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Students’ Reggae Jingle Weaves Together Art and Agriculture

Submitted by: EARTH University

Categories: Academia, Sustainability

Posted: Nov 28, 2012 – 10:00 AM EST


GUACIMO, COSTA RICA, Nov. 28 /CSRwire/ - Proving that holiday cheer can come from the most unexpected of places, today EARTH University (www.earth.ac.cr) released a music video for an original holiday song written and performed by six of its agronomy students.

But then again, this isn’t your ordinary agricultural school. Nestled in the rainforest of Costa Rica’s Caribbean lowlands, EARTH is an international, non-profit university with 400 students, recruited primarily from economically-disadvantaged communities in more than 30 countries to become leaders in sustainable agriculture, conservation, ethical entrepreneurship and community development. 

With its catchy roots-reggae beat, “Christmas Feelings” is the first recorded song by Tribu (which means “Tribe” in Spanish), a student band with a self-described “Afro-Reggae-Caribbean” sound.   The six students, all in their first and second year of study at EARTH, come from Haiti, Nigeria, Guatemala and Costa Rica, and feel the powerful connection between their art and agriculture.

One of the members of Tribu, Grégory Laforest (’14, Haiti), passionately explains how upon graduation he wants to promote cultural enrichment in Haiti and the agricultural knowledge needed for food sovereignty: “I want to work with agriculture, but my music will be the ambassador, the thing that I’ll be using to get people involved in all the process.”

The music video starts with an introduction in the University’s open-air cafeteria where vocalist Niyi Sunday Omidire (’15, Nigeria) taps a spoon on a glass. The screen splits, and Niyi is joined by students who shake beans on a drying rack in the peri-urban garden, tap pencils against textbooks in a classroom, and run pens up and down spiral notebooks in the library—creating a rich and organic blend of sounds.  With a charismatic performance, EARTH’s president, José Zaglul quiets the groups, making way for the official version of “Christmas Feelings” and glimpses of this extraordinarily lush, diverse and captivating campus. The video ends with hundreds of dancing students and staff gathered on a picturesque plaza on the University’s campus.

The holiday video will be shared with shoppers of EARTH University bananas, which are grown sustainably on EARTH’s campus and sold exclusively at Whole Foods Market to generate much-needed resources for the Institution’s scholarship program.  During December, a special holiday sticker will be placed on every bunch of bananas inviting customers to view the video.

“This is a gift that our students and staff have created with much love. We hope it will put a smile on the face and a groove in the step of all of our customers, supporters and friends around the world this holiday season,” commented EARTH president, José Zaglul.  He adds that EARTH hopes that apart from spreading the joy of the holidays in the tropics, this video and song will help raise awareness for the Institution and its alumni’s contributions to build a better world. 

The music video for “Christmas Feelings is also available at www.earth.ac.cr/mygift. To express their appreciation, Tribu will share the downloadable music file of the song with anyone who donates online to EARTH University Foundation between today and January 1, 2013.

About EARTH University

Since 1990, EARTH University’s innovative educational approach has been preparing young people from Latin America, the Caribbean and other regions, including Africa and Asia, to contribute to the sustainable development of their countries and construct a prosperous and just society.  EARTH offers a rigorous four-year undergraduate program in agricultural sciences and natural resources management and a prestigious, international faculty, providing a world-class education that emphasizes science and technology, values, ethical entrepreneurship and environmental and social commitment.  Students graduate from EARTH with a licenciatura degree in the Agricultural Sciences, which is between a bachelor’s and a master’s degree of science.  For more information, visit www.earth.ac.cr.

About EARTH University Foundation

EARTH University Foundation was formed to support the educational vision of Costa Rica-based EARTH University through generous gifts from the global community and other programs and initiatives. The Foundation is a registered 501(c)(3) public charity headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia.  Tax-deductible contributions through EARTH University Foundation will help to provide a quality agricultural and entrepreneurial education to future leaders who would not otherwise have such opportunities.  To give a gift to EARTH through the EARTH University Foundation, visit www.earth.ac.cr.

About Tribu

Tribu is an African-Reggae-Caribbean band created by EARTH University students. The group formed two years ago, bringing together music and voices from around the world. These musicians are students of agronomy who see and feel the powerful connection between their art and agriculture.  Its members include: Fabián Calvo (’14, Costa Rica) on percussion; Gina Beauzil (’14, Haiti) on vocals; Grégory Laforest (’14, Haiti) on vocals, guitar, bass guitar, and drums; Issa Daniela Secaira (´14, Guatemala) on the rainstick; Niyi Sunday Omidire (’15, Nigeria) on vocals and the conga; and, Yamileh Jean Pierre (’14, Haiti) on vocals.  For quotes, photos and biographical information visit www.earth.ac.cr/mygift.

For more information, please contact:

Kristine Jiménez Director, Office of Communications
Phone: +011-506-2713-0289
Lucy Nunn Communications Assistant
Phone: +011-506-2713-4005


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