On Travel: Reggae in Jamaica, The Spirit of One Love

“One good thing about music, when it hits you feel no pain.”~ Robert (Bob) Nesta Marley

I can’t think of one music genre that unites people more than Reggae does. Or any one artist known the world over, like Bob Marley (other than Michael Jackson, may they both rest in peace).

All races, all ages, all corners of the world. Roots reggae soothes, it warms the soul, it makes you think positive. And no matter what is going on, there is nothing like listening live reggae to make your troubles go away. Well, at least for a few hours!

And today, the music genre is far from dead. If anything it has gained in popularity and is growing into more and more festivals around the world. I think it’s because now more than ever, we all seek peace and unity, and an understanding of life one way or another. Reggae lyrics are about just that – the concept of One Love.

But I will still say this: you haven’t really listened to reggae until you’ve heard it live in Jamaica. On the beach, by the water, or on the cliffs… the breeze blowing and the melodies ringing in your ear, and up close and personal with reggae’s top recording artists. There’s an unspoken, spiritual cadence in the air when the music plays in Jamaica.

It’s also how I started my concert photography, shooting live reggae in Jamaica. If anyone had told me years ago that I’d be doing that one day, I would have thought they were nuts.  But that’s just it – just like travel, reggae has the power to move and inspire, to change.

So if there ever was a good reason to visit the land of Bob – aside from its beautiful beaches and culture – music is it. Come see what brings so many people together, first hand. You never know where it might lead you.

Bunny Wailer, of the original Bob Marley & The Wailers | Live at the Annual Bob Marley Birthday Bash | Negril, Jamaica, February 2009

Bob Marley’s sons can be found performing live at home, when not on tour overseas. A truly magical experience. | Marley Magic Show | Negril, Jamaica, April 2009

Beres Hammond, at the “One Love Concert Series” – now Jamaica’s rising best concert series| Negril, Jamaica, February 2010 | Every Tuesday night, the sea and cliffside resort Negril Escape features a major reggae artist, live. Can’t think of a better way to experience reggae in Jamaica.

Ky-Mani Marley, One Love Concert Series, Jamaica 2010

A unique reggae experience in Jamaica (and the most popular today) is Rebel Salute. | Jamaica 2011

The Jungle Nightclub, one of Jamaica’s well-known venues, hosts concerts throughout the year. | Rootz Underground, Negril, Jamaica, March 2009

Jamaica’s established and ever-growing Annual Jamaica Jazz & Blues Festival always features at least a one great Jamaican artist or group. ~ Third World, January 2010

Flags at reggae concert in Jamaica add to the overall vibe | Bob Marley Birthday Bash, Negril, Jamaica 2009

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Lebawit Lily Girma

Lebawit Lily Girma is an award-winning, Ethiopian-American travel writer, photographer and author of several Caribbean guidebooks for Moon Travel Guides, including Moon Belize, Moon Belize Cayes, and Moon Dominican Republic (October 2016). Her work focuses on Caribbean culture and adventure, and has been published in AFAR, CNN Travel, BBC, Delta Sky, The Guardian, Sunday Times Travel Magazine, and Every Day With Rachael Ray, among many others. Lily is also the 2016 recipient of the Marcia Vickery Wallace Award for Excellence in Travel Journalism for her Caribbean coverage, from the Caribbean Tourism Organization. Lily calls herself a “culture-holic”–she speaks four languages fluently and has lived in Cote d’Ivoire, England, Jamaica, Belize, the Dominican Republic and traveled to some 30+ countries around the world. Last but not least, she is a former corporate attorney who ditched her Washington DC office for the road in 2009 to pursue her dream of becoming a storyteller. Lily holds a Bachelor of Arts in French and Spanish (summa cum laude) from the University of Maryland at College Park, and a Juris Doctor from the University of Virginia School of Law.

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  1. RastaMermaid 22 February, 2011 at 8:11 AM #

    Your pics give me a fix I need! Heading to The Rock soon,but not soon enough!

    Keep snapping Lily,you’re awesome!

  2. lilyg 23 February, 2011 at 12:05 PM #

    Thank you so much! 🙂 I appreciate your kind words and encouragement. And happy to help with the “fix”! 🙂 Bless,

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