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Jamaica’s Poorest Parish Anxious For Entertainers To Saddle To The East

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Bounty Killer Resurrects Saddle To The East Charity Concert With A-List Line Up

Kingston, JA/New York, NY (June 16, 2006 )—The impoverished parish of St. Thomas anxiously awaits the eastward journey of ‘The Poor People’s Governor’ Rodney ‘ Bounty Killer’ Price and his A-list Reggae and Dancehall cohorts for the resurrection of Saddle to the East, Bounty’s signature charity stage show taking place August 26th. Bounty is enlisting Vybz Kartel, Wayne Marshall, Busy Signal, Alozade and Ce’Cile along with a slew of Jamaica’s hottest entertainers to saddle-up to the eastern parish to raise funds and awareness for Upliftment Jamaica (UJ), a St. Thomas based non-profit organization providing health, education, and social initiatives and facilities to uplift Jamaica’s most disadvantaged parishes.

“Having been associated with Upliftment Jamaica for the past two or three years, I have found them to be very dedicated to the work in St. Thomas,” states Bounty Killer of his decision to work with Upliftment to re-launch Saddle to the East. “With St. Thomas being the ‘heart of the east’ I have decided to take the show to Goodyear Oval which has never seen a show of this magnitude.”

“The goal of UJ is to empower the people of Jamaica through quality education, proper healthcare, and healthy social exchange,” states UJ co-founder and St. Thomas native Gary Foster, Vice President of hip hop mogul Russell Simmons’s Rush Communications. “Starting with our own backyard in St. Thomas, and with the help of artists like Bounty Killer, who are truly dedicated to making a positive difference in the lives of Jamaicans, there is no doubt, that we can and will accomplish our mission.”

Originally known as St. Thomas-in-the-East, the parish, along with Hanover, was identified by human rights organization MATCH International, as having the highest levels of poverty in Jamaica. The home of national hero Paul Bogle and the famous Morant Bay Rebellion, the parish is in strong support of Saddle to the East 2006, which will not only add to the resources UJ has in place to combat the extreme poverty, but will bring much needed attention to their often overlooked cultural landscape.

“St. Thomas has always been the cultural Mecca of Jamaica. We have the country’s cultural traditions protected and as a part of our history. We see reggae as an extension of this culture and any production that will help and continues to put St. Thomas on the map, I will be supporting,” states the Honorable James Robertson, Member of Parliament for Western St. Thomas.

Upliftment Jamaica is a U.S. non-profit organization with a base in the rural community of White Horses in St. Thomas, Jamaica. Founded in 1999 by Gary Foster and three childhood friends—Nigel Paris, Clayton Balliston, Rainford Grant, and the late Kirk Green– UJ empowers children and adults throughout the island of Jamaica through annual and year-round programs in the areas of health, education, and workforce development. UJ operates a basic school, community technology center, a children’s library, and several athletic programs. For more information on Upliftment Jamaica, go to www.upliftmentjamaica.org

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Written by jamarch