Hidden Powers: Reggae Girl Yazmeen Jamieson and her saviour in music

Collage of goalkeeper Yazmeen Jamieson.

Yazmeen Jamieson is an accomplished goalkeeper and is no stranger to anyone who watched the 2019 Women’s World Cup in France. The Canadian-born Jamaica international has also plied her trade in Sweden and New Zealand.

Her love for football came about after a childhood hand injury cut short her ballet and tennis lessons. Initially playing as a striker for a local girls team, it became more and more apparent that her athleticism would suit her as a goalkeeper.

This article though, isn’t about the evident footballing talents in Jamieson’s possession. In fact, she is one of the many footballers who are not just talented on the football pitch, but also have hidden powers.

In this case, it’s several talents all rolled into one woman. She sat down with Her Football Hub to talk about her impressive skills away from the pitch.

A younger Yazmeen Jamieson performs violin.
Jamieson plays the violin in a school production.

“My hidden passion — well I actually have a few,” she said, stopping herself momentarily before listing off numerous awe-inducing abilities.

“I grew up playing the violin before I even got into football, then that transitioned into me playing the cello, then the trombone. After that I taught myself the drums.”

She elaborated as more revelations rolled off her tongue.

“In terms of the artistic side of me, I feel like music has always been a passion of mine. I did it all throughout high school. Now, in terms of free time, I’ve been using that to develop that and get better.”

How childhood shaped her passion

Showing candour, Jamieson noted that her relationship with the violin wasn’t an easy ride in the early stages.

“I started violin when I was about four. I wasn’t very good at all in the beginning but as they say, practice makes perfect. Eventually I became really quite good.”

Young Yazmeen Jamieson performs the cello.
Jamieson plays the cello in a children’s choir.

Explaining the non-obvious transition into playing the trumpet, Jamieson reminisced about time spent with her father as a young girl.

“My dad bought a trumpet. He’s not very musically inclined but I thought it was really cool that he just picked that up and decided to go with it.”

Prejudice reared its ugly head

“I have a funny story actually, well really, it’s not funny,” Jamieson reflected, before pausing to collect her thoughts as she recalled the disappointing moment her music teacher dissuaded her from following in her fathers footsteps.

“I wanted to play the trumpet [like my dad] but my music teacher said my lips were too big. [Looking back] it’s kind of funny to me because some of the best trumpet players in the world are black.”

Thankfully for Jamieson, her mother acted emphatically when informed about what had been said to her daughter.

“She pulled out some books and was like, ‘here are some of the best trumpet players in the world, they have full lips, they have black features and you can play the trumpet if you want to.'”

Ultimately, Jamieson took up the trombone rather than the trumpet and became an accomplished performer.

The drummer inspired by church

“Just growing up in and around the church, originally I was just to shy to sing and I still wanted desperately to be part of that church environment,” the Jamaican international said.

Initially the then multi-talented musician had to convince the church to let her join in.

“I just had to figure [the drums] out. My granddad used to clean the church and I’d go and help him clean but then practice on the drum kit. I’d watch YouTube videos and experiment on the them and eventually just got really good.”

“Music saved me”

Jamieson went on to open up about the importance of music and how it became a pillar of strength in her personal and professional life.

“On a personal level, I think music is something that really saved me. I didn’t know for my entire life until recently that I had ADHD (Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder). I was only diagnosed with [it] in 2021.

“A lot of the coping mechanisms that I have acquired throughout my life in order to handle the symptoms come from music. I didn’t know it was music that was keeping me balanced.

“I tend to get overwhelmed or my brain would be hyper-stimulated and music gives me something to focus on and it really helps me.

“My teammates in the Jamaica national team call me ‘DJ Jamieson’ because I always have my headphones on my head.”

As well as embracing her passion for music, Jamieson has enjoyed building her career in football. She made her senior debut in 2019, representing Papakura City in New Zealand in a bid to bolster her chances of representing the Jamaican national team.

Jamieson currently plays for Ontario’s Simcoe County Rovers and has made three senior international appearances for the Reggae Girlz.

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