Tag Archives: Top lists

Top 30 best reggae songs of 2019 so far

It has been quite around here for some time, but better late never, as they say. And maybe it’s a little late to sum up the best reggae singles in the first six months of 2019, but let’s do it anyway.

Below is a list with no less than 30 superb songs released between January and June, songs that I have been spinning very frequently, especially crucial tracks like Ras Demo’s The Riddim, Krysie’s Know ‘Bout Me, Lion D’s Eyez Wide Open, Junior Cat’s Reggae Music and Shenseea’s Beat Me Congo.

But included is, of course, also Wiley’s Boasty, a cut featuring Stefflon Don along with Sean Paul and no other than Idris Elba.

The list is as usual an eclectic one and the songs are as always presented in no particular order. The songs included are only singles or tracks taken from compilations.

If you are curious about the songs you can download a Spotify playlist with all cuts or listen in the player below. Download the Spotify playlist here and I hope you enjoy the music as much as I do.

Artist – song title (riddim)
Randy Valentine – Yes (Blue Water)
King Mas – Flip the Script (Count Your Blessings)
DeeWunn & Natel – Put It Pon Me (Jafrodisiac)
Shenseea – Beat Me Congo (Carni-Afro-Jam)
Shenseea – Hype & Bruk (Limited Edition)
Wiley & Stefflon Don & Sean Paul & Idris Elba – Boasty
Lion D – Eyez Wide Open
Jada Kingdom – One Time
Brinsley Forde & David Hinds – Chillin’ (Tuff Gong Version)
Ce’Cile – Since You (Tropical Feeling)
Kabaka Pyramid – Sticks & Stones
Taiwan MC – Music Soldiah (Sword)
Ras Demo – The Riddim (Unity & Harmony)
Duane Stephenson & Agent Sasco – Play That Song (Remix)
Royal Blu – Style & Pattern
Busy Signal – Great Men
Micah Shemaiah – Rainbow Station
Junior Cat – Reggae Music (Ganja City)
Various – À travers les vagues
Protoje & Lila Iké & Agent Sasco – Not Another Word
Zia Benjamin – Rudie (Party Shots remix)
Jesse Royal & Protoje – Lionorder
Tiawa – Pain Killa (Extended Discomix)
Krysie – Know ‘Bout Me (Top Spot)
Tarrus Riley & Suga Roy & Zareb & Conrad Crystal – Say A Prayer For Me
Blvk H3ro – Feet Don’t Fail
Queen Ifrica – Girl Like Me (Prime Time News)
Courtney John – Far Away
Micah Shemaiah – Backyard Sensi
Lila Iké – Where I’m Coming From

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Reggaemani’s best albums in 2010

So, now it’s time for the best albums in 2010. And I think that it has been a rather good year. Much better than 2009.

This year saw releases from several acclaimed Jamaican artists. Capleton dropped his first album in six years and Junior Kelly put out his first in five years. Both were for me a bit disappointing, especially the Capleton set that was way too soft.

There were some major debut albums though, from the likes of Gappy Ranks, Mighty Howard, Romain Virgo and Toussaint.

The above mentioned albums are mainly roots, and on the dancehall album front it has been very quiet for years, as dancehall still obviously relies on the singles market or one riddim albums.

For me, the best albums in 2010 weren’t produced in Jamaica. They’ve been created in Europe or in the U.S. This shows that the trend continues – artists from Jamaica and music from overseas.

In 2011 I’m hopeful about the new albums from veteran singer Alpheus and debutants Protoje and Mellow Baku. I also believe that Franz Job can produce a great follow-up to his wicked debut Babylon is Dead from last year.

Below are the ten albums that I’ve enjoyed the most this year.

10. Romain Virgo – Romain Virgo
Impressive debut from this 20 year old singing sensation. Watch out Beres Hammond and Sanchez.

9. Nas & Damian Marley – Distant Relatives
Maybe the best attempt to combine hip-hop and reggae ever.

8. Earl Zero – And God Said to Man
Showcase album produced by Roberto Sánchez. Earl Zero certainly still knows how to choose great riddims.

7. Luciano – Write My Name
Impressive second set in 2010.

6. The Tamlins – Re-birth
This harmony trio sounds like it did in its prime. It’s produced by Alborosie and Clifton “Specialist” Dillon. Sounds like Sly & Robbie in the early 80’s.

5. Toussaint – Black Gold
Singer Toussaint shows how to combine reggae and soul.

4. Chezidek – Judgement Time
Showcase album with some wicked tunes. Only one drop riddims played with live instruments.

3. Apple Gabriel – Teach Them Right
Apple Gabriel is back with a blast. A very personal album with some very well crafted riddims. Also in showcase style.

2. Luciano – United States of Africa
Frenchie has produced Luciano’s best album in the 21st century.

1. Clinton Fearon – Mi Deh Ya
Veteran singer that hopefully will continue to produce great music for many years. Not a dull or weak moment.

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Reggaemani’s top ten mash-ups

Mashing genres has been a favourite topic on Reggaemani lately. Dancehall star Busy Signal goes beyond his genre and Toussaint successfully combines soul and reggae. Another way of mixing genres is through mash-ups – taking bits of songs to make a new tune. This is a nice way of introducing genres to a new audience and has been made popular by Mark Vidler and others.

It starts with the unmistakable organ of Take A Ride rhythm. But something is different. The tempo is a bit higher. Then Marvin Gaye starts singing “Mother, Mother”, the first words in his classic What’s Going On. This is certainly not Truths & Rights by Johnny Osbourne. It’s something new, something fresh.

And this is what a mash-up is all about. “Presenting the songs in a new light”, as DJ and producer Al Fingers put it in an interview earlier this summer with Reggaemani.

A mash-up is at its best when it adds something new and when it reinvents the tunes used. It has to be unique, but at the same time well executed. The best mash-ups are often those that follow the chord progression, are in the same key and don’t mess with the pitch too much.

Many DJs and producers that make mash-ups seem to have no musical boundaries. Max Tannone, for example, said in an interview with Reggaemani that he recommends trying whatever sounds good.

I think the weirdest combinations are usually the best, like Jr Blender’s brilliant mashing of hardcore deejay Bounty Killer with 80’s British synthpop trio Bronski Beat.

I’ve collected mash-ups for some time and can easily say that they’re usually fillers on the dance floor and have also lured one or two of my friends into reggae music. It can just as easily go the other way, like when Bost & Bim have introduced Usher and other hip-hop/soul artists to a reggae crowd.

Below I’ve compiled my ten favourite reggae mash-ups. These gems certainly present the tunes in a new light and give them a new dimension.

Producer – song title (original performers)

10. Nuff Wish Crew – Hammy’s Theme (Anthony Hamilton vs. G Corp)
9. DJ Shepdog – No, No, No (Mama Don’t Like You) (Dawn Penn vs. Alborosie & I Eye)
8. Max Tannone – Mr. Universe (Mos Def vs. Observer All Stars)
7. Nuff Wish Crew – African Billie (Michael Jackson vs. Joe Gibbs)
6. Al Fingers – What’s Going On (Marvin Gaye vs. Johnny Osbourne)
5. Nuff Wish Crew – Sensi Spice (Alozade, Mr. Easy & Richie Spice vs. Dr Dre)
4. Jr Blender – Ghetto Gladiator (Bounty Killer vs. Bronski Beat)
3. Max Tannone – In My Math (Mos Def vs. Michael Prophet)
2. J Star – No Diggity (Blackstar vs. Sound Dimension)
1. Jr Blender – Rougher RMX (Cocoa Tea, Home T & Cutty Ranks vs. Black Eyed Peas)

Many thanks to DJ Axxel of Axxionpack Sound for introducing me to the great works of Jr Blender.

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