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Welcome to Min-On’s Music Journey! Today, Min-On Concert Association and the Embassy of Jamaica in Japan welcome you to the Caribbean island of Jamaica! Jamaica is a globally famous country and its name means “Land of Wood and Water” in the language of the Taíno indigenous people. As per this etymological origin, Jamaica is a paradise replete with natural forests and pristine oceanfront beaches.

Firefly in Oracabessa, St. Mary, vacation home of Sir Noel Coward, legendary English playwright and actor

The national motto of Jamaica, “Out of Many, One People” has been passed down unchanged through generations, carrying the spirit of the King of Reggae, Bob Marley, and the passion he put into one of his most famous songs, “One Love.” The lively, positive Jamaican people are filled with love and compassion, and they welcome visitors from around the globe with open arms.

To begin our journey, please let us introduce the internationally renowned Jamaican artist Koffee, a Jamaican singer, songwriter, rapper, DJ and guitarist from Spanish Town, Jamaica. Today, she’s prepared a special recording of her song “Toast” for you, our Min-On Music Journey readers!


Toast – Koffee
*Special selection by the Embassy of Jamaica in Japan

The spiritual home of reggae and Jamaica’s capital, Kingston

Jamaica’s capital of Kingston is located on the south-eastern coast, a city rich with musical creativity and filled with the energetic rhythm of reggae from morning until night. This rich and lasting legacy led to Kingston’s designation as a UNESCO Creative City of Music in 2015. The city offers an eclectic mix of places to go and things to see with many historical sites, restaurants and entertainment spots.

Trench Town is located in the city of Kingston, and it’s known as the birthplace of Reggae music where reggae pioneer Bob Marley spent his youth. Today, his home has been converted to the Bob Marley Museum, and nearby Tuff Gong Studio also features the grand piano that he loved to play. This area is filled with compelling tourist attractions for reggae lovers and all visitors to Jamaica.

Kingston and the Devon House (right; photo credit: Jamaica Information Service)

Statue of Bob Marley (photo credit: Shasta-Lee SMITH (PhotograpHER)) (left) and mural outside Bob Marley Museum (photo credit: Andrea Chase)

Next, please enjoy a song by reggae artist Kabaka Pyramid, internationally renowned for his reggae style that reached #1 on the Billboard Next Big Sound Charts and has been featured by many different music media outlets.

Kabaka Pyramid

Nice Up the Dance –  Kabaka Pyramid
*Special selection by the Embassy of Jamaica in Japan

Inspiring natural beauty, flora and fauna

Jamaica’s topography notably includes mountain ranges sprawling from east to west that is home to over 3,000 varieties of flora, alongside many different wild birds that inhabit the island, such as the streamertail hummingbird. Kingston is flanked by the Blue Mountains and John Crow Mountains to the northeast, which were registered as Jamaica’s first Mixed UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2015. This site serves as the crucial source of Jamaica’s water supply and the heart of its coffee industry. Jamaica is known as an international coffee powerhouse, and this region is home to the high-quality Jamaica Blue Mountain Coffee known worldwide.

Photo credit: Natural History Museum of Jamaica, Institute of Jamaica

The world-class resorts of Montego Bay and Ocho Rios

The 15th century explorer Christopher Columbus claimed that the natural beauty of Jamaica was unlike anything he’d ever seen before, and today, it remains a highly attractive destination for foreign visitors.

Montego Bay is often referred to as “The Second City” and includes an international airport, adding to its allure as the gateway to Jamaica’s resorts for international visitors.

The emerald blue waters and pristine white beaches here are lined with luxury resorts famous as destinations for wedding celebrations and honeymoons.

Beach Resort in Montage Bay (credit: Josef Forstmayr)

Jamaica is also known as the birthplace of the “all-inclusive resort” that provides full services during accommodation, including meals and activities, allowing visitors to enjoy the Caribbean to their hearts’ content. Dishes heavy in wonderful spice including ackee and saltfish, alongside world-famous jerk chicken, are just another alluring reason to visit Jamaica.

Heading further north and then straight east from Montego Bay will lead visitors to Ocho Rios, which means “eight rivers” in Spanish. This relaxing resort area is known for its verdant mountains and crystal clear river waters. Here, visitors can climb the 180 meter-high Dunn’s River Falls or take a ride on the unforgettable rain forest adventure attraction Mystic Mountain.

Next, allow us to introduce the music of Jamaican singer Shuga through a performance accompanied by gorgeous views of the country’s beautiful beaches.


One People – Shuga
*Special selection by the Embassy of Jamaica in Japan

Jamaica’s rich musical tradition

Music has played a central role throughout Jamaican history, notably through the development of the genres of mento, ska, rocksteady and of course, reggae—all of which originated in Jamaica. The Jamaican folk music of mento, with roots in African and Latin traditional music, became popular in the early 20th century and greatly influenced Jamaica’s later musical development. This influence was seen in ska and rocksteady music, which developed in the early- and late- 1960s, respectively. Building on this development, artists Bob Marley and Jimmy Cliff started the international sensation known as reggae. Reggae music powerfully embodies the indomitable Jamaican spirit of overcoming anything that comes your way, and the reggae music of Jamaica was registered as a UNESCO Intangible Heritage in 2018.

Please see below for information on Dean Fraser, a Jamaican saxophonist representative of Jamaica and reggae music.


*Special selection by the Embassy of Jamaica in Japan

Min-On was overjoyed to welcome an official dispatch by the Government of Jamaica in commemoration of the 50th anniversary of Jamaica’s independence to Japan in 2011. Visiting artists for A Caribbean Musical Cruise series, Jamaica Rocks included Tessanne Chin, the “Peace Ambassador” of Jamaica, Abijah, and Ieye. Please check out their energetic, impassioned performances through the three videos featured below.

  1. Reggae Night

This song showcases the electric energy of reggae, the music of love, peace and joy.


  1. Jamaica Ska

This track embodies Jamaican ska while combining elements of jazz and blues rhythms in a big-band format.


  1. No Woman No Cry

A classic from Bob Marley. Tessanne, Abijah, Ieye and the dancers here display their full repertoire of talent and passion.


As we near the end of our journey, please see a special message and performance from Jamaican guitarist Nicolas Groskopf prepared especially for you, our Min-On Music Journey readers!

Breathe Easy – Nicolas Groskopf
*Special selection by the Embassy of Jamaica in Japan



The Jamaican National Stadium in Kingston features a bronze statue of the fastest sprinter in world history, Usain Bolt, an eight-time Olympic gold medalist and world record holder in the 100 metres, 200 metres and 4 x 100 metres relay.

In closing, please see the video below featuring a number of the stunning sights and sounds of Jamaica that we have introduced on our journey. Bless you all and One Love!

©Jamaica Tourist Board

What did you think of your music journey to Jamaica?

There are still many more places to go! Please look forward to our next destination.

Min-On Concert Association

-Music Binds Our Hearts-

(Produced in collaboration with the Embassy of Jamaica in Japan, who also provided photos.)