Veteran singer John Holt is dead

October 20th, 2014

Veteran Jamaican reggae singer John Holt died in a London hospital on Sunday. He was 69.

Copeland Forbes, Holt’s manager since 2006, confirmed the entertainer’s passing.“John died at 2:40 am English time. His [John’s] nephew informed of his death,” Forbes told OBSERVER ONLINE.

via Veteran singer John Holt is dead – Latest News – JamaicaObserver.com.

Thieves steal Meddy Ranks’ rare reggae recordings

September 25th, 2014

An acclaimed record producer said he feared for his life after £250,000-worth of tracks were stolen from his Birmingham home.

The haul lost by Meddy Ranks included a clutch of rare and unreleased works by reggae legends.

Meddy, who stored the tracks on his laptop, said he now feared repercussions from associates in Jamaica who had been expecting a slice of the profits.

via Thieves steal Meddy Ranks’ rare reggae recordings.

Taj Weekes Talks About Real Love, Herb, and Reggae Music

September 25th, 2014

From the Caribbean island of St. Lucia to the stage at the Funky Biscuit in Boca where he’ll be performing this Friday night with his band Adowa, reggae singer Taj Weekes has undergone a long, interesting musical journey."We would sing to our parents in the living room," he reminisced about his early crooning days as the youngest of ten children.

“We would sing Nat King Cole, Sly & the Family Stone, the Jackson 5, anything we would hear on the radio. My brothers and I then started a cover band, and I had my own radio program where I’d play whatever music I liked at 13.”

via Taj Weekes Talks About Real Love, Herb, and Reggae Music.

Honouring LKJ

August 19th, 2014

IN 1970s Britain, the sounds of Marley, Burning Spear and Linton Kwesi Johnson were the soundtrack for militant black youth protesting racism in that country.

On October 20, Johnson will receive the Order of Distinction for his contribution to the development of Jamaican music.

The OD, Jamaica’s fifth highest civic honour, will be awarded during the annual National Honours and Awards ceremony at King’s House.

via Honouring LKJ.

Artists gather for benefit to aid local reggae legend Ras Jahn

August 19th, 2014

Bob Marley sang about “One Love” and if there is one love today it’s Ras Jahn Bullock: More than a dozen acts and DJs will show their love for the local reggae legend today during a benefit at The Os in in Sunderland.Bullock, of both Loose Caboose and The Alchemystics, was injured in an accident outside his home last winter.

Today’s show will raise money to help him pay his medical bills.An icon in the regional music scenes for five decades, Bullock and Loose Caboose brought many top reggae artists to the area back in the 1970s and 1980s. The band was formed in Wendell in the early 1970s. In 1977, Bullock joined on percussion and backing vocals, and soon began writing, eventually becoming the front man of Loose Caboose.

via Artists gather for benefit to aid local reggae legend Ras Jahn.

To the world – Taking music of the region mainstream

August 10th, 2014

When Jesse Serwer was a beat reporter, he covered the reggae/Caribbean scene for mainstream publications such as Rolling Stone and The Fader.But, he never thought entertainers and events from the region got their just due.

As editor/writer for the website LargeUp.com, Serwer, founder/publisher Dave Susser and chief photographer Denmark-born Martei Korley have sought to correct that imbalance by focusing solely on Caribbean entertainment.

via To the world.

Sell off! – Sumfest’s dancehall night brings out thousands

July 20th, 2014

Well over 25,000 patrons poured into the Catherine Hall Entertainment Complex in Montego Bay for Reggae Sumfest’s Dancehall Night on Thursday night.

Traditionally, the annual event enjoys huge support from fans who make the journey to see their favourite dancehall stars in action.

via Sell off! – Sumfest’s dancehall night brings out thousands.

Bunny Wailer: reggae warrior

July 20th, 2014

There are certain things which get Bunny Wailer very angry, but we’ll come to them in a bit. Let’s start with the history lesson, one the man himself brandishes with great and warranted pride.

Neville O’Riley Livingston is the last of the original tribe of men and women that emerged in Kingston in the early 1960s as The Wailers who is still making music. The others are either dead (Bob Marley, Peter Tosh, Junior Braithwaite, Cherry Smith) or are seemingly retired (Beverley Kelso), but Wailer continues to preach the gospel.

via Bunny Wailer: reggae warrior.

Hearing Aide: Ziggy Marley’s ‘Fly Rasta’

June 8th, 2014

Ziggy Marley’s new musical offering Fly Rasta combines many of the essential elements that make up Ziggy Marley as a Rastafarian, music artist, and the son of a legend. The multifaceted  record reaches to the ends of the musical spectrum, touching on pop, roots, reggae, funk and soul. Marley easily navigates through numerous genres and influences, referring to his sonic hybrid appropriately as ‘Ziggy’ music. Now past the age reached by his famous father, Ziggy’s discography has now arrived at its natural maturity, taking on all aspects of Marley’s philanthropist pursuits in its content and context.

The album expresses the basic tenants of Rastafarianism, love, respect, hopefulness and nature through childlike expressionism uncluttered by pretense or unneeded obscure lyrical references. There is a consistency of focus on the record that is retained regardless of the thematic or genre excursions undertaken.

via Hearing Aide: Ziggy Marley’s ‘Fly Rasta’.

Mad for reggae in Samba land

June 8th, 2014

Jamaican music has resonated with Brazilians for nearly 50 years, starting with Jimmy Cliff’s song Waterfall in 1968.Waterfall won the International Song Contest that year. It was so popular in Brazil that Cliff moved to the Samba-mad country the following year.

Cliff remains the biggest reggae act in Brazil. Bob Marley, who visited in early 1980 with Jacob Miller; Dennis Brown, Gregory Isaacs, Eric Donaldson, The Gladiators and The Congos, all have a strong base there.

via Mad for reggae in Samba land.