Richie Stephens/Gentleman ‘I Found Heaven’ Burning Up Airwaves In JAMAICA
Singer Riche Stephens is a happy man these day. His hit single with Gentleman titled “Live Your Life” topped reggae charts in New York, Florida, Atlanta and Toronto in 2012 and was voted ‘Best International Song’ at the 2011 Stone Love Awards in Kingston. The video clip for the song also won the award for ‘Best Music Video’ at the 2012 International Reggae and World Music Awards (IRAWMA) in Chicago.
Last November, the Jamaican musical ambassador garnered international attention with his spirited cover of “Mary Jane,” which found favor with music fans in Japan. Stephens and Gentleman are also making musical inroads with their inspirational single “I Found Heaven” from their album of duets. The song is now a staple on Irie FM, Hitz 92 FM, Hot 102, Kool FM, Linkz FM, Vibez FM among others. Errol Smith aka Uncle Errol and radio listeners on Mello FM in Montego Bay have also fell in love with the song which is now in rotation on the station.
“Richie has always been an artiste whose music shows the professionalism and creativity of one who is devoted to his craft. A tragic event took place in his (Richie’s) life a few years ago and it is my belief that this gave him a new insight into what his life was all about and what his music could achieve. This was when I started paying serious attention to his music. Radio audiences have taken to it. People keep asking for it over and over….listeners of all ages I might add” the radio host disclosed.
“I played that song (Live your Life ) first on my programme on radio. The rest is history. ‘Warrior’ and the Gospel medley, which were released in quick succession pointed to a deep inspirational thread developing and this made and impact not only on Jamaican, but international audiences as well. I dare say the quality of reggae is riding high……the serious problem there is, is that the best of reggae is not reaching the people. A lot of presenters on radio haven’t the slightest idea what is music. They have no responsibility to what their function is, and so they leave listeners with the mistaken impression that reggae music is on the decline. That is so far from the truth” he said.
Smith, a veteran Jamaican broadcaster has spent the last 40 years in media in Jamaica – the last four years hosting his morning show at Mello FM in Monego Bay. With fellow broadcaster Barry G, the two have significantly improved Mello’s position in the latest media survey, making it one of the top four radio stations in the island.
“I must thank Uncle Errol, other Mello FM jocks and all radio listeners for the love they are giving ‘I Found Heaven.’ The song is an inspiration to many and it is gaining traction on other stations in Jamaica, the USA and other parts of the Caribbean as well” Stephens noted.
He will perform on February 14 at a Valentine’s concert in Discovery Bay, Jamaica. Later this year, he and Gentleman will embark on a European tour that will take him to several countries to push the album to an even wider international audience.
“Live Your Life” the album was release in November 2012 by VPAL (Sub Label of VP Records) and is available on iTunes and at all major music retail outlets.