating them hot with melted cheese inside. Of course, attending the three-hour Station of the Cross service was mandatory in our home. The older I grew it was the more I fell asleep during this ritual, usually rudely awakened by my mother nudging me in my ribs. Also mandatory was watching the revolving slew of Biblical films that TTT, the only TV channel back then, screened every Easter weekend. Notwithstanding not eating meat during Lent, we’d eagerly look forward to our final gourmet fish meal of this period of abstinence on Good Friday, usually king fish with gub gub or lima beans, always served with white rice, potato salad and pickled cucumbers. Lunch was always accompanied by wine or sherry. Read more: See also:

Easter rituals - Faith, festivities, feasts and fertility -- Jamaica Gleaner

Delicions Easter Bun
Easter rituals - Faith, festivities, feasts and fertility
Published: Sunday | March 31, 2013
Many Christians view Easter as the greatest feast of the Church year. It is a time of joy and celebration to commemorate that Jesus Christ is risen, according to Christian belief. Although Easter maintains great religious significance, many children in North America and Europe think of it as a time to get new spring clothes, to decorate eggs and to participate in Easter-egg hunts. Easter eggs and the Easter bunny are both fertility symbols, holdovers from the feast of Eostara. Other symbolic parallels include the pagan joy in the rising sun of spring, which coincides with Christians' joy in the rising Son of God, and the lighting of candles in churches, which corresponds to the pagan bonfires. Here are some of the Easter traditions from around the world. Jamaica - Bun and cheese is an Easter flavour, with fish being the main menu in many houses. Two of the more interesting practices associated with Easter in Jamaica is the setting of an egg to predict one's future and cutting of the physic nut tree at noon on Good Friday. Read more: For further information:

Haiti splashes slum with psychedelic colors -- Seattle Times (AP)

"Jacmel de mes Reves" by Prefete Duffaut
Haiti splashes slum with psychedelic colors
The Associated Press
PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti — One of Haiti’s biggest shantytowns, a vast expanse of grim cinderblock homes on a mountainside in the nation’s capital, is getting a psychedelic makeover that aims to be part art and part homage. Workers this month began painting the concrete facades of buildings in Jalousie slum a rainbow of purple, peach, lime and cream, inspired by the dazzling “cities-in-the-skies” of well-known Haitian painter Prefete Duffaut, who died last year. The $1.4 million effort titled “Beauty versus Poverty: Jalousie in Colors” is part of a government project to relocate people from the displacement camps that sprouted up after Haiti’s 2010 earthquake. The relocation has targeted a handful of high-profile camps in Port-au-Prince by paying a year’s worth of rent subsidies for residents to move into neighborhoods like Jalousie. The government is now trying to spruce up these poor neighborhoods and introduce city services. Said Clement Belizaire, director of the government’s housing-relocation program:
“The goal that we are shooting for is a neighborhood that is modest but decent, where residents are proud to be from that area.” -- Clement Belizaire, director of the government’s housing-relocation program
While most residents welcome the attempt to beautify the a slum of 45,000 inhabitants, critics say the project is the latest example of cosmetic changes carried out by a government that has done little to improve people’s lives in the Western Hemisphere’s poorest country. “This is just to make it look like they’re doing something for the people, but in reality they are not,” said Sen. Moise Jean-Charles, an outspoken critic of President Michel Martelly, arguing that the money could have been better spent. Read more: For further information about the artist:, and

Exhibition: Sandra Brewster through 31 March, 2013 at Alice Yard, Trinidad WI

'untitled(smiths)' by Sandra Brewster
Exhibition: Sandra Brewster through 31 March, 2013 at Alice Yard, Trinidad WI
Alice Yard, the backyard space of the house at 80 Roberts Street, Woodbrook, Port of Spain, Trinidad: For further information:
Artist Profile - Sandra Brewster, Alice Yard's current artist in residence, is a multi-media artist creating work (drawings, paintings, video and mixed media) that engages issues of race, identity, representation, and memory. Her current focus is African-Canadians born in North America and those who arrived in North America from the Caribbean during the 1960s and 70s. At times, she references old photographs and recreates elements using painting, drawing, and gel transfers, juxtaposing imagery to provide a dialogue through contrasts or likenesses. In this work she visually represents a time or a memory and provides a platform to tell stories of “back home”.
In other pieces Brewster presents portraits of individuals that challenge stereotypes and perceptions. Her ongoing series Smiths questions prevalent assertions about the existence of a monolithic Black Community. For further information about the exhibition: and about Alice Yard, the backyard space of the house at 80 Roberts Street, Woodbrook, Port of Spain: For more information about the artist:

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Bolt agrees to £500,000 tax-free deal to run two races at London Anniversary Games -- Jamaica Observer

Usain Bolt in Rio
Bolt agrees to £500,000 tax-free deal to run two races in London
$75-m MAN
Saturday, March 30, 2013
JAMAICAN sprint king Usain Bolt has agreed to a £500,000 (just under J$75 million) tax-free deal to compete in two events at the London Anniversary Games at the Olympic Stadium in July, the Daily Mail Online reported yesterday. According to the newspaper, Bolt, the Olympic triple gold medal champion signed a contract to compete on both days of the Diamond League grand prix meeting on July 26 and 27. The Mail reported Bolt's agent Ricky Simms as saying that they have been having positive negotiations, but there are "still some things to finalise".
"Bolt will be one of a host of Olympic champions, including Mo Farah, Jessica Ennis, and Greg Rutherford who will be in action at the Stratford stadium before many of the stars of the London 2012 Paralympics take the stage on July 28 for a day of disability events,"   the Daily Mail report said.
"Details of the two events Bolt will be contesting are being kept secret until a formal announcement is made, though it is probable he will compete in one individual sprint race plus the 4x100m relay as he is unlikely to take part in both the 100m and 200m on consecutive days just a fortnight before the start of the World Championships in Moscow," the Daily Mail report added. Read more: For further information: and

Easter Lamb -- Trinidad & Tobago Guardian

Happy Easter ! (T&T Guardian Photo)
Easter Lamb
Published: Saturday, March 30, 2013
Wendy Rahamut
Easter is a time for celebration for Christians around the world. A grand Easter feast usually marks the end of the Lenten fasting season. A superb meal headed by a meat roast is usually the way Easter is celebrated here in Trinidad and Tobago and in many countries around the world. Roast leg of lamb usually makes a very festive entrée accompanied by many mouthwatering side dishes. Here are some sure-to-please dishes which I know you will enjoy this holiday weekend! Happy Easter!
4 lb leg of lamb
2 tbs Dijon mustard
8 cloves garlic, minced
4 tbs red wine vinegar
2 tsp coarsely cracked black pepper
2 tbs chopped fresh rosemary or one tbs dried
2 tbs olive oil
2 tsp salt
Read more:

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Exhibition: Connecting Spot Final Friday at the Taft on March 29, 2013 from 6pm to 9pm — Cincinnati OH, USA

Artwork: Sam Gilliam, “Scarcely Blue”, acriylic on wood, 1995
Exhibition: Connecting Spot Final Friday at the Taft on March 29, 2013 from 6pm to 9pm — Cincinnati OH, USA: Time: March 29, 2013 from 6pm to 9pm; Location: Taft Museum of Art; Street: 316 Pike Street; City/Town: Cincinnati; Phone: 513.342.4557 x100; Event Type: professional, networking, art, exhibit — Event Description: The Connecting Spot is the place to connect on the spot for business and community leaders, tech visionaries, and social innovators just like you. Join us each month for a chance to meet, connect, interact, relate and engage with the most exciting and influential people in the Tri-State Cincinnati area. Join us for the first ever Final Friday Edition featuring African American Art since 1950: Perspectives from the David C. Driskell Center, and special guest Toilynn Oneal!
"This month we kick off our partnership with the Taft Museum of Art to bring you, African American Art since 1950: Perspectives from the David C. Driskell Center. In 1976, scholar, curator and artist David Driskell revealed the depth and breadth of African American art with a landmark exhibition, Two Centuries of Black American Art. In a new exhibition, the David C. Driskell Center for the Study of African American Art provides a sequel, a broad survey of how this art has evolved since then. Well-known artists such as Faith Ringgold, Romare Bearden, and Sam Gilliam are joined by powerful younger talents including Kara Walker, Willie Cole, and Chakaia Booker. Approximately 60 works in a great variety of media—paintings, sculpture, prints, collage, photography, and mixed media—present a vivid sampling of the range of expression of these American voices."  — The Connecting Spot
Contact Edward Williams for event information at 513.342.4557 or Amanda McDonald for exhibit and membership details at 513.352.5134. Tune in LIVE via SBN the Sovereign Broadcast Network if you cannot attend the event. For further information: For further information about the artist:

Cutting ties - When artiste/manager relationships go bad — Jamaica Observer

Cutting ties - When artiste/manager relationships go bad — Jamaica Observer
Struggling to manage
By Cecelia Campbell-Livingston
Observer Staff Reporter
Thursday, March 28, 2013
THE seemingly unshakable bond between deejay Busy Signal and his longtime manager/producer Shane Brown, was shattered recently with news of their split. There have been no details about what caused the parting of ways which comes five months after the entertainer was released from prison in the United States. Following his release after three months in a Minnesota penitentiary, Busy Signal had strong praise for Brown, the man behind some of his biggest hit songs. Brown was just as complimentary, saying he was committed to reviving the deejay's career. Being a manager of Jamaican artistes is tough work. Entertainers are known to change managers or publicists regularly. Splash spoke with Tommy Cowan, former manager for acts such as Dennis Brown, Israel Vibration, Junior Tucker and Inner Circle regarding the challenges of managing a reggae artiste.
"Here in Jamaica artistes seem to want a manager to get them work and spend on them. What they need is an agent to get them work … artistes splitting with managers when they hit the big time is global with the latter most times coming away bitter." — Tommy Cowan, Talent Manager
Read more: For further information: and

Strong T&T presence at German festival — Trinidad & Tobago Guardian

Proudly representing their country and region in Berlin, three members of the
trinidad+tobago film festival (ttff)—Nneka Luke, Jonathan Ali and Ryan Khan
Strong T&T presence at German festival — Trinidad & Tobago Guardian
Published: Thursday, March 28, 2013
Three members of the Trinidad & Tobago Film Festival (TTFF) attended the Berlin International Film Festival, Berlinale, in Germany this February. One attendant, Nneka Luke, TTFF director of external relations, represented TTFF in the DW Akademie Film Festival and Event Management Workshop. This was the first time a Caribbean film festival was invited to participate in the workshop. The workshop brought together film festival managers from 11 developing countries who shared information about improving the management of film festivals. Also attending Berlinale, which took place from February 7-17, were TTFF editorial director Jonathan Ali and filmmaker Ryan Khan. Ali was at the Berlinale to scout films for possible inclusion in the TTFF 2013, which takes place from September 18 to October 1. He also engaged in extensive rounds of networking, and met with producers, representatives of other film festivals and other film-industry professionals, with regards to identifying funding and other production, exhibition and distribution-related opportunities for local and regional filmmakers...
In a press release from the TTFF, founder and director Bruce Paddington said they were “pleased to have had such a high level of representation at the Berlin International Film Festival.” He added, “The TTFF was also able to participate in a vibrant trade market and such exposure will benefit the growth of the T&T and Caribbean film industry.”
Read more: For more information visit:,, and

Stars booked for Jamaica Invitational - Bolt, Blake, VCB, SFP, Felix all secured despite financial hurdles -- Jamaica Gleaner

Fraser-Pryce (left) and Campbell-Brown (JG Photo)
Stars booked for Jamaica Invitational - Bolt, Blake, VCB, SFP, Felix all secured despite financial hurdles
Published: Thursday | March 28, 2013
Ryon Jones, Staff Reporter
Triple world record holder Usain Bolt and reigning World 100m champion Yohan Blake have both been confirmed for the 10th staging of the Jamaica International Invitational set for May 4 inside the National Stadium. However, staging this year's meet and securing some of the world's top athletes have not been easy for organisers because of the financial challenges facing the country and with most local companies having entered a second National Debt Exchange (NDX) programme with the Government.
"A lot of potential sponsors have mentioned the NDX as a challenge, so it would have had some effect, but not to the extent where it would have been disastrous, in my view," said Ludlow Watt, Jamaica Athletics Administrative Association treasurer and vice-chairman of the organising committee, during yesterday's press launch held at the Spanish Court Hotel. "There is some concern expressed by some sponsors, but we are still in dialogue with a number of potential sponsors."
Meanwhile, despite the fact that fans will not see the two top male sprinters competing against each other, reigning 200m Olympic champion Allyson Felix and reigning World 200m champion Veronica-Campbell Brown will be facing the starters together in a highly anticipated 100m clash. Read more:

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Romain Virgo earns Prime Minister's Youth Award -- Jamaica Gleaner

Romain Virgo earns Prime Minister's Youth Award
Published: Tuesday | March 26, 2013
Marcia Rowe, Gleaner Writer
A number of outstanding young Jamaicans in a variety of fields of study, work and interest were recipients of the Prime Minister'ss Youth Award for Excellence On Sunday. Among them was Romain Virgo, international recording artiste, for his outstanding contribution to the field of arts and culture. After receiving his award the young vocalist shared his thoughts with The Gleaner.
"It is the biggest award for any young person in Jamaica to be honoured by the Prime Minister. So it's a joy and I feel honoured and humble. At the same time it is motivation and I will just keep on pushing on and work harder,"   said Virgo.
Later in the programme, Virgo and fellow awardee, Basilla Barnaby, responded on behalf of the nominees. Barnaby, who was the recipient of the award for her work in the field of journalism, began her speech with an attention grabber. Virgo on the other hand entertained the audience with songs like Mi Cyaan Sleep and Don't You Remember, from his catalogue. The Prime Minister's Youth Awards for Excellence & Jamaican Youth in Concert was held at the spacious Emancipation Park on Sunday. The theme was "Youth on a Mission É Project 2062." The tightly scheduled and executed programme saw presentation of awards to the 2012 recipients as well as excellent performances from different arms of the performing arts. Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller said she was delighted at the achievements of the young Jamaicans. Read more:  For further information: and

Wailer to release Reincarnate Souls — Jamaica Observer

Wailer to release Reincarnate Souls — Jamaica Observer
Brian Bonitto
Wednesday, March 27, 2013
LEGENDARY roots-reggae singer Bunny Wailer is set to release a commemorative 50-track album titled Reincarnate Souls in April. "No one has ever done this. These are 50 tracks that have never been heard before," he told the Jamaica Observer. Wailer, who turns 66 on April 10, said the album commemorates Jamaica's 50th anniversary of Independence and is produced by his Solomonic Productions.
"It's very symbolic and significant to our existence... musically." — Bunny Wailer
Wailer, whose given name is Neville Livingston, is one of reggae's standard-bearers. In August, last year, he was awarded Jamaica's fifth highest honour, the Order of Jamaica, for his contribution to the country's music. An original member of the Wailing Wailers which included Bob Marley and Peter Tosh, Wailer went solo in 1974. He went on to win Grammy awards for Best Reggae Album in 1991, 1994 and 1996. He has similar aspirations for his newest project. Read more: For further information:

Ricky Blaze returns to studio with different type of artistry -- Jamaica Gleaner

Photo by:

Ricky Blaze returns to studio with different type of artistry
Published: Wednesday | March 27, 2013
Jordane Delahaye, Gleaner Writer
Since the release of his EP, My Name is Ricky Blaze, in 2011, the artiste named in the title has been working on the production side of his career. Having now established himself as a music producer working with the likes of Chris Brown, Gyptian, Wiz Khalifa and Akon (just a few names from the multiplying notches on his belt), Ricky Blaze is now looking to make his way, once again, as a recording artiste. You probably remember the young musician's 2009 hit single Feel Free, which was remixed with Jim Jones, replacing Nicki Minaj and Red Café, who were on the original. Having signed with Ultra Records, Ricky Blaze has once again collaborated with Jim Jones for his latest single Kill Em. The single, the artiste told The Gleaner, is the lead from his upcoming urban mixtape, The Maestro, which fans can expect to drop in around a week. Ricky Blaze revealed in an interview that with The Maestro, he is looking to promote himself as that often-mentioned triple threat - singer, songwriter and producer. This means a lot of work for the musician, who seems more than up to the task. In fact, Blaze mentioned another EP during the interview, this time an electronic dance music compilation he expects to be released soon as well. For Ricky Blaze, it's all about creativity and finesse, and the musician revealed that the Jamaican music industry has been lacking in that department.
"To be honest, I'm not really seeing a lot of creativity in the industry. The music has definitely changed over the years but a lot of other styles of music are influenced by Jamaican music, and so we need to amp up the creativity and better represent this current generation,"   Blaze said.
Ricky Blaze was recently on the island lending his blend of creativity to Denyque's upcoming EP, Her Name is Denyque. Read more: For further information: and

Monday, March 25, 2013

Reggae crosses over into Switzerland -- Jamaica Gleaner

European reggae star King Youth

Reggae crosses over into Switzerland
Published: Monday | March 25, 2013
Sheena Gayle, Gleaner Writer
After 10 years of being in the music business, Switzerland-based reggae and dancehall musician King Youth is undaunted in his efforts to leave an imprint in Jamaica and broaden his fan base through local collaborations. "My sound and delivery is unique and that is something I want persons to experience when they listen to a King Youth track. While I am based overseas, I remain connected to what is happening with the local scene and it is quite colourful now so I hope to be a part of that mix," King Youth said in a recent interview. The 29-year-old musician, who grew up in England, revealed that several reggae icons have influenced his decision to enter into music some of whom include Max Romeo, Black Uhuru, Bob Marley, Steele Pulse and Bounty Killer and he hopes to be able to leave his mark on music for the future generation to emulate.
"Music never dies, some of our reggae greats have passed on but their music lives to date, so I am about creating an impact through the message of my songs. Europe loves reggae and I have witnessed this for myself through performances on SummerJam in Germany, among other shows. Dancehall is something I do as well and my new single with Bramma called Money Affi Mek is something different that I hope many will love,"  -- King Youth
Started in 2003 - King Youth was first introduced to the business in 2003 by an independent record label called LayanRaw operated by Alayande Thornton. Read more: For further information:

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Carnival of colours -- Jamaica Gleaner

Bacchanal Jamaica 2013
Carnival of colours
Published: Sunday | March 24, 2013
Amitabh Sharma, Contributor
Spring is in the air, the foliage of the tropics blooming spreading innumerable colours of Mother Nature, from trees to flowers to mango trees laden with succulent, juicy fruits sweetening in the crisp Caribbean sunshine. As the monochrome rays of the sun refract into spectral colours at the Mas Camp in Kingston, in a quiet corner, Earl 'Fuzzy' Franklin sits surrounded by glue, stapler guns, pliers and scissors - unlikely tools one may think that transform mundane, raw material into sensuous, colourful carnival costumes.
"I am not a designer," Fuzzy says, "I know how to put the costumes together."
Fuzzy, who has been with Bacchanal Jamaica since its inception, says that initially the costumes were bought from Trinidad. "While we were out there (in Trinidad), I would watch them (the designers) at work, and I picked up the traits," he said. "After three years, we started making our own costumes." Designing carnival costumes - like the free-spiritedness of the event itself, replete with the adrenaline-pumping music, and the accompanying gyrations - is a meticulous, intensive and laborious process. "The work begins two weeks after the road march," said Fuzzy. "I take a trip to New York and check out trim shops for costume jewellery and other items and then go to Trinidad." The base material is pre-fabricated, he said, so it cuts the production time considerably. "We try and use as much recycled material as possible; from thin aluminium sheets to pieces of rubber." PVC pipes, recycled aluminium sheets, steel wires and rubber might not sound the sexiest materials, but they are the backbones of the costumes - and Fuzzy ensures that the resultant creations are not only riotous and intricate, but sturdy enough to wine with the dancers' energy and not slip off in an embarrassing wardrobe malfunction. Read more:  For further information:

NexCyx says thanks to fans -- Barbados NationNews

NexCyx Band (BNN Photo)

NexCyx says thanks to fans
By Natanga Smith | Sat, March 23, 2013
Local band NexCyx is saying thanks to their fans who helped them get to the semifinals round of Ryan Seacrest’s “Best Maroon 5 Cover” contest. The band is currently in top position with 66.61 per cent of the votes. “We are incredibly grateful to our fans and everyone in Barbados, who have kept us in the running. This is an amazing opportunity for our band,” said Mahalia, lead vocalist. The Bajan band advanced to this round after a keenly contested voting period.
“Our fans really did an awesome job getting us through to the semifinals. We were even more thrilled when we entered that round at the top. Our hearts are warmed by the support that Barbados, in general, has shown us. It's humbling, really. NexCyx is excited about this opportunity. We see it as another way for people across the world to learn about who we are and our sound,” said Mahalia, lead vocalist.
Semi-final polls for the “Best Maroon 5 Cover” contest are open until 11.59 p.m. on March 26, 2013. NexCyx is a five-member band with a repertoire of hit music best defined as a pop-hip-hop-island made up of self-taught pianist turned producer (André), a drummer (Chad), bass guitarist (Kris), an dancer-singer-rapper (Mahalia) and rocker (Russell). The band has performed throughout Europe, North America and the Caribbean region. They are the winners of the 2012 Hennessy “Chase The Music. Own The Stage” competition and also hold an MTV Artist of the Week accolade. Keep voting for this local band at: Source: For further information:

Amazon's Book Reviews: Caribbean Authors

This is a review for A Perfect Pledge: A Novel by Rabindranath Maharaj - In 1956 Trinidad, Narpat Dubay's family lives quietly, this father of four tending his sugar cane patch and designing ingenious contraptions to make life easier. In Trinidad, nothing is ever planned, the frequent floods thought of as an act of God, a punishment, and Narpat seeks to rectify such ignorance. He has also noticed an influx of "Outsiders", squatters who fill empty houses as though they own the land. Narpat is determined to run them out and restore order to a country filled with corruption and graft: "Just like the invaders of India, the Outsiders were introducing a system of values alien to the village." Overburdened by insidious poverty, Narpat's wife, Dulari, borrows two-hundred dollars from her more successful brother to outfit her children properly for school and to arrange transportation for the older girls. While they are dependant on local bus transportation, Dulari waits anxiously for her daughters to return, content only when she has purchased a safe ride for them. Overruled and his authority threatened, Narpat is furious, believing the walk is beneficial, but then he expects every inconvenience to be turned into a learning experience, always ready with homilies to instruct his children on the virtues of hard work. Narpat feels his wife is acting against his wishes, as he routinely attempts to instill good habits and independence in Jeeves, Chandra, Kala and Shushilla. Read more:

This is a review for The Picture of Nobody (Good Reads) by Rabindranath Maharaj - Tommy lives with his family in Ajax, a small town close to Toronto. His parents are Ismaili Muslims who immigrated to Canada before Tommy was born. Tommy, a shy, chubby seventeen-year-old, feels like an outsider. The arrest of a terrorist group in Toronto turns Tommy's world upside down. No one noticed him before. Now, he experiences the sting of racism at the local coffee shop where he works part-time. A group of young men who hang out at the coffee shop begin to bully him. In spite, Tommy commits an act of revenge against the group's ringleader. This book is a quick and easy read for people on the go. Read more:

This is a review for Homer in Flight by Rabindranath Maharaj - Rabindranath Maharaj introduces an interesting story of Homer, an immigrant to Canada from his native country. He explains the bribery and corruption in the government of Trrinidad and expresses the experience of immigration, weather, hardship. prejudice, changes in social structure and racism in Canada. Maharaj describes the character and feelings of a new immigrant. He analizes the martial lifestyle while being unsettled. He also clarifies the character of Wali and his wife because of their honest, positive approach and help for Homer to get a job in a factory. He describes the half portion of his novel more interesting, but the remaining half is slow and un appealing. The end of the novel was beautiful because of the big achievement of Homer to become a writer. Read more:

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Easter Breads -- Trinidad & Tobago Guardian

Photo of delicious hot cross buns by

Easter Breads
Published: Saturday, March 23, 2013
Wendy Rahamut
Easter time heralds the coming of spring. It can be called a new beginning if you live in a country which experiences the different seasons. We too enjoy changing seasons, but the changes are not as visually dramatic. After about six long months of winter, birds begin to sing, the sun peeps out from behind the clouds and everywhere the earth is blessed with signs of new growth—the sight of tulips, irises and Easter lilies are some of the first signs of spring beauty. Easter time always brings with it some charm entrenched with tradition. It’s a time for chocolate bunnies, pastel colours, dyed eggs, pretty Easter baskets, bright flowers, Easter egg hunts, chocolate Easter bunnies in all flavours and Easter bonnet parades. Last but not least, it wouldn’t be Easter without delicious breads. Hot Cross buns are one of the favorites at this time of the year, although they are traditionally served on Good Friday morning they are just too delicious to pass up baking a batch any time you feel like a treat! Read more for recipe: For further information: and

Friday, March 22, 2013

UTech honours women in entertainment -- Jamaica Observer

Marcia Griffiths performing

UTech honours women in entertainment
Friday, March 22, 2013
THE University of Technology, Jamaica (UTech) will again honour Jamaican music industry stalwarts with a special tribute to the creative genius of women in the industry. The tribute will form part of the University's staging of the annual Literary Festival and Cultural Showcase set for April 11 at its Papine campus. This year's event celebrates a number of women making groundbreaking contributions to the creative and business side of the industry. The event will pay homage to Sonia Pottinger, Patricia Chin, Hortense Ellis, Margarita, Sheila Rickards and Olivia 'Babsy' Grange, as well as to singers including Judy Mowatt, Marcia Griffiths, Rita Marley, Sophia George, Myrna Hague, and Pauline Watson. Also to be honoured are contemporary acts, including Tanya Stephens, Alaine, Etana, Sandra Brooks, Carlene Davis, Keisha Patterson and Nadje Leslie, some of whose work will be presented by students.
Director for the Centre for the Arts, Dr Janice Lindsay notes, "The public can expect to learn about a number of outstanding women, many of whom have operated behind the scenes, but carved successful niches."
Source: For further information:, and

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Exhibition: Tobago Art 2013 until 21 March at 101 Art Gallery -- Trinidad & Tobago WI

Exhibition: Tobago Artists until 21 March, 2013 at 101 Art Gallery -- Trinidad & Tobago WI
Featured Artists: JENNIFER BAIRD; ANTHONY LERA; JEANNINE LETHE; KAJA MOSES; KAREN O'CALLAGHAN; MARIANNE PETERS; MARTIN SUPERVILLE; CHRIS THOMAS; Location: 84 Woodford Street; Newtown; Port of Spain, Trinidad & Tobago, W.I.; Tel: (868) 628-4081; Email:  See March 18, 2013 Art Review by Anne Hilton:,175009.html

'Hibiscus Faeries' by artist Jennifer Baird
Profile of Participating Artist - Jennifer Baird: Jennifer Baird (also known as Jenny Hilton-Clarke), was born in England but has lived for over 30 years on the tiny unspoilt island of Tobago, in the West Indies, where she resides as a recluse, high in the wild and remote rain forest - painting and meditating and living an extremely simple life without electricity, plumbing or mod cons. Jennifer has been painting all her life and has exhibited many times in Trinidad and Tobago and produced a diverse array of works over the last 30 years, ranging from the scenic to the deeply mystical and visionary.
For further information about the artist: For further information about the gallery:

Robin Maharaj to read tomorrow at Campus Week -- Trinidad & Tobago Newsday

Robin Maharaj to read tomorrow at Campus Week
Thursday, March 21 2013
There are times when you choose, and there are times when life chooses you. For acclaimed Trinidadian author Rabindranath Maharaj, his path as a writer was really a little of both. Robin, as he is called, says “I write because when I was young it was the only thing I felt that I was good at. I always sort of was curious about anomalies.” That is to say, he would notice things, particularly things that were different and would explore that difference through his writing. Rabindranath Maharaj is writer in residence this semester at UWI St Augustine. Tomorrow he will give a feature reading as a part of Campus Literature Week 2013. Robin will share a part of his award-winning book The Amazing Absorbing Boy which has recently been optioned to be made into a movie. This book is about an anomaly too, in that it defies the stereotype of the assimilating immigrant that capitulates whole-cloth to North American society. Set in Canada, Robin’s adopted country of residence, the Trini protagonist Samuel “absorbs” his surroundings as if he has a superhero’s powers, yet he also impacts upon his new community as much as it affects him. The genesis of this focus on anomalies? As Robin was growing up in his hometown of George Village in Tableland, he initially was fascinated by the village eccentrics – people who became models for some of his characters later on. As his career developed, he continued writing because there was a view he was interested in sharing about the travail of immigrants.
“Immigrants in Canada were trying so hard to fit in but there were so many stumbling blocks,” says Robin. “I wanted to pull back the curtain and show a little glimpse of how these people operate – that they were just like everyone else, all they wanted (was) to achieve.”
Robin usually begins his writing with a particular character in mind; a character who has a particular motivation or want. As a writer, he has a perspective and a sensibility that he would like to share with people who would not otherwise see certain things. Yet, he has to work through the writing, as a process, to work out and realise, as a vision made real, this purpose he wants to share. Read more:,175152.html.  For further information:

Raging Fyah BURNS UP 'TRACKS' -- Jamaica Observer

Raging Fyah performing (JO Photo: Garfield Robinson)

Thursday, March 21, 2013
THERE is something about reggae band Raging Fyah. They have no current hits mounting charts and are not on the playlists of popular radio jocks and sound system selectors. Yet, this aggregation, formed in 2006 at the Edna Manley College of the Visual and Performing Arts, continues to impress audiences with their live performances. They did so again Tuesday night as they rocked the small, yet appreciative audience at Usain Bolt's Tracks and Records in St Andrew, the latest in the Behind the Screen series. Raging Fyah's repertoire features strong lyrics and engaging stage presence, which translates into an enjoyable musical presentation. On Tuesday, they were in fine form. The band was reflective as they delivered World Crisis, sentimental on Far Away, militant with Dread, while Ganja spoke for itself. The title track from their debut album Judgement Day was particularly well received as was Cyaan Cool, the final track in their near 90-minute set. Speaking to the Jamaica Observer, bass player Delroy 'Pele' Hamilton noted that the members were elated with their performance.
"We were really looking forward to it. Most of our other local performance have been limited to 20-25 minutes. This one was an extended version, so we could really give it to our fans," bass player Delroy 'Pele' Hamilton said.
The band used its Tracks and Records performance to test the waters with new songs -- two which were released in February -- Barriers, Dread, First Love, and Nah Look Back. Raging Fyah leaves the island for Europe next week for a five-week club tour. The stops include Germany, Poland, Switzerland, the Czech Republic, and France. Read more: For further information:

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Third time's the charm - Large celebration for Dennis Brown on waterfront -- Jamaica Gleaner

Dennis Brown (Photo:

Third time's the charm - Large celebration for Dennis Brown on waterfront
Published: Tuesday | March 19, 2013
Mel Cooke, Gleaner Writer
Had they been committed by the top-two teams in another arena, the number of false starts to this year's Dennis Brown tribute concert would have been enough to change the results of Girls' Champs 2013. However, in music there are second chances to get the tunes rolling and the third time was the charm for honours to the Crown Prince, Richie Stephens (Live Your Life) bringing the night to a close for a rapidly dwindling audience, sated by Beres Hammond and Cocoa Tea, with a brief infusion of Jah Cure. What would have been Dennis Brown's 58th birthday was celebrated with a huge street concert on Ocean Boulevard, downtown Kingston, a shift from the previous venue, just outside Big Yard on Orange Street. There were pros and a sole con to the move; among the former were the increased parking and audience space, and improved aesthetics. Instead of being framed by somewhat ramshackle buildings as before, the concert took place between somewhat modern office buildings on one side and the Kingston Harbour on the other. Read more:  For further information: and

Exibition: The NAGB presents “MIRROR MIRROR” in Nassau, The Bahamas on March 19th 2013 starting at 6:30pm

The NAGB presents “MIRROR MIRROR” – a conversation about the challenges of accurate contemporary Caribbean representations. Panellists include Annalee Davis, founder and director of the Fresh Milk Art Platform Inc., and Tatiana Flores, Professor of art history and Latino and Hispanic Caribbean Studies at Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey. ”MIRROR MIRROR ON THE WALL…” presents a frank look at Caribbean visual practice. The presentation will take place at the NAGB located at West & West Hill Streets in Nassau, The Bahamas on March 19th 2013 starting at 6:30pm. Presenters include Annalee Davis and Tatiana Flores. The talk is free and open to the public. For further information: and

Studio 66 art gallery offers sculpture workshop -- Trinidad & Tobago Guardian

Studio 66, 66 Sixth Street, Barataria
Studio 66 art gallery offers sculpture workshop
Published: Tuesday, March 19, 2013
The 2013 training programme at Studio 66 art gallery begins on April 6 with a three-week clay sculpture workshop, Fire and Earth. The workshop, which ends April 27, is the first of five which all take place at Studio 66, 66 Sixth Street, Barataria. Lead facilitator of the workshop is sculptor Sherlann Peters. Peters’ work has been featured in many local solo and group exhibitions and is also housed in private collections locally and internationally. Guest facilitators include former University of the West Indies lecturer Carlstad Seales, sculptor Dharmbodh Westmass and artist Turunesh.
The workshop will cover busts, human figures, masks and free forms. The processes of firing, colouring and glazing will also be introduced. Local clay will be used and all material for the classes will be provided by Studio 66. Only the first 20 applicants will be accepted.
Workshop sessions are Wednesdays from 4 pm to 7 pm and Saturdays from 10 am to 1 pm. Other workshops in the training programme include cardboard and wire sculpture, papier mache and mas-making using found objects and recycled materials. For more information or to register, contact Studio 66 at 675-1421, 783-2048 or 353-8233. Source: For further information: For further information about sculptor Sherlann Peters:

Damian Marley gig brought together tourists and locals -- Camanian Compass

Damian Marley performed before an estimated crowd of about 5,000 people during
a concert 1 March at the Camana Bay Festival Grounds. – Photo: Stephen Clarke

Damian Marley gig brought together tourists and locals
By: Joe Shooman |
19 March, 2013
Thousands of attendees at the Damian Marley concert on Friday, 1 March, not only had the opportunity to listen to some great music, but also to mingle with expatriates, tourists and locals alike. Organiser Jean-Eric “Notch” Smith of Youngblood Productions deemed it a successful evening for many reasons. “Youngblood exists to put on top calibre regional entertainment in the most ambient Caribbean settings. It is predominately a one-man show with a small team of dedicated professionals, but I basically do everything,” Mr. Smith said. “I will put more emphasis on the VIP section next time; we had an issue with the security detail around the fencing between general admission, which was breached and also crowd control after the event with patrons surrounding Damian’s bus,” he added. “We did not want anybody to get hurt, so we stayed on the bus for a while. Other than that the concert went well and we gave quality and value for the money.”
Organiser Jean-Eric “Notch” Smith of Youngblood Productions said that there were around 4,000 paid patrons there plus a large guest list, bringing it to about 5,000 people at the Camana Bay Festival Grounds. That constituted about 10 per cent of the population of the Cayman Islands.
Read more: For further information: and

Monday, March 18, 2013

Clash of the lions -- Jamaica Observer

Clash of the lions
BY BRIAN BONITTO Associate Editor — Auto and Entertainment
Monday, March 18, 2013
DRESSED in camouflage-patterned army fatigues with black combat boots, legendary musician Bunny Wailer was in a militant mood when he visited the Jamaica Observer's Kingston office last week. He wanted to set the record straight about his feud with American gangster rapper-turned-reggae artiste Snoop Lion. Wailer — who is releasing a 50-track commemorative album entitled Reincarnated Souls next month — is fuming that the artiste formerly called Snoop Dogg "illegally" used footage of their meeting in February 2012 as a launching pad for his film Reincarnated which was released in the United States last Friday. Wailer is a founding member of the Wailing Wailers which included Bob Marley and Peter Tosh. The Blackheart Man singer explained that his requests were set out in a contract, which the artiste signed, in addition to a subsequent letter. Wailer said the 41-year-old Snoop Lion, whose real name is Calvin Broadus Jr, breached their contractual arrangement when footage of their meeting was released. According to Wailer, the get-together "should not have been filmed" and anything done would be the "private property" of both artistes. Wailer and Snoop Lion have recently been embroiled in a war of words. The American publication, The Huffington Post, last week reported that Wailer "is the most notable sceptic" of Snoop Lion's conversion. In response, Snoop was quoted: "'If I was Snoop Dog: (Expletive) Bunny Wailer. But I'm Snoop Lion right now, so I'm chilling.'" "I don't mix up in any slimy argument," Wailer told the Observer. "All I did was to call him a lion." He explained how Snoop's new moniker came about. Read more: For further information:

Sunday, March 17, 2013


EVENING SHADOWS by artist Carlton Murrell
last day March 17, 2013 in BARBADOS WI
CaFA Fair Barbados 2013 will now be held March 13 - 17, 2013 at an exciting new location in Barbados...the Spirit Bond building in the heart of historic Bridgetown, Barbados! Stay tuned for participating artists and special events planned for our 3rd Edition. Please visit Art Africa Miami, December 4-9, 2012, presenting the art of the global African Diaspora during Art Basel Miami week. US born Barbadian artist Jamal Ince and Jamaican painter Ava Tomlinson will represent CaFA Fair Barbados at this prestigous event. For further information:
Artist Profile: Carlton Murrell, Barbados: As a child growing up in Barbados, Carlton Murrell began exploring his artistic talents by drawing and painting the various lifestyles of his island nation. Upon relocating to the USA, Murrell pursued formal education. Master Impressionist painter Claude Monet tremendously influences his painterly style.
For further information about the artist:

White reggae artiste tries to connect -- Jamaica Gleaner

Jah Sun (left) and Kabaka on the set of the duo's 'Foundation' video (JG Photos)

White reggae artiste tries to connect
Published: Sunday | March 17, 2013
Davina Henry, Staff Reporter
He visited Jamaica to shoot and promote his two latest reggae videos with Kabaka Pyramid and Richie Spice, but for United States-born artiste Jason McCommas, he is on a quest to highlight and uplift the genre. McCommas, who goes by the name Jah Sun, converted to Rastafari in his early 20s. Prior to that he was a hip-hop artiste. Jah Sun continues to champion the cause of reggae music, but admits there are difficulties in getting his message across. "The US doesn't have a market as strong as certain places. It's been difficult, plus I'm not from Jamaica so it's been very challenging at times," Jah Sun told The Sunday Gleaner. Undeterred - Though faced with challenges, the Caucasian artiste is undeterred and has found success in the European market. After falling in love with reggae music several years ago, Jah Sun says one of his priorities is to stay connected to the reggae music scene in Jamaica.
"I recently shot two music videos; one with Kabaka Pyramid, titled Foundation and the other titled Can't Live Good, with Richie Spice. I try to always keep my eye on Jamaica, and I know that there is a reggae-revival movement going on with artistes like Chronixx and Kabaka Pyramid so I definitely wanted to do some collabs for my album to keep it fresh" -- Reggae Artiste Jah Sun
The album he refers to is already scheduled for a May release date and is titled Rise As One. The star-studded album will feature collabs from some of music's heavyweight including Sizzla Kalonji and Richie Spice as well as fast-rising stars such as Kabaka Pyramid and Chronixx. Read more:  For further information:

Amazon's Book Reviews: Caribbean Authors

This is a review for The True History of Paradise: A Novel by Margaret Cezair-Thompson - Cezair-Thompson's "TRUE" HISTORY is fiction, yet history. This work brings to life the island's harshest realities, centuries of its colourful history, the dynamism of its polygenetic people, and its breathtakingly beautiful landscape in such a manner that leaves the reader marvelling at Cezair-Thompson's amazing her talented interweaving of fact and fiction into a most beautiful tapestry depicting Jamaican life. It is a riveting account of a heartbreaking period in our history, and anyone who lived through the 70s in Kingston will inevitably live through it again when reading this book. My job requires me to read a great many books...and never have I so closely identified with any of them as I do to TRUE HISTORY. Cezair-Thompson has told many a Jamaican's story in this book...she tells the story of many of us that live here and has certainly told the story of most of our diaspora. A highly recommended read for all Jamaicans, for anyone interested in Caribbean literature and/or history, for anyone appreciative of literary techniques, and for anyone who just wants a truly great read!. Read more:

This is a review for The Pirate's Daughter: A Novel by Margaret Cezair-Thompson - May Flynn, the daughter of actor Errol Flynn and a beautiful Jamaican girl, has always wondered about her roots. Brought up by her mother Ida, grandfather Eli, and, for four years, a foster family, May is clever and tough from a young age. Always an outsider, she could pass for white, though she is not part of the white world of her father and maternal grandfather. Not part of the black world, either, though she considers herself "colored," she is often mocked by her dark Jamaican peers. Frequently alone, she keeps journals, filling them with stories of pirates, inspired by the films starring Errol Flynn which she sees at the local cinema. As May discovers more about her mother Ida's life before, during, and after her birth, she creates the story of her own life, revealing it through flashbacks. When Errol Flynn's yacht was blown ashore at Port Antonio during a 1946 hurricane, her grandfather Eli drove to his aid, soon becoming Flynn's social secretary, guide, confidant, and real estate broker. Flynn finds the relaxed atmosphere of Jamaica a welcome contrast to Hollywood, where he faces charges related to his affairs with underage girls. He soon builds a palatial estate on Navy Island, off the coast, where he entertains Marilyn Monroe, Tony Curtis, Truman Capote, and a host of other Hollywood stars. It is here that Ida, May's mother, first meets Flynn when she is thirteen. Read more:

This is a review for Caribbean Middlebrow by Belinda Edmondson - Edmondson shows that popular novels, beauty pageants, and music festivals are examples of Caribbean culture that are mostly created, maintained, and consumed by the Anglophone middle class. Much of middle-class culture, she finds, is further gendered as "female": women are more apt to be considered recreational readers of fiction, for example, and women's behavior outside the home is often taken as a measure of their community's respectability. Edmondson also highlights the influence of American popular culture, especially African American popular culture, as early as the nineteenth century. This is counter to the notion that the islands were exclusively under the sway of British tastes and trends. She finds the origins of today's "dub" or spoken-word Jamaican poetry in earlier traditions of genteel dialect poetry-as exemplified by the work of the Jamaican folklorist, actress, and poet Louise "Miss Lou" Bennett Coverley-and considers the impact of early Caribbean novels, including Emmanuel Appadocca (1853) and Jane's Career (1913). Read more:

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Exhibition: Synthia SAINT JAMES – Sat. Mar. 16, 2013 from 2pm to 6pm — NYC Fine Art Salon

'Le Village' by Synthia Saint James
Exhibition: Synthia SAINT JAMES – Saturday, March 16, 2013 from 2pm to 6pm — NYC Fine Art Salon
Time: Saturday, March 16, 2013 from 2pm to 6pm; Location: Private Venue; Phone: 323.993.5722; Event Type: art, exhibition. Event Description: Fine Art Salon - Synthia SAINT JAMES - Exhibit & Art Sale, New York, New York - RSVP for address - For further information about the artist:

Struggling artists sell paintings: Help the Haitians -- Trinidad & Tobago Guardian

Haitian Artist Moise Jonas shows off some of the acrylic paintings which are on
display at the Creative Arts Centre in San Fernando. Some of the paintings are landscape,
 abstract and portrait pieces done by 25 artists in Haiti (T&TG Photo)
Struggling artists sell paintings
Help the Haitians
Published: Saturday, March 16, 2013
Radhica Sookraj
Struggling artists from the impoverished country of Haiti are calling on T&T to help their floundering economy by purchasing more than 100 hand-made acrylic art paintings. The art work is currently on display at the Creative Arts Centre, Circular Road, San Fernando and is being sold from $200 to $3,500. The paintings feature many tourist spots in Haiti and were created by 25 artists, some of whom still live in tents. Language arts teacher Moise Jonas, of Petion-ville Haiti, who is marketing the paintings, said more than 300 Haitians would benefit if all of the paintings were sold. He added that some of the artists worked in makeshift studios. A few had to dry their paintings on rooftops after the devastating earthquake killed 220,000 people and injured a further 300,000 people on January 12, 2010. Jonas said one artist Chavet Kavenaght, 65, suffered vision loss after the earthquake but was still continuing to paint despite the odds. “He is one of the best artists in Haiti and he is old. His eyes went bad after the earthquake. Now he cannot see to do what he once did,” Jonas said.
He added that the artists could not afford to work with oil paint so many chose to do abstract compositions, landscape, portraits and still life paintings using acrylic paints. “Getting the materials is difficult but we have a friend in Canada who helps us. Since the earthquake people lost many of their possessions,” Jonas said. He explained that the poverty and depression in Haiti was fuelling an explosion of creativity.
“People feel at peace when they paint. They get into art because their mother and father are artists. Many people have this talent. Haiti has a lot of creative people,” Jonas said. He said there were misconceptions about the beauty of Haiti but some of the artists including Rufino Fabio, and Petitzil Michelet had captured the landscape beauty of areas such as Delmas, Kenskoff and downtown Port-au-Prince. Jonas said he would be in T&T until Tuesday. Anyone wanting to make purchases can contact Jonas at 704-2471. Read more: For further information:

E-books to change Jamaican landscape -- Jamaica Gleaner

Book Industry Association of Jamaica Publishing Director Kellie Magnus chats with
CHASE Project Manager Paulette Mitchell during a JAMPRO workshop
 Jamaica Gleaner Photo by Colin Hamilton

E-books to change Jamaican landscape
Published: Saturday | March 16, 2013
Curtis Campbell, Gleaner Writer
Jamaica is catching on to a fact the rest of the world has already warmed to: e-books are the future. This is the tune that some local publishers are singing in an effort to alleviate the high cost of publishing books. According to publishers, operational expenses are simply too high. Digital books are said to be more cost-effective and authors can produce more books if they can tap into the digital market effectively. Author of children's books Kellie Magnus commented on the e-book phenomena at a recent seminar hosted by Jamaica Promotions Corporation (JAMPRO). LOWER COSTS - According to Magnus, a publication in digital form heavily reduces operating and marketing costs. Among the institutions supporting digital publishing are The University of the West Indies and Ian Randle Publishers.
"Digitisation has allowed us to take more books to market, and has helped with conversion to take it across platforms," said Christine Randle, managing director of Ian Randle Publishers.
The rise of digital publishing worldwide has seen manufacturers creating several portable devices designed to read digital publications. Magnus explained that this trend is directly related to meeting the demand for Jamaican books without the immense publishing costs that are usually part and parcel of being an author. Read more: