Boot Camp Vets Stand Firm With Mr. “One Blood”

In the past couple of months, a wave of reggae collaborations has surfaced across genres of music—from the lover’s rock of Shaggy’s “You Girl” featuring Ne-Yo to A$AP Ferg saluting “Shabba Ranks” to Nicki Minaj and Busta Rhymes providing dance lessons with “Twerk It” to Selena Gomez trying to walk “Like A Champion” in Buju Banton’s footsteps. Some collaborations represent sheer genius while others lean on loud yelling and Ja-fakin’ accents. The best usually feature a reggae artist’s vocals, giving the tracks authenticity. Case in point: Boot Camp Clik’s Smif N Wessun (General Steele & Tek) have paid homage to reggae music ever since their inception. Their classic “Sound Bwoy Bureill,” from their 1995 debut album, Dah Shinin, painted on a canvas of echoes from old-school dancehall verbal artillery. The verbal brushstrokes of Fuzzy Jones’s  intro and Smif N’ Wessun’s use of Jamaican patois-infused rap, create a masterpiece of hip-hop reggae fusion that could only have been birthed in Brooklyn. This warning was also sampled on Kanye West smash hit, “Mercy” in 2012. “Sound Bwoy Buriell” also features lyrics from Buju Banton’s “Boom Bye Bye” making it a BoOM tune by far! Video After The Jump…

Fast forward to 2013, as the group prepares to release a new EP tastefully seasoned with some serious reggae vocals on their first single, “Solid Ground.” Junior Reid’s voice has been featured on over a dozen hip hop collaborations including, The Game’s “ Its Okay (One Blood), ” Alicia Keys “No One” remix and MIM’S debut single,  “This is why I’m Hot,” to name a few. What better sonic foundation to build this new single on? But instead of killing sound boys in a clash, “Smif N Wessun” are battling all forms of oppression on the song with spiritual enlightenment. Produced by Beatnick & K-Salaam, the tune gives Smif N Wessun space to vent about atrocities and the day-to-day challenges of surviving in the hood. The video directed by Guy Belloch features Junior Reid and Smif N Wessun in Crown Heights and Bed Stuy Brooklyn. Most notable are the images of Notorious “B.I.G.” on T-shirts, NYPD patrol and the “Power to the People” fist raise. The use of black and white cinematography gives the visual effect of flipping through a newspaper. The inflections of color come in when pearls of wisdom drop over the beat. Both the song and video supersede in terms of delivery and leave high expectations for the new EP entitled “Born and Raised” set for release on December 3, 2013.

I can only keep it real when I’m on the battlefield” Run that…

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