Jamaica’s Prime Minister Andrew Holness, says institutions will have to be put in place to protect and preserve the nation’s history.
Addressing the opening of a museum to honour the work and life of Jamaica’s global music legend, Peter Tosh, on October 19, at the front courtyard of the Pulse Centre, New Kingston, Holness said places such as the Peter Tosh Museum will play such a role in preserving the culture of the country.
“The Government endorses this initiative and we are very grateful that you have seen it fit to take your own resources and your own contributions to do this and I have (told) the Minister of Tourism to support this venture… as we plan to return tourism to Kingston in a big way,” he said.
Holness pointed out that the museum will help in “stamping” Jamaica’s claim as the centre of the Caribbean for culture, innovation, lifestyle and creativity.
The establishment of the museum was made possible through support from the Wisynco Group, Melia Braco, The Spanish Court Hotel, Downsound Entertainment, and the Chicago-based Art On the Loose museologists.
Meanwhile, Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, Olivia Grange, noted that Peter Tosh was “controversial, but he was someone who spoke from the heart”.
“He was a great poet, a great writer and a really creative individual. He also was a sincere individual. My favourite Peter Tosh song is ‘Jah is my Keeper’. I think that song is an anthem in the industry and a song that should be used on every occasion when we praise ‘Jah’,” Grange said.
Daughter of Peter Tosh and Administrator of the Tosh estate, Niambe McIntosh, said she is honoured to “give this gift to the world of a great man, an educator and a visionary”.
Tosh, a self-taught guitar and keyboard player, and the Wailers became pioneers of the burgeoning reggae scene in the late 1960s and together they toured the world for more than 10 years.
He left the band in 1973 to pursue his solo career and earned huge success with ‘Legalise It’ and later solo releases.
When the museum officially opens its doors, Jamaicans and visitors from around the world will be able to see a large collection of never-before-seen Tosh memorabilia, as some of the treasures will be displayed to the public for the first time.
Visitors will also be able to relive aspects of the Tosh experience through audio and visual recordings, as well as iconic artefacts, including his M16 guitar and unicycle that became one of his favourite means of transportation.
Peter Tosh died at the age of 42 in 1987, during a tragic home invasion. The museum will be opened to the public on November 1.