Youth Resiliency Institute (YRI) Announces Public Induction Ceremony for YRI’s
Guest Speaker: Niambe McIntosh, daughter of Peter Tosh and Administrator of the Peter Tosh estate.
Fifteen youths from Baltimore’s Cherry Hill Homes, Albermarle Square, and other parts of the city will be publicly inducted into the Tosh Roots Reggae Youth Cohort as part of the Youth Resiliency Institute’s Baltimore Guitarists Against Violence program. Cohort members will make their own guitars under the tutelage of musician and instrument maker Abu the Flutemaker, learn guitar basics, and perform roots reggae concerts throughout Baltimore City beginning in August.
The event is free and open to the public and will feature guest speaker Niambe McIntosh, daughter of reggae legend Peter Tosh and administrator of her father’s estate. McIntosh will speak about her father and his legacy, with an eye to the importance of that legacy for young people living in difficult circumstances.
“The essence, the legacy of Peter Tosh lives in our most disinvested communities throughout Baltimore City,” said Fanon Hill, co-founder of the Youth Resiliency Institute, along with his wife, Navasha Daya. “Peter Tosh had a lot of swagger, as you might say, but he never was a violent person. He never resorted to violence. Although he spoke about issues related to police brutality, he fought with his music, with his art form.”
Tosh’s music tackled many issues that remain relevant to Baltimore’s youth, including disparate sentencing in the criminal justice system, education, youth rights, police brutality, and other challenges facing impoverished Black youth. That outspokenness has often led to Tosh being misrepresented as something of a firebrand or radical.
“I’ve always recognized parallels between Peter Tosh and how young people in Baltimore are misrepresented, specifically young people living in public housing,” said Hill.
As members of the Tosh Roots Reggae Youth Cohort, the 15 students will have the opportunity to not only learn guitar basics from master guitarists, but will also learn about Tosh’s life, music, and his example of responding to oppression through art, not counter productive self-violence.
“Imagine a Baltimore City where it was as easy to get a guitar as it is to get a gun,” said Hill. “What would Baltimore City look like? What would Baltimore City sound like? It’s very clear to us as cultural arts organizers and artists that we really can’t afford to wait for theaters or museums to prioritize the needs of young people living in the most disinvested communities of Baltimore City. We need to go on the offensive and provide them with opportunities to create art, fresh imagery, original songs that corroborate their experiences and challenge the status quo in Baltimore’s cultural arts community.”
Saturday, May 2, beginning at 12:30 p.m.
For more information, please contact Ashley Myers at firstname.lastname@example.org, or (443) 934-1972.
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The Youth Resiliency Institute is a program under the umbrella of Fusion Partnerships, Inc., a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization registered in the state of Maryland. The Youth Resiliency Institute is dedicated to inspiring realization of the authentic self in children, youth and young adults in Baltimore. We encourage and support authentic living in the service of just, joyful and sustainable communities.