Reggae & Dancehall round up...

Time for some lovin'….. as the month of love drops so do the tracks and as usual its all about the girls!! Whether its smooth, hardcore or damn right off the scale lets go…..

'Better Mus Come' the first major film by exciting new Jamaican director STORM SAULTER has started its international festival screenings, in this 50th anniversary year of Jamaican independence. It's already been shown in the last few weeks at Toronto film festival, LA's Pan African Festival and later this week NYC. No dates yet for UK.

Congratulations to STEPHEN MARLEY for bagging a Grammy for best reggae album for Revelation Pt 1 'The Root of Life', which includes tracks like Jah Army featuring brother Damian and Buju Banton. When he spoke to me recently he said it goes very much together with Revelation Pt 2 'The Fruit of Life', so if you like the root, don't forget the fruit.

His father BOB MARLEY put romance into reggae so when better for his anniversary than the month of love? He would have been celebrating his 67th birthday on Feb 6th. Bob's daughter CEDELLA has just released an ebook 'Bob Marley: The Man, The Music, The Revolution' . which has her selections of his quotes and lyrics and as she says "this is Dad talking to you". Even though it's over twenty years since his early death, he still strides the musical scene like a colossus - last year he was named the second most popular music celeb on Facebook.

And the world famous NYC venue The Blue Note stages a crossover between reggae and jazz, bringing in Jamaican jazz veteran ALEXANDER MONTY for a fortnight to perform each night with with reggae stars incl. Shaggy, Sly & Robbie and Tarrus Riley.

Just in time for Valentine's Day I-Octane's new album 'Crying to the Nation' is just released, tracks for lovers include 'L.O.V.E.Y.O.U' and 'Missing You' ft Agent Sasco

Dancehall boys SHAGGY & SEAN PAUL have been busy, with Shaggy's last album 'Summer in Kingston' having been up for a Grammy nomination and the release of Sean's new album 'Tomahawk Technique', his fifth studio album. Maybe its time for another track from them ''dedicated to all the sexy ladies….''

The month's been packed with some hot riddims - flying around at the moment and worth checking is the Riva Stone riddim with tracks like MAVADO's 'Clean Everyday' doing well. Also getting good rotation is the Worldwide riddim which include big names such as BEENIE MAN, SERANI, VYBZ KARTEL & BUGLE.

Popping up on the radar this month is LADY SAW - it looks like Marion Hall is on vacation - for now at least. Saw does her thing on the School Bag & Saucy riddim.

Keeping on the girl front SPICE drops her latest release 'Body Good'

All hands on deck! Gully Gad MAVADO continues to do his fing as he teams up with new crush CRIS CAB and WYCLEF for 'Rihanna's Gun' (off Cris's fresh new EP 'Echo Boom' - cute!). There's something endearing about a gangster mixed up in smoove love talk.

If your looking for some 'foot pon shoulder' chat its gotta to be TANYA time and her last track 'Fire Burning' - boy you better start popping the champagne & don't forget the strawberries!

And if its something in the middle you're after CHRIS MARTIN's 'Luv U Forever' might be the one - but be sure not to get the clean and raw versions mixed up, you could say they're a different mood. He also voices track 'Link Fe U Friend' on the same riddim, and this is definitely not to be mixed up with - not just a mood changer, it'll be a deal breaker for sure!

Lastly how romantic to have a track by a couple, and it's a hot one as Cham introduces his wife 'O' on the Dave Kelly 'Tun Up' - yep all about the girls. Somehow I get the feeling these two really get on.

''….you have the boy weak like a dog to a bone''

Veterans JOHN HOLT and FREDDIE MCGREGOR get together for The Valentine's Reggae Showcase @ The Drum, Birmingham 18 Feb.

Its all about JA this year and it seems like the island's gonna get a visit from Snoop Dogg, as he announced during a shout out message to Bob Marley on his birthday.

As Bob would say, ''turn your lights down low…'' - the rest is up to you! But if you're planning to be all up in the dance then as Vegas says "bruk it dung"!!

Happy Valentine's Day!

See ya next month.

Words by Reshma B

Picture: Mavado

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