Everybody likes Reggae right?
About 4 years ago I completely hit a wall with Hip-Hop music as I decided that it alone, no longer represented the energy I was looking to bring into my life. Although I knew little about it as a genre, I began listening to a lot of Reggae and Dancehall because the vibe was perfectly in line with what I wanted to attract in the world. The experience of listening to good Reggae is extremely transformational and can literally induce a spiritual revolution in your life.
Far from being an expert, but after years of exploring, I think its fair to say I learned a tad bit about the culture of reggae music. And once on the “inside” I was able to look back out and realize, reggae/dancehall music was far less popular than I once thought. Although its clearly one of the most recognizable musical genres, its popularity has seemingly been limited to a few smoke filled underground night clubs in each of the major U.S. cities. There is a tendency for people to consider themselves “Reggae” fans, when really they only know every (popular) Bob Marley song, about 7 classic Reggae joints, 2 Collie Buddz tracks, and a few Damien Marley cuts. Or folks would even say, they don’t know any of the current artists, they just like the music.
By no means am I here to call out “fake fans”, but the purpose of this article is to actually identify and help overcome a few dynamics I believe help contribute to the lack of exposure of reggae music in the United States. Admittedly, it can sometimes be hard to tell the difference between artists, there are lot of tracks over the same “riddims”, the marketing is often very poorly done, and there is an obvious language barrier that makes it hard to understand the lyrics. How can we overcome this?
At the end of the day, when exploring Reggae music, it helps to have someone sort through the crates to streamline the quality shit, so you can quickly enjoy what I feel is some of the best music in the world. So, we at Mixologi have come up with a Reggae and Dancehall Starter Kit. Each week (until we run out), we will feature 2 Reggae/Dancehall artists that we know you will love. We’ll give you a quick breakdown, a few tracks, and hopefully some links to download. All you have to do is sit back, enjoy, and Just Add Water! Easy enough?
Konshens- Straight from Kingston, Jamaica, this is a guy everyone will undoubtedly love. He brings an old school lyrically conscious approach, to the dance hall sounds. You may have heard his biggest hit, Tha Realist Song. If not, enjoy that and one our other favorite tracks from Konshens.
Gappy Ranks- Figured we would take you international the first time around, since there is a vibrant Caribbean music scene is London. Gappy Ranks is one of many British born Jamaicans who are pumping out quality sounds. Here are two tracks from Gappy that are easy to love.
If you have artists you think should be featured (please don’t send me any of your homies), please comment below and let us know!