Category:American people of Martiniquais descent
This category has only the following subcategory.
This category has only the following subcategory.
1. Harry Belafonte – Harry Belafonte is an American singer, songwriter, actor, and social activist. One of the most successful CARIBBEAN AMERICAN pop stars in history and his breakthrough album Calypso is the first million-selling LP by a single artist. Belafonte is perhaps best known for singing The Banana Boat Song and he has recorded in many genres, including blues, folk, gospel, show tunes, and American standards. He has also starred in films, most notably in Otto Premingers hit musical Carmen Jones, Island in the Sun. Belafonte was a supporter of the Civil Rights Movement in the 1950s and 1960s. Throughout his career, he has been an advocate for political and humanitarian causes, such as the anti-apartheid movement, since 1987, he has been a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador. In recent years, he has been a critic of the policies of both the George W. Bush and Barack Obama presidential administrations. Harry Belafonte now acts as the American Civil Liberties Union celebrity ambassador for juvenile justice issues, Belafonte has won three Grammy Awards, including a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award, an Emmy Award, and a Tony Award. In 1989, he received the Kennedy Center Honors and he was awarded the National Medal of Arts in 1994. In 2014, he received the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award at the Academys 6th Annual Governors Awards, in March 2014, he was awarded an honorary doctorate from Berklee College of Music in Boston. His mother was born in Jamaica, the child of a Scottish white mother and his father also was born in Jamaica, the child of a black mother and Dutch Jewish father of Sephardi origins. This is all Harry says about his Jewish grandfather, whom he never met, “a white Dutch Jew who drifted over to the islands after chasing gold and diamonds, from 1932 to 1940, he lived with one of his grandmothers in her native country of Jamaica. When he returned to New York City, he attended George Washington High School after which he joined the Navy and served during World War II. In the 1940s, he was working as a assistant in NYC when a tenant gave him, as a gratuity. He fell in love with the art form and also met Sidney Poitier, the financially struggling pair regularly purchased a single seat to local plays, trading places in between acts, after informing the other about the progression of the play. He subsequently received a Tony Award for his participation in the Broadway revue John Murray Andersons Almanac, Belafonte started his career in music as a club singer in New York to pay for his acting classes. The first time he appeared in front of an audience, he was backed by the Charlie Parker band, with guitarist and friend Millard Thomas, Belafonte soon made his debut at the legendary jazz club The Village Vanguard. In 1952, he received a contract with RCA Victor and his first widely released single, which went on to become his signature song with audience participation in virtually all his live performances, was Matilda, recorded April 27,1953
2. Bob Kaufman – Bob Kaufman, born Robert Garnell Kaufman, was an American Beat poet and surrealist inspired by jazz music. In France, where his poetry had a following, he was known as the black American Rimbaud. Born in New Orleans, Louisiana, Kaufman was one of thirteen children and he claimed to be the son of a German-Jewish father and a Roman Catholic Black mother from Martinique, and that his grandmother practiced voodoo. At age eighteen, Kaufman joined the United States Merchant Marine, there, he met William S. Burroughs and Allen Ginsberg. In 1944 Bob Kaufman married Ida Berrocal and they had one daughter, Antoinette Victoria Marie, born in New York City in 1945. Kaufman moved to San Franciscos North Beach in 1958 and remained there for most of the rest of his life and he married Eileen Singe. in 1958, they had one child, Parker, named for Charlie Parker. Kaufman, a poet in the tradition, usually didnt write down his poems, and much of his published work survives by way of his wife Eileen. Like many beat writers, Kaufman became a Buddhist, in 1959, along with poets Allen Ginsberg, John Kelly, A. D. Winans, and William Margolis, he was one of the founders of Beatitude magazine. In 1959, Kaufman had a role in a movie called The Flower Thief. In 1961, Kaufman was nominated for Englands Guinness Poetry Award and he appeared on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson four times in 1970–1971. Kaufman frequently expressed his desire to be forgotten as both a writer and a person and he took a vow of silence after the assassination of John F. Kennedy, which lasted ten years. He was believed to return to silence in the early 80s. He died in 1986 from emphysema and cirrhosis, I didn’t know he was Bob Kaufman at the time. He had little pieces of Band-Aid tape all over his face and he came up to the cars, and he was babbling poetry into these cars. He came up to the car I was riding in, and my folks, I knew that this was exceptional use of the human voice and the human mind. His poetry made use of syncopation and meter. The critic Raymond Foye wrote about him, Adapting the harmonic complexities and spontaneous invention of bebop to poetic euphony and meter, Poet Jack Micheline said about Kaufman, I found his work to be essentially improvisational, and was at its best when accompanied by a jazz musician. Kaufman said of his own work, My head is a guitar, strung with tongues
3. Lorraine Toussaint – Lorraine Toussaint is a Trinidadian-American actress and producer. Toussaint began her career in theatre before supporting performances in such as Breaking In, Hudson Hawk. Toussaint later appeared as a regular cast member in the NBC police procedural Crossing Jordan and she co-starred in the ABC fantasy-drama series Forever, and is currently co-starring in the Fox comedy-drama Rosewood. Toussaint received critical acclaim and an Independent Spirit Award nomination for her performance in the 2012 drama film Middle of Nowhere, written and she later played the role of Amelia Boynton Robinson in the 2014 historical drama film Selma, directed by Ava DuVernay. Toussaint was born in Trinidad and Tobago, in an interview she said, I grew up under the British system, which I think is horrific for children -- very, very strict -- a system that did not recognize children as being individuals. You were small animals earning the right to be human, childhood for me then felt extraordinarily powerless, and as an artistic child who learned in alternative ways, it was hell. A good child was a child, and I was a very, very, good child. Her mother was a teacher, and brought Toussaint to live in Brooklyn in the late 1960s, Toussaint graduated from Manhattans High School of Performing Arts in 1978. She then attended the Juilliard Schools drama division as a member of Group 11, where her classmates in 1982 included Megan Gallagher, Penny Johnson Jerald, Jack Kenny, Toussaint graduated from Juilliard with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree. She then began her career as Shakespearean actress before tackling screen acting in television, Toussaint made her screen debut in 1983. In 1986 she played the role of widow of a man shot, Toussaint has made her film debut in the female lead role opposite Burt Reynolds in the crime comedy Breaking In. The film received reviews from critics, but flopped in box office. In 1991 she appeared opposite Bruce Willis in Hudson Hawk, and she also appeared in films Point of No Return, Mothers Boys, and Black Dog. She starred in show as Rene Jackson, a successful African-American lawyer, the series has received critical acclaim for Toussaints and Potts acting performances and writing, but never had big ratings. In 2001, Toussaint was a contender for a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series category. She also was nominated five times for a NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Actress in a Drama Series for her role, Any Day Now ended after four-season and 88 episodes. From 2002 to 2004, Toussaint had regular role of Dr. Elaine Duchamps in the NBC police procedural, in later years she guest-starred on Frasier, Judging Amy, The Closer, CSI, Crime Scene Investigation, ER, and NCIS. She also was regular opposite Holly Hunter in the TNT crime drama Saving Grace as Capt, kate Perry from 2007 to 2010