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50 Years of Independence Realest Jamaica 50 song ever from Dr Michael Abrahams and 'the girls'

Another Jamaica 50 song has been released, or perhaps unleashed would be a much more appropriate term.

Entitled 50 Years of Independence, it is infused with bangarang, totally hilarious and delightfully didactic.

Done by a formidable and talented trio calling themselves SMS — Sherando Ferril, Michael Abrahams and Sakina Deer — the single will certainly mash nuff corn. But this trio is unapologetic and moreso, their skill at injecting humour, while discussing serious issues, should deflect any harsh criticism. 

“50 years of Independence and so many tings gone wrong/50 years of Independence and we can’t even agree pon a song.” the chorus rings out loud and clear, rocking with truth and sincerity.

In true Jamaican fashion — as exemplified with the dueling culture ministers — the song starts out with confusion and cas cass, as they get into character – Babsy, Lisa and Bruce – and tun it up … all the way up. What ensues is quite a lyrical clash between ‘Babsy’ and ‘Lisa’, with each scoring points and you can almost hear the “bap bap” and see the hands in the air signalling approval at the very low blows.

Lisa thinks she’s hot but she “cold like freezer”, and Babsy has been renamed Flabsy and she needs to go work on her absy.

Then enter the Driver who admonishes the ladies to ‘behave’ because Miss Lou must be turning in her grave.”Don’t fight.. on the celebrations you are putting a blight. Use the opportunity to unite,” he urges.

But this is a war that the Driver just cannot win. He’s told quite calmly, “Hear me now Driva, save you breath and save you saliva. Bi-partisan ting never survive yah. Why you gwaan like you just arrive yah?  A so we love strife yah.”

And this is what makes this song about the song so real. There is no time for frills and niceties. It tells the story. Perhaps, 10 years from now when my daughter is doing Cultural Studies at the University, she will be able listen to this song and be amazed at the immaturity of a nation at 50. Hopefully, at 60, we will get it right.

“50 years of Independence and so many tings gone wrong/50 years of Independence and we can’t even agree pon a song.”. — Yasmine Peru


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