Sat | Mar 2, 2024

Japanese reggae studio donates musical instruments to Aabuthnott Gallimore

Published:Friday | March 31, 2023 | 12:54 AMCarl Gilchrist/Gleaner Writer
Javion Brown (left) and Ayelo Parke (second right), students of Aabuthnott Gallimore High School, try out instruments donated by Kaeru, a reggae recording studio in Japan, as Japanese volunteer Natsumi Nagamura (right) and Tedroy Gordon of Jamaica 4-H Club
Javion Brown (left) and Ayelo Parke (second right), students of Aabuthnott Gallimore High School, try out instruments donated by Kaeru, a reggae recording studio in Japan, as Japanese volunteer Natsumi Nagamura (right) and Tedroy Gordon of Jamaica 4-H Clubs share the moment.

PRINCIPAL OF Aabuthnott Gallimore High School in Alexandria, St Ann, Eloise Panton, says the school is back on track to producing musical excellence after a donation of some much-needed equipment, courtesy of Kaeru Studio, a reggae recording studio in Japan.

Japanese volunteer and representative of the non-profit organisation Link Up JaJa, Natsumi Nagamura, who is based in Jamaica, organised the purchase and delivery of the items, which were sourced locally from Music Mart in Kingston.

The instruments, a Fender CB-60SCE acoustic-electric bass guitar, a Fender Redondo Player-California Series acoustic guitar, and a Korg EK-50 61-key keyboard, are valued at $272,500.

“These instruments will really enhance our music programme because that is one of the areas the school normally does well in,” Panton pointed out.

“Back in the days when we could utilise funds as we could, we would have had the students participating in All Together Sing, something I’m hoping we’ll be able to get off the ground again,” she said.

Panton added: “We do have students with their own innate skills who are able to play the keyboard and we’re hoping that these instruments that we have received will continue to enhance the programme in terms of delivery and to build back the music that saw us participating in the JCDC Festival as well as All Together Sing.”

Nagamura, who operates from the Jamaica 4-H Clubs office in Brown’s Town, said Japanese love and have benefited from reggae music and are happy to support a worthy cause.

GIVING BACK

“This project was started by a very famous recording company in Japan, Kaeru Studio,” she explained.

“All of us are reggae fans and because we receive so much education and power and everything from the reggae music, they always want to give back somehow, give back something to Jamaica. And they realise that many schools don’t have a lot of resources so they would love to help a bit to empower their positive movement, especially in music,” Nagamura added.

Tedroy Gordon, parish development officer at the Jamaica 4-H Clubs, said the donation means a lot, not just for the schools but for the community as well.

He said students who were in dire need of the equipment will now be able to get more practical experience in music class.

“I’m very happy we, along with Natsumi, did our need assessment and found out that the school was lacking these equipment; this also means a good partnership with the people of Japan and Jamaica in terms of cultural exchange,” Gordon said.