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Kingston Jamaica Culture Food and Music Scene

by onelove
Kingston Jamaica Culture Food and Music Scene
Jamaican street vendor selling ackee and breadfruit

Happy New Year from the island of ‘one love’! On a recent trip to Kingston, Jamaica I enjoyed the authentic food and scenes of the third largest island urban capital city in the Caribbean Sea.

The natural fruits and vegetables are grown  and celebrated in Jamaica’s cuisine. The roots reggae music evokes peace, love and unity despite many Jamaicans are living through economic struggles and hardships.

Naturally beautiful, Jamaica’s landscape is green and hilly with great Blue Mountains in the east. In the hills, there are plenty coconut, banana trees, mango trees and the national fruit tree – the ackee tree.

Jamaica landscape banana trees

Jamaica rural landscape with banana trees

Jamaican Food

Jamaican tradtional breakfast

Traditional Jamaican breakfast ackee and saltfish, festival, fried plaintain, Escovitch fish, bamee and green callaloo

Authentic Jamaican cuisine comes from the land. The national dish called ackee and saltfish, is fried in oil with cod fish, onions and hot peppers. The dish is served at breakfast with iron-rich leafy green callaloo, boiled green bananas, yams and fried Johnny Cakes.

jamaica beach

Kingston, Jamaica beach

Jamaican steamed snapper fish

Steamed snapper fish from the Caribbean cooked with okra

With the Caribbean sea surrounding the island, fish dishes like snapper are also served for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

In Kingston and throughout Jamaica, people sell fruits and vegetables from the land along the road and in large outdoor markets like the popular Coronation Market in downtown Kingston.  Fruits sold roadside include the green breadfruit that looks like a large cantaloupe and sugar cane chopped into bite sized stalks are sold in as a juicy snack.

Staddaday interview

Staddaday rasta reggae artist. Watch the interview with Staddaday here

Jamaican Reggae Music

Known for its reggae music, Jamaica’s music scene is a vibrant part of the Jamaican culture. Kingston is the site for the famed Bob Marley museum. I had the privilege to spend time at the Youth Promotion Music Center of late reggae artist Sugar Minott. Inside the walls of the center grounds, are colorful painted murals paying homage to some of Jamaica’s top reggae artists such as Dennis Brown, Mighty Diamonds, Garnet Silk, Tenor Saw, and Bob Marley. Many up and coming reggae musicians work and perform at Sugar Minott’s studio.

Watch the Drive through Kingston with background music “Jah Love Cover Me” by reggae artist Staddaday, whose melodic sounds is mix of Sanchez and Bob Marley.

 

A visit to Kingston, Jamaica is an opportunity to enjoy food and music grown directly from the island and its people.

Interview: Rasta Reggae Artist Staddaday

by onelove
Interview: Rasta Reggae Artist Staddaday
Staddaday rasta reggae artist

If I could tell the story of Kingston, Jamaica, it would be through its reggae music. Reggae music is native to the land due to the Rastafarians like infamous reggae musician Bob Marley.

I visited a Kingston music studio and interviewed one rasta reggae artist by the name of Staddaday. He talked  his latest music, rasta spirituality and hope for the country of Jamaica.

Reggae music is rooted from the struggles of people. Economically, Jamaica is a developing country and former colony of the British empire. It gained independence in 1962 but has struggled to thrive economically. Reggae music artists have been the mouth piece for the downtrodden in Jamaica. One of Staddaday’s song called “Ghetto Youths Be Free” is a direct call out to political leaders who he believes lack the concern for the poor. In the song, he hopes young people will search for deeper meaning in their life to think more about the community.

“Rasta is love and unity,” said Staddaday

He hopes people will find peace, love, and themselves through meditating on the music.

Watch the full interview below featuring his popular song “Jah Love Cover Me.”

Follow Staddaday on Facebook and Youtube.