Blondie famously covered the singer’s “The Tide Is High,” but the Jamaican icon also leaves behind more than 40 albums of reggae, rocksteady and ska.
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John Holt, one of Jamaica’s most well-loved vocalists, died early Sunday morning in London at the age of 67. His death was confirmed by his manager Copeland Forbes via the Jamaica Observer. Holt, who was initially known for his career with the Paragons in the rocksteady era of the 1960s, had 40 albums under his belt alongside his reputation for strong live performances.
As a pre-teen, Holt was tremendously successful at local talent competitions in his native Kingston, quickly drawing the attention of equally legendary Jamaican singer and songwriter Bob Andy. Andy had begun performing as a duo with Tyrone Evans just after independence in 1962. Deciding that the field was flooded with strong twosomes, Andy and Evans decided to reach out to some potential singers, including Holt, that would eventually become The Paragons. Holt’s voice was “a velveted tone like Nat King Cole,” Andy tells Rolling Stone, and was just the thing for the mimicking of American and English hits popular in Jamaica at the time. “We became a national household name without having a recording,” recalls Andy. With songs including the Holt-penned “Ali Baba,” “Wear You to the Ball” and “I See Your Face,” the Paragons rose to fame, becoming one of the top groups in Jamaican music. Also recording on his own with the legendary producers of the time, Coxsone Dodd and Duke Reid, Holt had numerous hits throughout the 1960s. In 1967, however, the Paragons released the Holt-written “The Tide is High.” The B-side tune was popular in Jamaica, but ended up both a UK and US number one in 1980 after Blondie covered the song for their fifth album Autoamerican.
Truly the voice of the Paragons, Holt continued his fame after leaving the group in 1970. His 1973 album Stick by Me was a hit, as well as his series of unique covers of well-known pop songs, 1,000 Volts of Holt. Holt demonstrated talent for roots reggae in the 1980s, making “Police in Helicopter” a 1983 hit while continuing to steadily tour. He was also the first Jamaican artist, alongside fellow singer Freddy McGregor, to perform with London’s Royal Symphony Orchestra. More than anything, Holt will be remembered for his unmistakable tone. “He was a balladeer singing popular, uptempo music,” Andy says. “He had such a naturally good voice that he didn’t need to push the envelope. He has the most unique balladeer voice in Jamaican music. Across the board, he was the voice of our era.”
October 20, 2014

Blondie famously covered the singer’s “The Tide Is High,” but the Jamaican icon also leaves behind more than 40 albums of reggae, rocksteady and ska.

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John Holt, one of Jamaica’s most well-loved vocalists, died early Sunday morning in London at the age of 67. His death was confirmed by his manager Copeland Forbes via the Jamaica Observer. Holt, who was initially known for his career with the Paragons in the rocksteady era of the 1960s, had 40 albums under his belt alongside his reputation for strong live performances.

As a pre-teen, Holt was tremendously successful at local talent competitions in his native Kingston, quickly drawing the attention of equally legendary Jamaican singer and songwriter Bob Andy. Andy had begun performing as a duo with Tyrone Evans just after independence in 1962. Deciding that the field was flooded with strong twosomes, Andy and Evans decided to reach out to some potential singers, including Holt, that would eventually become The Paragons. Holt’s voice was “a velveted tone like Nat King Cole,” Andy tells Rolling Stone, and was just the thing for the mimicking of American and English hits popular in Jamaica at the time. “We became a national household name without having a recording,” recalls Andy. With songs including the Holt-penned “Ali Baba,” “Wear You to the Ball” and “I See Your Face,” the Paragons rose to fame, becoming one of the top groups in Jamaican music. Also recording on his own with the legendary producers of the time, Coxsone Dodd and Duke Reid, Holt had numerous hits throughout the 1960s. In 1967, however, the Paragons released the Holt-written “The Tide is High.” The B-side tune was popular in Jamaica, but ended up both a UK and US number one in 1980 after Blondie covered the song for their fifth album Autoamerican.

Truly the voice of the Paragons, Holt continued his fame after leaving the group in 1970. His 1973 album Stick by Me was a hit, as well as his series of unique covers of well-known pop songs, 1,000 Volts of Holt. Holt demonstrated talent for roots reggae in the 1980s, making “Police in Helicopter” a 1983 hit while continuing to steadily tour. He was also the first Jamaican artist, alongside fellow singer Freddy McGregor, to perform with London’s Royal Symphony Orchestra. More than anything, Holt will be remembered for his unmistakable tone. “He was a balladeer singing popular, uptempo music,” Andy says. “He had such a naturally good voice that he didn’t need to push the envelope. He has the most unique balladeer voice in Jamaican music. Across the board, he was the voice of our era.”

West Indies’ withdrawal from India tour over pay dispute threatens future of cricket in Caribbean
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THE latest impasse between players and officials in West Indian cricket has far-reaching repercussions that threaten the very future of the sport in the Caribbean, Fox Sports reports.
The West Indian players’ decision last Friday to pull out of their tour of India with a one-day international, a Twenty20 match and three Tests still to play because of a pay dispute with their board shocked the cricketing world but highlighted the diminishing power of a once great region.
The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) immediately replaced the abandoned matches with five ODIs against Sri Lanka next month, but still stands to lose more than $A54.10 million in revenue.
The BCCI is likely….[Full article HERE]
October 19, 2014

West Indies’ withdrawal from India tour over pay dispute threatens future of cricket in Caribbean

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THE latest impasse between players and officials in West Indian cricket has far-reaching repercussions that threaten the very future of the sport in the Caribbean, Fox Sports reports.

The West Indian players’ decision last Friday to pull out of their tour of India with a one-day international, a Twenty20 match and three Tests still to play because of a pay dispute with their board shocked the cricketing world but highlighted the diminishing power of a once great region.

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) immediately replaced the abandoned matches with five ODIs against Sri Lanka next month, but still stands to lose more than $A54.10 million in revenue.

The BCCI is likely….[Full article HERE]

Advertisement starring Usain Bolt gets banned
Story HERE
September 20, 2014

Advertisement starring Usain Bolt gets banned

Story HERE

Do Jamaican Young women love the Beating?
JAMAICA ALERT

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After coming back from Jamaica this story was dominating the news feeds. I even got a health warning card at the airport on arrival…
September 15, 2014

JAMAICA ALERT

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After coming back from Jamaica this story was dominating the news feeds. I even got a health warning card at the airport on arrival…

August 23, 2014

Usain Bolt Breaks 100m Indoor WORLD RECORD

August 19, 2014

Arsenal’s Giroud Is Jamaican 

J A M A I C A 
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Do you love the island?
August 16, 2014

J A M A I C A 

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Do you love the island?

GARNET SILK
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We don’t need an excuse to remember greatness.
August 15, 2014

GARNET SILK

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We don’t need an excuse to remember greatness.

HAPPY INDEPENDENCE DAY JAMAICA
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Thanks to all our followers and all the heart felt messages sent to us today - One Love
August 6, 2014

HAPPY INDEPENDENCE DAY JAMAICA

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Thanks to all our followers and all the heart felt messages sent to us today - One Love

Majah Hype And Macka Diamond Dating, Dumped By Girlfriend
Last month Majah Hype denied dating Macka Diamond after rumors began circulating that the two were an item.
The rumors all started from a leaked photo of Hype and Macka Diamond in a compromised position while shooting a music video.
According to the comedian, the rumors almost destroyed his relationship with his longtime girlfriend.
“My girlfriend really took it hard, she thought it was a violation,” Majah Hype said. “It reach a point where things really shake up. Right now, we just a reach a rebuilding phase, but it still kind of sticky……Full article HERE
August 4, 2014

Majah Hype And Macka Diamond Dating, Dumped By Girlfriend

Last month Majah Hype denied dating Macka Diamond after rumors began circulating that the two were an item.

The rumors all started from a leaked photo of Hype and Macka Diamond in a compromised position while shooting a music video.

According to the comedian, the rumors almost destroyed his relationship with his longtime girlfriend.

“My girlfriend really took it hard, she thought it was a violation,” Majah Hype said. “It reach a point where things really shake up. Right now, we just a reach a rebuilding phase, but it still kind of sticky……Full article HERE

Three people shot by "madman" in Jamaica Corportate Area
Major Bush Fire Raging In Jacks Hill, Residents Worried.
July 28, 2014

Major Bush Fire Raging In Jacks Hill, Residents Worried.

Exodus — Over 7,000 professionals left for North America since Great Recession
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OVER 7,000 managers and professionals left Jamaica for North America since the start of the Great Recession.
On average, the number of professionals opting to leave total over 1,100 each year since 2008 when the when the globla financial crisis started.
"People make calculated individual decisions when they decide to leave," said an established, 35-year-old chartered accountant, who asked to remain anonymous and who plans to emigrate to the US at the end of July.
"I know that more than half of my graduating class from UWI left long before me," said the man who currently works at one of Jamaica’s largest banks, and who admits that he has a number of colleagues who have been looking at that option.
He said that his decision to ‘migrate north’ came after years of contemplation, and was largely driven by a number of assessments that he has made of the financial sector since 2007. “The number of layoffs that has been happening in the sector recently” was definitely noted.
"It is not an easy transition [but] I don’t know anybody who has left and hasn’t met their goals or who is not at least better off," he said. "As long as they carry their Jamaica work ethic, they usually make it."
The chartered accountant also noted that “people who leave usually return home for vacation when the time gets cold and a number of them still has assets and strong ties here.”
For Dennis Chung, who admited that were it not for his experience travelling, or “maybe if I wasn’t working or in a worse position”, he too might have made the trek to North America, his prevailing love for Jamaica has been the most dominant reason for staying.
"I have a love for Jamaica [and] I think Jamaica is the best place in the world to live" said the CEO of the Private Sector Organisation of Jamaica (PSOJ), who is also an accountant by profession. "Where else in the world you can go and the society is so warm? Where else in the world you can go in your back yard and pick some Julie mangoes and ackee?"
Chung argues that there are only a few things wrong with Jamaica and he would rather stay here and help to remedy them.
"I would rather stay in my country and fix my country rather than stay outside and help to criticise it," he said. "Everything is not just about having a lot of money, quality of life is a lot more important than that.
"People take simple things for granted, like the fact that you can walk down the road and see Usain Bolt or pay $1,000 and hear all the vintage artiste sing, when people aborad have to pay up to US$100 to see three of them perform."
In accounting for the experiences of some of his colleagues who left for the North, the PSOJ CEO said, “One or two of them have done well, but for the most part a lot of them are not really living the life that they thought they would be living (in Jamaica).”
Chung said that “people have called me and said that they are trying to come back to Jamaica and get a job because it is so difficult up there”.
He reckons that the transition is far from a ‘bed of roses’ because a lot of people don’t have the support base that they would have back home.
"Had some of them been back in Jamaica where they have a solid base and work smart, not hard, they could have actually made it," he said.
He figures that the level of brain drain is largely resultant of the lack of transformative leadership in Jamaica, the issue of crime and the cumbersome and restrictive effect of the Jamaican bureaucracy.
On the other hand, he is confident that ‘no weh no nicer than yaad’, because, despite the fact that while there is still a lot wrong with our politics, “you have some ministers now who are actually showing that type of transformational leadership”.
"Jamaica is getting more mature as a nation because the people are demanding it," he added and the issue of crime, which has always been a problem is trending down "in the right direction", largely because of a change in the culture of policing left by Owen Ellington.

BY TERRON DEWAR Business reporter dewart@jamaicaobserver.com
July 27, 2014

Exodus — Over 7,000 professionals left for North America since Great Recession

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OVER 7,000 managers and professionals left Jamaica for North America since the start of the Great Recession.

On average, the number of professionals opting to leave total over 1,100 each year since 2008 when the when the globla financial crisis started.

"People make calculated individual decisions when they decide to leave," said an established, 35-year-old chartered accountant, who asked to remain anonymous and who plans to emigrate to the US at the end of July.

"I know that more than half of my graduating class from UWI left long before me," said the man who currently works at one of Jamaica’s largest banks, and who admits that he has a number of colleagues who have been looking at that option.

He said that his decision to ‘migrate north’ came after years of contemplation, and was largely driven by a number of assessments that he has made of the financial sector since 2007. “The number of layoffs that has been happening in the sector recently” was definitely noted.

"It is not an easy transition [but] I don’t know anybody who has left and hasn’t met their goals or who is not at least better off," he said. "As long as they carry their Jamaica work ethic, they usually make it."

The chartered accountant also noted that “people who leave usually return home for vacation when the time gets cold and a number of them still has assets and strong ties here.”

For Dennis Chung, who admited that were it not for his experience travelling, or “maybe if I wasn’t working or in a worse position”, he too might have made the trek to North America, his prevailing love for Jamaica has been the most dominant reason for staying.

"I have a love for Jamaica [and] I think Jamaica is the best place in the world to live" said the CEO of the Private Sector Organisation of Jamaica (PSOJ), who is also an accountant by profession. "Where else in the world you can go and the society is so warm? Where else in the world you can go in your back yard and pick some Julie mangoes and ackee?"

Chung argues that there are only a few things wrong with Jamaica and he would rather stay here and help to remedy them.

"I would rather stay in my country and fix my country rather than stay outside and help to criticise it," he said. "Everything is not just about having a lot of money, quality of life is a lot more important than that.

"People take simple things for granted, like the fact that you can walk down the road and see Usain Bolt or pay $1,000 and hear all the vintage artiste sing, when people aborad have to pay up to US$100 to see three of them perform."

In accounting for the experiences of some of his colleagues who left for the North, the PSOJ CEO said, “One or two of them have done well, but for the most part a lot of them are not really living the life that they thought they would be living (in Jamaica).”

Chung said that “people have called me and said that they are trying to come back to Jamaica and get a job because it is so difficult up there”.

He reckons that the transition is far from a ‘bed of roses’ because a lot of people don’t have the support base that they would have back home.

"Had some of them been back in Jamaica where they have a solid base and work smart, not hard, they could have actually made it," he said.

He figures that the level of brain drain is largely resultant of the lack of transformative leadership in Jamaica, the issue of crime and the cumbersome and restrictive effect of the Jamaican bureaucracy.

On the other hand, he is confident that ‘no weh no nicer than yaad’, because, despite the fact that while there is still a lot wrong with our politics, “you have some ministers now who are actually showing that type of transformational leadership”.

"Jamaica is getting more mature as a nation because the people are demanding it," he added and the issue of crime, which has always been a problem is trending down "in the right direction", largely because of a change in the culture of policing left by Owen Ellington.

BY TERRON DEWAR Business reporter dewart@jamaicaobserver.com

Here Comes Bolt
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Six-time Olympic champion Usain Bolt says he will run in the heats of the 4x100m relay at the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games after arriving on Saturday. There was speculation the Jamaican might choose to race in just the final as he continues to chase top form after an injury-hit start to the season. Can anyone prevent his relay team from winning gold? 
July 26, 2014

Here Comes Bolt

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Six-time Olympic champion Usain Bolt says he will run in the heats of the 4x100m relay at the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games after arriving on Saturday. There was speculation the Jamaican might choose to race in just the final as he continues to chase top form after an injury-hit start to the season. Can anyone prevent his relay team from winning gold