Review: Kabaka Pyramid Releases ‘Kontraband’ Album

16 Tracks in total, ‘Kontraband,’ the debut from Kabaka Pyramid does not disappoint.

Kabaka Pyramid - Kontraband. DIGITAL RELEASE [Ghetto Youths International, Bebble Rock Records].

I only heard 3 of the songs before the album’s release so this is a fresh, new experience. The album is reminiscent of Chronixx’s “Chronology” in its diverse representation of modern reggae music.

Hip-Hop influences are evident throughout but do not detract from the roots vibe. You can choose to bob your head and/or skank to the beats. Kabaka spits bars of knowledge with a cool, collected delivery. At times, he sing-jays on the riddims in perfect melody.  

‘Kontraband’ is a strong debut for Kabaka Pyramid and it bolsters his global appeal. The Damian and Stephen Marley executive-produced album features Akon and Stonebwoy out of Africa. Jr. Gong joins Kabaka to illustrate the story on the title track.

Pressure Buss Pipes from the U.S. Virgin Islands sings the hook on “Make Way,” the opening song of the album. Fellow reggae revivalist Protoje makes his mark with a succinct verse on “Everywhere I Go.” Kabaka teams with Chronixx on the mesmerizing and memorable “Blessed Is The Man.”

Kabaka doesn’t only chant a lyrical onslaught on Babylon. He considers the divine essence of black queens on “Natural Woman.” He opens up about affairs of the heart on “Kaught Up,” and “All I Need,” which features Nattali Rize. The different vibes on ‘Kontraband’ balance out. If you ranked this entry as one of 2019’s top reggae releases, I would say that’s accurate. 

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Top Lyricists | Reggae Lover Podcast Episode 91

This is episode number 91 of the Reggae Lover Podcast with the top lyricists of Reggae music today.

The selection features 20 lyrically potent songs. The concept was a suggestion by Kris Richards, a visual and graphic artist who enjoys listening to this podcast while he creates his art. He created the original artwork for this episode.  Visit @iandidea on IG to see Kris Richards’ magnificent works. A big shout out and thank you to Kris, representing Jamaica and the ATL. So far his feedback is that this mix is too short, and he has requested a part 2. I’m cool with it. I’ll go ahead and mix up a series of lyricist-based podcast episodes.

This mix keeps your head bobbing all the way through. If you came to the end and thought “wait… what… it’s over already?” then I know you will come back for more. Meanwhile, you have to go back and listen to this wordplay and these metaphors. Lyrics are layered with symbolism in the songs, especially those by Kabaka Pyramid. You have to go back and listen again to extract the true meaning.

Rebellious Nature by Agent Sasco kicked it off. Wicked Man by Busy Signal, Wadada by Jesse Royal and Kabaka Pyramid‘s Global Warning complete the intro. Listen to Can’t Breathe, Well Done, and also Liberal Opposer by Kabaka. He also features on The Flame with Proteje. Koffee, the 17-year-old sensation, makes her mark on Burning.

Proteje‘s creativity is on display with the one called Criminal and also Truth and Rights. Over Damian Marley’s On the Corner Riddim, you hear Chronixx with Ghetto People. Busy Signal’s Survival from the Return Riddim by Jukebox Productions adds to the vibe. Love Is All I Bring, the new Spragga Benz tune from Sting International fits in well. I was able to squeeze in 1999’s Wha Yuh Say Star which got left off of the Spragga Benz podcast.

Damian Marley flows on The Master Has Come Back and Road to Zion featuring Nas off the Welcome to Jamrock album. In the next edition of the lyrical opposer mix, you’re going to hear some more from Vybz Kartel. I’ll also bring it very current with 2018 material from these and other new artists.

artwork - Reggae Lover Podcast 91

Thank you to the listeners who have added ratings and reviews on iTunes. Shouts out to my very lovely wife who has been binge listening via the podcast app on her new iPhone. I’m honored to have you listen to my podcast. It’s all about us reggae lovers. We have to continue to spread the culture. I focus on the reality I want to see which is positivity. Positive energy and momentum arise from reggae music.

Shout out to my family at WRFG 89.3FM ATL. I’ll be dropping by the Global Drumbeat and Riot Radio shows this week to spread the word about Reggae Lover. I’m gonna drop 2 crazy guest DJ sets live on the air. I’ll be talking about the podcast because I want more people to tune in as we build this movement. I’m inspiring and healing people with reggae.

Look out for the episodes coming up where I’ll be chopping it up with guests learn when, where, why and how they fell in love with reggae. Diving into some of the stories will be lots of fun and I’m so very excited about that.

Review the podcast on Apple Podcasts and get a shout out on the next episode. Have any questions, comments, or feedback? I love to get requests and suggestions. I want to hear what you are interested in hearing. Hit me up. I will those mixes lined up for you. Get your own custom mix right here on the Reggae Lover podcast and be a part of the show. Thank you for listening. Keep your head up – keep it positive. Until next time, One love.

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Suggest a Reggae Lover Mix

Marsha Ambrosius, Freddie McGregor, Maxi Priest, Romain Virgo, Ikaya, Raging Fyah, Jah9, Christopher Ellis, The Green, Katchafire, Jah Cure, No Maddz, Chronixx, Jesse Royal, Kabaka Pyramid, Exco Levi, Kelissa, Jahmiel, Iba Mahr, Keznamdi

VP RECORDS REMEMBERS “THE CROWN PRINCE OF REGGAE” DENNIS BROWN

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Compilation Features Covers from Marsha Ambrosius, Freddie McGregor, Maxi Priest, Romain Virgo, Ikaya, Raging Fyah, Jah9, Christopher Ellis, The Green, Katchafire, Jah Cure, No Maddz, Chronixx, Jesse Royal, Kabaka Pyramid, Exco Levi, Kelissa, Jahmiel, Iba Mahr, Keznamdi and more.

DENNIS BROWN Double-Disc Tribute Album Will Drop June 3, 2016

DENNIS BROWN Double-Disc Tribute Album Will Drop June 3, 2016

Hailed by NPR Morning Edition as one of the 50 great voices of all time – the Jamaican musical icon Dennis Brown began his recording career at the tender age of 11 and released more than 75 albums during his all too short 42 years on Earth. Although the reggae legend passed away in 1999, his music and legacy live on.

VP Records, the world’s leading reggae label, will pay homage to Brown on June 3, 2016 with an extensive tribute album of his timeless hits and deep cuts titled, We Remember Dennis Brown. The 30-song collection features a wide and impressive range of reggae and R&B voices covering crucial Dennis Brown compositions. The set was produced by Jamaican legend Clive Hunt with an all-star team of musicians.
In February (Brown’s birthday month), VP Records premiered one song from the album every Friday for five weeks – including “Caress Me” from one of Jamaica’s brightest voices Romain Virgo, “Milk & Honey” by roots reggae rockers Raging Fyah, “Bloody City” from the Caribbean’s soulful songstress Jah9, “Promised Land” from Hawaiian reggae band The Green and “Have You Ever” by R&B powerhouse Marsha Ambrosius.

In addition to these power hitters, We Remember Dennis Brown will feature an array of singers from Brown’s native country and across the globe who he influenced. Jamaica’s latest crop of stars (including Jah Cure, Gyptian, Iba Mahr, Kabaka Pyramid, Kelissa, Keznamdi, Chronixx and Jesse Royal) as well as the island’s icons who worked with Brown (like reggae vocalists Bushman and Freddie McGregor) all offer their contributions. Freddie’s son Chino McGregor and Christopher Ellis, the talented UK-based singer and offspring of Alton Ellis (another one of Brown’s musical mentors and confidants), both deliver powerful renditions of Brown’s classics.

New Zealand rockers also create a breezy rendition of “If I Had The World.” The worldly collection proves that his universal sound transcends all boundaries of time, race and creed. Each artist adds their own original flair to Brown’s profound soul-stirring sound – touching the hearts of new and old fans alike on this unique multi-disc collection. We Remember Dennis Brown will include deluxe packaging as well as extensive liner notes on the belated legend.

Dennis-Brown

DENNIS BROWN

Dennis Brown was greatly influenced by American balladeers such as Sam Cooke, Frank Sinatra and Dean Martin as well as Jamaican singers like Delroy Wilson and John Holt. At only 12-years-old, he cut his first hit “No Man Is An Island” at Clement “Coxsone” Dodd’s famous Studio One. Within the years, he was a force to be reckoned with musically – dubbed the “Boy Wonder of Jamaica” and “Crown Prince of Reggae.” Before he was 16, he had worked with Jamaica’s top recording artists (Alton Ellis, Horace Andy) and producers of the time (Prince Buster, Dennis Alcapone, Winston “Niney” Holness and Vincent “Randy” Chin).

In the 1970s, he worked closely with producer Joe Gibbs and released multiple albums. One of the album’s songs “Money in my Pocket,” peaked at #14 on UK Top 40 chart becoming one of the biggest international hits in Jamaica’s history. This success landed him the cover of the NME’s February 1979 issue. Enthusiastically adapting to the new dancehall era, Brown released a huge amount of work throughout the 1980s recording with genre’s major producers like King Jammy on Brown’s 1986 album The Exit and Gussie Clarke in 1989 with the Gregory Isaacs duet “Big All Round” and the album Unchallenged. He continued to record prolifically in the 1990s before his passing. His 1994 album Light My Fire and 2001 release Let Me Be the One were both nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Reggae Album.

TRACK LISTING:

Iba Mahr, Jesse Royal, Keznamdi, Chronixx, Exco Levi, Kelissa, Jahmiel, Kabaka Pyramid & Rockaz Elements – I Need Your Love (Rasta Children)
Bushman – Don’t Want To Be No General
The Green – Promised Land
Raging Fyah – Milk and Honey
Christopher Ellis – Created By The Father
Mutabaruka & Marla Brown – Words of Wisdom
Chino – Melting Pot
Yahsha – The Existence Of Jah
Jamelody- Halfway Up, Halfway Down
Freddie McGregor – Little Village
Mykal Rose – Easy Take It Easy
Jah9 – Bloody City
Richie Spice – Wolves and Leopards
Shuga – Black Liberation
VP Hit Team – To The Foundation
Romain Virgo – Caress Me
Marsha Ambrosius – Have You Ever
No Maddz – Rocking Time
Maxi Preist – Love Me Always
Jamelody & Ikaya – Love Has Found Its Way
Sanchez – Your Love Got A Hold On Me
Katchafire – If I Had The World
Etana – Should I
Jah Cure – Ghetto Girl
Christopher Martin – Baby Don’t Do It
Gyptian – How Can I
Ikaya – For You
Dalton Harris – No More Will I Roam
Jah Vinci – Money in My Pocket
VP Hit Team – Silhouette

Rocksteady ATL hosts the debut of DUBWISE ATLANTA, Sat. June 13 @ Space 2 (The Sound Table)

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The organizers of “Rocksteady ATL,” myself and The Honorary Citizen, will host the debut of Dubwise Atlanta on Saturday June 13th at the Sound Table’s SPACE 2 (485 Edgewood Avenue, Atlanta, GA) with Yaadcore from Kingston, Jamaica alongside Aba Shaka, Love People, and Highlanda Sound.

The original Dubwise Jamaica is a Roots Dub Reggae session every Wednesday in the city of Kingston, created to preserve the roots in the Dancehall & spread the message of love through music.  Dubwise Jamaica guarantees strictly original & rootical selections all night coming from the vein stream & not the main stream, resurrecting songs that haven’t been heard in decades as well fresh selections from the new and upcoming Reggae artists.

Rocksteady ATL hosts Dubwise Atlanta at Space 2, Saturday June 13th, 8pm

Rocksteady ATL hosts Dubwise Atlanta at Space 2, Saturday June 13th, 8pm

Strictly roots and culture vibrations, with no slackness. Tunes played in a dubwise style, for their full duration, with messages of upliftment delivered live over the mic.

In December 2013, Yaadcore, the Jamaican selector known for his Reggae Aroma mixtape series, began holding a weekly, Wednesday-night session inside Kingston’s Whitebones Grill with the principles listed above.  Dubwise Jamaica quickly became a magnet for similarly-minded selectors, including such foundation DJs as Rory Gilligan of Stone Love and Danny Dread of Stereo Mars and Volcano sound system fame. Jamaica’s young reggae stars Chronixx, Protoje, Kabaka Pyramid, Jesse Royal and Micah Shemaiah were among its earliest supporters, passing through both as performers and just to hol’ a vibes, and it soon attracted veteran artists like Lutan Fyah, Mikey General and even Ninjaman, as well as international acts like Pressure Busspipe (St. Thomas) and Ziggi Recado (St. Eustatius).

A year and a half after its launch, Dubwise Jamaica has become an international brand representing what many see as a return to a more pure and natural style of playing reggae (as opposed to the fast-paced juggling style preferred by most of today’s Jamaican DJs).  Yaadcore has teamed with selectors Corey Chase and DJ Rampage to launch Dubwise Miami, a weekly session at Coyo Taco in the Wynwood Arts district. Although Yaadcore’s schedule only permits him to appear in Miami about once a month, each Wednesday night the backroom of the fashionable taqueria becomes the “Coyo Dub Lounge,” attracting a loyal crowd as well as fellow DJs such as house DJ Armand Van Helden.  Artist Kabaka Pyramid dropped in recently to perform.

Yaadcore has brought Dubwise sessions to New York City, Washington DC and Puerto Rico (San Jaun, Santurce and Rincon) over the past few months and relaunched Dubwise Jamaica in a new location following a brief hiatus.  In Yaadcore’s view, he’s laying a foundation for a movement that can spread consciousness and upliftment through roots music whether he’s in the building or not.

Sources:

New Reggae Song Alert: Chronixx – “Give Me A Try” from ‘Roots Reggae Revivalist Vol.1′

New Reggae Song: Chronixx -

‘Roots Reggae Revivalist Vol.1′ – In Stores April 24, 2015 from Tad’s Record

Welcome To Jamrock live 3-20-15 from Studio No. 7 *audio download*

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Marley_StudioNo7_035

DOWNLOAD

Welcome to the first reggae lover podcast episode of Spring 2015, marking the show’s one year anniversary. I have nothing but appreciation for those of you who listen to and support my podcast. I am in the process of moving and setting up a new studio to be able to continue producing this content so there have been some delays, but that will be over soon. Expect more unique mixes and informative updates to come your way on a weekly basis right here.

This mix was recorded live at Studio No. 7 in Atlanta on Friday March 20, 2015 where I represent the theme “Welcome To Jamrock.” This is a refreshing 100% reggae excursion where tunes and good vibes flow all night – a true reggae lover’s event in Atlanta.

This audio portion begins with 3 Protoje collaborations off the new ‘Ancient Future’ album featuring Chronixx, Kabaka Pyramid, Jesse Royal, and Sevana. Also in the mix, hear from Bob Marley and the Wailers, Dennis Brown, Barrington Levy, Sluggy Ranks, Luciano, Sizzla, Inner Circle, Beres Hammond and many more.

New Music with a Message from The Leaders of The Reggae Revival

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Buck The System with Word Sound Power (2014)

Reggae Lover Podcast Episode 32 – The Neo Roots Reggae Revival

This episode contains 40 of today’s most powerful songs recorded by Jamaican artists. These are songs of revolution, freedom cries, and warrior chants from the artists that currently carry the reggae banner including Protoje, Chronixx, Jesse Royal, and Kabaka Pyramid.

Listen for songs from Etana’s new album “I Rise,” Jah9’s new album “New Name,” and I-Octane’s “My Journey,” all featured in this episode.  Please support these artists by purchasing their music.

Playlist:

1 Kabaka Pyramid and Chronixx – Ghetto Blues
2 Jah9 – New Name
3 Etana – Stepping Out Of Babylon
4 Torch – Blazing
5 Shuga – Freedom
6 Busy Signal – Nah Follow Dem
7 Mr. Perfect – Awake
8 Lutan Fyah – Rebel Warrior
9 Jah9 – Imagine
10 Kabaka Pyramid ft. Masicka – Choppinz
11 Lutan Fyah – Sorry Fi Dem
12 Chronixx – Judgement
13 Chronixx – Capture Land
14 Jah9 – Intention
15 Tarrus Riley & Kabaka Pyramid – Fly Di Gate
16 Zebi Lion – Blaze Again
17 Kelissa – Sellassie I Way
18 Shuga – Ebony
19 Etana – I Rise
20 Jesse Royal – Muddy Road
21 I-Octane – Blood A Go Run
22 Pressure ft. Chronixx – Africa Redemption
23 Kabaka Pyramid – Global Warning
24 Cherine – Wah Dat Fah
25 Chronixx – I Am Chronixx
26 Shuga – Bun Dem Down
27 Iba Mahr – Red Fire
28 Chronixx – Capitalist
29 Tasha T – Bed of Fire
30 I-Octane – Babylon
31 I-Octane ft. Ky-Mani Marley – A Yah Wi Deh
32 Kabaka Pyramid – Never Gonna Be A Slave
33 Historyman – Fire Fe The Heathen
34 Bugle – Real Soldier (I Want Jah)
35 Iba Mahr – Let Jah Lead The Way
36 Chronixx – Warrior
37 Exco Levi – Ready to Revolute
38 I-Octane – Jah Jah Warrior
39 Chronixx – Di Youth Dem
40 Jah9 ft. Protoje – Legitimate

New Inspirational Reggae, Brighter Days are Here Again

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neo roots, reggae revival, reggae renaissance

Reggae Lover Podcast #23

 

This installment of the Reggae Lover Podcast focuses on motivational songs performed by the finest artists of today including Alborosie from Italy, Zebulun from Trinidad, Gentleman from Germany, and Jamaica’s reggae revival catalysts: Chronixx, Protoje, Kabaka Pyramid, Jah 9, and Jesse Royal among others.

Select veteran artists are featured here as well, all singing uplifting and encouraging lyrics of socially conscious, responsible, and spiritual subject matter.

Please research each of these artists, purchase their music, and support this very important resurgence in the global reggae music movement.  Links to purchase most of the songs are provided in the track list below.

Track List:

1 Alborosie featuring Spiritual – Marathon
2 Alborosie featuring Gentleman – Celebration
3 ReneGrade – Black Survivor
4 Agent Sasco – Rebellious Nature
5 Spectacular – We Can Do It
6 Jah Bouks – No Slave
7 Kelissa – Wake Up
8 Koxx – Believer
9 Jah Cure – Life We Live
10 Chronixx – Wall Street
11 Protoje featuring Chronixx – Who Knows (feat. Chronixx)
12 Spragga Benz featuring Marcia GriffithsNo Way No How feat. Marcia Griffiths
13 SizzlaChant Dem Down
14 Zebulun – Better Will Come
15 Lutan Fyah featuring Chronixx – Cyaaan Do We Nothing (feat. Chronixx)
16 Jah 9 – Reverence
17 Iba Mahr – Great is H.I.M
18 Chronixx – Here Comes Trouble
19 Jesse Royal – Modern Day Judas – Single
20 Christopher Martin – Jah Light
21 Chronixx – Eternal Fire
22 Kabaka Pyramid featuring Protoje – Warrior
23 Kelissa featuring Keznamdi – Gideon (feat. Keznamdi)
24 Kelissa – Afrika
25 Dubtonic Crew – Nah Give Up
26 Etana – People Talk
27 Protoje – Resist Not Evil
28 Jimmy Reid – Nah Give Up
29 Etana – I am Not Afraid (Acoustic)
30 Chronixx – Champion
31 Chronixx – Beat & A Mic
32 Warrior King – Never Lose My Culture
33 Chronixx featuring Kabaka Pyramid, Sizzla, & Protoje – Selassie Souljahz
34 Protoje – Our Time Come
35 Chronixx – Odd Ras
36 Chronixx – Spirulina
37 Kabaka Pyramid – World Wide Love
38 Kelissa featuring Kabaka Pyramid – Word Power Sound
39 Chronixx – Thanks and Praise
40 Chronixx – Ain’t No Giving in
41 Sizzla – I Am No Better
42 Sizzla – It’s a Rocky Road
43 Jah Sun and Kabaka Pyramid – Foundation
44 Kabaka Pyramid featuring Chronixx – Mi Alright
45 Chronixx – Life Over Death
46 Kabaka Pyramid – Liberal Opposer
47 Hyah Slyce – Jah Is My Keeper
48 Etana – I am Strong
49 Chronixx – Like A Whistle
50 Nas and Damian MarleyCount Your Blessings
51 Jesse Royal – Light Like A Feather
52 Masicka – Me Seh Life
53 Mavado – At The Top (Just Us)
54 Charly Black – Unstoppable
55 Tessanne Chin Ft. Alaine, Tami Chynn & Queen Ifrica – Beautiful Sista

 

Protoje ‘ Music From My Heart’ Mixtape, presented by Yaadcore

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Protoje, lead singer for The Indiggnation band, has released a new mixtape called Music From My Heart.

Protoje

Listen on Soundcloud
Mediafire Download

Protoje & The Indiggnation will head to the United States this week for multiple west coast events including California where they will perform at the Sierra Nevada World Music Festival. The eight-member band will travel to Europe thereafter.

Music From My Heart combines tracks from The 8 Year Affair album with additional tracks featuring Sizzla Kalonji, Kabaka Pyramid, Chronixx and Jah9.

It is mixed by DJ Yaadcore, who is also responsible for Protoje’s two previous mixtapes. Yaadcore is the selector for the I&I Worldwide sound system and also airs his radio program, Reggae Aroma, on HOT 102FM.

1.Intro
2.Music From My Heart
3.Burning Fire #MFMH
4.Hail Ras Tafari
5.Legitimate – Jah 9 ft. Protoje
6.8 Year Affair
7.Young General #MFMH
8. I&I
9. New Generation #MFMH
10. Reggae Revival ft. Romain Virgo
11. Shot By Love ft. Toi
12. Black Cinderella
13. Hold You Down
14. Someone Like You ft. Tessanne Chin
15. Come My Way
16. Around The World ft. Chris Watts
17. Who Dem A Program
18. Purple Like Ribena #MFMH
19. This is NOT a Marijuana Song
20. Evil Display
21. Warrior – Kabaka Pyramid ft. Protoje
22. Selassie Souljah – Chronixx ft. Kabaka Pyramid, Protoje & Sizzla
23. Where Is The Good News??? #MFMH
24. Kingston Be Wise
25. Militancy Riddim
26. I&I WorldWide #MFMH
27. Outro