Unity Sound Worldwide owner and selector CrossFire links up to share his excitement for new reggae and dancehall releases. PODCAST EPISODE SUMMARY During this conversation we touched on: The debut of the Family Buss Riddim produced by Unity Sound Worldwide. Unity online mixes and mix CDs (old and new). Who are the current Unity Sound Worldwide members? […] http://dlvr.it/RncMpt
This episode takes a look at the world of reggae backing bands and the legends they support.
Our guest is Stevie Culture, a musician from the west coast of Jamaica who’s has been playing and performing Reggae music for more than 2 decades.
The backing band culture seldom gets highlighted or explored though it’s a major part of Jamaican music culture. This is a tribute to the musicians in the background, working to support the major Reggae artists.
Reggae Backing Band Culture
Every big show is facilitated by these amazing people behind the scenes. They never get the recognition they deserve – until now that is.
Stevie Culture has been a member of major reggae backing bands, Sane Band, the Fifth Extension, Prophecy Band, and Ninja Force Band. He has been on stage with some of the greatest artists of all time including Dennis Brown, Freddie McGregor, Yellow Man, Garnet Silk, and Capleton. He has traveled around the world touring and playing reggae music. We are grateful that he could share these stories on your platform.
We caught up with Diego Herrera, the Reggae/Caribbean Music Curator and Programmer for Pandora Media. He curates the popular New Reggae Now playlist.
Diego is entrenched within the culture and has been for a long time. As you may know, we’ve been working with Pandora to help push reggae music. Our podcast is featured on Pandora and we curate playlists on Pandora as well.
We had a very interesting, informative conversation. You will love it. We loved it! Diego works in the ecosystem touching the artists, labels, and the distribution channel. We pull back the curtain and shed some light on what happens on the back end at digital streaming services.
We all use these platforms to listen to content, but how do they really work? What are the inner workings? We learn about that plus get Diego’s refreshing perspective on new reggae now and the state of the culture. He comes from a very knowledgeable point of view. Of course, after the main segment, we present the Buzzworthy, Tastemaker, and SoundClash update segments.
Buju Banton denounces mask-wearing.
David Rodigan and Cedella Marley receive Jamaican Order of Distinction honors.
Barrington Levy in the studio with DJ Kahled.
Official music video for Koffee’s “Pressure” Remix featuring Buju Banton.
Downbeat pays epic tribute to fallen reggae icon Bunny “Striker” Lee on LP International’s Real Talk IG Live Show.
[Soundclash News] The No Jing Bang clash tournament Grand Final was Saturday, October 10th. Sponsored by the world’s #1 DJ software platform Serato, the final featured Tek 9 from Brooklyn versus Kanabis from Antigua.
[Podcast Interview] Sean Paul responds to criticisms for labeling dancehall clash culture as “slavery mentality.” – Watch Now via The Fix
[Sound Clash Audio] Eagle Force vs Love People vs Super Gold vs Inferno 10/20 (45 Shop Lock) JA ( Finals) – Listen
We talk to Maxi Priest and Jonathan Emile who collaborated on Emile’s recently released “Babylon is Falling” Remix.
Reggae music has always been at the forefront of social and political issues. One example is Bob Marley’s participation in the Amandla Festival of 1979 in Boston. There, Marley performed in support of the anti-apartheid movement and the liberation of South Africa.
A few short months ago, the entire world was shaken when George Floyd lost his life. People protested, buildings and businesses burned – all while in the middle of a worldwide pandemic. Race relations were already strained, but this event managed to trigger both a national and international outcry for change and justice.
“Babylon is Falling” is a song that has put a voice to the change. The song features 2 artists (Jonathan Emile and Maxi Priest) from different generations coming together to speak on what they’ve been through, and what’s to come.
We held reasoning on the following with Maxi Priest and Jonathan Emile:
How did the Remix to “Babylon is Falling” featuring Maxi Priest come about?
Different flavors of racism in the UK, Canada, and the Southern U.S.
The concept behind “Spaces In Between,” Jonathan’s debut reggae album.
Maxi Priest’s excitement for his forthcoming album, “United State of Mind.”
Why are some Caribbean people afraid to go back to the region?
Billboard’s disrespect towards dancehall culture with their Verzuz cover.
What is the responsibility of musicians in fighting oppression?
The problem with trying to control musicians’ creative output.
‘Babylon is Falling’ Remix – Jonathan Emile ft Maxi Priest
Two Artists from Different Generations Come Together to Sing About the State of the World Today:
Canadian-Jamaican artist Jonathan Emile and British-Jamaican artist Maxi Priest came together to create the Remix to “Babylon is Falling”, a track on Emile’s new album, “Spaces In Between.” The album is currently distributed by MindPeaceLove/Tuff Gong International. While the remix to the song was recorded back in January 2020, neither artist knew at the time that the song would become so relevant a few months later.
Emile is a bilingual (English & French), multi-talented singer-songwriter, producer, and Cancer survivor. His commanding voice resonates at the start of the song and draws the listener in immediately, asking if they know what their worth is, and then mentions the capitalistic society in which we live. He then explains that this can’t go on and eventually, something has to change (Babylon will fall).
“Growing up Black and Jamaican in Montreal, racism has been a fact of life. The institutional side was hidden but the interpersonal is still always present. As a Black person, you know you need to move cautiously to gain access, be accommodated, or have the opportunity to be treated with respect. This caution manifests in how you speak, how you read a room, and how you respond to racist banter or microaggressions.
Knowing that you’re seen as the other, alien, or ‘less than’ is at the forefront as you face people’s prejudice, always having to be an ambassador for your race. You become a master negotiator, code switcher, and an expert in de-escalation to preserve your body and reputation. This is a key concept in Spaces-In-Between. I am fortunate to have parents who provided me with tactics and strategies to avoid and cope with racism as a young Black Jamaican. The knowledge I received was built on their hard work and determination.”
Grammy-nominated Maxi Priest, best known for his Lover’s Rock and R&B/Reggae fusion tunes like “Close to You’ and “Wild World” comes in next, but he’s not singing about love this time. In fact, he’s Deejaying (rapping), which in itself is a rare sound for him. He rides the riddim with the smoothness that he’s best known for, but the content of the lyrics speak of the things he’s both experienced himself throughout the years growing up in England, and what he continues to see around him today. His message, like so many, is that he’s tired.
“Here we go again – We stand firm we nah ease up the pressure – Just like a volcano bubbling over – to take it to the heights you have fi step like a soldier”
Although both Emile and Priest come from different generations, they have many things in common, including being of Jamaican heritage, and growing up and living outside of Jamaica, which has impacted them.
Like so many people that live abroad, there are mixed feelings right now with what is happening with the racial, economic, and spiritual climate, and the uneasiness that it brings. “Babylon is Falling” is a song that resonates with everyone, no matter where you come from, or what age you are.
We list our Top 5 Revolutionary Reggae Songs of all time. Ras Jamal from Royal Ethiopian Sound joins the discussion to give his analysis.
We define what a revolutionary song is and how the music of the 70s differs from the messages in today’s music. There are different kinds of revolutions. The conversation takes us through some responses that have emerged as a result of today’s struggle for racial justice.
Anthony B, Sizzla, Jah9, Yeza, Kabaka Pyramid, Protoje, Akae Beka, Lutan Fyah, Warrior King, and Queen Ifrica are commended for their contributions to the movement. We each listed some honorable mentions in addition to our top 5 revolutionary reggae songs. Listen to the Pandora playlist inspired by this episode.
Kahlil Wonda’s Top 5 Revolutionary Reggae Songs
Bob Marley – Burning and Looting
Bob Marley – Revolution
Peter Tosh – Equal Rights
Sizzla – Made Of
Bob Marley – Slave Driver
AGARD’s Top 5 Revolutionary Reggae Songs
Bob Andy – Unchained
The Abyssinians – Declaration of Rights
Peter Tosh – Equal Rights
Dennis Brown – Revolution
Bob Marley – War
Ras Jamal’s Top 5 Revolutionary Reggae Songs
John Holt – Police In Helicopter
Bob Marley – War
Peter Tosh – Equal Rights
Dennis Brown – Revolution
Beres Hammond – Another Day In The System
We also debated:
Where is the revolutionary music of this generation?
What is the difference between conscious music and positive music?
Is reggae supposed to teach or help people?
Outside of revolutionary music, what tactics can lead to the results we seek?
Does an artist have to be a rasta to be conscious?
Protoje’s “In Search of Lost Time” album. Notable track, “In Bloom” ft. Lila Ike.
We discussed how Steve has been pushing the culture in nightlife and through his work in the recording industry. He shares how he got started in the business, and his thoughts on Jamaica getting more hardcore about honoring reggae icons. We touched on strategies for harnessing the economic potential of reggae, the Sean Paul success formula, and much more.
Steve “Urchin” Wilson Bio
After getting his start at Bob Marley’s legendary Tuff Gong record label as a marketing exec, Steve spent 10 years cross-training in every imaginable area in the entertainment industry including a stint as studio manager for the GeeJam Studios where he oversaw studio sessions for The Roots, Common, The Gorillaz, No Doubt & The Jungle Brothers amongst others. In 2001 this Jamaican trailblazer signed on to help pilot the dizzying career of multi-platinum Grammy winner Sean Paul.
He spent the last 15 years traveling to over 100 countries and presiding over logistics, booking, touring, promotion & recording for the Dancehall superstar.
While honing his role as a reggae ambassador Wilson simultaneously plotted to bring EDM & house music to his Homebase of Kingston via his Brand New Machine party series that saw super DJs like Diplo, Bob Sinclar, CongoRock & Toddla T spin in Jamaica for the first time. He has gone on to export the BNM party concept to Montego Bay, Cayman, London & New York City.
Steve is also partners in FSOR Music (Future Sound Of Reggae) a boutique label that has featured releases from Mink Jo, Transdub Massiv, Naomi Cowan, Jesse Royal & Craigy T amongst others.
Most recently he was one of the local partners of the initial staging of the critically acclaimed Tmrwtday Culture Festival in Negril, Jamaica.
The Vault: Classic Music Reviews podcast host, Brian Cox gave us an education on the island of Grenada.
Brian shared his unique perspective as a first-generation American of Caribbean descent. He described the soundtrack of Grenada, and how music has changed there over time. We learned about the music and food you would encounter at a typical Grenadian party.
The Vault: Classic Music Reviews is a top-rated music commentary podcast. The co-hosts, hip-hop fans that grew up in the 90s, review classic hip-hop, R&B, and reggae albums 20 + years after their release. They break these albums down to see if they stood the test of time. Listeners get a perspective on classics from a fresh point of view. The Vault: Classic Music Reviews also includes guest interviews, round table discussions, and artist catalog debates.
The Fix JA podcast has been a dominant force in media for quite some time now. The three co-hosts, Naro, Ari, and Javi, have dynamic chemistry and synergy.
The Fix JA features the best of the best of the Jamaican dancehall and reggae scene. They cover what’s hot and bubbling in Kingston from an objective point-of-view. The co-hosts interact with guests in a unique, honest, and real way.
We had the privilege of speaking with Naro, one of the dynamic hosts of The Fix JA, formerly Nightly Fix. From his base on the island of Jamaica, Naro keyed us into many aspects of the culture. If you have yet to check out The Fix, please do so as soon as you finish this episode.
Listen to Reggae Lover Podcast episode 205 – The Fix JA to learn:
Do Jamaican youth respect dancehall icons and history?
Are young people in Jamaica building sound systems any more?
What is the importance of quality media platforms and voices covering our music?
Why and how did The Fix JA podcast get started?
How did Naro, Javi, and Ari became the co-hosts and develop their chemistry?
How does Naro handle the controversy that surrounds him?
How does The Fix JA crew get the toughest dancehall personalities to be vulnerable?
Why is it important to give upcoming artists an outlet?
How does one stay up on the latest dancehall music?
What is the state of the Jamaican entertainment industry in this COVID19 era?
Why do people around the world have more reverence for reggae than people in Jamaica
It was a dope conversation. We look forward to linking up more in the future. As mentioned in the intro to this episode, we had to scrap the other segments for this week. Look out for more essential content curation in addition to some bonus episodes.
Please visit ReggaeLover.com to catch up on past shows. Make sure to subscribe on your favorite podcast platform.
Major Lazer’s Jillionaire sits down with Reggae Lover’s AGARD and Kahlil Wonda.
Jillionaire Interview (Major Lazer, Feel Up Records)
Christopher Leacock aka Jillionaire is a Trinidad-born DJ/Producer, entrepreneur, IT guru, and restauranteur. He shares insights and drops gems while taking us through his amazing career.
In this Jillionaire interview, he came off like a scholar and an elder. He dropped a lot of knowledge. Dropped a lot of history, and a lot of perspectives. This conversation was nice and mellow – very different energy than last week’s show with Walshy Fire. Nevertheless, Jillionaire had profound things to say and you will enjoy the discussion.
Big ups to Buju Banton who’s been continuing his promotion of Upside Down 2020. Last week that promo brought him to a couple of very big platforms. One of them being the Breakfast Club.t
I love the song. I love the video. It speaks for Jamaicans living abroad and at home. The composition embodies the Jamaican patriotic spirit. Make sure you don’t miss that.
There is a new single from Kabaka Pyramid, a response to the current social injustice. The song, “Babylon Fallin,” came out on July 17th, 2020 with accompanying visuals. The music video features clips of scenes with the police facing off against citizens.
Kabaka uses his well-known lyrical prowess in this very conscious song. It’s social commentary. One of the themes that we’ve been talking about on this platform is the need for music like this. This song definitely goes on that list of revolutionary music. And it’s right on time.
The riddim is a different kind. It is not a “one-drop” beat. The message and production are coherent with the times. Regardless of what genre you subscribe to, once you hear the song, you hear what he’s talking about. If you’re anything short of an anarchist or a racist yourself, then you will feel the passion. The release has seen coverage by The Source, a nod to Kabaka’s rep as a dope emcee.
Every Friday Team Torment presents the Locked and Loaded dubplate showcase. Hear four different sounds weekly live on YouTube. Shout out and the entire Team Torment crew, King AP, Blackheart, and the rest of sounds.
Also in sound clash news, Soundclash.com has a new series coming out sponsored by Serato called No Jing Bang. The tournament will be hosted by D.J. English Fire, Chris Diamond, Walshy Fire, and Warrior Sound.
What do I love about this? First of all, it’s great to see the unity between Chris Diamond, Walshy, and Warrior. Two of the top online clash promoters have now joined forces. Secondly, the major corporate sponsorship for this sport is a huge win. Look out for more developments from the No Jing Bang series. We’re glad to see some growth in the SoundClash community as we all adapt to this new normal.
This season, we will bring you more interviews due to what’s going on in the world right now. Some great potential guests have definitely freed up. We look forward to sharing more exciting, insightful conversations with you. So stay tuned.
Get In Touch
Reggae Lover Podcast is produced by Andres AGARD and Aubrey Kahlil Agard. Visit ReggaeLover.com for full show notes, archives, and more information. If you’re interested in a sponsorship or donation, please email info@ReggaeLover.com. Follow us on Instagram @ReggaeLoverPodcast. Like our Facebook page at Facebook.com/ReggaeLoverPodcast.
Our special guest is Walshy Fire from Major Lazer.
We enjoyed reasoning with someone that AGARD and I have known for decades. Before the podcasts, and before all the fame. If you’re not familiar with Walshy Fire I don’t know what rock you’ve been under. He has been everywhere in the world to deejay.
Walshy Fire talked about the state of the culture. We commented on dancehall, reggae, and business. We talked about soundclash and life in general. We didn’t get into a lot of his background. If you want to check into his background, he’s done many interviews in the past. If you’re looking for that go check out this spot.
During this conversation, we checked in and started shooting from the hip. The session was militant, and energetic, which is a good combination.
Walshy Fire Reasoning
How quarantine has changed life.
The soundtrack to the revolution.
Soundclash.com and the Quarantine Clash series.
Upcoming Major Lazer albums, artists, and mixtapes.
The “Customized Years” book.
The energy of nightlife versus day parties.
Influencers standing against destructive music.
The end of “niggering.”
Highlights for 2020 so far.
Buzzworthy, Tastemaker, and Soundclash Update
Buju Banton celebrated a birthday.
Donovan Jermaine and Buju received their gold record plaques for Til Shiloh.
Please join us next week for a reasoning session with Jillionaire from the Major Lazer crew. Tell a friend to tell a friend and shared a link to this show. Tweet a link to the show and tag @ReggaeLoverPod. We’ll be looking for you online using hashtag #ReggaeLoverPodcast.
In this episode’s main Segment catch an interview with Jamaica Music Conference founder and CEO, Kwasi Bonsu. The 7th annual conference featured panel discussions, workshops, artist showcases, special events, exhibits and more. Kwasi recaps this year’s JMC and highlights his favorite moments.
Results from the JARIA honors. Mortimer dominates, beating Koffee and Lila Ike.
Steppa Riddim released by Gargamel.
“Down and Out” by Ras Fraser Jr
Runkus – $$$ (Money)
Sean Pipa & Boomerang promotions out of the clash game.
This episode of the Reggae Lover Podcasts features an interview with Caribbean media personality and entertainment blogger, Red Carpet Shelley.
Shelley gives us her first-hand recap of the recent Welcome to Jamrock Reggae Cruise, answers a round of rapid-fire questions, shares her reggae lover journey and lets us know what she’s excited in 2020.
Episode 176 ( Season 5, Ep. 4) “The Red Carpet” with guest Red Carpet Shelley, Caribbean blogger, radio and media personality
Michelle Obama Lists Koffee’s “Toast” On Workout Playlist.
Clarks Originals Invites Reggae Songstress Lila Ike To Paris Fashion Week.
Buju Banton’s single, “Murder She Wrote” on Bad Boys Forever soundtrack.
Rebel Salute 2020 performances?
Dynamq vs Black Scorpio in Dubplate Display at Rebel Salute.
“Gaining Access” with guest Odessa Chambers, a publicist and television producer based in Kingston. She is the creator of O-Access Jamaica and host of the podcast “Reasonings with Odessa.” Episode 174 (Season 5, Ep. 2)
Click for Podcast Episode Page
Koffee to perform SuperBowl Weekend
Buju Banton on Bad Boys Forever soundtrack
Kahlil Wonda: Mortimer’s EP ‘Fight the Fight,’ and Single, “Lightning.”
AGARD: Salaam Remi, Buccaneer, and Red Rat, “No Normal Lover.”
Boss Mama Michelle Miller aka DJ RunDat, guests on Reggae Lover. DJ RunDat is known for her gift to inspire others to fulfill their dreams while fulfilling her own. In 2019, she became the best selling author of, “How to start a DJ business,” launched her first digital course, an online show, and a mentorship business.
Topics discussed included:
Her roots in Humbolt County, CA., home of the Reggae on the River festival.
How she has grown her DJ hobby into a very profitable business.
Becoming a best-selling author.
The online show, “Queens on Decks,” where she interviews female DJs from around the world.
Her Facebook group, “Female DJs” where DJs network and support each other.
Is Afrobeat replacing Dancehall?
Support for and connection with Jamaican reggae music in California.
The absence of “Reggae On The River” and “Sierra Nevada World Music Festival in 2019.”
Speaking at the Mobile Beat DJ Convention in Las Vegas 2020.
Balancing family life and being a mother with her career.
The superstar talks about his recently released album entitled “It All Comes Back to Love.” The project was executive produced by Shaggy.
We preview the album’s title track “It All Comes Back To Love” and “My Pillow’ which sound classic.
Listen for “It’s a Summertime Vibe” feat. Bounty Killer, and Maxi’s favorite cut, “The Bridge You Burn.”
Also, “Cool Nuh” with Shaggy, and “Anything You Want” with Estelle and Anthony Hamilton. Maxi takes us back to his early days in East London lifting speaker boxes. The singer walks us through an evolution forged in London’s sound system scene.
He was the first reggae artist to have a No. 1 hit worldwide, including the U.S. Billboard charts. There’s so much to learn from this fun conversation with the living legend, Maxi Priest.