Miss Lily’s is a restaurant in downtown Manhattan, New York City, described as a social and cultural hub for all things Caribbean. This eatery has together with reggae powerhouse VP Records brought out a brand new compilation series – Miss Lily’s Family Style.
The first edition includes 15 tracks full of island flavor selected by Miss Lily’s family of DJ’s and tastemakers. Their favorites are well-known dancehall classics from the 90’s and forward as well as contemporary anthems.
All of these big, bad and bouncy cuts are sure to heat up any dance floor, whether you’re in New York City shaking it to Konshens’ So Mi Tan, in London moving your feet to Gappy Ranks’ Pumpkin Belly, in Kingston getting down and dirty to the Wurl Boss’ Whine, in Tokyo jumping up and down to Lil Rick’s Guh Down or in Moscow slow-whining to Gyptian’s smash hit Hold Yuh.
The CD comes in a vintage vinyl-inspired packaging with liner notes by reggae journalist and Radio Lily resident Rob Kenner along with a free download card of a 40+ minute mix by Miss Lily’s own DJ Max Glazer of Federation Sound.
I ignored one major release last year. It was Vybz Kartel’s Kingston Story, and a few months after the release the controversial Jamaican dancehall superstar was arrested and charged with murder, and he has since been jailed.
Now I get a second chance to write about it since it was recently re-released in a deluxe edition with two bonus cuts and a different cover sleeve on double LP, CD and digital download.
On Kingston Story Vybz Kartel – with the charmingly boastful moniker Wurl Boss – is more laid-back than usual. It’s not the lyrics spitting style that you’re used to. His auto-tuned vocal flows effortlessly over the futuristic melodic electro beats produced by New York City’s Dre Skull of Mixpak Records.
Musically it’s a cohesive and well-thought story where the Boss deals with topics ranging from the usual rude and crude romancing to social commentaries, all spiced with the typical self-assertion.
It’s not often you hear a dancehall album as consistent as Kingston Story. And this is probably because of Vybz Kartel’s huge talent and that only one producer has been involved.
If you want to have a look behind the scenes of the recording of the album you can check this interview on Boomshots with Dre Skull and Max Glazer where they talk about working with Vybz Kartel.