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Monthly Archives: October 2015

  • Alison Hinds & iWeb – Incredible (2016 Soca)

    Title:- Incredible
    Artist:- Allison Hinds & iWeb
    Producer:- Darien Bailey
    Composers/Writers :- Ian Webster, Cheyne Jones, Darien Bailey

    Incredible is the musical personification of the sights, sounds and the very heart of West Indian culture. Writers Ian Webster and Cheyne Jones put the vibrant spirit of Carnival on paper with lyrics that touch all aspects of the Caribbean and melodies that echo the very soul of its people.

    Who better to bring a song of this magnitude to life than the Queen of Soca herself, the evergreen Alison Hinds along with one of the Caribbean’s most talented new artists iWeb who has been making tremendous waves in his home island of Barbados.

    One of the region’s most respected musician’s Darien Bailey is responsible for the production of the track and his experience and keen ear for perfection put the icing on the cake of this transgenerational soca special.

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  • Sherry-Ann Luke adds “Sweetness” to the Soca world

    POS, Trinidad (Sonique Solutions) – For the 2016 Trinidad and Tobago Carnival season the latest addition to the Soca fraternity, Sherry-Ann Luke is putting a vintage spin on modern day Soca music with her latest groovy track ‘Sweetness’.

    Since its release the young Carenage-based singer has gained the attention of Soca fans both young and old due to the song’s pulsating rhythm, classic calypso-like melody and catchy melodious hook.

    ‘Sweetness’ was written by Nigel Rojas, produced by Danté Pantin and mastered by MadMen Productions and according to Sherry-Ann, was inspired by the late Lord Kitchener’s Calypso hit ‘Sugar Bum Bum’. With this new track she plans to not only motivate waistline movement but to give audiences that much needed ‘sugar rush’ to get the party started.

    Boasting a lifetime love affair with music, Sherry-Ann brings a wealth of performance experience to her professional career having entered and won both primary and secondary school Calypso competitions. Now in her second year as a professional Soca artiste she continues to build on the foundation laid by the very artistes that have influenced her which include Destra Garcia, Dense ‘Saucy Wow’ Belfon, Calypso Rose and Singing Sandra.

    She shared, “I believe that singing is the talent that the Almighty has blessed me with, and I am only involved in this industry because of the love and passion I have for music. I chose to sing Soca Music as opposed to any other genre because Soca music is my culture and I am very proud to be a Trinbagonian.”

    At present, the charismatic, persistent and hard-working artiste is gearing up for a busy Carnival season while balancing her vocal training classes, strict workout regime at the gym and her job as a manager of a local seafood outlet.

    She aspires to showcase her talent in various upcoming carnival fetes, competitions, and media interviews and possibly land an opportunity to be a frontline singer in a music band.
    Sherry-Ann also revealed her plans to apply her unique musical delivery to a wider range of genres such as Chutney, Dance hall and Traditional Calypso and to also tour regionally and internationally.

    The determined, up and coming Soca songstress who desires to one day collaborate with the likes of Groovy Soca Monarch Olatunji and Dancehall superstar Alkaline encourages her current and potential fans to support and follow her and her new track on social media.

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  • Carnival Flavor Ready to Touch Down 2016

    TOKYO, JAPAN – Japanese singer Angella Giustini and Carnival Flavor are eagerly counting down the days to their return to the shores of T&T.

    Giustini, a.k.a. Ann-G, has, in the meantime, sent a precursor to their arrival; a bouncy up-tempo groove track titled “Touch Down”.

    Produced by Japan-based UK producer Daizen Britto and written by UK-based songwriter Natasha TL Norman, who has Trini roots, the track brings three continents of cultural expression to musical life. A dominant folk guitar rift sits perfectly atop a Caribbean percussion with Giustini vocals driving the narrative.

    “Heading to Carnival again this year/We up in dere, de crew ready we on our way/Doh have to worry cause the costume paid/de Monday wear Jouvert wear, beach Ash Wednesday/Meet me by de bar/ In insomnia/ Meet me in de fete/ We got no regret/we be soakin’ wet now/we be soaking wet/so put up allyuh rags up in the air if you’ll be/Pumpin’ till mornin’/Jumpin’ all evenin’/ Me and ma friend dem/ when we touch down/ when we touch down,” she sings.

    Giustini has already made a name for herself in soca music. The Tokyo native’s soca debut “We Love Carnival” landed her in the Soca Monarch Finals in 2014. And she enjoyed another successful festival season following a pairing with Humour Calypso Monarch Myron B earlier this year on the track “Till Yuh Wet”.

    The diminutive half American half Japanese singer said she and her teammates Mari and Kei are bursting with excitement at once again being a part of T&T’s Carnival celebration.

    “We look forward every year now to Trinidad Carnival. I don’t know what we did before it, but now that our eyes are open we definitely can’t ever miss it. So T&T you better be ready cause Carnival Flavor will soon touch down,” she said.

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  • Out via Feel Up – Jus Now’s Cyah Help It EP “Will Make You Wanna Wine”

    Jus Now – the alliance of two music fanatics previously separated by 4,500 miles – was brought together by a shared love of bass, rum and parties. The bi-product of their connection is a brand new EP Cyah Help It via Feel Up Records (the label co-owned by Jillionaire of Major Lazer).

    Jus Now is the musical bond between UK-based drum and bass producer Sam Interface and Trinidadian producer and percussionist Keshav (aka LAZABeam), who met in Bristol in 2010. Together, they offer an exhilarating fusion of vibrant island beats with the bottom-heavy sound of the British Underground.

    The title track features Trinidad’s ragga/soca star Bunji Garlin and London’s grime/R&B fusion pioneer Ms. Dynamite. Over bhangra-fused soca beats, the self-proclaimed “Viking of Soca” and England’s award-winning lyricist drum up a hard-hitting call-to-action anthem. Given their geographical differences, they manage to traverse each other’s sounds thanks to the worldly backdrop provided by Jus Now’s versatile production style.

    Throughout the 5-song EP, Jus Now continues to bridge this musical gap – whether it is revamping soca artist Olatunji’s T&T carnival hit “Bam Bam” into a dancefloor banger for the masses on “Badder Than,” mixing reggae one-drop and electronic rhythms on “Culture” featuring Coreysan or channeling 2016 Trinidad Carnival vibes with fresh futuristic beats on “Wave Something” featuring the island’s own Bunji Garlin and Kerwin Prescott.

    Cyah Help It, which follows their debut 2013 EP One Time, will surely raise the bar for cross-genre innovation and tear up the dance from London to Port-of-Spain and everywhere in between.

    JUS NOW – CYAH HELP IT EP
    (Feel Up Records)
    1. Cyah Help It Ft. Bunji Garlin & Ms. Dynamite
    2. Badder Than Ft. Olatunji
    3. Wave Something Ft. Bunji Garlin & Kerwin Prescott
    4. Culture Ft. Coreysan
    5. Cyah Help It Riddim

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  • TJ takes T&T and Miami by storm

    Castries, St. Lucia (Sonique Solutions) – Hot on the heels of his monster hit “Allez”, St. Lucian Soca star Teddyson ‘TJ’ John has been on a roll after completing an impactful promotional tour of the Trinidad and Tobago which was followed by a successful string of performances at the recently concluded 2015 Miami Carnival.

    Ahead of T&T’s Carnival 2016, TJ made a business trip to the Soca capital in order to promote ‘Allez’ which has garnered steady rotation on Trinbagonian airwaves and a strong following within the global Caribbean diaspora.

    While on his promo tour, TJ was able to visit several top T&T radio stations which included Slam 100.5FM, 96.1FM and Next 99.1FM and gain first-hand knowledge of how the public has embraced his latest Groovy Soca contender. During his time in T&T, he was also able to meet and interact with several notable local entertainers, one of which was Soca stalwart Edwin ‘Crazy’ Ayoung.

    With regards to unity amongst the regional Soca artistes, the always willing to collaborate TJ shared, “I think that everyone should come together as one Caribbean. All the islands which make up the Caribbean have amazing artistes who create incredible music but just need a shot to be heard. If we all come together as one then there is nothing we can’t conquer and Soca music will take its rightful place in the main-stream market.”

    After T&T, TJ made his presence felt at the last major festival for 2015 i.e. Miami Carnival. Flags and rags waved as he performed Allez and his other hits at several major Miami Carnival events such as Soca Haus, Rise & Shine, Bright Colours Boatride, InstaJam, Colour Me Krazy J’ouvert and on the road with the Wassi Ones mas band.

    As an artiste, one of TJ’s greatest passions is watching his music transform lives.
    With this motivation and even amidst his hectic touring schedule, the jovial, big-hearted St. Lucian singer took time out to perform at the recent ‘One Caribbean Fundraising Concert’ which was held in Barbados as a benefit show to raise funds for Dominica which suffered severe damages as a result of Tropical Storm Erika.

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  • Listening Party’ for Jamaican/British singer/songwriter Mark-Anthony Abel

    Mark-Anthony Abel is a British-born singer, songwriter and composer of Jamaican roots who exploded on the London music scene at the turn of the millennium. Mark-Anthony is as passionate and he is driven and this one in a million musical artist is the proud owner of a most amazing and distinctive voice. He brings to the industry an edgy approach that is fresh, undaunted and sensual with a timeless, hip, youthful swag. His ability to create great music is the by-product of his desire to connect and communicate with the world. “I believe in the soul and not just the soul in music”. A genius at striking the perfect balance, his audiences are always mesmerized by his sound.

    Mark-Anthony currently resides in London but he sees the wider Diaspora as his global stage. His journey has been one of discovery and challenges and his prolific songwriting culminated in his first album Sunshine in My Head which is available on iTunes. Mark-Anthony is currently in the process of putting the finishing touches on a second album.

    His honest, fearless and straight-talk persona has brought him in immediate contact with the important issues affecting those around him. Ultimately, many of these elements end up in lyrics to many of the songs he has written. A quote from Mark-Anthony reflects how deeply he is affected by his day-to-day experiences: – “I like what I have become. I like the fact that I have learned from my mistakes and gained wisdom, and although I don’t always get the respect for my efforts, I strive on as a testimony to the love I get from those closest to me”.

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  • “Success is Imminent. Soca Artiste Sets ‘Good Music’ Trend from NYC”

    There’s a new guy on the scene and he’s prepared to go to any lengths to prove his strength. In Trinidad and Tobago and the Caribbean where soca music is prevalent and carnivals a natural part of the “islandlife” landscape, he knows there’s enough room for him and others like him, so he’s coming hard and he’s pushing with maximum force. There’ll be no stopping De Postman.

    Like an express delivery he’s arrived. “Fetaholic” is his second hit single released to the Trinidad and Tobago slate of DJs and radio personalities, programme directors and just about anybody on the entertainment and music scene who’s got something to do with ensuring the music reaches the masses. In fact, if you give this Brooklyn based soca lover a chance, he’ll peddle his music on the streets himself, CD cart and all. You see, he knows it takes a lot to win the hearts of Caribbean people when it comes to Soca music. He understands that getting the airplay is just 50% of the journey. He knows that what it really takes is a big mouth and the ‘go hard or go home’ attitude. In November, he’ll be touching down in T&T and don’t be surprised if you see him at the Piarco International Airport with a blow horn in hand. “Fetaholic” is a fetter’s anthem by every account. It’s got the right rhythm and the perfect tone to set the speed for the tipsy and tantalized in any fete. The song boasts a simple structure with bass that pounds the heart, tugging at every fibre of excitement that’s innate to the Caribbean soca lover. But don’t get it twisted. This song has the power to entice the newbie- tourist that is- the man or woman who hears the island rhythm for the very first time and quietly takes it all in. “It was made to hit hard, almost directly and while it’s not a power soca track, I believe it can have that effect- that make you move with your hands in the air effect, that everybody around the world has heard of when it comes to T&T carnival,” said the artiste.

    For Sherwin Rogers, this is no hustle. He’s been around, listening and taking notes. This is his re-emergence really, having been on a hiatus for a while. Soca is embedded in him though, so even from behind the counter of his Trini inspired Bakery in East Flatbush, Brooklyn, he feels the tempo of T&T’s rhythmic Soca beat. It calls out to him, he says, and that’s a call he simply cannot ignore. “Fetaholic” has been unleashed and now, he awaits the tidal wave of excitement and enjoyment that’s expected. “A good song is a good song. This is a good song. If it’s denied a space this year, that will be a shame but at the end of it all, I’ll still be happy knowing that I shared it with the people of my country and the Caribbean – I’ll be happy that I shared a sweet part of me with my people,” he said.

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  • “Ready for His Chance With Sweet Soca”

    While Fay – Ann Lyons may have started the ball rolling ahead of Carnival 2016 with her African inspired hit, “Block De Road” which features Ghanaian singer, Stonebwoy, other artistes are moving full speed ahead toward the magic of the motherland, infusing their harmonies with the rhythmic African beats that are somehow distinctive to that part of the world.

    Mysta Lyon – a Trinidad born singer who lives in the United States but maintains his heritage, says the African beat has revitalized the genre quite a bit. Having heard the sweetness brought to the fore in recent years, with Kerwin Du Bois and Machel Montano’s collaborative track with South Africa’s Ladysmith Black Mambazo in 2013 and now, Lyons’ tantalizing single, he’s excited to throw himself into the foray, delivering a son g he feels is more than worthy of being included in the soca list of must- plays heading toward the season of revelry and ecstasy in T&T.

    “Go Down Low” is a reflection of what’s seen annually on the island of steelpan, mas and calypso, during carnival and even outside of the festival period, the artiste and music producer concedes. He says the song is all relative to what’s displayed and coupled with a tune that encourages the desire, Mysta Lyon is promising a frenzy of Trini excitement anytime his single is played in the days and weeks ahead.

    A chance. That’s all he feels he needs to win the hearts of the Caribbean p eople. “It all comes down to that really. It’s all a matter of delivering good music at the right time and I think my time has come,” he shared.

    Mysta Lyon’s co -written music with several foreign – based soca artistes, among them, Brooklyn based hit-maker, Lyrikal , fellow artiste and videographer, Ronnie Homer and Kiko Dan with whom he’s word arduously with in the creation of most of his music . Mysta Lyon has also worked with St. Vincent powerhouse, Fya Empress, producing her 2014 hit single, “Drink Ah Juice ” on the Swanky riddim. In the past, the co -founder of US record label, ROAR Productions, has imself released several songs, among them, “Rum Drinkers” in 2013, “Drinkin – Lymin” and “J’ouvert Vibes”. He however understands the dynamic of the soca music industry and has continued to keep his eye on the prize, making notes and targeting the people who he feels will be most appreciative of his work. “I understand the need to have a core fan base. I’ve worked on that and I will continue to do that. I don’t expect it to be easy for someone who’s not in T&T to up and make it big in just one or two years on the soca circuit. I however believe that music can speak for itself so when good songs really get the opportunity to be h eard, there really can’t be any denying it,” he said.

    Mysta Lyon’s ready for the challenge. He’s ready to show T&T just what he’s got. “Go Down Low” is just the beginning and with Mother Africa on his side, he seems pretty much set for success, wouldn’t you say?

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  • Keith Richards Trades Stories and Licks with Noisey in “Guitar Moves”

    Today, Noisey is excited the unveil the season premiere of Guitar Moves, featuring none other than rock ‘n’ roll royalty, Keith Richards. Hosted by Matt Sweeney (Chavez, Bonnie “Prince” Billy, Zwan), the two dive deep into the art of playing guitar, trading riffs and the stories that come with them.

    The two cover the 71-year-old’s expansive career, going all the way back to the first song Keith learned from his grandfather (“Malagueña,” as it turns out). Keith describes the endless hours he spent learning to play as a teen, “I would spend all practicing. I should’ve been trying to get laid, but I was playing guitar,” as Keith  eloquently puts it.

    Keith also looks back on his own personal guitar heroes, figures like like Jimmy Reed and Ry Cooder who Richards learned from and emulated. He even recounts teaching Ike Turner how to play in his famous five- string, Open G style — showing Matt Sweeny how it’s done in the process.

    Guitar Moves, hosted by Matt Sweeney, is Noisey’s show where the viewer gets an opportunity to sit in on a private, interesting, and hilarious conversation about guitars, music, life, and craft. Previous episodes have featured figures like James Williamson of the Stooges and St. Vincent. Later this season, Noisey will sit down with everyone from Lemmy from Mötorhead to the Geto Boys’ Scarface.

    About Noisey
    VICE started Noisey back in 2011, criss-crossing the globe documenting the year in music from heavy-hitters to tiny garage bands who usually play for their girlfriends and moms. Since then, it has grown into one of the most unique and successful video-driven music sites on the planet. In 2012, Noisey teamed with YouTube as a premium content provider, and built out a series of shows that take a completely fresh take on the world of  music. As an editorial resource, Noisey.com reaches millions of people a month, and has become a go-to source for weird music news, artist-sourced content, and VICE’s signature offbeat coverage. Noisey throws parties and shows worldwide, hosts innovative online listening parties for new records, and produces videos for the best artists in the world, like MIA, Die Antwoord, A$AP Rocky, and the Yeah Yeah Yeahs. Noisey is more than just a music site—music is the lens with which we explore youth culture all over the world.

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  • “That ‘Oh Gosh’ Moment That You Will Remember”

    We’re painting a picture, so follow closely. You are dressed, full of energy and in search of the best fete…You get to the venue and at that very moment your favourite song tunes up, what do you do? We see your hands tightly gripping your head while your waist line warms up. The first phrase that slips off your tongue is “Oh Gosh” and that’s the party starter.

    Canadian based, Trinbago born Soca artiste Stephon “Slammer Cutter” Mark in his Carnival 2016 contribution ‘Oh Gosh’ is creating the perfect haven for feters and those present at any party. Through the track which was produced by both Arnold “Blackstarr” Noel (Blackstarr Productions) and Nikholai Greene (NMG Music) he is encouraging you to let go and enjoy the best of Carnival 2016. You should understand though that a Carnival without that special memory, that “Oh Gosh” moment is not an enjoyable one.

    Residing overseas is quite trying at times but he continuously finds solace in translating his experiences through music. For Slammer his contributions to Soca music are derived from a place of love and a longing to feel at home. Whether physically present on the island of his birth or not his heart remains, allowing him to create comfortably. No stranger to the entertainment industry, having been involved for 10 years Slammer is still knocking on doors and working on perfecting his craft. He is known for a number of his releases and specific mention should be made of his 2009 hit single ‘Hangover.’ With two songs already released, he is preparing to release two more prior to culmination of Carnival 2016, one of which will feature Grenadian Jab Jab ambassador Tallpree.

    Look out for Slammer’s releases as he continues to contribute to Soca music.

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  • Nadia Batson Takes Lead

    Trinidad and Tobago based singer/songwriter/band leader Nadia Batson is focused on standing out during the upcoming Carnival seasons throughout the world. Already taking a lead, the SASS The Band leader has released two singles; ‘Magic’ (featuring Sekon Sta) and ‘Sorry’, both of which have quickly become favourites of many Soca lovers. On both tracks Nadia can be considered as a tease as her vocals meshes brilliantly with both words and melodies leaving music enthusiasts anticipating more.

    Constantly in studio working on new material Nadia can be expected to release tracks produced by Martian Music, Mega Mick, Precision Productions and Advokit Productions. The satisfaction of her fans is guaranteed and she is pulling out all the stops. For Nadia, “Quality should never be compromised” and she applies this mantra to all aspects of her life. This mantra also extends to her involvement in Digicel Rising Stars as a judge for the second consecutive year. Nadia sees it yet again as an opportunity which allows her to share her knowledge in entertainment with budding entertainers.

    It’s quite fair at the moment to align both released song titles to Nadia’s persona for 2016 and beyond. With musical contributions that are Magical those interacting would be forced to say Sorry for their uncontrollable enjoyment. Nadia is doing things her way, to the best of her ability and refuses to be sidelined or ignored. She is putting in the work and sacrificing for ultimate success. With band rehearsals having already begun in preparation for the Carnival season, Nadia touring as a solo act and the band gearing up for performances in Anguilla and other Caribbean territories before years’ end, there will be no one denying Nadia’s brilliance. Sounds like a mouthful right? Don’t take your eyes off Nadia; she has too much in store.

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  • Fall 2015 Rundown (New Music & Events)

    //*Upcoming Releases* New Fall 2015 Music//

    Various Artists – Clarks in Jamaica
    (Oct 16), Greensleeves) LP & Vinyl Release

    Greensleeves, in conjunction with One Love Books, is proud to present Clarks in Jamaica, the album tie-in with Al Fingers’ critically acclaimed book of the same name which chronicles the celebrated status of Clarks shoes in Jamaica. The compilation showcases classics from the golden age of dancehall music that celebrate Jamaica’s love affair with the iconic English footwear brand. Al, who compiled the album says “Growing up in England I’ve always been fascinated by the Jamaican love of Clarks shoes and the way the brand is referenced within reggae and dancehall music. Vybz Kartel’s tune ‘Clarks’ brought the phenomenon to many people’s attention in 2010, but the relationship goes back a lot longer, and I wanted to bring attention to that, highlighting the work of artists such as Dillinger and Little John who sang about Clarks many years before.”

    JUS NOW – Cyah Help It
    (Oct 23, Feel Up) EP Release

    Throughout the 5-song EP, Jus Now continues to bridge this musical gap – whether it is revamping soca artist Olatunji’s T&T carnival hit “Bam Bam” into a dancefloor banger for the masses on “Badder Than,” mixing reggae one-drop and electronic rhythms on “Culture” featuring Coreysan or channeling 2016 Trinidad Carnival vibes with fresh futuristic beats on “Wave Something” featuring the island’s own Bunji Garlin and Kerwin Prescott. 

Cyah Help It, which follows their debut 2013 EP One Time, will surely raise the bar for cross-genre innovation and tear up the dance from London to Port-of-Spain and everywhere in between.

    NPR selects title track ft. Bunji Garlin & Ms. Dynamite for Songs We Love

    Jus Now is the musical bond between UK-based drum and bass producer Sam Interface and Trinidadian producer and percussionist Keshav (aka Laza Beam), who met in Bristol in 2010. Together, they offer an exhilarating fusion of vibrant island beats with the bottom-heavy sound of the British Underground on their new EP. The title track features Trinidad’s ragga/soca star Bunji Garlin and London’s grime/R&B fusion pioneer Ms. Dynamite. Over bhangra-fused beats, the self-proclaimed “Viking of Soca” and England’s award-winning lyricist drum up a hard-hitting call-to-action anthem. Given their geographical differences, they manage to traverse each other’s sounds thanks to the worldly backdrop provided by Jus Now’s versatile production style. Throughout the 5-song set, Jus Now continues to bridge this musical gap – whether it is revamping soca artist Olatunji’s T&T carnival hit “Bam Bam” into a dancefloor banger for the masses on “Badder Than,” mixing reggae one-drop and electronic rhythms on “Culture” featuring Coreysan or channeling 2016 Trinidad Carnival vibes with fresh futuristic beats on “Wave Something” featuring the island’s own Bunji Garlin and Kerwin Prescott.

    Various Artists – The biggest One Drop Anthem 2015
    (Oct 23, Greensleeves) Album/LP + Vinyl

    After a four year hiatus, Greensleeves resurrects the popular compilation series The Biggest One Drop Anthems. This year’s approach is a little different. The 13-track-set -produced solely by legendary Jamaican aficionado Clive Hunt (Stevie Wonder, Peter Tosh, Rolling Stones, The Wailers, Grace Jones & Jimmy Cliff) will feature all new material from some of the hottest roots and lover’s rock artists. Fans can listen to exclusive music from reggae hitmakers like Luciano, Capleton, Richie Spice and Etana as well never-before-heard tracks from Jamaica’s rising stars like Jah 9, Yahsha, Raging Fyah, Ikaya, Iba Mahr and more. The renowned illustrator and Greensleeves’ go-to artist Tony McDermott created the album artwork.

    Bunji Garlin & Damian “Jr. Gong” Marley – The Message
    (Oct 30, VP Records) Single Release

    Trinidadian soca star Bunji Garlin and Jamaican Grammy-winning reggae artist Damian “Jr. Gong” Marley team up on “The Message,” a passionate forward-thinking song fighting for the souls of our youth and the future generation.The two Caribbean artists merge soca, dancehall and reggae into a universal sound on this world cry anthem, produced by Philip Mecksepe. They go verse for verse addressing society’s illls and Marley delivers a powerful hook aspiring for change. “There is music in your soul, minerals in your soil, children full of beauty worth way much more than oil. While history unfolds, don’t let the good things spoil, oh no.” Marley is slated to perform in Garlin’s homeland on October 30th, 2015 in Tobago at Pigeon Point (Colours Of Reggae) and October 31st, 2015 in Trinidad at Hasley Crawford Stadium (Reggae On The Bay Presents Hennessy Artistry).

    Romain Virgo -Lifted
    (Oct 30, VP Records) EP Release

    On Lifted, Virgo unveils hope behind darkness on this concsious 8-song set filled with social commentary. He holds strong with “God Inna Mi Corner” and weeds out fake friends on “Fade Away.” This week, he releases the video for the EP’s the latter track “Fade Away.” While showcasing his dee-jay skills on the EDM-tinged reggae track “Badder Man,” he reveals the gripping realities of a rudeboy and opts for a different way of life. To pay homage to his ladies, Virgo then offers a few ballads on his EP – including his latest romancer “Stars Across The Sky,” his Sam Smith cover of “Stay With Me” (which recieved over 2.4 mil YouTube views for its accompanying visual) and “Soul Provider” (racking in nearly 4 mil YouTube video views). This will give listeners a feel of his 2016 album entitled Love Sick (VP Records), which is a heartfelt collection mostly comprised of love songs.
    Lifted follows his critically acclaimed 2012 album The System, which was described as “striking” (Washington Post), “high-quality” (BBC) and “smooth and engaging” (New York Times). Billboard also proclaimed he has “empowering messages over misogynistic and violent lyrics, intricately textured one-drop rhythms instead of frenetic digital beats” and he has “found an appreciative, multi-generational audience.”

    Proper Villains – Fire Alarm Blaze
    (Nov 13 / Feel Up Records) EP Release

    FIRE ALARM is the collaboration between veteran dance music producer Proper Villains and seasoned Trinidadian vocalist Metric Man. After meeting through a friend, the two established an immediate musical rapport: Their early collaborations quickly became releases on Fire Power and Play Me, earning support from the likes of Zed’s Dead and Flosstradamus, and placement on MTV’s Teen Wolf reboot. This laid the groundwork for a full length Fire Alarm project. Proper Villains brings the experience of almost two decades of New York dance music, from Giuliana-era raves to basement dubstep on through today. A versatile talent in his own right, Metric Man is comfortable crooning or chanting, with two mixtapes and releases on Burn the Fire, Easy Star and Reel Me to his name. Together, the duo distill dancehall riddims and heavy bass into something cohesive and new: FIRE ALARM is a force to be reckoned with and their full mixtape is a wild journey.

    Gyptian Ft Lady Leshur – All On Me | Diztortion Remix
    (Nov 6 / VP Records) Single Release

    Gyptian, who hit international stardom with his RIAA certified Gold hit “Hold You” (produced by Ricky Blaze and later remixed by Nicki Minaj) in 2010, is back with a single just as contagious. The Jamaican reggae singer’s song “All On Me” (June 9, VP) continues to climb UK and U.S. radio charts on Top 40, Urban and Rhythmic radio, and now has Lady Leshurr, “Britain’s hottest female rapper” hailed by Vogue, gets on the wicked new remix produced by the Dutch born record producer Diztortion (known for his hits with UK artists like Stylo G, Lethal Bizzle and Tinie Tempah). The new remix, available Nov 6, 2015 for digital sale on VP Records, collides UK grime, hip hop, EDM and reggae into a worldly sound.

    GENTLEMAN – MTV UNPLUGGED – DELUXE EDITION
    Gentleman – MTV Unplugged – Deluxe Edition
    (Nov 6, VP Records)

    // Current Music *Fall 2015 //

    Boyslashfriend – Low Key
    (Sept 18, Feel Up Records) Album/LP Release

    Whether it is VOGUE raving about his “pitch-perfect R&B,” BILLBOARD giving props to his “seductive songwriting and soundscapes” or NYLON stating that he has “the shadowy beats of someone like The Dream,” critics and tastemakers alike can’t deny there is something special about Boyslashfriend. After a series of singles and mixtapes, the NYC based singer, with a heavy heart for 90’s R&B, and a forward mind for the future in dance music, returns with his debut album Low Key on Jillionarie’s (of Major Lazer) label Feel Up Records. The new LP Low Key displays Boyslash’s range as a storytelling hopeless romantic who loves to break night alongside that special girl or his music partners, Jason Scott Henderson and producer, Christian “MNTN” Mariano. The album features guest production from Obey City, MeLo-X, Joseph Marinetti, Mess Kid & more. Guest vocalists on the project include Brooklyn siren, JADE♥ and New York’s brand new R&B MC, GETOVERHER. Check him in NYC at SOBs on Oct 22.

    Various Artists – August Pablo Presents Rockers International
    (Sept 25 / Greensleeves) Album/LP Release

    Originally issued as two separate album releases, this 2CD remastered edition collects 28 classics from Augustus Pablo during the golden age of the Rockers era. The album features melodica masterpieces, deep dubs andclassic vocal sides from the likes of Jacob Miller, Junior Delgado, Earl Sixteen and more – all built on Augustus Pablo’s signature rock solid drum and bass foundations. Also for the first time, a 7″ vinyl release for the scorching ’79 reggae classic from Junior Delgado’s 1979 scorcher “Away With You Fussing And Fighting.”

    Gussie Clarke – From the Foundation
    (Oct 9, 17 North Parade) 2CD/DVD + Vinyl Release

    VP Records’ vintage imprint 17 North Parade opens its vaults to present a new reggae anthology from one of the most influential Jamaican producers and businessmen Gussie Clarke. 17 North Parade will release a comprehensive double-disc compilation. From The Foundation, spanning Gussie Clarke’s catalog of hit productions from the 1970s until today, accompanied with a DVD that takes an in-depth look of the man behind the controls. The collection featurese exclusive unreleased material and iconic hits from artists like Augustus Pablo, Big Youth, Gregory Isaacs, Dennis Brown, The Mighty Diamonds, Bunny Wailer, J.C. Lodge, Shabba Ranks, Sizzla and many more. All the music is re-mastered and coupled with deluxe packaging and extensive liner notes. In addition, a vinyl companion piece (carrying the same name) will be available the following week (Oct 16) that features exclusive tracks not available on the CD and digital version.

    // Upcoming Events //

    High Times 2015 World Cannabis Cup in Negril
    (Nov 12-15)

    Welcome to JamRock Reggae Cruise
    (Nov 30-Dec 5 & DEC 5-10)

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  • Saint Lucians in New York Celebrates Jounen Kweyol

    The Saint Lucia House Foundation in conjunction with the Saint Lucia Consulate in New York is set to observe Creole Heritage Month in New York. This year’s festival will take place on Sunday October 25th, 2015 with an action filled day in Brooklyn. This event will showcase the rich cultural heritage of Saint Lucia and introduce others to the island’s amazing history and traditions that continue to be celebrated to this day. This year’s celebration will feature De Inferno Band, Tropicalfete Steel Pan Ensemble, DJ Eryk Natural Sounds, Drummers, Dancers, The Children of Culture, Saint Lucia Folklore Association, Saint Lucian American La Rose and Solo Group, National Wear Fashion Models and many more.

    President of The Saint Lucia House Foundation Matthias Wilkie indicated that he is expecting a block buster turnout. Wilkie stated: “Based on the demand for advanced tickets it is expected that the attendance might break last year’s record attendance”. Due to the popularity of this festival, it was necessary to relocate the event from the Saint Lucia House where it had been held in previous years. This year’s festivities will be held at PACIFIC BK., conveniently located at 1065 Pacific Street between

    Franklin and Classon Avenues. The event starts at 12-10pm.

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  • Iba Mahr and Dean Fraser Say It’s All About “Having Fun!”

    Reggae Star and Ambassador Iba Mahr, and legendary saxophonist Dean Fraser, have teamed to deliver a new single to the music marketplace carrying a simple message: it’s all about “Having Fun!”

    Released on SoundCloud, the single comes in advance of Iba Mahr’s much anticipated album, Diamond Sox, which will be released on the VPAL imprint on November 20th, 2015. Warming the market to the many moods of Iba Mahr, the single “Having Fun” is a reflection of the artists fun side when not performing music about the importance of faith in HIM (His Imperial Majesty), or social issues such as the improvement in living standards for all people around the world.

    Produced by Roland McDermott for Born Rollin Productions, and Jermaine Edwards, the song offers listeners a perfect 3 minute Ska getaway which hears Iba encourage one and all to ‘shake off the stress / just stay high’ by focusing on the positives and not the negatives. Adding to that call are the sounds of Dean Frasers saxophone which playfully joins in on Iba’s lyrics.

    When contacted about the single and his album, Iba said “I’m excited to give this album to the world. It’s been some time in the making, and it really reflects me as an artist and as a person who has connected with people from all walks of life. We all have ups and downs, joys and tears, and this album understands that. By the time the album ends, we both feel uplifted and joyful, and I feel good about that!”

    Dean Fraser is a veteran musician and producer who has worked with caliber artists such as Tarrus Riley, Dennis Brown and Sly & Robbie, as well as award winning producer Donovan Germaine. He is known for infusing the genres Reggae and Dancehall with the saxophone, and is one of the most celebrated talents in music in the Caribbean.

    Also included on the 15 track disc will be the original and remix versions of Iba Mahr’s hit single “Diamond Sox” featuring Notis and Tarrus Riley. Fans in Jamaica will be the first to experience Iba’s album live when he performs on December 31st at the Sound Di Alarm Music Festival in Linstead, St. Catherine, Jamaica.

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  • Philippines get ready for the Reggae Heavyweights Inner Circle Perform Live

    Bad Boys of Reggae from the Caribbean Island of Jamaica are coming to The Philippines ! Get ready to SWEAT and enjoy the “GAMES PEOPLE PLAY” as the Bad Boys bring their One Love Reggae Revolution Tour to Cebu City, Manila, & Boracay for 3 exclusive shows !

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  • Jus Now Drops EP Title Track ft. Bunji Garlin & Ms. Dynamite

    Producer duo Jus Now unveils the explosive title track – featuring Trinidadian soca star Bunji Garlin and British grime/R&B fusion pioneer Ms. Dynamite – off their upcoming EP Cyah Help It. The EP will be released in the U.S. this Friday (October 23rd, 2015) via Feel Up Records (the label co-owned by Jillionaire of Major Lazer).

    Over Jus Now’s soca dance beats, the self-proclaimed “Viking of Soca” and England’s award-winning lyricist drum up a hard-hitting call-to-action anthem. Given their geographical differences, they manage to traverse each other’s sounds thanks to the worldly backdrop provided by Jus Now’s versatile production style.

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  • Fay-Ann Lyons ft. Stonebwoy – Block The Road (2016 Soca)

    When one of the most fearless females in soca Fay-Ann Lyons teams up with BET award winner for Best International Act Stonebwoy B from Ghana you get a wickedly sick built original from the ground up AFROSOCA that is surely going to damage on local and international waters. Produced by Stadic music the track BLOCK THE ROAD written by fay and Stonebwoy this is simply a smash and musical mesmer.’

    Written by Fayann Lyons and Stonebwoy
    Produced by Stadic and Wetty beatz
    Mixed by Stadic Music
    Mastered by Nikholai Greene of Bass Gang
    Recorded at Sound Lock

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  • “Smooth Jazz Meets Reggae” on November 6th, 2015

    Billboard chart-topping vocalist and songwriter Helen Rogers of Jazzmasters fame is set for a strong return with the potent Smooth Jazz Meets Reggae (Skinny Bwoy Records). The 10-song set (plus two CD-only bonus tracks), features original songwriting and production, as well as compelling reggae covers of “Don’t Know Why” (Norah Jones), “Be Thankful For What You Got” (William DeVaughn) and the reggae classic “Still In Love With You Boy” (Alton Ellis).

    Producers for the album includes Quicktouch (Henry “Sadiki” Buckley Jr. and Marvin Weatherspoon (Keyboardist for The Chi-Lites), reggae’s Paul “Computer Paul” Henton (Akon, Shaggy), Lloyd Mullings (DJ Warm n Easy) and Nathan Monlux (Coalition).

    Smooth Jazz Meets Reggae is an album embodying two distinct styles. Creating an album such as this, without the watering down of either style, is seldom an easy task. “Sadiki and I both had exactly the same concept at the outset for the structure of the songs on the album – the smooth jazz songs should be one hundred percent smooth jazz and the reggae songs should be a hundred percent reggae. They are two distinctly different ‘feels’ and we both felt strongly that’s the way it should be,” says Helen.

    With main producer Sadiki residing in the US and Helen living in the UK, Smooth Jazz Meets Reggae is truly an album made possible by technology. “I received the musical backing ideas from Sadiki, spent some time writing in solitude and then recorded the demos at my home studio with my husband Simon at the engineering controls,” says Helen. “The demos were sent back to Sadiki for feedback with both of us really wanting the songs to be the best they can be,” she continues. “Sadiki as my producer was an incredibly positive influence throughout, completely understanding where I was coming from with each song and knowing when to say “that’s great just as it is” or when to add lyrical, melodic or phrasing content and ideas.

    Helen believes both her fan bases will appreciate Smooth Jazz Meets Reggae. “At the end of the day music is music and there is no reason why people can’t enjoy different styles,” she says. “In fact, I’ve had so many lovely messages from the really cool, loyal and supportive smooth jazz fans telling me that although they weren’t usually into reggae they really liked my new music and vice versa,” she continues. “Of course a lot of the fans already enjoy both genres too.”

    Born in Rinteln, West Germany to Irish/Scots, Helen cites her Mum and R&B Queen, Aretha Franklin as her first musical influences. “My Mum had a really beautiful voice and would sing me to sleep as a baby… all the Jazz classics,” she says. “I first felt the emotional power of a vocalist via Aretha Franklin,” she remembers. “The pain of ‘Til You Come Back to Me’ direct from Aretha’s soul to my 9 year old heart, was captivating.”

    Rogers – born Helen Clark, began her singing career in London in the 80’s, firstly with One Stop a South London reggae label, where she met and recorded with reggae legend Ken Parker and worked with lovers rock band Natural Touch. She went on to become lead singer of the #1 Brit Funk band Direct Drive, and was signed to Polydor Records in this capacity. They had a massive hit with their song ‘Anything’ which remained at #1 on the Black Echoes Soul chart for 8 weeks then crossed over to the UK National Chart.

    Helen’s foray into the US market came through her work on Jazzmasters, the smooth jazz album series she co-founded with producer and multi-instrumentalist Paul Hardcastle. Throughout the 90’s the Jazzmasters series entered Billboard’s Smooth Jazz charts numerous times with several entries peaking at the #1 position. “My time working with Paul Hardcastle was really special to me,” she says. “We had met whilst both working with UK Jazz Funk band Direct Drive and following the band’s break up we worked together on and off over the years,” she continues. “What an incredible experience it was to write and record five Jazzmasters albums with an artist, composer and producer like Paul.”

    With the first single, “In The Light” already gaining strong radio attention in the US and the UK, Helen will be promoting Smooth Jazz Meets Reggae with a radio promotional campaign while working on tour dates for 2016.

    “If I could sum up Smooth Jazz Meets Reggae in a few words, I’d say – inspirational, relaxing, positive – smooth and chilled out vibes for peace,” says Helen.

    Smooth Jazz Meets Reggae is scheduled for worldwide release on November 6th, 2015 via Skinny Bwoy Records.

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  • Kerwin Du Bois & Christopher Martin Encourages Female Celebration

    Beyond physical attributes there are some features that can be easily listed by male suitors as main attractors when referring to women. While the preferences may vary, a confident, self assured and authentic woman can capture the attention of any right thinking man. In recognizing positive female characteristics, Kerwin Du Bois and Christopher Martin are encouraging celebration in their new release ‘Feelin Ya Self.’ It’s quite understandable why women will readily comply to the collaborative track by two of the Caribbean’s best voices.

    Written by both Kerwin Du Bois and Christopher Martin and produced by Du Bois, the track incorporates sincere melodies, well penned lyrics and unique rhythms. That’s right; these descriptions have been used many times before however listening will further confirm why both artistes are recognized in their respective genres of Soca and Reggae for their contributions. ‘Feelin Ya Self’ will undoubtedly be embraced for the merging of their talents for Carnival 2016.

    A call to “Show it Off” has been made. Ladies, bring your confidence and comply!

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  • Lady Leshurr Jumps on Gyptian’s “All On Me”

    Gyptian, who hit international stardom with his RIAA certified Gold hit “Hold You” (produced by Ricky Blaze and later remixed by Nicki Minaj) in 2010, is back with a single just as contagious. The Jamaican reggae singer’s song “All On Me” (June 9, VP) continues to climb U.S. radio charts on Top 40, Urban and Rhythmic radio, and now has Lady Leshurr, “Britain’s hottest female rapper” hailed by Vogue, gets on the wicked new remix produced by the Dutch born record producer Diztortion (known for his hits with UK artists like Stylo G, Lethal Bizzle and Tinie Tempah). The new remix, available Nov 6, 2015 for digital sale on VP Records, collides UK grime, hip hop, EDM and reggae into a worldly sound.

    Following his 2013 #1 Billboard Reggae Album chart-topper Sex, Love and Reggae, Gyptian’s bubbling new track “All On Me” (off High Life riddim produced by JA Productions) continues to gain momentum. While spins are growing at U.S. radio, Gyptian has been landing prestigious performances throughout the summer and fall – including NYC’s Central Park SummerStage, BET Experience Festival in LA, DJ Funkmaster Flex’s birthday bash with Fetty Wap as well as Jamie XX’s BoilerRoom event with Young Thug (just to name a few). The video also received over 3.5 mil views on WorldStarHipHop alone and is currently spinning on VH1 Island Soul.

    England’s leading lady is the perfect match to team up with the reggae star. Born to St. Kitts parents and influenced by reggae’s sound, the grime artist Lady Leshurr brings her own unique Caribbean-tinged flavor to the track to match Gyptian’s pitch-perfect island vibes. Whether her music is heard on Samsung Galaxy’s brand new commercial, booming out of the speakers during Alexander Wang’s Spring 2016 New York Fashion Week runway show or hitting Spotify’s Top 10 Most Viral Tracks, Lady Leshurr’s music is spreading like wildfire. Together, Gyptian and Lady Leshurr backed with Diztortion made beats, deliver an explosive mix of pure fyah!

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  • Nu Generation Studios Drops “Don Diva” from Juelio Featuring Inzey

    Trinidadian production house Nu Generation Studios drops its new hit “Don Diva” from Juelio featuring Inzey, available worldwide from all major digital retailers on October 23, 2015, with pre-order available now, from FOX FUSE. Hit producer Julian “Juelio” Nelson, who is at the helm of Nu Generation Studios, evolves as an exciting artist and delivers with the up-tempo, groovy “Don Diva.”

    Trinidadian rapper Inzey adds his lyrical flow, flavoring the groovy soca tune with rap. The track is building momentum on radio and dance floors, as Juelio pulls double-duty as producer and singer, much to the delight of soca fans. The song is Nu Generation Studios and Juelio’s new release for the 2016 Trinidad Carnival season.

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  • AdvoKit Productions Scores New Smash “Better Than You” by Rita Jones

    Trinidad and Tobago-based hit house AdvoKit Productions releases its new smash “Better Than You” by Rita Jones, available worldwide from all major digital retailers on October 23, 2015, with pre-order available now, from FOX FUSE. Coming off a stunningly successful 2015 soca season with blockbuster releases such “Ola” by Olatunji, which continues to chart on Billboard over a year later (Top 100 Reggae Songs chart), AdvoKit Productions brings its new hit “Better Than You” for the 2016 Trinidad Carnival.

    Trinidadian songstress Rita Jones cut her singing chops and earned a strong fan base as a vocalist for bands such as JMC 3Veni and Roy Cape All Stars, and brings us this sizzling track that is laced with an important message. On “Better Than You,” she claims whatever men can do, women can do better.

    Rita Jones is bound to cause a stir with such a bold statement and the track is being embraced by radio and fans, alike. It was penned by noted Trinidadian songwriters Dale Ryan, Emmanuel Rudder, Antonio Phillips and Kit Israel (lead producer for AdvoKit Productions), and is definitely a story and song worth checking out, Carnival and beyond.

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  • Martian Music Brings Us “Bumper Patrol” from Devon Matthews

    Trinidad and Tobago-based Martian Music brings us “Bumper Patrol” from Devon Matthews, available worldwide from all major digital retailers on October 23, 2015, with pre-order available now, from FOX FUSE. It was produced and written by producer Erikkson “Don Iko” George for his own imprint, Martian Music.

    “Bumper Patrol” is a provocative, groovy soca tune voiced by Trinidadian soca sensation Devon Matthews. It debuts for the 2016 Trinidad Carnival season and is perfect to enjoy at fetes and on the road, or wherever a bumper patrol is needed.

    Martian Music was established in 2007 and is headed by Don Iko, who has been crafting beats and hit tunes for over eight years now. His exciting take on soca music is making Martian Music a household name in soca music today.

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  • Blackstarr Productionz Ignites with the Skyline Riddim

    BlackStarr Productionz ignites with its new soca compilaton the Skyline Riddim, available worldwide from all major digital retailers on October 23, 2015, with pre-order available now, from FOX FUSE. The groovy soca rhythm is BlackStarr Productionz’s new release for the 2016 Trinidad Carnival season.

    Short and sweet with four tracks, the Skyline Riddim features tunes from Trinidadian entertainers Semonita, Sir Skarz, Mr. Moore and Ruben. The tunes are picking up momentum on playlists throughout the Caribbean and also on YouTube, where audio-only videos are racking up views.

    Based in Trinidad, BlackStarr Productionz is captained by producer Arnold Noel, who has been producing music for four years now. The Skyline Riddim adds a slew of new hits to its growing catalog.

    TRACK LIST
    1. Semonita – Helicopter Mode
    2. Sir Skarz – 48 (2 Days)
    3. Mr. Moore – Doh Hold It Back
    4. Ruben – Safe

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  • Tuff Nut Studio Presents the Good Works Riddim: Deluxe Edition

    Trinidadian production house Tuff Nut Studio presents the Good Works Riddim: Deluxe Edition, available worldwide from all major digital retailers on October 23, 2015, with pre-order available now, from FOX FUSE. Based in Febeau Village in San Juan, Trinidad, Tuff Nut Studio was established in 2006 by producer Michael “Master Mike” Samuel, who has been crafting reggae gems for a decade now.

    Good Works Riddim: Deluxe Edition delivers six tracks and features Trinidadian reggae sensations Marley Palmer, Jah Son, Tishana, Nigel Lopez, J Dot Manswell and Patriotic.

    The conscious reggae compilation delivers one-drop anthems for reggae lovers everywhere. This deluxe edition adds three new tracks (from Marley Palmer, Nigel Lopez and Patriotic) to the Good Works Riddim, which was originally released on July 15, 2015, also from FOX FUSE.

    TRACKLIST
    1. Marley Palmer – Who God Bless Featuring Jah Son
    2. Tishana – Last Night
    3. Nigel Lopez – Don’t Fight No More
    4. J Dot Manswell – I Give Thanks
    5. Patriotic – I’m Praising Jah
    6. Tuff Nut Studio – Good Works Riddim (Instrumental)

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