'Tinue' Brown hails Garvey
Marcus Garvey

MUSIC producer/artiste Ricardo "Tinue" Brown believes Jamaica would be a much better place if the teachings of Marcus Garvey and Garveyism were made mandatory courses in schools.

"No one who have read about the teachings of Marcus Garvey can deny that if his ideas were instituted it would have led to economic, political, and social gains for the country... Garvey spoke about emancipating ourselves from mental slavery, which Bob Marley used in one of his songs titled Redemption Song. To have someone as great as Bob using Garvey's teachings in his song shows how powerful and timeless the message is. It should be part of our schools' curriculum," Brown told the Jamaica Observer.

Today, Garvey — Jamaica's first national hero — would have celebrated his 135th birthday. A floral tribute is planned for where Garvey is interred at the National Heroes' Park in downtown Kingston.

Garvey uttered "Emancipate yourself from mental slavery" during a speech at Menelik Hall in Nova Scotia, Canada, in October 1937. It is widely associated with Redemption Song, Marley's acoustic masterpiece from Uprising, his 1980 album.

Brown said Garvey believed in social, economic and empowerment for black people across the globe.

"Garvey established restaurants and shops to provide employment. His Negro World newspaper was to educate blacks of their rights in society... As blacks we are even ashamed of the colour of our skin because we still harbour the mentality that black represents evil, hence we go through stages of bleaching. But Garvey explained that 'the black skin is not a colour of shame but one of national greatness'. And it is so true that 'a people without the knowledge of their past history, origin, and culture is like a tree without roots'," said Brown, in reference to Garvey's quotes.

Garvey was born in St Ann. As an activist he organised the UNIA (Universal Negro Improvement Association) which grew into an international organisation and advanced a Pan African philosophy that inspired a global mass movement known as Garveyism.

Garvey died in London in 1940 age 53; his body was exhumed and returned to Jamaica in November 1964. Five years later, he was named Jamaica's first national hero.

Born in Kingston, Brown relocated with his mother to Portland. But his love for music saw him resettling to Kingston in 2017 and producing songs for Bounty Killer, Capleton, and Cutty Ranks on his All Spikes label.

As an artiste his songs include The Truth, She Loves Me Now featuring X-Amount, and Naw Count.

Ricardo "Tinue" Brown

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