This lady was the first in nearly 20 years to be nominated for a Grammy as a female and opened up the door for Koffee to become not only first female artist to win a reggae Grammy, the youngest of any to do it. This is Etana's full album follow up to her Grammy nominated album "Reggae Fever." She did release an EP last year, too. This album literally is doing a 100 mph out of the gate. The song is '100 On The Highway.' Nice use and manipulation of her words in this songs chorus. Strong will always come to mind with Etana. True love is the only real love because it's a love you can feel. Etana sings with a heap of emotion and that's why you can feel her as in 'Truly.' 'Bubble' has the same emotion and like the previous, feels like real life experiences of Etana, not a shadow. These are also two singles off this album. The next bright spot on her birthday present to herself 'Gemini,' since her day was May 22, is her rendition of 'Secret Lovers.' The real jewel is 'Easy To Let Go' because it's more of that true 'Love.' Great that Etana is strong enough to sing about this. It helps when your heart is open and it really makes it 'Easy To Let Go.' Before you finish out the album, you hear the true 'Jamaica' in Etana with help from the underrated artist Bugle, No-Maddz and Yahsha. Now that the show is over I'm sure plenty want to go back stage with Etana 'Party & Smoke.' Her strength is in her very own strength. Enjoy it while you can.
Jason Mraz "Look For The Good"
"Look For The Good" 'in everyone.' So before you make any judgements on this one, 'Look For The Good.' So to set the tone, we will let you know the facts and then help guide you through an authentic reggae album. Jason has always been not only a fan of reggae, he has dabbled in it and brought it to the pop world. The big difference this time is he hired the real deal. Most of us know or will remember the Easy Star All Stars and their Dub Side Of The Moon. The genius behind that album, it's music, concept and music is Michael Goldwasser. The 'Gold' is the man behind the music so it's real roots reggae. He does a great job with the music and making match Jason's vibe, melodies and flow to the extent that it sounds so natural. Now we can listen to the pop icon live out his dream to do a reggae album. 'You Be You' because he's going to be him.
The album starts with the title track. Jason is a very optimistic on the outside. He's pessimist on the inside. You have to have one to have the other. Mraz's messages fit well with reggae as we 'Look For The Good.' (that's me too). When I was growing up and listening to reggae, there was an expression 'make love, not war.' This is Jason's next song and the track, message and vibe compliment each other. This is real roots reggae all the way through. 'Love is the way' and it's 'My Kind' of unification for our differences as mankind are all as ONE!!! This one skanks more to a ska vibe and I can forget the horns too. His words are very catchy, a little poppy and not out of realm. The 'Good Old Daze' starts off with a nice piano & organ that turns into a light skank and a few ooohhhhs and feels just like then. Jason shows off his singjay skills in 'You Be You' because he's going to be him. As the wise man, he is, Jason says she got me real high off of love because she's a wise woman & a green garden goddess. So you know these two work well together. Jason's that wise man who married the wise woman. What I love the most about Jason is that he 'Take(s) The Music' 'everywhere he goes. I love you for that. I hope you can make roots reggae get mainstream. It's time to take a 'Time Out' with the original Mother Culture, the Black Cinderella Sister Carol. Showing more Jamaican influence (like singjaying earlier) he sings so you are 'Hearing Double.' As soon as this one started, 'The Minute I Heard Of Love,' I felt a Bob Marley/Wailers vibe. There's a lot of love in this album (never too much) and it's been that way ever since 'The Minute I/(he) Heard Of Love.' I love Jason for being so bold to do a full reggae album because he could have easily done several tracks and been good with it. I just hope his fans and reggae fans can 'Look For The Good' in 'Look For The Good.' I've got 'Gratitude' do you? Jason does.
NGA HAN "THE LIVING STREAM" : CHAPTER ONE
Presented by Roots Unity out of Holland, Nga Han out of Jamaica, was discovered at a Earl 16 concert and never left Holland. He ended up being a dub cutting engineer. The vibes would come around and "The Living Stream" album was the end result which contains melodic tones and rootical rhythms, with dynamic harmonies and encouraging words to match. It's definitely one of those pleasant surprises. 'Nazarene' was the first single and the last song on the album. In life you go with flow or you go against it. The creator sets the flow and that becomes 'The Living Stream.' This album has great production and this tracks use of the flute & trombone are the highlights of this production. The Signal One band uses the flute on 'Great Honor' and the horns sound like those of Burning Spear aka The Burning Brass. My favorite track cuz I'm a sucker for horns. The creator here is 'Jah Alone.' Hopefully, you 'Hear The Call' and heed to it. There's more of that flute. As the momentum of the vibes moves forward and you pass through 'The Living Stream' with 'Jah Alone,' you then 'Hear The Call' and make that last journey to 'Zion Place' 'you happy place.' You leave the 'Frantic Mess' of the world behind and live that eternal life of peace with 'The Holy.' Now it's really time to 'Live Life Love.' The next 3 tracks are all collaborations with the RAW Rhythm Section, Maxie Freeman and One Heart Riddim section, respectively. If you like what you hear, like myself, you will be glad to know that "The Living Stream" is aptly subtitled "Chapter One" , being the first release in a series of albums in the musical pipeline. In other words more to come, more to enjoy and more vibes.