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JamRock in Pictures: David Muir Launches Coffee Table Book

Jerry D heaps kudos on David Muir at the launch of Pieces of Jamaica

Kingston, Jamaica: The coffee table book Pieces of Jamaica: The Real Rock Edition received its Jamrock launch on Wednesday evening at the Devonshire, Devon House, Kingston. The book features photography by David Muir complemented by poetry and prose by Sonia Morgan. Both Muir and Morgan left the island years ago and currently reside in Florida. The book's name evokes a longing for home, or rather the fact that many in the Diaspora often take Jamaica with them through their memories.

“This book came about because I love Jamaica a lot,” explained Muir. “That’s really it.” The largely informal launch featured short speeches by Muir’s friends and family which included Jerry McDaniel and Stone Love’s Rory who all regaled the members of the audience with tales of his continued commitment to Jamaica.
Pieces of Jamaica, cover
The book received its Florida launch in September of this year and the Toronto version in October. The book features photographs Muir took on various trips to Jamaica, often as a part of the excursions organized by the Flikr Jamaica photography group. It was evident, that the book reflected the culmination of years of work and passion for his island home.

Pieces of Jamaica has been four years in the making Muir explained that it finally received its major catalyst when an exhibition in his new home of Sunrise. Florida received over 2,000 visitors. Muir took it as a clear indication that the writing, or at least the picture was on the wall, and it was time for the book to be born.
Morgan reading at the Canada Launch of Pieces of Jamaica (photo by D. Muir)
Morgan, who was unable to attend the Jamaican launched revealed to Susumba, via an online interview, that several of the photographs struck a nostalgic chord for her. She particularly points to the photograph ‘School Ties’ which speaks to one of Jamaica’s cultural traditions.

“I had fun writing that caption,” she said, also explaining that her captions are likely to become part of a larger work of poetry. “It reminds me that unlike in the US where most people are tied to their colleges, in Jamaica we are tied to our High Schools. We go through life as Campionites, Excelsorians and chanting Fortis. And that is especially apparent in the alumni associations across the US.”

This clearly also remained true for Muir as the Devonshire Yashika Graham performs with David Muir in the backgroundwas also filled with persons from his alma mater, Campion.

Despite Morgan’s absence, the launch was not devoid of poetry as it featured a short reading Yashika Graham, who delivered ‘Kitchen’, ‘Dream’ and ‘Find Your Way Back Home’.

Pieces of Jamaica, published in Kingston by LMH Publishing, seems a timely addition to the book landscape while the nation continues to commemorate its fiftieth year of independence.