Interview with…Pitman Browne: Inklings of a Genius

Aged 72, Pitman has many strings on his artistic bow. An established author of five books and mentor for emerging writers; an exciting, performance poet; an interviewer and videographer (he has over 70 video on YouTube) a composer of exceptionally unique, classical music and a professional pianist, Pitman has been a cornerstone of the African Caribbean community in Nottingham since his arrival from Kingston, Jamaica in September 1962, aged 17.

“All I was told about England at school was the existence of the BBC symphony orchestra and Elvis Presley” said Pitman with his sardonic sense of humour. He recalls his, ‘polkadot experience’ living in various parishes in Jamaica and with what he calls, “a mixture of the good, the bad and the ugly”. “When I arrived in England I felt cheated because of the weather and living conditions. So I enrolled at Clarendon College and studied music and worked at Bairnswear knitwear factory in Basford. There was unemployment in the black community but there was always the chance of quickly getting another job -unlike now,” stated Pitman in his vocally poetic narrative, a mirror of his unique writing style.

“I remember the race riots in Nottingham in 1958. This is the subject of my book, Children Get Out of the Ghetto Mentality, self–published in 2000 and a must-read. This book was written to question and to explore youth subculture,” says Pitman. “There has been a terrible division in our culture. Broken relationships and marriages, the intake of banned substances, coupled with extreme entertainment and the desire for quick money. Where are the massive seizures of drugs collated from drug dealers by the police? My book asks these questions,” says Pitman with no fear in his being but the genuine desire to dig deep for answers.

Pitman is a man not afraid to venture into subjects many with stable careers and almost at the top rung of the career ladder would probably stay well clear of. “My first book called, Inklings of a Black Christ (Kitabu-Pet Publications, 1998) explores the premise that Jesus and the apostles were African men. This book examines scholarly research findings on this hidden belief and attempts to turn around misconceptions to their true order,” said Pitman with enigmatic passion.
Reflecting on his life and his future, Pitman concludes the interview by with reference to his autobiography titled, What Is My Mission? (2005) his last (but not final) book, which shares his personal feelings and details of his private life, “girls – a part of life I can’t reach so I leave it alone,” says Pitman.

Pitman Browne books:

  • Inklings of a Black Christ (1998)
  • Wishing Can Be Dangerous (1999)
  • Children Get Out of the Ghetto Mentality (2000)
  • Community Writing (2003)
  • What is My Mission? (2005)

To find out more, visit Pitman Browne’s website Order Pitman Browne’s books at Waterstone’s Bookshops or directly from Kitabu-Pet Publications:

Watch the interview on YouTube @

Story© Nottingham News Centre
An excerpt from aJamaicans in Nottingham: Narratives and Reflections Price £14.99. Hansib Publications
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