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My name is Jacinth Winsome Pinnock aka Aunty Tat .


I was born in the year 1961 to two wonderful parents Mrs Nancy Pinnock who is still alive and Mr
Fredrick Pinnock who is now deceased. My birthplace was Jamaica , Parish of St Thomas and a little
District called Spring Garden.

I remember growing up as a little girl I was very active. I was a little tomboy who liked to climb trees
and do something that we called Pupalick. Going to school was fun - my teacher always called on
me to tell Anansi stories or sing in fro nt of the class which was a pleasure for me .


I have five siblings and we were all brought up to be God fearing., We had to go to Sunday School to
learn about God from a tender age. So for me, that’s where the real singing started .

After leaving Spring Garden Primary School, I then moved on to Seaforth Secondary High School. Idecided to be baptised and become a Christian . My siblings and I used to sing in the choir at our local church and would rotate to other churches to perform there. I was a member of our Parish choir and would also take part at our National Convention which was held yearly.


I was also a member of Crusaders Gospel Band which provided me with the experience of performing before hundreds of people .


Some of my siblings migrated to England. I came to join them in 2001.Coming to England was a complex experience. I immediately noticed that our Jamaican culture wasnot recognised as it should be . My sisters and I had this great passion so we decided to do
something about it.


In the year 2008 we heard of a group called Brawta which we became a part of but we only remainedmembers for a brief period . Having such enthusiasm for our culture and singing, we decided to formour own group.


When the group Tan Teddy was formed I could not be an active member at the beginning because I ran a restaurant in Easton and had a very full schedule .


But eventually I was able to get more involved in singing. We also catered for a junior singing section and a strong group of youngsters formed called Tan Teddy Children. This lasted for several yearsbefore dissolving but this is definitely a programme i would like to see revived. Our adult group persevered and we are now in our 10 th year - our name is Tan Teddy which means stay strong and let nothing knock you off track.

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My name is Donna Pinnock

 

I was born in the lovely district of Spring Garden in the Parish of St Thomas Jamaica 58 years ago. My

first school experience started at Spring Garden Basic School, then I moved on to Spring Garden

Primary School.

Whilst at Spring Garden Primary School, I sat the then Common Entrance School

Examination and was successful in gaining a place at Morant Bay High School where I attained my

secondary education and O level qualifications.

I am the oldest of six children, three brother and two sisters. My father Fredrick Pinnock became

deceased in 2016 and my loving mother Nancy Pinnock is still living at home in Jamaica.I am the

mother of three gorgeous children and the grand mother of four beautiful grandchildren. I was born into

a Christian family, was baptized and became a member of the Church of God. I was also born into a

very creative family, singing and performing from a very young age. I played an activepart in the growth of my local church, encouraging other young people to become members of the church. I became the Local Youth leader  and later was appointed Parish Youth Director, Choir Director for my local church and National Youth Camp Counsellor.

Not only was I active in the Church but also in my local community. I became a member of the Paul Bogle Youth Club in my district and had a sense of duty to support, motivate and empower other young people. I started a project in needle craft and culinary arts, empowering young people with valuable life skills.

I  migrated to England in the late eighties to advance  my education .

I have worked in Supported Housing for over 20 years, working with the most disadvantaged and vulnerable in the city of Bristol. My job entails offering support and signposting people to Bristol services in order to address complex needs that lead to homelessness, isolation and deprivation. 

 

MY INSPIRATION

About 10 years ago I sat with my sisters and started singing, a hobby we share and enjoy  as a form  of relaxation and socialization. We sang some of the songs we usually sing back home in Jamaica, mainly when it is moon shines nights. These songs we call Folk songs. Then the idea sprang into our heads. Why not start a folk singing group? This idea did not go idly by. I was a part of this great decision and  I am pleased to say the Jamaican Folk Culture Group was formed springing from a deep love for our roots and culture .

I am the current leader of Tan Teddy Folk Culture Group.  We have performed in numerous events in and around Bristol. We facilitate a range of workshops for children and adults. Even more  importantly, we experience a feeling of acceptance within our communities  and this is a great achievement. I am involved in the organizing of our annual Jamaica Independence Event, ‘Everything Jamaica’.

I would like to see continued integration happening in our city.

My aim is to continue being the difference and not to be swayed by indifferences.  The arts is an excellent medium for combating  racial discrimination and segregation. ‘The beauty of this world lies in the diversity of its people’ is a moving quotation by poet and activist Audre Lorde.We are inspired by it.

I am happy to be living in Bristol. I am even happier to be able to contribute to its rich culture. I truly hope that Bristol will become a UK City of Culture in the next 10 years.

I would like to encourage younger generations of women to follow their dreams and help build our communities. I have been doing it for man  years, I am sure you  can too.

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My name is Carlene Pinnock , affectionately called Dainty

I was born in Jamaica, in the Parish of St Thomas.

From childhood, I had a passion for singing. I started singing at basic school from the age of three years old. Singing was a daily part of my life. My teacher would teach us songs and poems, This was how we learnt in a very easy way. We would count in songs, we would sing the names of people, places, animals and objects in songs. This made remembering things easier for me,

My parents would send me to the shops, and I would sing the items I was told to buy so I would remember as soon as I got to the shop,

I was also brought up in the church and was a very talented girl in the choir, I would sing at rallies and concerts with my brothers and sisters I grew up in the country and so my family and I  didn’t have the privileges that the kids in the town areas

had, So we would create our own enjoyment, We would go outside on a moonshine night. My brothers would make drum sets from  plastic water buckets. They would use pot covers for cymbals, guitars from empty cans and cords. The girls would have bottle stoppers and wire for our tambourines and we would play and sing with our stick mikes with the trees as our audience. Our parents were also good singers so they sometimes listened to us and acted as the judges. I look back with such fond, warm memories on  those days.

          

I have always loved   composing songs and writing poems, I got that talent from my mother, During my primary school years I would take part in morning devotions. My teachers would let me sing to the entire school at our weekly  Friday concerts as I was very polite.    I would also take part in festival competitions.  Singing, dancing and reciting  Miss Louise Bennett’s poems. I would be presented with the winning trophy,  I enjoy sharing my culture with others  - it is a real  passion, In the early 90s, I became a member of a folk group  in the Cayman Islands and still continue to enter singing competitions, spreading my culture through song.

When I arrived in  the United Kingdom, my family and friends came together and decided we would form a folk group. We are still going strong after over 10 years. Being a member of Tan Teddy has opened up  many experiences for me. My desire is to spread my culture to the young and old people throughout the UK and other parts of the world.

My name is Paulett Wintand 

 

I was born and raised in the Midlands. I have lived in Leeds,Kent and I moved to Bristol in 2015. 


After spending   twenty-six years working in social housing. I decided to follow my childhood dream of becoming a nurse. I obtained a place at university and then qualified as a Registered Mental Health nurse in 2010.

Since then, I have worked in many different areas of mental health including forensics CAMHS, eating disorders.  Following these positions. I became a manager in  private sector care homes. 

However my greatest joy is singing. Whilst I cannot profess to be anywhere close to the super great vocalists of our times. I can hold a note , well, most of the time!  I have always had a passion for singing.I joined my first band aged 13 and went on to sing in many choirs and other bands of all genres.

I joined Tan Teddy in 2018. This was my first experience of joining a folk group. It’s has to date been an inspiration to me. For me, being a child of the diaspora, connecting culturally is as important as breathing.

Things that are important to me include spending time with my family, friends and travelling. I love life and enjoy living it to the best of my ability.

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My name is Tramaine Graham,

 

I was born on October 31st, 1987, on the sunny island of Jamaica. I grew up in a little district known as Spring Garden,  amongst a cluster of small districts that form the circumference of St Thomas . I spent  my early years attending Basic and Primary schools, namely Pinnock’s Basic School and Spring Garden Primary School.

My singing journey started when I was very young. I inherited this love of singing and music    from my family. I always enjoyed listening to and singing many genres of music. My mother and aunts grew up in the church and were  active members in the church choir.

As a child,  the church and school formed the core foundations of my singing journey. My deepest dream and aspiration throughout youth was to be part of a girl group or band.I migrated to England with my mother at the age of 12 to be united with family. Living in England was a

transition that did not allow a continuation of the cultural engagement I had growing up in Jamaica. The birth of Tan Teddy Jamaican Folk Culture group in 2008 was a reviving experience for me. Tan Teddy’s vision in creating awareness and showcasing the rich culture of Jamaica through singing and performances has been an uplifting experience.

 I am passionate about singing and creating avenues and re-inforcing  cultural identity for young individuals, by building a platform so as to know and understand their roots and backgrounds. This is how I began. I know  it will lead to personal  development that can ultimately benefit our society.

Apart from the above, I love to help others. I have a keen interest in hair and beauty, helping and making individuals look and feel good within themselves.

My names is Jhanelle Pinnock.

 

I am one of the soprano singers in Tan Teddy.I was born and raised in St Thomas, Jamaica up until the age of 11.Growing up in St Thomas where the Parish was known for its traditional dance ‘Kumina’,  my family and I were inspired by music, singing and dancing as these arts form a massive part of our culture. 

 

I moved to the UK aged 11.  After a few years of living here, I realized my Jamaican culture did not have much representation, especially not in Bristol where I resided. In addition, the culture  being promoted was  not necessarily positive and omitted many of our traditions.  

 

In 2008,  my family decided to represent a small part of our culture  and to shed some light on one of our traditional arts known as Folk Songs. 

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This led to the birth of Tan Teddy.

Being a part of the group  has helped me get over my fear of singing in front of a crowd.  All the folk songs are jolly and tell a story which has helped me to relax and have fun while  engaging with the audience. I am now able to embrace my passion for singing fearlessly but most importantly to help to keep my culture alive by teaching others, especially the younger generations. This  includes my own children who, in turn, will be able to hand down this knowledge to their children. 

My aspirations in being a part of Tan Teddy is to see the expansion of not only folk singing but the dancing, storytelling, ring games and poems that represent our culture and mix some of the old traditions in with the new.

 I would  also love for us to share what we do with the world by touring every continent.  And to one day own a studio/school where everyone can come to learn  the rich treasures  in Jamaican culture.

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My name is Marcia Atkinson.

 

 I have been a member of Tan Teddy Jamaican Folk Culture Group for the past 11 and a half years.

My love of music began from I was a small child, I would go into the forbidden front room and play the gram singing along to the Jamaican songs of the 50s and 60s. I would admire the harmonies and sing different parts along with the records.

In 1973 I moved to the best place in the world, Jamaica where I heard first hand the beautiful sounds of their Folks songs being song in schools, on TV, at nine nights, on the streets and in theatres. I immediately knew that I would give anything to be able to sing like them which led to me joining the group in school that would enter singing contests with other schools.

I returned to the UK 1987 but wasn’t able to find anyone who shared my love of our Folk songs until

one faithful night when I attend a stage show at the Malcolm X Centre. I was standing behind a group of people including youngsters and all of a sudden they began singing along with the Artiste with different harmonies, I drew closer, my heart was racing as this is what I was looking for.  It turned out that they were a family of 3 Sisters and some of their children.

At the end of the night I realised I knew one of the Sisters who contacted me a in 2009 about joining their group, the rest is history, we have been together ever since.

In 2003 I enrolled in City of Bristol College onto the Initial Teacher Training Access Course. In 2004 I attended the University of West of England (UWI) where I trained to be a Primary School Teacher specializing in the Early Years. Upon graduating I worked temporarily as a Support Worker with homeless people and as time passed the joy of helping people get there lives back together helped me to decide that I would like to be employed permanently as a Support Worker. 

Since becoming a member I have had the pleasure of meeting so many talented and like minded people who all share the same vision of sharing the Jamaican Culture within the Southwest and beyond through song, poetry, dance and drama.

I have held the post off Treasurer for the past 8 years to present day and look forward to continually working alongside people who help to promote self worth, confidence and togetherness.

My name is  Rene Williams  and I too was born in Jamaica.

 

I became involved in singing and learning about my culture growing up in Jamaica. I would look forward to your school’s annual cultural events, which would include customs and prop making, our annual Jamaica night which would have the whole community involved. Singing, dancing, food, customs and lots of fun shared by the whole community. 

 

My love for folk singing started following my first trip to the pantomime on a school trip. It was a magical experience, their harmonies and stage presence brought everything to life. I told myself I wanted to be a part of that experience one day.   

 

 I moved to England where I attended high school and college.  I am one of the founding Tan Teddy 

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Jamaican Folk Culture Group members, along with my with my mother, aunts and cousins. The group was formed thirteen years ago,  in October 2008, in my aunt’s hair salon. We wanted to bring our folk culture back into the community. I had a son  same year and wanted my son to know his culture. He learnt most of the songs we were singing at the age of 2 and knew how to play the drums. That brought lots of joy to my heart.

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