By Editor-July 6th, 2023.
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken thanked Trinidad and Tobago for creating music that “brings people together” during his visit to HADCO Phase II Pan Groove panyard, Woodbrook, Port of Spain on Wednesday night.
After trying his hand at playing the pan with the help of Lennox “Boogsie” Sharpe, Blinken said, “One of the things I’ve learned travelling around the world is that nothing brings us together more than music. It breaks down barriers. It brings people together. It helps each of us share in common humanity.
Blinken is better known for playing the guitar.
“And so the music that you’re providing, and the Caribbean has provided so much – the soundtrack, the rhythm of our lives, not just in the United States but all over the world – even more than anyone, brings people together. We need that more than ever.
“So thank you for the music, the rhythm, for the joy that you bring to our lives.”
Minority Leader of the US House of Representatives Hakeem Jeffries and US Ambassador to TT Candace Bond were also present.
Bond thanked TT for its hospitality over the seven months since she’s been the ambassador.
“Thank you for your creativity, your positivity, your artistry and just the sheer joy and love of music. I appreciate that.”
Jeffries, who also played the pan, described Sharpe as the Michael Jordan of pan music and thanked him for the warm welcome.
“Thank you for sharing a bit of your incredible culture and art and music. Poetry and heart should that is such a part of the Trinidadian and Tobagonian people.
“We are appreciative of that, and our commitment, as we move forward with this congressional delegation visit and return to the (United) States is to continue to lean into our relationship with our history, our bonds and the sheer interest and values that we have for the best interest of our people as we move forward.”
Source: Trinidad and Tobago Newsday