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HEAR THIS: Stephen “Ragga” Marley ft. Jo Mersa & Cedella Marley “Revelation Party”

HEAR THIS: Stephen "Ragga" Marley ft. Jo Mersa & Cedella Marley "Revelation Party"

Ragga, Joseph & Nice Time Keeping The Party Of Their Life

Talk about right on time. Between terror attacks and fearmongering folly-ticians, the world seems to have gone mad in recent days and weeks. Leave it to the Marley fam to bring about a cure for our ills—even if only for a while. Today Stephen Marley dropped his latest full length effort, Revelation Vol II: The Fruit Of Life. A handful of singles have been preceded today’s long-awaited release. The latest highlighted single, “Revelation Party,” proves to be a potential anthem not just for our current time, but for any future not so pleasant day ahead. The song is a real family affair as it features Stephen’s son Jo Mersa Marley and his sister Cedella Marley. The earliest versions of this song took the form of a father-and-son acoustic duet between Stephen and Jo Mersa, but this official album version features full-scaled live band. The instrumentation generates more life—a different kind of energy—accentuating the spirit and hope that drives this song. And weaving Cedella’s harmonies through the fabric of this recording maximizes this songs’ potential in a way I don’t think the acoustic version could’ve done. And that’s coming from someone who is a pretty big fan of the acoustic version. The song says it’s OK to celebrate life in a dark time. Thinking about it, what better time is there to celebrate? A dark time can manifest as a result of the lack of celebrating our every day to day. So consider “Revelation Party” both a cure and a preventative to any potential dark or hard day ahead. We all hope to avoid them, but should that next dark day come, rest assured you have a musical outlet to alleviate the stress.  Audio After The Jump… Read more »

HEAR THIS: Busy Signal “Colder”

HEAR THIS: Busy Signal "Colder"

The Turf Prez Touches Up A Classic King Jammy’s Riddim

Some things just can’t be improved upon, but that doesn’t mean they should be left alone. King Jammy’s 1987 “Score” Riddim is a perfect example, a track that defines digital lovers rock. There was something about Steely’s warm and easy computer bassline and those crstyal-clear twinkling high notes combined with Clevie’s tastefully understated drum programming. The riddim became an instant classic when it first appeared on Frankie Paul’s “I Know The Score” from FP’s crucial Original Sara album, with additional  versions by Sanchez and Thriller U available on 12-inch discomix. A quarter century later Busy Signal has brought the riddim forward with a brand new song entitled “Colder.” Utilizing Edi Fitzroy’s distinctive stammer-phrase on the hook, the Turf Prez sings for the girls,  evokes bygone dancehall days, and pays homage to the elders who paved the way. The only thing worth changing is the title, cause this tune is definitely #Hotted. “Fe real, fe real, fe real pull up that one from top.” Audio After The Jump… Read more »

HEAR THIS: Meleku “What to Make”

HEAR THIS: Meleku "What to Make"

Sizzla Kalonji’s Son Links With XTM Nation & Keeps The Fire Blazing

Asking the musical question “What to make of this world,” Meleku, the son of Sizzla Kalonji, steps forward on his own quest for wisdom, knowledge and overstanding. Continuing a multi-generational collaboration, Meleku has linked up with Kareem “Remus” Burrell, son of legendary producer Philip “Fatis” Burrell, the man who first championed a young Sizzla (born Miguel Collins) on the mighty Xterminator label. Just as Remus keeps carrying his father’s works forward with his new XTM Nation imprint, likewise Meleku is keeping his father’s lyrical fire blazing.  Audio & Video After The Jump… Read more »

Reasoning with Christopher Martin:
“I’m a Lover from Birth”

Reasoning with Christopher Martin: "I'm a Lover from Birth"

“SssMartin” Speaks on Spearheading the Sugar Reggae Movement

Ever since winning Digicel Rising Stars way back in 2005, Christopher Martin has emerged as one of Jamaica’s premiere entertainers, topping the charts with hits like “Cheaters Prayer” and starring in the recent motion picture Destiny. But his rise to the top of the game stretches back long before he appeared on the television talent show. As he explains in an exclusive Boomshots interview, Martin started singing in church at the age of four, progressing through school choirs and glee clubs. “I sang every chance I got,” he tells Reshma B, “and it’s been niceness ever since.” The singer’s new album is due to drop on V.P. Records this October. The lead single is “Under The Influence,” a track on Anju Blaxx’s “Mildew” Riddim. He says he does in fact prefer making love under the influence—but not so much that he can’t remember the fun. Born on Valentine’s Day, Martin says he’s a “lover from birth” who understands that his core fanbase is female. “I feel like I do this type of music cause it’s real to me,” says Martin, who calls his specialty “sugar reggae” because it’s extras sweet. This coming Saturday Chris Martin will be pouring out some sugar at Reggae Sumfesr in Montego Bay. I the meantime check out the reasoning.  Video After The Jump… Read more »

HEAR THIS: Akae Beka “Like Rhyme”

vaughnBOOMSHOTSVaughn Benjamin’s Poetry In Song

A master of word play, Vaughn Benjamin (Akae Beka), the prolific songwriter of Midnite Band, supersedes our expectations on his recent solo album, “Portals,” I-grade Records. This July, the artist from St. Croix  trods out for the “Portals Summer Tour.” Manager, Preston Powell predicts that venues will be bursting at the seams for fans who adore this “solo project,” with conscious hits about relationships, spirituality and life.  Fan favorite,  “Like Rhyme” really demonstrates the creativity and intellectual prowess of this lyricist. The entire song is poetry with each line reverberating a natural wave of consciousness.  Moreover it is not just the way the words sound but how the message is physically delivered and neatly packaged into one song.

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A Musical Response to Injustice

A Musical Response to Injustice

Lyrics for a Perilous Time

This is a reflective Sabbath, with the killing of two African American males by police officers. What followed was an uproar on social media and peaceful protests across the United States. The recorded narratives of “what happened” reveal the loss of human life for trivial reasons such as a routine traffic stop or walking. This highlights an overt disparity in law enforcement in the United States.

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WATCH THIS: Protoje Talks “Can’t Feel No Way”

WATCH THIS: Protoje Talks "Can't Feel No Way"

Diggy British Talks “Royalty Free”

Since Protoje’s remarkable Ancient Future joined the legions of crucial reggae albums overlooked by the Grammy Awards, Diggy British hasn’t slowed down at all. The five songs comprising the B-side of his latest release, Royalty Free, have set the Internets ablaze since it was uploaded to his Soundcloud, demonstrating the full range of the artists’ creative powers. One track in particular, “Can’t Feel No Way,” produced by Tracker John, M.D., stood out from the rest—promptly getting added to BBC Radio 1 and showcasing sicker than your average flows and rhyme patterns that far surpass any “reggae revival” limitations. Today Boomshots proudly premieres the visuals for said track, along with Reshma B’s exclusive interview with Protoje, wherein Diggy British details the albums’ diverse influences, from Makaveli’s Seven Day Theory to Twin of Twins Stir It Up, and confirms for the record that he does in fact, feel no way whatsoever. Videos After The Jump… Read more »

WATCH THIS: Micah Shemaiah featuring Rassi Hardknocks “Legal” Official Music Video

WATCH THIS: Micah Shemaiah featuring Rassi Hardknocks "Legal" Official Music Video

Check out the new video for “Legal”  with Cameos from Yaadcore, Keida and Exile Di Brave

The decriminalization of marijuana remains a huge topic of interest for reggae music in 2016.  Reggae has always been a medium for social commentary and these lyrics reflect global changes regarding this plant. The highly anticipated visual for the Uncle Ben (Channel One) produced song was released this week. The video directed by Sherkhan Chiffre of Raatid Magic Films features Micah Shemaiah, Rassi Hardknocks and friends handling the herb discretely. Video After The Jump

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WATCH THIS: Omari Banks ft. Duane Stephenson “System Set” Official Music Video PREMIERE

WATCH THIS: Omari Banks ft. Duane Stephenson "System Set" Official Music Video PREMIERE

Omari Fights The Right Fight

The quest for wisdom knowledge and overstanding is not about having all the answers. The real major key—shout to DJ Khaled—is asking the right questions. The Crown Prince of Reggae, Dennis Emmanuel Brown, once sang a song that asked “Do you know what it means to have a revolution?” Elsewhere D. Brown observed “Them ah fight them mothers, them ah kill them brothers, some ah fight them sister, some a fight them father,” then he asked a musical question that was more like a challenge: “Who they gonna fight when the right fight comes?” Although Dennis passed away without receiving a good answer, there were other seekers who picked up his line of questioning. On Tarrus Riley’s seminal 2006 album Parables  Singy Singy sang a song called “System Set” (subtitled “Willie Lynch Syndrome” after a notorious speech attributed to a West Indian slave master who advised that the best way to control unruly slaves was to, in other words, to divide and rule.)  “In the race for a dollar, friends turn sour—even Mama ‘gainst Dada,” Riley’s song observed. “And I heard that gunshot ah shower over rice and flour—This we can’t allow yah. It makes no sense to fight for food. I’d rather wait for harvest.” And then he completes the thought with a powerful question: “Tell me who and what it profits?” (The modern day Willie Lynches of course, people like Donald Trump.) Today Boomshots proudly premieres the music video for Omari Banks’ song of the same name. But make no mistake, the 2016 version of “System Set” is not a cover. The melody and lyrics are completely new, although the fearless rebel spirit remains the same. This song is more like a continuation of an ongoing search for wisdom, knowledge, and overstanding—making use of word, sound, and power to ask a burning question, one that remains unanswered from that time till this time: “Do you know what  you’re fighting for?” Video After The Jump…
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Spice talks Culture Clash and Why She Doesn’t Want You To Call Her Queen of the Dancehall

Spice talks Culture Clash and Why She Doesn't Want You To Call Her Queen of the Dancehall

Just Call The Mad Gyal “Queen of the Stage”

One day before the Red Bull Culture Clash, Reshma B sat down with  Spice for an exclusive Boomshots interview. As usual the Mad Gyal and the Reggae Girl About Town kept it 100% real. In the first segment of their epic 3-part reasoning session, they speak about Spice’s huge international fanbase, her latest tunes to touch the road, and how to do the “Indicator” dance. In the second segment, they speak about whether Vybz Kartel is the new King of the Dancehall, what that means for Beenie Man, and why she doesn’t want to be called the Queen of the Dancehall. As usual the Mad Gyal and the Reggae Girl About Town kept it 100% real. In the third and final segment of their epic reasoning session, Spice shares her thoughts on the Red Bull Culture Clash, how she will do whatever it takes to win, and why Mixpak’s dancehall lineup should not be considered “under dogs” since Jamaica originated the whole clash culture. Video After The Jump… Read more »

HEAR THIS: Jah 9 “Humble Mi”

HEAR THIS: Jah 9 "Humble Mi"

Tune in to Jah9’s Frequency

A few months ago, Jah9 performed a new song for one of BBC 1Xtra’s Jamaica live sessions, voicing out at Anchor Studios in Kingston. The official version of the song is here and it’s evey bit as powerful as that version. “Try to be humble cause blessed are the meek,” Garnet Silk once sang. But there’s nothing meek about Jah9 when she’s plugged in to the source of the sacred. If this song is any indication her forthcoming album 9 is sure to be a scorcher. Audio After The Jump…
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Sean Paul Signs With Island Records

Sean Paul Signs With Island Records

Dutty Paul Has The Last Laugh

Two years after parting ways with Atlantic Records, Grammy-winning dancehall superstar Sean Paul has signed a new contract with Island Records, according to Kevin Jackson at the Jamaica Observer. After making history with a series of chart-topping releases for VP/Atlantic, Sean has stayed Gettin’ Busy as an independent artist, recording hit features with acts ranging from Enrique Iglesias to Major Lazer and most recently Sia. The Australian-born star’s Dutty Paul duet “Cheap Thrills,” has already topped Billboard’s Dance Music Club Play chart and now sits at #6 on the Hot 100. Video & Full Story After The Jump… Read more »