Fi Di Youth Dem

Two all new motivational roots reggae tunes caught my attention today: “Get It In Your Head” by Jamaican singers Exco Levi and Romain Virgo and “Generation” by UK / Jamaican MC, Gappy Ranks.  Romain Virgo’s and Exco Levi’s track is a reminder of how important knowledge and education are, while Gappy Ranks tells the story of how he grew as an artist and how he never gave up trying to reach his goals.  Both tracks have that oldschool roots reggae feel; “Generation” is in fact off the upcoming “Old Fashion Riddim” by Kemar “Flava” McGregor, which is a tweaked rendition of the classic “Ba Ba Boom Riddim” aka “Shine & Criss Riddim”.  “Get it in Your Head” is off Exco Levi’s new album “Country Man”, produced by Penthouse Records. Get Your Education and remember Knowledge is Power!

OldFashionRiddim

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“Criminal” – Lutan Fyah & Turbulence (Official HD Music Video March 2015)

The Canadian label Riddim Wise, based in Montreal, produced and released the Empire Riddim a couple months ago, in November 2014.  Lutan Fyah’s and Turbulence’s “Criminal” is my personal favorite tune on the riddim.  Check out the awesome brand new video, released two days ago.  A massive one indeed, you’ll agree…

Taken from The Empire Riddim produced by Riddim Wise.
iTunes : https://itunes.apple.com/ca/album/the…
Juno : http://www.junodownload.com/products/…

Video Credits :
Directed by Vincent RC (Les Gamins)
Director of photography : Marco Gilbert (Les Gamins)
2nd DOP & Steadycam : Jeremie Boivin
Stylist : Amanda Van Der Siebes
Art Director : Élyse Bédard
Executive Producer : Julien Houle
Production Manager: Sebastien Olscamp
Editing : Vincent RC (Les Gamins)
Colorisation : Jonathan Tremblay
Titles: Kilian Amendola
VFX Artists: Charles Labbé & Emile Massie-Vanasse
https://vimeo.com/lesgamins

http://riddimwise.com/
https://soundcloud.com/riddimwise/
https://www.facebook.com/riddimwisesound
https://www.youtube.com/user/RiddimWise

“Necessary Love” – Necessary Mayhem (February 2015)

necessarylove Curtis Lynch with his brainchild “Necessary Mayhem Records” is one of the top dub reggae producers in the UK and a personal longtime favorite.  With Valentine’s Day coming up, this album was released two days ago.  You can listen to 7 of the 12 massive, perfectly mixed, tracks for free here.  ONE LOVE

“This Town” – The Skints featuring Tippa Irie & Horseman (Official Music Video February 2015)


The Skints, the dub reggae group from London, UK, present their brand new music video for the first single off their upcoming Easy Star Records produced album , entitled “FM” and to be released on March 9th/10th 2015. Watch the East London Reggae band come together with skilled vocalists Tippa Irie and Horseman to pay tribute to their home city. A great collaboration and first glimpse of the new album.

Preorder from iTunes now and receive ‘This Town’ and ‘My Way’ instantly! http://smarturl.it/TheSkints-FM.

http://www.theskints.co.uk.

Revival: Sugar Minott – “A Letter To Nelson Mandela + Dub” (HD audio)

Tribute to Nelson Mandela, produced by Black Solidarity. Amazing riddim! I predict that the “A Letter To Nelson Mandela” riddim will soon become very popular again as it is used in the upcoming OBF Dubplate “Freedom Fighter”, featuring crazy good lyrics and vocals by Mr. Williamz. The dubplate is yet to be released so I’ve also embedded a live video with decent audio of OBF playing it at Garance Dub Station 2014. Lemme see unu hand if you love Nelson Mandela, the great freedom fighter from outta South Africa!

“Dubby Dubby” – Specialist Moss featuring Mr. Williamz (New Official Music Video December 2014)

Filmed and edited by TRAMPLAZ TV, this excellent music video focuses on soundsystem and dancehall dub reggae culture today.  Off the “Dub Style” EP by Specialist Moss and Mr. Williamz, produced by 45 Special Music.  All Music Played, Mixed And Mastered By Specialist Moss. Two awesome DJs and singers in a memorable dub collaboration!

https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/dub…
http://www.musicmeter.nl/album/463119
http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=ntt_srch_…

“Worldwide Traveller” – Top Cat & Mr. Williamz (Official Music Video 2014) / Chopstick Dubplate

Awesome reggae dub drum & bass track, by the great Jamaican/UK artists Top Cat and Mr. Williamz, off the Chopstick Dubplate LP “Wanted – Murda We Charge For”. Gotta love the lyrics. Big up all worldwide travellers! Watch & Share now:

Directed by Jacky Murda
Filmed by Jacky Murda and Aries
http://www.facebook.com/jah.murda
http://www.facebook.com/ariesdubs

Video editing and graphics by Trav (EXM. COLLECTIVE)
http://www.backdownwarchild.co.uk

“Unemployment” – Twinkle Brothers, with full lyrics by rootsnwingz

One of my most beloved Jamaican UK produced roots reggae pieces, the deeply meaningful “Unemployment”, remains as relevant as it was upon its release in 1984.  I could not find the lyrics anywhere, so I transcribed them myself.  The lyrics are an original rootsnwingz online exclusive, you won’t find them anywhere else on the web! Watch this insightful and cleverly made unofficial video and read and share the full lyrics below.

Full lyrics by rootsnwingz:

“Unemployment” – Twinkle Brothers
Album: Burden Bearer (1984)

(Scatting)

Time hard sir
But it gettin harder
Devaluation of the dollar make cost a living get higher

Today you live like a king sir
Tomorrow you beg like a pauper (x2)

Time hard sir
A so it rough sir
5 out of 10 nah work sir
Talkin about unemployment sir

Today you drink wine like a water
Mind tomorrow you drink but a wata
Today you drink wine like a water
Tomorrow you drink but a wata

Time hard sir
A so it rough sir
Devaluation of the dollar make prices get higher
Let me tell you time hard sir
A so it rough sir

Today you live like a king sir
Tomorrow you beg like a pauper (x2)

Time hard sir
A so it rough sir
5 out of 10 nah work sir
Talkin about unemployment sir
Time hard sir
A so it rough sir

Today you drink wine like water
Mind tomorrow you drink but a wata
Today you drink wine like water
Tomorrow you drink but a wata

Time hard sir
A so it rough sir
Devaluation of the dollar, prices get higher

Time hard sir
But it gettin harder
Tell you time rough sir
Talking about unemployment sir

Time hard sir
I say time rough sir
Devaluation of the dollar make prices get higher

Me tell you time rough sir
A so it tough sir
5 out of 10 nah work sir
Talkin about unemployment sir
Me tell you time hard sir

Gentleman ft. Marlon Roudette – “Big City Life” (MTV Unplugged)

German reggae singer Gentleman and British / Vincentian Marlon Roudette of Mattafix sing the 2005 hit song “Big City Life” by Mattafix on MTV Unplugged. Amazing version of a timeless song performed by a full string and wind instrument orchestra, featuring the legendary Dean Fraser on the sax. A big collaboration!

Check it out here:

Joseph Hill, Culture interview, West Indian World Newspaper, 1982

Yesterday I wrote a bit on Joseph “Culture” Hill and his son Kenyatta. Here’s an awesome, rare interview with Joseph Hill in 1982 I just found on the midnightraver blog!

Midnight Raver

Give thanks to MIDNIGHT RAVER’S Peter van Arnhem for this most crucial contribution.

The article finds Joseph Hill in London in September 1982. Joseph talks about the split in the group, about the death of Bob Marley, about the song “Tribute to the O.M.” (album Lion Rock) and about Rasta.

After the album Lion Rock 4 years went by before Joseph Hill reunited with original members Kenneth Dayes and Albert Walker and recorded the album Çulture in Culture.

culture article

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“When Britain Loved Rastafari”, by Ras Cos Tafari, Sister Stella Headley, Ras Shango Baku, Dr Robbie Shilliam, Ras Rai I and Sister Addishiwot Asfawosen

Insightful essay on RasTafari, taken from http://www.discoversociety.org, July 2014, Focus Issue 10.

What does the British public know about RasTafari? Perhaps they might recognise the colours – red, gold and green – although they might mistake them for the Jamaican flag instead of the royal Ethiopian standard. The word “stoned” might come to mind, implying the use of a “drug” called Marijuana, which to members of the faith is a holy herb and used as part of a sacramental rite. No doubt they would be able to sing a line from Bob Marley’s “Three Little Birds”, while probably being less familiar with the singer’s more political Pan-African oriented songs such as “Africa Unite”.

Older members of the public might also think of the iconic cover of The Clash’s Black Market Clash, where a lone “dread” (Don Letts) confronts a line of police. In this respect, they would be referencing a time before the current Muslim scare when young Black men with dreadlocks occupied the position of public enemy number one as muggers, drug dealers, fanatics and rioters.

clash album cover
It would not be unfair to say that in Britain RasTafari has largely been apprehended as either a colourful curiosity or a corrosive cult. Yet it is neither of these. At its root, RasTafari is a movement of Pan-African redemption, confronting the inequities forged in the days of slavery and colonialism that continue to reverberate across physical, mental and spiritual dimensions. RasTafari take their name from the title that the Ethiopian emperor Haile Selassie I held as crown prince. Ras is a rank, meaning “head”; Tafari can be glossed from the Amharic as “a person who inspires awe”.

As a movement, RasTafari finds its compass and energy store in a faith (some would call it a “livity”) that centres upon the divine nature of Selassie I and his consort, Empress Menen – the Ethiopian Alpha and Omega. Many observers of the RasTafari movement are captivated by its aesthetics and music. Some will sympathise with the RasTafari ethos. Most, though, will be confused by the overwhelming love demonstrated for Selassie I, which they will interpret as evidence of fanaticism, cultism or the result of harmless recreational smoke.

In fact, RasTafari carefully utilise diverse and complex theological and cosmological traditions to “sight up” the nature of Selassie I’s divinity, expertly weaving together Biblical prophesies, doctrines of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church, and indigenous cosmologies that arrived with those Africans trafficked illegally across the oceans to work as chattel on plantations.

Hence, for RasTafari, the fundamental challenges posed to humanity in the twentieth century and beyond are manifested in the life, experiences and utterances of Selassie I with Empress Menen. But you do not have to rely on our testimony alone. For there was a time when even the British public loved RasTafari. Step back into this history with us, because we want you to know us better.

Rally around the Red, Gold and Green

It is July 1935 and Mussolini has amassed Italian troops on the frontiers of Ethiopia. After manufacturing a border “incident” the previous year, Mussolini wants to reverse the historic defeat suffered by Italy from the armies of Ethiopian emperor Menelik II at Adwa in 1896. Like all reputable European imperialists, he is determined to stake out his own place in the sun – the horn of Africa. And he has already taken Eritrea and Italian Somaliland.

Click here to continue reading.

“Medical Marijuana Card” – Macka B (Official Music Video)

A Herbies Seed Videos production, this animated music video is inspired by Macka B’s real life experience in the USA, when he was pulled over with a friend in California, who actually had a medical marijuana card. Upon his return to the UK, he joined producer Chris Peckings to create the song. First released in 2012, it was released again as a single in 2014 since it was very relevant considering the policy changes taking place recently. The animation is clever and funny; a singularly entertaining reggae music video. Witty, but not a joke. A serious thing…