Saturday, January 15, 2011

Jammin' in Jamaica

As you may have guessed, my “One Love” is the Caribbean. I’m in Jamaica this week for the Caribbean Marketplace hosted by the Caribbean Hotel Association, and I must say I’m feelin’ the reggae. In light of my location, I’d like to share a little Bob Marley love with you.

The musical prophet, Bob Marley was born in Rhoden Hall to the north of Jamaica and spent most of his life in Kingston, Jamaica. Marley’s story, his music and his ideals resonate today, and his music can be heard all over Jamaica. A man of love, understanding and God-given talent, Marley may have been the most significant musical artist of the twentieth century; he had, and still has, the ability to sing any person through a rainy day. To this day his music offers a daily reminder of what he felt is most important – peace, love and music.

It’s amazing in our fast paced, internet, iphone and ipad, Pandora (I love Pandora!) world we now live, Marley’s music not only sounds refreshing and new, but connects and touches us almost more so than when the songs were written without any of the .com world around it. You know, I usually take an informal poll on every flight to see what “people are doing” as I walk down the aisle of the plane when flying around the islands. While laptops, ipods, and DVD players are being used by many, do you want to know the number one thing I still see today? Passengers reading a book, magazine, or newspaper. Almost 50 percent of the plane is using the same standards they did years ago. It means to me that some standards will never go away as time passes and changes the way we interact with each other. Listening to Bob Marley is one of those standards.

There’s a great jerk chicken place called “Scotchies” just 10 minutes from the airport. I always make this my first stop when I land in Montego Bay. The sauces, smells, and Red Stripe at this outside bar, while watching an English premiership soccer match is a slice of heaven for me. Then the Bob Marley music plays and it is totally magical. A few minutes of “Could This Be Love’” and the world is ready for Jamaica. Just as Marley used music for relief in tough times and a smile on a rainy day, you too should be jammin’. So “let’s get together” in Jamaica “and feel alright!”

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