Tuesday, April 05, 2011

We Got Mojo, Dubmatix & Twins: Reggae News Update

Accomplished reggae producer and expert keyboardist Steven "Lenky" Marsden has founded a label named after his breakthrough riddim, 2002's Diwali that spawned hits for Sean Paul ("Get Busy") and Wayne Wonder ("No Letting Go"). According to Gerald Belnavis' Examiner article  Diwali Records will be Lenky's platform for new dancehall/reggae projects as well as hip-hop, R&B and pop titles. The article also contains excellent biographical details including Lenky's early life in Kingston, Jamaica's volatile Dunkirk community and Lenky's tour outings with Rita Marley, Lloyd Parkes, Richie Stephens and Buju Banton among many others.

  Daniel “Chino” McGregor has dropped a new single to preview his upcoming self-titled album out May 24 on VP Records. Produced by his talented brother Stephen "Di Genius" McGregor, "Seal The Link" has a King Jammys-style uptempo digital reggae feel and strong melodies. It's a bubbling track that should impact reggae clubs quickly. Chino's other recent  hits  "Pon Yuh Head," "Protected" and "From Mawning" (video) hint at a promising debut album.

Canadian artist Dubmatix has a new sample pack available for producers. Reggae Soundclash is geared toward producers making dancehall, dub, dubstep, experimental or ambient recordings. Choose from Reason, Ableton Live or Apple Loops formats. The loops and samples are made from real instruments played live with some added effects and processing. Hear samples or order packs at Loopmasters.

Morgan Heritage member Mojo Morgan's new track "Streets Worldwide" is contemporary reggae with an urban twist. Acording to Mojo, "This song is about the reality in our world today and shows that things aren't so different in the different parts of the world." Mojo and his brothers and sister performed
in the Living Legacy Concert at UN headquarters March 25 for International Day of Remembrance of the Victims of Slavery and the Transatlantic Slave Trade.

 Jahdan Blakkamore has his single "All Comes Back To One" remixed by a heavy duty quintet of producers from the electronic dance world. Released on New Yorker Liondub's label, reworks are delivered by Potential Badboy & Liondub, who offer a rolling drum 'n' bass treatment, NYC dubmaster Ticklah (Victor Axelrod from Antibalas), Nate Mars' killer dubstep remix and a roots rub from The Bobos (download). The single is taken from Jahdan's latest album Babylon Nightmare. Hear clips from the remix EP here.
Singer Sledge has covered Dennis Brown's classic “Should I” and it's reached  #7 on the New York Top 30 Singles Chart.  “Being on the Chart gives me a great feeling. It’s like I’m moving in the right direction and that direction is to the people.” says Sledge. Check his full length album release, After The Storm (Builders Music) available now on iTunes or CD in retail stores or at  Ernie B’s Reggae

Preview the hilarious new Twin of Twins comedy mixtape in which they put Jamaica's most infamous stars on "trial." ToT specialize in pitch perfect impressions of Buju, Bounty, Vybz and, their specialty, Mutabaruka. "Stir It Up Volume 9" is a reggae roast at its best: raw and uncensored Yard humor!

New  dancehall riddims:
• Vigilante Riddim from Arrows Records featuring I-Octane, Stacious, Spragga Benz. Listen or buy it here.
• Stadium Buck Riddim from Crash Dummy Records
• New Begining From Jus Easy Productions featuring new tracks from Mr. Lexx, Red Fox, Ishawna
• Hungry Dawg produced by Seanizzle with lead single
"Swaggin" by Mr. G
• Spazzle (new Mavado "Tumping"), One A Way (new Richie Loop and Cecile) and Problem Riddim (Beenie Man, Kiprich) all from Scikron/Big Yard

One last note: If you're  ever in SF on a Monday night, be sure to stop by the Skylark Bar on 16th street at Valencia for the killer all-vinyl weekly reggae night Skylarking presented by SF's I&I Vibration Sound. The crew bring Swedish/Jamaican artist Million Stylez to the Rockit Room on April 21. And check their excellent (free) mixtapes:

• Addicted to Muzik featuring Konshens mixed by Beatnok (download)
• Trillin mixed by Mr. Lucky (download)