Monthly archive July, 2015

HEAR THIS: Kayla Bliss “Red Hott”

HEAR THIS: Kayla Bliss "Red Hott"

After dropping a few hot joints alongside the likes of Jesse Royal and Sizzla on XTM Nation productions like the “Long Days, Short Nights” Riddim, Kayla Bliss steps up today with a brand new one-away single called “Red Hott,” which premiered today via Mass Appeal. The rhythm track, an update of Alton Ellis’s classic “Can I Change My Mind” featuring Sly Dunbar on drums and Donald Dennis on bass, bubbles like soup on a fire while Kayla sings about why she, Kareem “Reemus” Burrell, and the whole XTM Family are, in fact, “Red Hott.” Even when the Brooklyn-based singer is making moves with one of Jamaica’s most respected production teams she makes sure her “nails well done… hair intact”—oh yeah, and she always burns “the stinkest of hash.” What better way to mark the late great Phillip “Fatis” Burrell’s birthday than to continue his musical legacy? Audio After The Jump…
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Sumfest 2015 Dancehall Night Preview: Will Thursday Be Ladies Night?

Sumfest 2015 Dancehall Night Preview: Will Thursday Be Ladies Night?

Do The Ladies Run This M@th@f@CK@?

Yes, it’s that time again. The Summer blockbuster, the Greatest Reggae Show on Earth, Reggae Sumfest is about to go down in Montego Bay, Jamaica. Although international headliner Rick Ross was unavoidably detained due to a little pistol-whipping incident at his multimillion-dollar estate, word is that T.I. will be stepping in to fill his shoes. Meanwhile there’s no danger of Common or Jennifer Hudson pistol-whipping anybody between now and this weekend. But the reality is that people visit Jamaica to hear Jamaican music. As Morgan Heritage has pointed out, there isn’t even a reggae night at Reggae Sumfest, but the final two nights—previously known as International Nights 1 & 2, and this year renamed Show Time and Star Time—feature a blend of overseas rap, R&B, and pop stars mixed with legendary Jamaican acts like Beenie Man and Cocoa Tea, as well as artists like Jesse Royal and Kabaka Pyramid, representing Jamaica’s “Roots Revival” movement that’s been gaining momentum at home and abroad.  But if you ask us, Reggae Sumfest is all about Dancehall Night—which always seems to draw the biggest crowd. This years should be no excpetion, with stars like Capleton, Popcaan, and Dexta Daps on the bill. But this year, for the first time, Lady Saw will be headlining the biggest night of the festival. She is the first woman to close Dancehall Night, and it’s only fitting since she was officially crowned Queen of the Dancehall on this stage. But Saw is not the only dancehall diva who will be rocking the mic at Catherine Hall this year.  Details After The Jump… Read more »

Til Shiloh: Blessed Earthstrong Buju Banton

Til Shiloh: Blessed Earthstrong Buju Banton

It’s not an easy road, but once we have life, we have the opportunity to live, dream and hope. On his earthstrong, we salute the reggae icon, Grammy winning artist, Buju Banton and the amazing music he blessed the world with so far. As Gargamel marks his 42nd birthday behind bars—having instructed his defense team to cease all appeals, and looking forward to his release in 2019—we remember the words he told Boomshots many years ago: Buju: “Well nothing last forever and one thing I hope and pray… that is that all man and all true works must receive their justice. We are not just pawns here to make you dance and gyrate. We are here to uplift, educate you, and to stimulate you in all ways and every way. Yes?”  More After The Jump… Read more »

WATCH THIS: Jesse Royal “Gimme Likkle Herb / Finally” Official Music Video

WATCH THIS: Jesse Royal "Gimme Likkle Herb / Finally" Official Music Video

Palace Pikney and Notis Link Up Inna Herbalistic Affair

One good thing about music, Bob Marley once observed, when it his you feel no pain. The same could be said of ganja, the healing of the nation, the leaf of life, coming to a dispensary near you. And now that the whole medicinal vape industry has taken hold, that green weed / brown weed color barrier is getting a lot more complex. You might get a dab of wax, a crumble, a shatter, a sativa-dominant indica hybrid. But down in Jamaica, Jesse Royal likes to keep it simple. On his latest single, a collab with the drum and bass duo Notis, Jesse just says “Gimme Likkle Herb” and you already know what time it is. The song says “likkle” herb but judging by this brand-new (directed by Jay Will for Game Over Films) Mr. Royal seems to have found himself an abundant supply. And check how well-worn the man’s cutting board is! Jesse may be taking it slow-slow-slow-slow but make sure you check this  video fast. Video After The Jump… Read more »

The Heatmakerz’ Baddest Reggae Samples

The Heatmakerz' Baddest Reggae Samples

Rsonist Breaks Down The Reggae Roots Of The Heatmakerz’ Crack Music

Gregory Green aka Rsonist was born in Mandeville, Jamaica and moved to NYC as a youth. He was fascinated by music all his life, and grew up to establish The Heatmakerz production team in the early 2000s. They made their name working with Cam’Ron and The Diplomats, as well as other big name rappers like Lil Wayne and Fat Joe. The Heatmakerz production style features lots of high-energy beats, sped-up soul loops, and reggae samples galore—a sound that came to be known as “Crack Music.” After shooting an episode of Rhythm Roulette for our peoples at Mass Appeal, Rsonist spoke with Boomshots and broke down the inspiration behind some of his best-known reggae flips. Interview After The Jump & Countdown Above In The Gallery Read more »

Chronixx & Dre Island Shock Out In Central London

Chronixx & Dre Island Shock Out In Central London

Zinc Fence Redemption Rock Out In A NeoClassical Courtyard Overlooking the River Thames

As Chronixx  and his trusty Zinc Fence Redemption band continue stampeding through the UK on the Reparations Tour, certain moments seem to stand out as obvious milestones. This weekend’s historic performance at Somerset House, a landmark neoclassical building in central London just overlooking the River Thames, would surely qualify as one of those moments. Opening act Dre Island took the vibes way up, playing the piano, singing, and DJing with the Zinc Fence Redemption. Then it was time for the Steam Minister to come through and make sure everything stay way way up. Staging a massive reggae concert in such a stately setting as Somerset House a powerful statement, especially when the artist in question has embarked upon his “Reparations Tour” as is singing songs like “Captcha Land” and “Start A Fire” and “Here Comes Trouble.” Video & Photos After The Jump…
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UB40 & Nature Rock the Royal Botanic Gardens

UB40 & Nature Rock the Royal Botanic Gardens

Veteran British Band  & A Rising Jamaican Star Shine At England’s Kew The Music Fest

It’s been more than 30 years since the British reggae supergroup UB40 dropped their breakthrough album, Labour of Love. These cover versions of classic Jamaican rock steady and reggae tracks—songs like “Red Red Wine” and “Cherry O Baby” and “Johnny Too Bad”—transformed this Birmingham, England reggae ensemble into a worldwide phenomenon. Original UBs lead vocalist Ali Campbell and DJ Astro got back with the old rhythm section and put on a big show this weekend at the Royal Botanic Gardens in Kew, England. Their set was predictably brilliant, but the opening act Nature was the real surprise. Before he came to England, Nature was a rising star in Jamaica’s dancehall scene. His conscious lyrics and energetic performance style has made him a rising star at home—currently promoting his new album, Life’s Journey—but to the rest of the world he is virtually unknown. The chance to open up for UB40 at a massive outdoor show in England might just be one of the biggest opportunities of Nature’s career so far—and he was not about to let it pass him by. Watch the artist go hard on the big stage.  Video After The Jump… Read more »

Jah Cure Speaks on The Cure Album: “I’m trying something new with a new feel—we need that in reggae.”

Jah Cure Speaks on The Cure Album: "I’m trying something new with a new feel—we need that in reggae."

“I’m trying to implement some of the old and modify it and move forward,” says Cure.

From the first single, to the first video, to the first glimpse of the cover art, Jah Cure’s latest album—titled simply The Cure—has had in suspense for months now. At last the waiting is over and we can dive into the fullness of Cure’s sixth studio album. Featuring hits like “All of Me,” “That Girl,” and “Life We Live,” the fourteen-track album was produced by Cure himself, who says he hopes the album we help usher in a new sound within reggae music. Right now the #WorldSinger is over in Europe blazing a trail for Jamaican music. But in the days just before the album dropped, Boomshots caught up with Cure via telephone to talk about his latest work of art. Interview After the Jump… Read more »

DOWNLOAD: Konshens Mixtape
“Money Plan Complete”

DOWNLOAD: Konshens Mixtape "Money Plan Complete"

Like Kanye Said Money Isn’t Everything, Not Having It IS
Konshens put it plain from early out. The first time he stopped by the Strictly Boomshots show he explained how he drew a musical line in the sand and said “this year me haffi be the winner.” The reason? Not vanity, but because “me nah go me yard without the youth dem dinner.” Well it surely worked and Konshens has been winning for some time now. And here the DJ comes again with some more musica; motivation. “Bless my plans Almighty Jah… I wake up with a medz like, teach them youths to be wise and medz right.” As Konshens himsef puts it: “Some ppl are just lucky, some people inherited money,some ppl got all the good connections,some ppl got unbelievable undeniable talent, some got all the above mentioned…….. Some just worked nonstop harder and smarter everyday and refused to not succeed. Ppl have been born rich and turn out to nothing and others have been born in the worst situations and places humanly possible and turn out to be ICONS on earth… #noexcuses #Work MIXTAPE OUT NOW!!” Download Link After The Jump…

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Soca Wuk: Classic Foreigner Frank and New Skinny Banton

Soca Wuk: Classic Foreigner Frank and New Skinny Banton


New and Old Soca Regarding Employee Benefits

Summer time brings the hot calypso tunes with the double entrende narratives. These songs make you want to dance and laugh out loud at the same time. The ones regarding employment are interesting and usually involve a days work, where the laboror (also the narrator) is hired to perform specific duties in exchange for employee benefits. One  song that comes to mind is the classic bajan hit by Foreigner Frank, “Lawn Um Down.” This song is so creative, especially with all of its onomatopoeia, the story of working for “Mrs. Bailey” just comes alive. More After The Jump… Read more »

HEAR THIS: Michael Rose “Warrior”

HEAR THIS: Michael Rose "Warrior"

Bless Up the Grammy Winner From Waterhouse On Another Earthstrong

“Life is a gamble,” sings Michael “Grammy” Rose on the title track from his powerful 2007 roots rock reggae album produced by the Twilight Circus crew. “Cease fire!” Since joining forces with Black Uhuru in 1977, Rose has remained at the forefront of reggae music outernationally—whether by cultivating and celebrating a “Stalk of Sinsemilla” or shaking up society with “Guess Who’s Coming To Dinner,” bouncing to the “Sponji Reggae” or collecting the first ever Grammy Award for Best Reggae Album with Uhuru’s Anthem. As Mr. Rose marks his 58th birthday today, Boomshots salute a musical soldier who never cease fire yet, just like the youths of Eglington with them Remington. Audio After The Jump… Read more »

HEAR THIS: John Holt “My Heart Is Gone”

HEAR THIS: John Holt "My Heart Is Gone"

Celebrating The Birth of a Legend

On this day in 1947, Winston “John” Holt was born in Greenwich Farm, Jamaica. His destiny in music was clear before he hit his teenage years, and he soon became a standout at the talent show circuit. His first recordings included “I Cried A Tear” for producer Leslie Kong and “Rum Bumper” a duet with Alton Ellis, for producer Randy Chin. He would of course go on to become a founding member of The Paragons, as well as one of Jamaican music’s most successful and prolific songwriters in his own right. He penned a rich catalog filled with internationally known hits, and yet everyone seems to have their own personal favorite John Holt tune. Before he grew his dreadlocks and starting singing more rebellious songs like “Police in Helicopter,” he was known as a romantic balladeer with legions of female fans. Some consider him a pioneer of the lovers rock style of reggae that later caught on in the UK—where he made his home for many years. Somehow John Holt seemed to particularly familiar with the sadder side of love, as he displayed on songs like “Tonight” and this one, which he first recorded for Coxsone Dodd at Studio One, and then re-versioned for Phil Pratt’s Sunshot label. It hasn’t been quite a full year since John Holt’s death—and there’s something about that first birthday after someone passes away. Those of us who aren’t quite ready to let him go will know exactly what this song is all about. Audio After The Jump… Read more »