New chapter for Jakes

BY HOWARD CAMPBELL
Observer senior writer

Monday, August 12, 2019

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The Jamaica Observer presents the first in a series on entertainment figures whose contributions have been acknowledged in this year's National Honours and Awards.

 

On October 21 when he accepts the Order of Distinction on behalf of his father, Taki Miller says he will be assured that Jacob Miller's legacy is finally being accepted in Jamaica.

The senior Miller, lead singer of the Inner Circle band, died in March 1980 at age 27; he was killed in an auto accident in Kingston. Taki, then just a toddler, was also in the car.

“This brings great gratitude and satisfaction to know that my father is being recognised for his contribution to Jamaica. I see this honour as the closing chapter to a person that was loved by all,” he told the Jamaica Observer.

Jacob Miller died when his career was on the verge of an international take-off. Inner Circle had recently signed with Island Records, the independent company that helped make Bob Marley a superstar.

Miller and Marley were in Brazil for the opening of Island's office in that country, two weeks before his death.

Taki's brother Andre Jones and Latoya Atkins, stepdaughter of Inner Circle's bass player Ian Lewis, were also in the vehicle Miller was driving 39 years ago. They also survived the crash.

In his early 40s, Taki has a bachelor's degree in computer science from Rutger's University, and a masters in business from Nova Southeastern University. That tragic evening stays in his memory other than the loss of his father.

”I have two distinct memories of my father. When my father crashed and died I was in the car with him. It was our ritual to go on a 'drive out'; sadly, that was the final moment we shared. Another, growing up in the town houses next to 56 Hope Road I would stand next to the wall and listen to my father singing,” he recalled.

Taki Miller is into events marketing through his company, Tenement Yard, named after one of his father's biggest hit songs with Inner Circle. Tenement Yard is also one of his favourite 'Jakes' songs, along with Chapter A Day and Mix Up Moods.

Brothers Roger and Ian Lewis, co-founders of Inner Circle, will also be awarded the OD for their contribution to Jamaican music. They will be officially recognised during the National Honours and Awards ceremony at King's House.


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