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As a little girl growing up in Southside Jamaica Queens, if anyone would've told me I'd have my own perfume one day, and be able to inspire young black girls everywhere, to go into Macy's or Nordstrom's and see their face staring back at them - I wouldn't believe them.
By the time my first album was out, I had been out in Jamaica three or four years, but I had hits out at that time that were bona fide hits.
In Jamaica, them always have throwback riddims, recycled old beats, and the hardcore reggae scene is always present. You have faster stuff like the more commercialized stuff, but you always have that segment of music that is always from the core, from the original root of it.
Jamaica full of ghetto, but boy, I tell you: me never see it like that.
Stuart Hall was an utterly unique figure. Although he arrived at the age of 19 from Jamaica and spent the rest of his life here, he never felt at home in Britain. This juxtaposition was a crucial source of his strength and originality. Because of his colour and origin, he saw the country differently - not as a native, but as an outsider.
Bob Marley performed the 'One Love Peace' concert in Jamaica with the two different warring political sides. There's always been that in black music and culture in general. It's no surprise because black music is such a reflection of what's going on in black life. It's not unusual for hip-hop.
I grew up in uptown Jamaica; I went to a rich school. I was raised by my mother and my stepfather; they made sure education came before anything. I had a good childhood, grew up spending time with my bigger brothers and sisters. My people are good people. I was exposed to a lot of different kinds of people and culture.
I never did feel any pressure in Jamaica. You just someone, not nobody big.
I grew up with coconuts as the main flavor in food in Jamaica. It's part of our culture.
When people come to Jamaica, we don't want them to think about the problems of Jamaica. So let them come be in their paradise.
I can't really live outside Jamaica. I can be away, but only for a while.
The whole world is set up so that for places like Switzerland to exist, that are crime-free and with the best care for everybody, you have to have places like Sudan, or Jamaica. But really, there's enough to share, when you check it. It's not that complicated, really. It's probably less thinking and more feeling that's required.
Jamaica is more than just the 'brand' the world recognizes so well; it's a place of pride for the people who live here, its educational institutions, its sports achievements, its science and technology growth.
At Harvard, I got to meet and have dinner with Jamaica Kincaid. Just to have conversations with professors was absolutely amazing.
I wouldn't be where I am, if not for Jamaica. My formative years were here. I wouldn't have the confidence that I have if I wasn't born here, because growing up here I knew I could become anybody I wanted to become. There was no ceiling on top of me.
Out of all the places in the world, Jamaica is my favorite place.
In England, rain was thin and cold, and made you hunch up inside your coat, walking home from the bus stop. In Jamaica, it was wide and thick and invited you to step into it, and see how wet you could get, and be thrilled that it was warmer than the sea and warmer than your skin; it was abandon.
Growing up in Jamaica, the Pentecostal church wasn't that fiery thing you might think. It was very British, very proper. Hymns. No dancing. Very quiet. Very fundamental.
I wouldn't have become an engineer, I wouldn't have done what I did, had a hand not been held out to me. I have to remember who helped me when I needed help. The people of Jamaica helped me. I can't forget that. I would be ungrateful if I forgot.
In Jamaica, we eradicated polio many years ago, but there are a lot of kids suffering in Africa still.
I love running in nature. I don't like running on the streets, I don't like running in the city, I don't like running on the concrete. I love running in nature, so Jamaica provides a lot of that for me.
Twenty or 30 years from now, I'm going to be on a beach in Jamaica.
When you're in Jamaica, unless you're in a tourist spot, you don't hear Bob Marley; you mostly hear dance hall music.
Thanksgiving was always a favorite holiday for me. The preparation was fun! My grandma and I would walk to the butcher on Jamaica Avenue in Queens, order the bird, and buy all the fixings at the market.
Technology has changed things, same as everywhere. But the economy has changed drastically. When Jamaica first won independence, our dollar was stronger than the U.S. dollar. Now ours is about 90 to one. That's had a big impact on crime and poverty.
Martin Luther King, Jr.
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We cannot become what we need to be by remaining what we are.
Max de Pree
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