Crazy Jamaica Zooming in on Jamaica

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    Sep 9

    21 Famous Jamaicans

    List of famous people born in Jamaica, or whose parents were originally from Jamaica.

    Bob Marley (Musician)

    Bob MarleyRobert Nesta “Bob” Marley (February 6, 1945 – May 11, 1981) was a Jamaican singer-songwriter and musician.He was the lead singer, songwriter and guitarist for the ska, rocksteady and reggae bands The Wailers (1964–1974) and Bob Marley & the Wailers (1974–1981).Marley remains the most widely known and revered performer of reggae music, and is credited for helping spread both Jamaican music and the Rastafari movement.

    Usain Bolt (Athlete)

    Usain BoltUsain St. Leo Bolt, C.D. born August, 21 1986, is a Jamaican sprinter and a three-time Olympic gold medalist.He holds the world record for the 100 metres, the 200 metres and, along with his teammates, the 4×100 metres relay. He also holds the Olympic record for all three of these races.At the 2008 Summer Olympics, Bolt became the first man to win three sprinting events at a single Olympics since Carl Lewis in 1984, and the first man to set world records in all three at a single Olympics.In 2009 he became the first man to hold the 100 and 200 m world and Olympic titles at the same time.

    Sean Kingston (Musician)

    Sean KingstonSean Kingston, is an American-born Jamaican reggae fusion singer and rapper. Kingston was born 1990 in Miami, Florida, and raised in Kingston, Jamaica.In early 2009, Kingston released the lead single from his sophomore album. The single, “I’m At War” featuring Lil Wayne, was a “promo single”. In April, 2009, Kingston released the official lead single from his sophomore album.”Fire Burning” was released on April 24, 2009, and has peaked at #5 on the Billboard Hot 100. 

    Canibus (Musician)

    CanibusGermaine Williams, better known by his stage name Canibus, is an American rapper. He is a part of supergroup The HRSMN.He was born in Jamaica in 1974. His father, Basil Williams, is a former Jamaican cricketer.The family moved frequently, living in The Bronx, Washington, D.C., Atlanta, Miami, Buffalo, and Montreal due to his mother’s career requiring constant relocation

    Shaggy (Musician)

    ShaggyOrville Richard Burrell born October 22, 1968, Kingston, Jamaica, better known by his stage name Shaggy, is a Grammy-nominated Jamaican-American reggae singer.He takes his nickname from Scooby-Doo’s companion, a nickname given to him by his friends during his teenage years because his name bore a similarity to the Scooby Doo character.He is especially notable for his distinctive sub-baritone voice. Speaking on ‘This Morning’ on August 27, 2008, Burrell states the name Shaggy is a reference to his then hairstyle.

    Busta Rhymes (Musician)

    Busta RhymesTrevor Tahiem Smith, Jr., better known as Busta Rhymes born May 20, 1972 is a Grammy-nominated American rapper, songwriter, and actor.Smith was born in East Flatbush, Brooklyn to Jamaican parents Cherry Green and Trevor Smith, Sr.Chuck D of Public Enemy gave him the name Busta Rhymes (from former NFL wide receiver George “Buster” Rhymes).

    Biggie Smalls (Musician)

    Notorius BIGChristopher George Latore Wallace
    (May 21, 1972 – March 9, 1997), popularly known as Biggie Smalls and his primary stage name The Notorious B.I.G., was an American rapper.Wallace was the only child to Voletta Wallace, a Jamaican pre-school teacher, and George Latore, a welder and small-time Jamaican politician.His father left the family when Wallace was two years old, leaving his mother to work two jobs while raising him.On March 9, 1997, Wallace was killed by an unknown assailant in a drive-by shooting in Los Angeles. His double-disc set Life After Death, released fifteen days later, hit #1 on the U.S. album charts and was certified Diamond in 2000.

    Sean Paul (Musician)

    Sean PaulSean Paul Ryan Francis Henriques born January 9, 1973, simply known as Sean Paul, is a Jamaican ragga and hip hop musician.Sean Paul was born in Kingston, Jamaica and spent his early years “comfortably” in Upper Saint Andrew Parish, a few miles north of his birthplace.His parents, Garth and Frances, were both talented athletes, and his mother is a well-known painter.The newest Sean Paul album entitled “Imperial Blaze” was released on August 18, 2009. The lead single, “So Fine”, which was produced by Stephen “Di Genius” McGregor, premiered on Sean Paul’s official website on April, 2009

    Asafa Powell (Athlete)

    Asafa Powell, Jamaican AthleteAsafa Powell C.D born November 23, 1982 is a Jamaican sprinter who specialises in the 100 meters. He held the 100 m world record between June 2005 and May 2008, with times of 9.77 and 9.74 seconds respectively.Powell has consistently broken the 10 second barrier in competition, with his personal best of 9.72 s being the fourth fastest time in the history of the event.He won a gold medal and set the world and Olympic record in the 4 × 100 metres relay with the Jamaican team in Beijing. At the 2007 Osaka World Championships he won a bronze and a silver medal in the 100 m and 4 x 100 m relay respectively and he has been successful at the Commonwealth Games, winning two gold and one silver medal.At the 2009 World Championship he again achieved a Bronze medal in the 100 m and Gold in the 4 x 100 m. Powell has won at the IAAF World Athletics Final five times and is the 100 m record holder for the event.

    Carla Campbell (Model)

    Carla CambellCarla Campbell born 1981 in Jamaica is a fashion model represented by IMG in New York.She received her most widespread exposure appearing in the 2006 Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue, being the first model from the Caribbean to appear in the highly popular edition.She is the only the second model from the Caribbean to shoot for Victoria’s Secret!

    Patrick Ewing (Athlete)

    Busta RhymesBorn in Kingston, Jamaica, Patrick Aloysius Ewing excelled at cricket and soccer. He was 11 years old when he arrived in the United States with his family, settling in Cambridge, Massachusetts. He learned to play basketball at Cambridge Rindge and Latin.Ewing was born August 5, 1962 is an American retired Hall of Fame basketball player and current assistant coach for the National Basketball Association’s Orlando Magic.He played most of his career with the NBA’s New York Knicks as their starting center and played briefly with the Seattle SuperSonics and Orlando Magic.He was inducted into the Hall of Fame on September 5, 2008 along with former NBA coach Pat Riley and former Houston Rockets center, Hakeem Olajuwon. His number 33 was retired by the Knicks in 2003.

    Naomi Campbell (Model)

    Naomi CambellCampbell was born in Streatham, London, England. Her mother, Valerie Campbell (née Morris), is a former ballet dancer of Afro-Jamaican descent.The high point of Campbell’s career was in the early 1990s, when she was part of the two major “supermodel” powerhouses: the Big Six, alongside Cindy Crawford, Claudia Schiffer, Christy Turlington, Linda Evangelista and Kate Moss, and The Trinity, alongside Turlington and Evangelista.Campbell is signed to IMG Models (New York City), Storm Model Management (London), Marilyn Agency (Paris), and D’management Group (Milan).

    Colin Powell (Politician)

    Colin PowellColin Luther Powell was born on April 5, 1937 in Harlem, a neighborhood in the New York City borough of Manhattan to Jamaican immigrant parents Luther Theophilus Powell and Maud Arial McKoy.Powell is an American statesman and a retired four-star general in the United States Army. He was the 65th United States Secretary of State (2001-2005), serving under President George W. Bush.He was the first African American appointed to that position. During his military career, Powell also served as National Security Advisor (1987–1989), as Commander-in-Chief, U.S. Army Forces Command (1989) and as Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (1989–1993), holding the latter position during the Gulf War.He was the first, and so far the only, African American to serve on the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

    Ziggy Marley (Musician)

    Ziggy MarleyDavid Nesta “Ziggy” Marley born October 17, 1968, Trenchtown, Jamaica is a four time Grammy-winning Jamaican musician and leader of the band Ziggy Marley and the Melody Makers.He is the oldest son of Rita and Bob Marley, the roots reggae singer.In 1979, Ziggy and his siblings, Cedella, Stephen and Sharon made their recording debut with their father, “Children Playing in the Streets”.The Melody Makers, as the group came to be known, played occasionally for several years, including at their father’s funeral in 1981.

    Ziggy had become politically active by this time, working with the United Nations and creating a record label called Ghetto Youths Crew. A solo album, Dragonfly was released on April 15, 2003.

    On July 2, 2006, his second solo album, Love Is My Religion, was released on his independent record company Tuff Gong Worldwide.

    He is listed as the featured artist on Donna Summer’s song, “Crayons,” the title track from her 2008 album. Marley went on tour with 311 in July 2009.

    Elephant Man (Musician)

    Elephant ManElephant Man, also known as the Energy God, (born O’Neil Bryan on September 11, 1977, in Kingston, Jamaica) is a dancehall musician.His stagename stemmed from his large ears, which led to the nickname Dumbo in his youth. Ele started out his musical career as a member of the Scare Dem Crew, later continuing as a solo artist.He was later characterized for several trademarks, such as his dyed yellow-orange hair, his unique low-key voice, and his stage performance, which included jumping and running, or even climbing on stage props and monitors. His acoustic trademark is marked by a light lisp.

    Jamaican Bobsled Team

    Naomi CambellThe Jamaican Bobsled Team first gained fame during their debut in the 1988 Winter Olympic Games in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. They are also well known from their portrayal in the 1993 film Cool Runnings, based on their exploits in the Winter Olympics.Two Americans were largely responsible for the founding of the Jamaican Bobsled Team. George B. Fitch and William Maloney had family and business ties to Jamaica and after witnessing a pushcart derby they realized that it was very similar to bobsledding.
    Since bobsledding requires a fast start, Maloney and Fitch decided to use sprinters, who are plentiful on the island nation of Jamaica. They originally tried to recruit Olympic-class sprinters, but no one was interested, so they presented their idea to Colonel Ken Barnes of the Jamaican military.The first four members of the Jamaican bobsled team were:

    • Devon Harris, a lieutenant in the Second Battalion, Jamaican Army
    • Dudley Stokes, a captain from the JDF Air Wing
    • Michael White, a private in the National Reserves
    • Samuel Clayton, a railway engineer

    They were coached by New York native Howard Siler, of Malone, New York.

    Christopher “Kid” Reid (Actor/Musician)

    Christopher Reid, KidChristopher Reid born April 5, 1964, formerly known as Kid is an American actor, comedian, and former rapper.Reid was born in The Bronx, New York City, to a Jamaican father and an Irish mother. He graduated from the prestigious Bronx High School of Science in 1982. He also graduated from Lehman College in the Bronx.He is best known as one-half of late-1980s/early-1990s hip hop musical act Kid ‘n Play with fellow rapper/actor Christopher “Play” Martin. Reid was particularly notable for his extreme hi-top fade hairstyle. Reid has appeared on a number of television programs, including Martin and Sister, Sister, and has also served as the host of amateur contest shows such as Your Big Break and It’s Showtime at the Apollo.Reid’s most recent musical contribution has been to HBO’s Real Time with Bill Maher; he wrote the theme song. He also appeared on the VH1 reality magician game show Celebracadabra in 2008.

    Alicia Keys (Musician)

    Alicia KeysAlicia Keys was born Alicia Augello Cook on January 25, 1981, in the Hell’s Kitchen area of Manhattan, in New York City, New York.She is the daughter and only child of Irish-Italian mother Teresa Augello, a paralegal and part-time actress, and Jamaican father Craig Cook, a flight attendant.Keys released her first studio album, Songs in A Minor, in June 2001. It debuted at number one on the Billboard 200 and sold 236,000 copies in its first week. The album sold over 6.2 million copies in the United States.It went on to sell over 12 million copies worldwide, establishing Keys’ popularity both inside and outside the United States, where she became the best-selling new artist and best-selling R&B artist of 2001.

    Keys signed a film production deal in 2009 to develop live-action and animated projects with Disney. Their first film will be a remake of the 1958 comedy Bell, Book and Candle and will star Keys as a witch who casts a love spell to lure a rival’s fiancé.

    Heavy D (Musician)

    Heavy D and the BoyzDwight Errington Myers was born on May 24, 1967, in Jamaica. His family moved to Mount Vernon, New York, when he was a young child.Heavy D is the stage name of Myers, an American rapper and former leader of Heavy D & the Boyz, a hip hop group which included G-Whiz (Glen Parrish), “Trouble” T. Roy (Troy Dixon), and Eddie F (born Edward Ferrell).The group maintained a sizable audience in the United States through most of the 1990s. He has recently ventured into reggae music and can now be described as a reggae fusion artist.Heavy D has now released a new reggae album via itunes, called Vibes & reportedly has a son who is currently releasing mix tapes as a rapper.

    Lyriq Bent (Actor)

    Originally from Kingston, Jamaica…Lyriq Bent is an actor, best known for his portrayal as SWAT Team Leader Rigg in Saw II, Saw III and Saw IV.After graduating college with high honors, Lyriq Bent originally began his career as a computer graphic technician.Bent’s plans, however, were short lived as he decided to take up acting on a dare. Since then, he has had numerous film and television appearances.

    Lisa Hanna (Miss World 1993)

    Lisa Hanna was the third Jamaican to win the Miss World title. She won the title in 1993 in Sun City, South Africa at 18 years old. Hanna had a small role in How Stella Got Her Groove Back, and she has hosted the popular Jamaican talk show, Our Voices.Lisa migrated to the U.S. in 2004 to pursue a career in broadcasting and was a guest presenter on the entertainment show Xtra. During June 2007, she was catapulted into the public’s eyes again when the ruling political party, Peoples National Party announced her as a candidate for key constituency for the country’s next general election which is constitutionally due in October 2007.On September 3, 2007, Lisa Hanna went on to win the South Eastern St. Ann constituency by 2678 votes over the JLP’s Peter Fakhourie 

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