Entertainment News 2010 – column 2

Wyclef’s plea for quake-hit Haiti- Wyclef’s Skipping Records

Star’s charity repeatedly dissolved after failing to file reports
Musician Wyclef Jean’s charitable foundation–now the recipient of many donations big and small in the wake of the Haiti earthquake–has repeatedly had its corporate status dissolved for failing to file required state disclosure reports, records show. As seen below, the Florida Division of Corporations has, on four separate occasions over the past five years, sanctioned the Yele Haiti Foundation (the charity was incorporated in Florida in 1998 as the Wyclef Jean Foundation, but formally changed its name two months ago). The longest involuntarily dissolution lasted 26 months, ending in November 2008 when Jean’s organization provided Florida officials with overdue annual reports disclosing the identities of the group’s officers and directors, its registered agent, and office address. The foundation’s most recent dissolution occurred in September 2009, but was vacated a month later when the 37-year-old Jean’s group filed its disclosure report. As TSG reported yesterday, the Jean foundation’s records delinquency extended to the filing of its tax returns–and could make a prospective donor question whether the organizationally challenged foundation is a wise choice for disaster relief contributions. In August 2009, the group filed overdue tax returns for 2005, 2006, and 2007, documents showing that Jean and fellow board member Jerry Duplessis paid themselves at least $410,000 for services provided to the foundation. Duplessis, a bass player who has toured with Jean, co-owns a New York City recording studio with the performer, as well as a Haiti-based production company.

Actor Jimmy Jean-Louis Leads PADF-OAS`s Haiti Relief Campaign-PRNewswire-USNewswire/ –report that Haitian American actor Jimmy Jean-Louis, who plays the `Haitian` on NBC`s hit series `Heroes,` is leading a public awareness campaign to raise money for the survivors of the devastating earthquake in Haiti, the Pan American Development Foundation and the Organization of American States announced. Jimmy Jean-Louis will appear in television public service announcements, print ads and online.
The actor found out that his parents in the Haitian capital are safe, their home was destroyed by and other family members died in the earthquake. He’s returning to Haiti where he will provide first-hand reports on the situation on the ground by satellite telephone for PADF.
John Sanbrailo, PADF`s Executive Director said `Jimmy’s kind heart and dedication to his countrymen are outstanding and we are proud to work with him on this national campaign.` says. . website: Donations are also accepted by a toll-free number: (877) 572-4484.

Hollywood Stars for Haiti                                                                          CaribWorldNews out of New York, report that Hollywood stars are pitching in to help Haiti as that nation grapples with the after effects of the Tuesday, January 12th earthquake. Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie donated a whopping $1 million to Doctors Without Borders.
Global Oxfam ambassador, actress Scarlett Johansson, a released a statement saying, “My heart goes out to the millions of people affected by the tragic events that have afflicted Haiti. As an ambassador of Oxfam, I urge those who are able to donate to the organization which currently has over 200 people on the ground and a team of 15 highly-experienced emergency specialists based in the capital that are responding with public health, water and sanitation services to prevent the spread of water borne disease.”

Embattled Golfer, Tiger Woods, is said to be pitching in $3 million to Haitian singer, Wyclef Jean. Jean foundation, Yele Haiti. Wyclef Jean. Jean is leading the online fundraising effort through the group even as a report revealed that the singer was paid to perform at his own 2006 benefit and the 12-year-old organization only filed taxes from 2005-2007, last August.

Music industry pledges Haitian support:

Buju Banton Reaches Out to Haiti                                                              

As more 50,000 thousand Haitians are reported dead by the International Red Cross, and unknown numbers missing and while the rest of the population are lacking food, clean water or medical care, and international rescue teams descended on the help have been coming from several sources. website is reporting that despite his legal problems reggae star Buju Banton has announced that he will be lending a helping hand to the people of Haiti. The incarcerated artiste, Banton has pledged to donate US1000 along with clothing and other necessary items.

The Jamaican Music fraternity is also embracing the Haitian cause. Musicians and promoters are pledging their assistance in a variety of ways.

Proceeds from Coke Zero concert for Haiti relief: best known for his chart-topping hit, Beautiful Girls, Kingston is also working on material for his next album which is set for release in April of this year. says”I’m doing a lot of songwriting and recordings for both myself and a number of other artistes including Ciara, Stephen Marley and Sean Paul.” “The first single is a collaboration with Akon, and that should be out by February Sean Kingston at this time. The recording artiste is currently involved in talks with Disney with regard to developing a project for television. “Think Fresh Prince of Belair and Moesha meets reality show,. “Believe it or not, this is my first performance in Kingston, and with a name like Sean Kingston, I just have to deliver for the fans in that city. I will definitely be giving the local audience a show like they have never seen. I will be coming with a full band and just turning the venue upside down.” All the money made from the Coke Zero concert in Jamaica Saturday Jan.16th featuring international superstar Sean Kingston and Etana, Ding Dong, Elephant Man, Demarco, Alaine, Tifa to be held at the LIME Golf Academy in New Kingston will be donated to relief funds for survivors of the 7.2 magnitude, earthquake in Haiti.  From the $100 that persons paid over to Mother’s and Burger King to redeem tickets, to every dollar collected at the gate for the event, proceeds from drink sales, everything we will just hand over to Food for the Poor for them to activate our support and get aid to the persons who need it most.”    

One Touch Charity Organization-President and founder, Sophronia, McKenzie and reggae/dancehall Songstress Raine Seville who is co-founder of the One Touch Charity Organization says spoke to a variety of persons who have pledged their assistance under the One Touch Banner. According to Seville they receive assistance from the Rotaract Club of St Andrew, promoter PJ Wright of Wright Image, producer TJ White, Bugle, Fed Ex, S&A Beautique, Coca Cola and Lascelles giving items such as food, clothes, medicines, soap and disinfectants, among other necessities.”

Steve Urchin/Brand New Machine and superstar Sean Paul also assisted the Haitian cause. They did a celebrity birthday party Paparazzi for Sean Paul who celebrated his birthday last Friday. The proceeds from the entrance fee will go towards Haiti.”

Pepsi Rebel Salute 2010: Tony Rebel, promoter of Pepsi Rebel Salute, and Pepsi’s Marketing Manager Denise Dixon and daughter Jahyudah Barrett, is working on how they can dedicate 30 minutes or an hour of Pepsi Rebel Salute on January 16th to the people of Haiti and collect funds from patrons willing to donate.”

Jazz and Blues Festival Jamaica Jazz and Blues Festival, have introduced a food-relief programme to assist the victims of the earthquake. Working with local agencies, TurnKey will collect and package non-perishable food items from patrons attending the annual festival for delivery to the impoverished nation. Patrons could also leave donations at ticket outlets.

Beenie Man Pledges to help Haitian Earthquake Survivors- “My heart goes out to Wyclef and to the people of Haiti. I saw the devastation of the island on the news… the hundreds of dead bodies piling up on the streets, the buildings destroyed by the earthquake and people working to rescue friends and family trapped in the rubble. I want to make myself available to help in any way I can,” Beenie Man said in a release.

Beenie Man and Wyclef Jean collaborated on the radio hit, Love Me Now and another song called Lie Detector several years ago.

“Wyclef Jean and I share a passion for improving communities throughout the world and he has always been very hands-on when it comes to looking after his home nation so I can’t imagine what he is going through at this very difficult time,” Beenie Man, who has also spearheaded social and environmental programmes in tough inner city areas such as Craig Town, Arnett Gardens and Waterhouse in his native Jamaica, said. Beenie Man has already contributed money to the Yele charity to aid humanitarian efforts. Wyclef, a Goodwill Ambassador to Haiti, started the Yele Haiti Foundation to raise relief funds for the area following Hurricane Gustav in 2008. Adapted from Yard Flex

The ‘Boops’ rhythm has returned

Super Cat popular 1980s a massive hit Boops cemented Super cat’s place in reggae history and also that of the late producer Steely of the Cleevie and Steely duo. ‘Boops’ rhythm spawned 120 versions. The ‘Boops’ rhythm was remade with new generation of artistes giving the old rhythm a different twist by producer Shane Brown of Juke Boxx Productions. It was re-released late December 2009

Brown he explained his reasons for re-making the rhythm alongside Kirk Bennett saying, “I decided to do ‘Boops’ because Steely is someone I grew up listening to and admiring. A lot of people don’t really know what persons like that contributed and made for us today.” “The artistes brought something new and old, Busy and Assassin used the old way like Super Cat and Shabba and the young artistes compliment the rhythm but keep it authentic by using old melodies,” Brown said.

Brown’s ‘Boops’ rhythm has songs from Chino, Assassin, Busy Signal, Timeka Marshall, Elephant Man, Karl Morrison, Konshens, Lutan Fyah, Romain Virgo and Tarrus Riley. We tekking this year and easing off the ‘One Drop’ rhythm and bringing back the 80s/90s era music like Boops.”

Rihanna – “Every woman should have naked pictures taken”

In recent months, Rihanna has been in the headlines for her lack of clothing nearly as much as her music.

Just weeks after declaring ‘every woman should have naked pictures taken’, the 21-year-old has peeled off again for a revealing new photo shoot.

In stunning black and white images for the new issue of American magazine W, Rihanna goes topless as she talks about her recovery from her difficult 2009.

The topless shots, taken from the side and behind, give Rihanna the opportunity to show off her extended tattoo collection.

The star has a series of stars on the nape of her neck, a gun under her armpit and a tribal pattern on her right hand. In the accompanying interview, the Bajan singer admitted recording her latest album Rated R proved a therapeutic experience, with many of her songs being inspired by her break-up from Chris Brown after he assaulted her. Source:

Musical treat for Jazz and Blues opener at Pegasus

The 2010 staging of the Jamaica Jazz and Blues Festival will be a seven-day celebration of ‘The Art of Music’ from January 24-30 at the Trelawny stadium with performances from Gladys Knight, Joss Stone, Erykah Badu, Jon Secada, Deborah Cox, Kelly Price, Tamia, Machel Montano HD, Caribbean Jewel, Billy Ocean, as well as reggae band Third World.

The 2010 week-long Jamaica Jazz and Blues Festival kicks off at The Jamaica Pegasus hotel in Kingston on Sunday, January 24 with the vibrant Latin funk sounds of Spanish band Yerba Buena. The Jamaica Pegasus hotel gardens transformed into an amphitheatre featuring Vibraphonist/vocalist Roy Ayers, known as the Godfather of neo soul, continue to bridge the gap between generations of music lovers. His music has been sampled by music industry heavyweights, including Mary J. Blige, Erykah Badu, 50 Cent, A Tribe Called Quest, Tupac and Ice Cube and Jamaica’s Tony Greene, Ricardo Suave..  Ayers recently recorded with hip-hop artiste Talib Kweli (produced by Kanye West) and jazz/R&B singer Will Drowning.

Jimmy Cliff to receive Linkz FM Lifetime Achievement Award

Reggae legend Jimmy Cliff will receive a Lifetime Achievement Award when the western Jamaica-based Linkz 96FM hosts its second Linkz Awards – The Cupid Edition at Margaretville in Montego Bay on Friday, February 12. “Once again, we will be recognizing the contribution that talents from western Jamaica have made to the development of the Jamaican entertainment industry,” said Roger Allen, CEO of Linkz FM. “It is our belief that the works of these talented individuals should not go unrecognized.”

Sophia Brown gets ‘Universal’ deal

Reggae recording artist Sophia Brown (on her label Music Mecka label) signed a one-year, one-album distribution deal – with options – with the Universal Records label It is a move, she says, to go global and one step closer to realizing my Grammy dream.” Under the agreement, Brown is to produce an album that will be exclusively distributed by Universal next year. Universal will also be distributing her single Good Love.  The deal was signed in mid-December while Brown was in Los Angeles shooting the video for her latest single Good Love. The singer will be in Los Angeles on January 25 to perform before the international media at the Roxy on Hollywood Boulevard in Los Angeles.

Sophia Brown is up against Cherine Anderson, Alaine, Phyllisia, Barbee, Tami Chin and Etana for the “Female Vocalist of the Year” category of the Excellence In Music and Entertainment. EME Awards slated for February 4th.  Brown’s debut album “The Spotlight” ‘was released in April 2009 sold over 5000 copies digitally within the first few months. Brown says she plans to find new management that will allow her to focus more on her creativity and her goal of becoming an international star.

Bashment Granny’ movie to debut at Carib – June 16

There are plans for premieres across the Caribbean, the UK, USA and Canada. The ‘Bashment Granny” premiere will take at Carib, Cross Roads, St Andrew, on June 16.  It will be screened at Cinemas Island wide.                                                                                                          

Among those stars are Keith ‘Shebada’ Ramsey, Maxwell ‘Maama Man’ Grant, Garfield ‘Bad Boy Trevor’ Reid and Stede ‘Jooky Jam’ Flash. There are also persons who were not in the play of the same name, including Apache Chief and Sarge, Trudy Bell, Donald Thompson and Patrick Smith.
 There will also be a big premiere in the US either in Florida or New York. And there is a special showing in the UK” Toronto, Canada, and number of Caribbean islands including Grenada, Barbados, Trinidad, Guyana, Antigua and The Bahamas.
Dean Fraser, renowned saxophonist, will be doing the soundtrack for the movie and an album will be produced.  The intention is to go for reggae in the theme song. However, on the soundtrack “not everything is going to be reggae.

Chino nabs 6 nominations-The Reggae/Dancehall artiste Daniel McGregor, aka Chino the son of reggae legend Freddie McGregor, has been nominated for six awards in this year’s Youth View Awards (YVA) and Excellence in Music and Entertainment Awards EME. For the YVA’s he was nominated for: ‘Male Artiste of the Year’ and ‘Young Hot & Hype Male Artiste of the Year’ , for the EME’s he was nominated for ‘Breakthrough Artiste of the Year’, ‘Singjay of the Year’ and ‘Most Improved Artiste of the Year’ and ‘Song of the Year – Dancehall’ for  From Mawning.

Zumjay – Ready Fi Defend It / Dancehall in the Middle East

Dancehall deejay Zumjay is deployed in the heart of the battle zone in the Middle East on his first official tour of duty. He has no regrets. So far he says it has been an amazing experience where he has increased his appreciation for life and family and of course the music that continues to be his passion. “I am just watching my head back and taking care of business. I am in the middle of a combat zone but I know that God is watching over me, and my family, friends and fans are praying for my safe return, that is very reassuring.”Zumjay has discovered how far-reaching Reggae music has become.  Apparently, Reggae music is very popular in the Middle East, as Sean Paul songs can be heard every day on the radio; Shaggy and Beenie Man songs play occasionally.  In his spare time, Zumjay writes songs, surfs the internet to see what’s happening in the western hemisphere and reads the Bible.

“I just want to thank all my family, friends and fans who have been praying for me to return home safely to my family,” he said.

Prior to being deployed, he recorded Ready Fi Defend It on the Splinta rhythm, produced by Garret Campbell and Jeffrey ‘Assassin’ Campbell for Boardhouse Production. The single has been getting rotation on local radio and is available on Itunes as well as Youtube.

Shaggy and Friends drops $30-

 The Shaggy Make a Difference Foundation handed over a cheque for $30 million, to the Bustamante Hospital for Children, the proceeds from the Shaggy and Friends concert staged at Jamaica House on January 2. This year saw the second staging of the concert which featured a top-flight list of local and international acts including, Boyz II Men, Joe, Mario Winans, Beenie Man, Queen Ifrica and Baby Cham.


Vybz Kartel, Tarrus Riley, Queen Ifrica & Konshens EME Awards

The 6th Annual Excellence in Music and Entertainment (EME) Awards slated for The Jamaica Pegasus Hotel on February 04, 2010 and the Youth View Awards Saturday, slated for February 6, 2010 at the National Indoor Sports Centre Awards being given out in over 30 categories including, Deejay of the Year, Vocalist of the Year, Album of the Year, Song of the Year, Producer of the Year, Singjay of the Year, Song Writer/Lyricist, Best New Artist and “Breakthru” Artist of the Year among others. Additionally, the Award of ‘Role Model of the Year’ will be bestowed on Toots Hibbert and Denroy Morgan.

Tifa Grabs Five Youth View Awards nominations for Favorite Local Music Video, Favorite Female Dancehall Artiste, Favorite Female Artiste of the Year, Female Fashion Icon of the Year and finally the coveted Young, Hot and Hype Female of the Year

Vybz Kartel has earned a total of seven nominations. He is nominated in the following categories: Deejay of the Year, Song Writer/Lyricist of the Year, Song of the Year, Recording Artist of Year, International Artist of the Year and a double nomination for Collabo of the Year (Dancehall). Reggae artist Tarrus Riley has seven nominations in the categories Male Vocalist of the Year, Recording Artist of the Year, Album of the Year, Collabo of the Year (Reggae), Cultural/Positive Artist of Year, Collabo of the Year (Dancehall) and Song of Year. Kiprich artiste has been nominated in the categories of DJ of the Year and Best Collaboration of the Year for the 2009 EME (Excellence in Music and Entertainment) Awards. 

Richie Spice grabs three EME nominations in the following categories: Male Vocalist of the Year, Cultural Positive Artist of the Year and Collabo of the Year (Reggae. in the following categories: Male Vocalist of the Year, Cultural Positive Artist of the Year and Collabo of the Year (Reggae).
 Singer Jah Cure has copped a whopping six nominations for the 2010 for Vocalist of the Year, Song of the Year,(Call On Me with Phyllisia), Album of the Year, Cultural/Positive Artiste of the Year & Collaboration of the Year, and Recording Artiste of the Year.

Konshens has 5 nominations in these categories; Recording Artiste of the Year, Cultural/Positive Artiste of the Year, Songwriter/Lyricist for the Year, Singjay of the Year, and Collabo of the Year for his song Good Girl, Gone Bad with Tarrus Riley. Romain Virgo was nominated in the categories of Best New Artiste and Best Male Vocalist, Most Improved Artiste and Best Song for Cyaan Sleep. Tifa grabbed two nominations for Female DJ of the Year and Most Improved Artiste; Sean Paul grabbed nominations for International Artiste of the Year, and Album of the Year. Timeka Marshall was nominated for Best New Artiste (Female), while D’Angel walked away with a nomination for Sing jay of the Year (Female) and Etana with Vocalist of the Year (Female).

Nadine Sutherland looks to 2010

Arguably one of Jamaica’s most talented and successful female singers, Nadine Sutherland is a note-belting, lyric-lacing powerhouse who will this year celebrate her 30th year in the music industry.

Sutherland, who boomed from a very tender age when she won the Tastee Talent Competition, has blossomed into becoming a hit-making, no-holds-barred female icon both in Jamaica and abroad. She has seen it all, and had a tough time breaking through the very male-centric entertainment world.
Overcoming vicious, almost career-ending rumors, Sutherland has experienced immense success with cross-over hits such as Action, Baby Face and Anything for you. There’s no doubt about it. Nadine Sutherland is a singer and woman extraordinaire. The only female judge on Jamaica’s number one television program, Digicel Rising Stars, saw 2009 being a very busy year, and she used it to make quite a number of changes in her life.

“I’m very happy how ’09 went. I revamped my look and also my management. I also worked with a lot of old people, with new energy. I did a lot more promotion abroad as well as performances locally especially the Digicel Rising Stars Finale. This, I think, reminded people of the performer that I am. But in retrospect, I think I made very good moves for 2009,” said a sweetly smiling Sutherland.
In the near future, much is to be expected from the songstress. A compilation of all her singles since the Tastee Talent Competition, entitled Then til Now will be released, and she also has other singles out with top producers including Snowcone, Shane Brown and Vigilante Productions. Her most recent achievement is Life in the Street, which sits atop the charts in New York and is holding firm in the number three spot South Florida. This, to say the least, has her quite excited, as she looks forward to an eventful 2010.

And, in an industry where young females are on top of their game, Nadine remains headstrong. “I have so many years of history. I don’t compete with the younger generation. After years of being in the industry, I have established who I am and so I just go out there to perform and to show my talent.”

US visa for Vybz Kartel?

Reliable YardFlex sources have confirmed that visa restrictions have been lifted from dancehall artiste Adidja “Vybz Kartel” Palmer. “He has been given a permit that allows him one entry to the United States,” the source said, adding that Kartel will be able to work on this visa.

Kartel, whose last performance in the US was nearly five years ago, has since been trying to renew his work permit for that North American country, without much success. Interestingly, the reason for the US embassy’s refusal to grant the dancehall artiste a visa has never been fully disclosed and this has led to various speculations. A prolific hit maker, and the self-styled Gaza President, Kartel has a huge following and is in high demand for shows in the US. Last year, an intense and much-hyped rivalry between himself and the Gully God, Mavado led to intervention by the Jamaican government. Posted by YardFlex


Conscious Reggae singer, Duane Stephenson is one of the latest artistes to join the line up for this year’s staging of Pepsi Rebel Salute.

The artiste stated that he had been approached earlier by Flames, the organized of the event, but at the time it didn’t look possible. However, things subsequently changed, making it possible for the talented artiste to take his place on this highly-anticipated reggae festival.

According to Duane, he too is thankful for the opportunity to perform on Pepsi Rebel Salute, a show which is now in celebrating 17 year. He notes that Pepsi Rebel Salute is just another event in what has been the great start to 2010. The former member of the group To-Isis, just returned to the island following shows in sister Caribbean isle, Dominica and is set to leave for his first European tour immediately after Rebel Salute.

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Sean Paul releases The Odyssey

dancehall artiste Sean Paul has sent internet users and music lovers worldwide scurrying to find his mix tape, released this week. Named The Odyssey, the mix features new singles from the Grammy-winning artiste in all his dancehall glory.
Mixed by ace disc jockeys from insanely popular sound system Coppers hot Disco, the tape was made available for download virally and has so far found itself as far as Dubai and Ireland, where Sean Paul fans are listening to 19-tracks of platinum-selling megastar. The Odyssey includes collaborations with Jay Sean, Chris Brown, Sean Kingston, Chino, Fahrenheit, and Wayne Marshall.

Singles such as Do You Remember, Follow Me, Brown Skin Girl, and Buy You A Round are highlights of the lyrically-lethal hit-heavy tape, and Sean Paul comments that it was “wicked fun” putting the project together.

“From we started putting together the songs to put on the tape the vibe was just there. And Coppers hot Disco has the right touch for everything, and we just put it out there for the fans to enjoy and get up to date with the music.”

Some of the tracks on the mix tape are new material, which Sean Paul is equally excited about.

Sean Paul is a multi-platinum selling artiste many times over, and the most successful Jamaican artiste on the international charts. He’s had three Billboard #1 singles and five Billboard Hot 100 top ten tunes. He has hand even more chart entries over three worldwide best-selling albums, which have sold more than 11-million copies worldwide. In 2009, he copped the MOBO Award for Best Reggae Act, as well as the initial Best Reggae Artiste award at the Soul Train Awards. He adds those trophies to an impressive collection of awards that includes a Grammy, MTV Music Video Award, Billboard Music Award, American Music Award, MTV Europe Music Award, MOBO, BET Award and others.

He nabbed a Grammy nomination for his fourth studio album Imperial Blaze, which was released in August 2009. The project was completely produced in Jamaica by Jamaican producers such as Stephen McGregor, Donovan ‘Don Carleone’ Bennett, Craig ‘Leftside’ Parks, Jeremy Harding, and Jason Henriques.

The album made Sean Paul the first Jamaican to top the Billboard Rap Charts, and Imperial Blaze the first dancehall album to do so. Subsequently, Billboard named him the top reggae artsite of the year, and the decade and listed his other two Atlantic Records projects, Dutty Rock and The Trinity as top reggae albums of the decade as well.

Last night, the popular Rebel Salute stage show was slated to pause its entertainment package to allow patrons to make cash donations to the Haitian relief fund, with United Nations representatives collecting the money.

Our neighbour

“Haiti is our neighbour and if we were not lucky this could have happened to Jamaica,” dancehall star and promoter of the annual stage show, Tony Rebel, told The Sunday Gleaner.
“You can’t fool me that Jamaicans are all wicked; the response to the Haitian crisis shows me that Jamaicans have a heart, it is just that the good majority keeps silent,” Rebel said, even before he determined how much money was collected at the show.

But it was not only corporate Jamaica and established entities which were willing to reach out to the Haitians. On Friday, Jamaicans from poor communities walked with money and their small ‘scandal bags’ with food, clothes and water to collection agencies.

Shabba returns on VP CD set

Before he signed with a major American record company and became the ‘Grammy Kid’, Shabba Ranks was king of the Jamaican dancehall circuit and he earned that title by racking up a number of hit songs in the 1980s and early 1990s.

Many of those songs (44 to be exact) are featured on Shabba Ranks: Reggae Legends, a four-CD box set which was released last Monday by Greensleeves Records. Most of the hits on it were produced by Bobby ‘Bobby Digital’ Dixon and Gussie Clarke, two of the heavyweights of the aforementioned period.

Reggae Legends is actually being marketed by VP Records, the Queens, New York label that bought London-based Greensleeves two years ago. The album is aimed at the British and European markets.

Shabba Ranks (real name Rexton Gordon) was born in St Ann but grew up in the Seaview Gardens community of St Andrew. He broke through in the late 1980s with the rocking Peeny Peeny which was produced by Dixon, who earned his spurs as an engineer at the legendary Waterhouse studio of Lloyd ‘King Jammy’s’ James.

Most of Dixon and Ranks’ early collaborations including Live Blanket, Weh Yu Get It From, Wicked Inna Bed and Dem Bow were risqué, but Dixon said it was not long before they turned the corner with conscious, radio-friendly songs.

“Wi did songs like Just Reality and Roots and Culture and showed dem that it wasn’t just slackness. Wi showed dem that the artiste had a clean side,” Dixon told The Sunday Gleaner.

Ranks also struck a fruitful relationship with Clarke who had had success with acts like Dennis Brown and The Mighty Diamonds. Clarke had assembled a formidable array of artistes at his Anchor studio in the Swallowfield area of St Andrew. Among them were Home T and Cocoa Tea with whom Ranks recorded Pirates Anthem and Holding On, which make the Reggae Legends cut.

Mr. Lover Man, another Clarke production featuring Guyana-born singer Deborahe Glasgow, is also included. A remix of that song with Ranks and Chevelle Franklyn would be a minor pop hit in the United States in 1992 when he was signed to Epic Records.

Ranks’ stint with Epic spawned two hit albums in As Raw As Ever and X-tra Naked which won the Best Reggae Album category in 1992 and 1993, respectively, at the Grammy Awards. Now 44 years old, Ranks has not recorded an album of original material since 1998’s Get Up Stand Up. Gleaner

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