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IT was a full house for Sizzla Kalonji's 'Earthstrong' on April 18, 2015 at the old Skateland complex, Windward Road, east Kingston.

The location, which houses the Caveman studio where Sizzla frequents, was transformed into a dancehall celebration with veteran and upcoming artistes turning out to celebrate the fiery artiste's 39th birthday.

Sizzla did not disappoint the hardcore throng, performing a number of his standards, including Holding Firm and Thank you Mama.

Capleton, Half Pint, Teflon, Iba Mahr, Junie Platinum and Kabaka Pyramid were among the performers on an event that rocked until 5:00 am Sunday.

Sizzla, whose birth name is Miguel Collins, emerged during the 1990s as a protegé of music producer Phillip 'Fattis' Burrell. His considerable catalogue of hit songs include the anthems Black Woman and Child, Praise Ye Jah and Just One of Those Days.

Versatility talks - album review

September 23rd, 2014

"Versatility Talks" is Lady Valy's second debut album independently released under her label Versatility Records.  Following her mixtapes “Livin’ International” and “Olympic Medal”,  "Living Internationally", you can expect some more energizing reggae and hip hop songs in different languages, including English, French, Spanish and Russian. The songs "You Got Me", "Sweep You Off Your Feet" and "Higher Than The Sun", featured in all four languages, demonstrate Lady Valy's ability to interlace her rap and singing skills with creative lyrics (in all languages!). She collaborates once again with some local artists, namely Wassawah, Lucid the Artist, and Long Life, to flavour the hip hop, reggae and R&B songs with a variety of raping styles. "Versatility talks" does contain a few surprises including the mesmerizing dance track "Diamond Eyes”. Lady Valy's inspiring, motivating and relentless approach to achieving her dreams is truly portrayed in "Olympic Medal", a song released just time for the 2014 Winter Olympics, where she parallels "being a champion" to being in love. Lady Valy also reveals some of her personal life experiences such as being a mom in her song "Mama" released a week before Mother's day and a month before giving birth to her third son. After all, it wouldn't be a Lady Valy album without a call for respect and admiration towards all the proud independent women. Mixing genres and languages, Lady Valy once again produces a solid record with something for every fan. "Versatility Talks" truly speaks for itself in showcasing a diversely talented artist who knows how to set herself apart from the crowd.

-Sarah Perez

Published: Wednesday November 27, 2013 | 4:30PM 

The main witness at the Vybz Kartel murder trial today told the court of a plan by the deejay and fellow entertainer Shawn Storm to get him out of the country to prevent him from telling the authorities about the alleged killing of Clive 'Lizard' Williams. The witness also denied suggestions by the defense that he made up a story about what happened at Kartel’s house on August 16, 2011.Kartel and four others are charged with Williams' murder. The witness said a day after the alleged attack Campbell spoke to him telling him that he was going to take him to Guyana. The witness said he told Campbell that he did not have a suitcase and the entertainer told him that he would get one for him. According to the witness, Campbell told him that he was taking him out of the country because he did not want anybody to question him. The witness said Campbell later gave him the suitcase which he said he took to his house and put clothes in it. He said a few days later Campbell called him and told him to get ready. He said he and Campbell took a taxi to the airport. He said the taxi was driven by the same driver who took him, Campbell, and Lizard to Kartel’s house. The witness said when they arrived at the airport he was met by Kartel and two other men who he identified as Sheeba and Mooney. He said a plane ticket was purchased for him but they did not get to go on the flight as it had already left. The witness said he was told to return the Thursday morning. The witness said the Wednesday night he went back to Waterford in Portmore and called his family to come get him and he left the community that night. He said he did not go to the airport as was planned. He said Campbell called him and asked him if he was ready but he said he was not going. The witness said Kartel also called him asking him if he was going on the flight to Guyana because he did not want anybody to question him. The key witness testified that on the day he and Lizard were allegedly attacked at Kartel’s house he was not able to see all the accused because of the light from a blackberry cellphone that was constantly shining. He said he went with Kartel to the hospital because he wanted him to know that he was not involved in what was going on. Under cross examination from defense attorney Tom Tavares-Finson, the witness denied suggestions that Lizard did not go to Kartel’s house. He maintained that he, Lizard and Campbell entered the premises. The witness denied suggestions that he and police investigators are a part of conspiracy and that he made up a story about what happened on 08,16,2013



REGGAE albums continue to show poor sales in the lucrative North American market, according to the latest figures from Nielsen Soundscan.

The sales tracker reports that the top five albums on the Billboard Reggae Album chart returned paltry numbers, consistent with data for the last five years.

SHAGGY... had a poor first week with sales of 741 copies

Shaggy's highly touted Out of Many, One Music: Sly and Robbie Presents Shaggy, had a poor first week with sales of 741 copies to debut at number three.

It is the follow-up to 2011's Summer in Kingston, which was also a commercial flop.

This is a far cry from the mega sales Shaggy enjoyed with his Boombastic and Hot Shot albums.

And though it came in at number one, 9ine, an album by American Rhythm and Blues singers Musiq Soulchild and Syleena Johnson, sold only 955 copies.

9ine was produced by Jamaican Kemar 'Flava' McGregor.

With over 10,000 copies sold to date, Hawaiian reggae band The Green sold another 377 copies this week with its Hawaii 13.

The set, which opened at number one six weeks ago with 4,960 copies, is currently number four on the reggae table.

Selling just over 70,000 copies to date since its April 23 release, Reincarnated by American rapper Snoop Lion moved only 899 copies in the past week.

Another album that had hyped pre-release coverage, Reincarnated entered at number one on the chart with over 21,000 copies.

New York dub/reggae group 10 Foot Ganja Plant debuts at number five with its 13th studio effort Skycatcher. The album sold 304 copies.

Albums by top dancehall artistes have not done well on mainstream North American charts in recent years.

Gyptian's Hold Yuh (featuring Nicky Minaj) is the last song by a Jamaican act to make a mark on the Billboard pop chart. That happened in 2010.


The Juno Awards: April 21, 2013 @The Brandt Centre Sa(Saskatchewan)

"The Juno is the Canadian equivalent of the Grammy Awards."


Ammoye - Flava McGregor*Doubt

Ammoye’s name is inspired by the Italian word for love. That’s what goes into her music, and it’s how audiences respond to her wherever she goes. Rooted in the reggae music of her native Jamaica, Canada’s 2011 Reggae Music Award winner for Best Female Artist effortlessly glides from reggae to dancehall and dub, to gospel and soul, to hip-hop and R&B with breathtaking ease and presence. Her phenomenal new single and video, “Radio” is currently taking over the airwaves and social media, having already charted in the UK on Galaxy Gold Radio. Two of her songs, “Best Friend” and “Catch Up” were featured on MTV’s 2010 Winter Olympics special, Over The Bolts. Ammoye proudly represented Canada at the World Expo in Shanghai and recently featured prominently at several events marking the 50th Anniversary of Jamaica’s independence. Over the past several years, Ammoye has been consistently performing at high-profile events and festivals in Canada and around the world, touring and sharing the stage with A-list artists such as Michael Bublé, Ziggy Marley, Freddie McGregor, Byron Lee & The Dragonaires, Beres Hammond, Beenie Man, The Heptones, Gyptian, Richie Spice, Demarco, Frankie Paul, Joshua Nazuka, Ken Boothe, Serani, Easy Star All-Stars and Exco Levi.
Elaine Lil’Bit Shepherd - Rebel Vibez*Independent
"Move Ya’"
Elaine “Lil’Bit” Shepherd, born in Bahrain, began performing at a young age. In 1997, she immigrated to Vancouver, B.C., Canada with her family, where she continued to develop her musical talents, transferring and blending the sounds of her origins with the West Coast Canadian vibes she met. Blessed with a confident voice and creative ability, Lil’Bit is recognized as “the little girl with the big voice,” as her iconic, sweet tone is pleasantly alluring and draws a listener into her world of dramatic presence and passion. Lil’Bit began seeing regular rotation on community airwaves across Canada, and in June of 2010, Lil’Bit received The Most Promising New Artist Award at the RMAA’s. This award – a milestone in itself – ultimately foreshadowed her acceptance of the most prestigious award in the Canadian Music Industry: in 2011, Lil’ Bit received a JUNO Award for Reggae Recording of the Year, an honour that she received graciously. Elaine “Lil’Bit” Shepherd’s accomplishments speak for themselves but her voice speaks louder, as she continually evolves as a professionally-minded strong woman and as a relentlessly passionate artist. Her sound is bold, and her humble frame exaggerates the beauty her soul speaks, making Lil’Bit a Canadian icon worth following closely.
Exco Levi - Silly Walks*Independent
"Storms of Life"
Exco Levi was born Wayne Ford Levy on June 7, 1981 in Manchester, Jamaica and grew up in Clarendon, Jamaica. Exco's musical tastes include the late Garnet Silk, Bob Marley and Peter Tosh, as well as contemporaries like Sizzla Kolonji. With their influence, he has developed his own unique sound that emanates deep respect for the musical icons who have paved the way for Reggae Music. Exco Levi quickly took hold of the Canadian reggae music scene after immigrating to the country in 2005, showing his range and musical intellect through songs like the Canadian Anthem, "Oh Canada," the nostalgic "Sweet Jamaica" and the love ballad, "Same Ole Words." Presently, he works with Penthouse Records and has released two singles: "Mr. Hammer" with NCF and the hit song, "Bleaching Shop" on the Penthouse label, which won Best Reggae Recording at the 2012 JUNO Awards. Both songs have received major airplay locally and by DJs overseas. He just completed recording with reggae diva, Marcia Griffiths for release on her album and was in Germany in March for a series of shows with Silly Walks Sound System, one of the leaders in reggae in Germany. Exco Levi is well on his way to becoming a household name.
Makeshift Innocence - Op3*Independent
"Yours To Keep"
In 2007, lead singer Jesse-James Cameron formed Makeshift Innocence. Canadian born, Cameron spent three seminal years in Negril, Jamaica, where he fell in love with the tones and feel of reggae music – music that now infuses the group’s reggae, rock and roots sounds with authentic Caribbean flavour. In 2010, Tammy Amstutz joined Cameron to create a formidable live show. The two songwriter-performers are regularly backed with drums, guitar and organ. Known as one of Western Canada's best live acts, they have sold out several shows from 2010 to 2012. Makeshift Innocence have also toured extensively, including 2012 stops in most major cities in the U.S. and Germany, while 2013 will see the band tour South Africa for the first time, along with an extensive tour across Europe. With original songs such as “One Love” and “All You Need is Love,” they share an inspired message that finds an audience around the world. 2012 highlights include performances at the opening of the 100th Anniversary of the Calgary Stampede, an international showcase at Musexpo in LA, and a gala EMMN (European Music and Media Night) performance in Hamburg, Germany which lead to requests for several European tours and promotional appearances.
Melanie Durrant - Relentless*Independent
"Made For Love"
Melanie Durrant is a seasoned veteran who embodies real artistry through her very unique, edgy and soulful music style. Born and raised in Toronto, Melanie attended the Earl Haig School of the Arts. She trained at the Royal Conservatory of Music and worked on an eclectic array of projects before becoming an “alternative hip-hop soul” artist. Citing influences that range from the soulful swoon of Minnie Riperton, to the hard-knock of Aerosmith, to the “mercy me” melodies of Marvin Gaye, the radiant singer-songwriter has no problems crashing through the wall of sound. She has received multiple accolades though out her career, including a MuchMusic Video Award for her single “Where I’m Going” and Stylus Award for Single Of The Year for her song “Bang Bang” featuring Kardinal Offishall. In addition to performing her own shows for audiences across Canada and the U.S., Melanie Durrant has shared the stage alongside Jay-Z, 50 Cent, Jill Scott, Common, Sean Paul, as well as many of Canada’s top artists. Melanie has performed and done interviews with MuchMusic Canada, MTV Canada, Star Daily, and CTV Network.

Bob Marley married Rita Anderson on February 10, 1966.  Rita brought a daughter into the marriage (Sharon) from a previous relationship and although not officially acknowledged so didBob (Imani).

Bob Marley Rita Marley Marriage Bob Marley Children Rita

The Marley’s together would have four children during their marriage.  For those of you keeping score… Bob had eight more children with eight different women not including his wife Rita.  Rita also had another child (Stephanie) as a result of an affair with another man during her marriage to Bob..  Rumor has it that there are several other “unclaimed” or “forgotten” children ofBob Marley, but to the best of our knowledge this is the complete list of Bob Marley’s children and mothers.

Bob Marley Sons

“Children are wonderful. It don’t take plenty y’know. Just a nice girl who don’t take birth control. Sexual intercourse is a lovely thing”

Last public pic of the KING!

 Bob Marley Last Photos Germany Death

His final words,

“Money can’t buy you life”…

Here is a look at two of Stone Love's contemporaries, Kilamanjaro and Metro Media. The Kilamanjaro sound system was founded in Kingston in 1969 by Noel 'Papa Jaro' Harper.


(frlr)Ribbz,Scully,Jiggy hunk, Platinum

'Jaro' is generally regarded as the top 'sound' of the 1980s. It helped launch the careers of dancehall acts Early B, Super Cat, Jim Kelly, Burro Banton, and Ninja man.  The 'set' was also known for promoting 'live artistes' in the 1980s. Among them Puddy Roots, Daddy Shark, Hammermouth, Charlie Chaplin, and Ironman.  Much of Jaro's success is credited to selectors like O Lord, Ricky Trooper, Freddie Kruegar, DJ Tarick, Mophead, Jeremy Lee, and Crazy D whose 'specials' won them many sound clashes.  Metro Media was started in 1974 by Lou Gooden in the central Kingston community of Woodford Park. Two years later, it had a new owner in Hadain 'Jimmy Metro' James.  In the 1980s, deejay Peter Metro came on board and drew a large fan base with his distinctive style. With the addition of selector Sky Juice (Christopher Blake) Metro Media became one of the most popular sound systems of that decade, playing in England, Japan and Canada.  Metro Media is still based in Woodford Park, and remains active on the dance circuit.


Some of the worlds 10 extreme limos

There's riding in style and then there's rolling in extreme look-at-me am rich Biatch!

There's riding in style and then there's rolling in extreme look-at-me mode. Some of the wildest limousine conversions take the hottest cars and stretch them out, while others simply pack a party onto wheels. Whatever the reason for the ride, here's how to roll when your average limo simply won't do.
Photo: Avolar LimoPhoto: Avolar Limo

Ferrari F1 360

England-based Prestige Limousine created the first-ever 400-hp Ferrari F1 360 limousine by adding nonstructural carbon-fiber panels bonded to the existing Ferrari. The designers worried about adding the extra weight to the vehicle, but reinforced the added section with even more carbon fiber. The best part?  Enormous Ferrari-red gullwing doors.

Photo: Avolar LimoPhoto: Avolar Limo
Chevy Camaro Transformer

Avolar Limo calls its custom-built 312-horsepower Camaro limousine the Bumblebee Transformer, after the character in the Transformer films, we can only assume. The ride includes seating for 12, fiberoptics to wire all your media needs, lasers, mirrored ceiling panels, media galore, and a full bar. This modded Camaro cruises the streets of L.A.

Photo: A Perfect LimoPhoto: A Perfect Limo

This one screams chic wedding more than party lifestyle, but you have to appreciate the classic conversion of a British staple by A Perfect Limo. With oak seating for 36, or 50 if you include standing room and pack people in—this trolley actually has more function than you might think. The trolley limo comes with laser-show capabilities, a fog machine, and flat screens. The fully enclosed riding cabin also features a fireplace for those cold evenings and karaoke, too.

Photo: Tanks-a-LotPhoto: Tanks-a-Lot

Tanks-a-Lot in the U.K. has about 30 tanks in its arsenal, mostly for corporate events and thrill seekers. But it decided to turn one version, the FV432 British tank, into a limo that can seat eight passengers ready to storm the streets of London. The armored personnel carrier includes a turret from when it was stationed near the Berlin Wall, newly created windows (since the original wasn't built for sightseeing), cameras in lieu of a rearview mirror, a leftover diesel-powered heater from the tank's war days, 44 feet of remote neon tubes, and a Jacuzzi.
Photo: The Midnight RiderPhoto: The Midnight Rider
Semi Truck

With 460 square feet of extreme limo riding, the 435-hp Midnight Rider is the largest limousine on the road, its creators say. Based in California, this tractor-trailer—the only one ever built—has pulled in numerous awards as the largest, heaviest, etc., limo for hire in the U.S. Midnight Rider is a dance party on the highway: It's 70 feet long, carries 40 passengers (complete with two bartenders and a hostess), and has three separate lounges each with an 1800-watt surround-sound system to pump up the volume.
Photo: Monster LimoPhoto: Monster Limo
Monster Truck

This Sunday you could be riding high in perhaps the world's most elegant monster truck. The 350-hp Monster Limo, based in Arizona, can show up at your place with a paint job to match your event. It's perfect if you need to crush a lineup of 15 Chevy Novas on your way to the prom.
Photo: GPLimosPhoto: GPLimos

The monster truck limo brings power, but not speed. Luckily, if you need luxury in a hurry there's this Indycar-style GP limo by Canadian Michael Pettipas. The world's fastest legal street limousine with 400-hp performs on the track, too. Those interested can also rent out the limo for track runs and seat six passengers in the back while they do hot laps.
Photo: Clean Ride LimoPhoto: Clean Ride Limo
Armored Limo

If you're planning an upscale heist during a bachelor party, The Vault by Armored Limo is the ideal ride. The Florida-based armored car includes all the strobe lights, neon lighting, and full bar amenities you'd expect in a limo for you and your 27 closest friends. The only thing it can't protect you from: bad decisions.
Photo: A Advantage LimousinePhoto: A Advantage Limousine
The F650

Don't call it a bus—the F650 is the largest of the truck-based limos. Featured at a few different limo companies across the nation, this super-size Ford with 362 horsepower fits 30 passengers in a hybrid of a standard limo and a tour bus. The cabin includes a color-changing interior, a 42-inch plasma TV, and plenty more features to keep you riding in style.

Batmobile Limo

The fruition a fanatical vision, this look-alike Batmobile limo has been seen roaming the streets of Gotham. Seriously. One can only wonder at the cost to create such an intricate design, complete with all the curves and points of a vehicle suitable only for Batman's night on the town.


Marley film for April 20 2012 .. 4:20

Marley.. documentary on entertainer for its first showing will be at the Berlin film fest the March 9-17 SXSW Flim Festival in Austin, Texas

A new documentary on the life of reggae legend Bob Marley is scheduled to open April 20 in the United States. Directed by Scottish director, Kevin Macdonald, Marley will be distributed by Magnolia Pictures.

According to the Hollywood Reporter publication, the documentary will be shown in theatres, and will be available in Video On Demand and digital format. It will be first shown during this week's Berlin International Film Festival.


"Bob Marley is a fascinating, towering figure in musical history, and Marley is the biography that he deserves," Magnolia president Eamonn Bowles is quoted as saying. "Kevin Macdonald has once again shown himself to be a master documentarian with this eye-opening, entertaining, beautifully crafted film."

Macdonald won an Academy Award in 1999 for directing One Day In September.

For Marley, he used rare footage, archival photos, performances and interviews with family, friends and bandmates for fans and persons who know little of the singer/songwriter to get an authentic portrayal of his life.

Steve Bing of Shangri-La Entertainment and Charles Steel co-produced Marley while Marley's oldest son, Ziggy, and Island Records founder Chris Blackwell are executive producers. Island distributed several of Marley's best albums.

"This documentary is the ultimate revelation of my father's life," said Ziggy Marley. "The family is proud to be able to have the world finally experience this emotional journey."

The Marley documentary has been the subject of much speculation.

High-profile film-makers such as Martin Scorsese and Jonathan Demme were rumoured to be potential directors before Macdonald was offered the job.

Marley, reggae's most enduring figure, is best known for songs like No Woman Nuh Cry, One Love and Exodus, died from cancer in May, 1981 at age 36.


Chrysler Super Bowl Ad Raises Questions About Underlying Political Message

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David Beckham: My Super Bowl Ad Was 'Embarrassing'

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WATCH: NFL Shows How Winning A Fantasy League Can Help You Live Large

WATCH: NFL Play 60's Super Bowl Ad

WATCH NFL Runs Commercial Touting History Of Promoting Player Safety

WATCH: Budweiser's 'Over The Decades Ad'

WATCH: Fiat's Funny 'Hot Girl' Super Bowl Commercial

Bridgestone Introduces Tire Technology To The NFL

Clint Eastwood Addresses Commercial Buzz: 'I'm Not Politically Affiliated With Obama'


Save-minded travellers may not always be able to spring for the loftiest hillside hotels, but a single meal at a spectacularly situated restaurant can be a worthy splurge. From glacial peaks to ancient rain forests - even an underwater dining room in the Indian Ocean - we've rounded up some unforgettable places to pick up a fork, pull up a seat and feast your eyes on these beauty .


The untamed Andes from the southern-most city in the world.
You might not expect to find world-class French food in a frontier city that's more or less at the ends of the earth-which makes Chez Manu an even more pleasant surprise. Set on a hill about a mile north of Ushuaia, the capital of Tierra del Fuego and the southern-most city in the world, the restaurant first impresses visitors with its remarkable perspective on Beagle Channel. And then there's the food. Naturally, fish figures prominently-such as black hake, salmon, and herring, to which expat chef Emmanuel Herbin applies his own suitably French twists (seasoning with anise and herbs, say). Also worth a try: Herbin's takes on Patagonian lamb and Fuegian rabbit, served in an aged mustard sauce. (Photo courtesy of Chez Manu)

Best Deal: Centolla (king crab) is abundant here, and preparations such as centolla gratinada "Chez Manu" come in well below splurge territory ($24). 2135 Fernando Luís Martial Ave., Ushuaia, Argentina, 011-54/2901-432-253, chezmanu.com, entrées from $15.


Primordial paradise in the midst of the jungle.
Julaymba Restaurant brings travellers right to the heart of the world's oldest rain forest. The 40-seat restaurant's terrace juts out over an ancient freshwater lagoon while tangled vines drape from the canopy above. From every direction, diners hear the sounds of some 430 species of birds, plus tree frogs, wild turkeys and wallabies thumping through the brush. The distinctly Aussie menu incorporates pepper berries, wattle seeds and other native foods used by the local aboriginal Kuku Yalanji people, many of whom work in the restaurant. Make like a local, and order either the smoked crocodile or the kangaroo steak. (Photo courtesy of Julaymba)

Best Deal: The lunch-only fish-and-chips special - it's made with local, line-caught barramundi and chips ($17). Daintree EcoLodge & Spa, 20 Daintree Rd., Daintree, Australia, 011-61/7-4098-6100, daintree-ecolodge.com.au, entrées from $29.


Over-the-top architecture in the world's most outrageous city.
For all the glamour, glitz and grandeur that have come to define Dubai, Pierchic stands out for being just the opposite: understated, low-slung, and vernacular in its architectural style. Its wooden beams blend right in with the simple, 150-metre jetty that connects the over-water dining room to Jumeirah Beach and provides enough distance to take in the man-made Palm Jumeirah Island and the full height of Burj Al Arab's 300-metre-tall glass sail. Despite the restaurant's waterfront location, much of its top-notch seafood is imported from around the world. (Photo courtesy of Pierchic)

Best Deal: The seafood lover's degustation menu, which includes an appetizer, an intermediate and a main course, and a dessert (). The menu changes daily, but expect options such as brown shrimp panna cotta, pan-fried oyster, and crème brûlée. Served daily from 1-3 p.m. Al Qasr Hotel, Madinat Jumeirah, Dubai, 011-971/4-366-6730, jumeirah.com, entrées from $27.


Scuba views from beneath the ocean.
It's like dinner theatre for the dive set - and there's not a bad seat in the house. Ithaa is located 5m below the surface of the Indian Ocean. Its tunnel shape and glass walls reveal a breathtaking seascape of unspoiled coral atolls, schools of parrot fish and giant stingrays to 12 lucky diners. The menu is rich with decadent dishes like caviar, line-caught reef fish and rock lobster, but if you'd rather not look out the window for your ordering inspiration, seared veal tenderloin and button-mushroom soup make for suitable substitutions. And while the four-course lunch menu is undoubtedly a splurge, it's still cheaper than getting certified to scuba. Note that tables can only be reserved two weeks in advance. (Photo courtesy of Ithaa Undersea Restaurant)

Best Deal: An 11 a.m. daily cocktail hour opens up the space to curious travellers who can't quite justify the cost of a meal. Conrad Maldives hotel, Rangali Island, Maldives, 011-960/668-0629, conradhotels1.hilton.com, six-course dinner from $320 per person.


A Parisian panorama from one of the city's most iconic department stores.
In a city where shopping has been elevated to an art form, it's fitting that one of the best roof-terrace restaurants sits atop the iconic Printemps department store, in the 9th arrondissement. Serving simple bistro fare (think quiche, soups and toasted spinach-honey-and-goat-cheese sandwiches) to Parisians and tourists alike, Le Déli-Cieux also delivers 360-degree views of the city's centuries-old tin rooftops and its greatest architectural icons: the Arc de Triomphe, the Sacré Coeur, and bien sur, the Eiffel Tower. (Photo courtesy of Cafe Deli)

Best Deal: Well-priced wine, champagne, and beer ($7) flow freely on Thursday evenings, when the terrace is open until 10 p.m. Printemps Home Store, 64 Haussmann Blvd., 9th floor, 9th arrondissement, Paris, France, 011-33/42-82-62-76, departmentstoreparis.printemps.com, gazpacho from $6.


A view of the country's most famous gilded square.
Bosco Bar hits a rare sweet spot: There is a bona fide social scene, plus impressive sightlines and prices you can actually stomach. While the shopping centre itself draws wealthy Muscovites browsing Hermès and Armani, savvy travellers stake out seats in the 1970s-inspired bar, where they can see Lenin's mausoleum, the Kremlin and St. Basil's Cathedral all at once. The menu straddles the new/old divide, with inventive salads (quail with beets and roasted foie gras; smoked salmon, arugula, and potato) and traditional favourites such as beef Stroganoff and borscht. (Photo courtesy of Bosco Cafe)

Best Deal: Red Square, red soup: A bowl of borscht goes for $16. GUM Department Store, 3 Red Square, Moscow, Russia, 011-7/495-627-3703, bosco.ru/en, entrées from $11.


A lofty view of a sparkling metropolis.
The 63-story OUB Centre is crowned by 1-Altitude, a three-level venue that offers the best views in the city-plus main-course-quality bar snacks such as wood-fired pizzas, satay platters (spicy Thai beef, chicken, and pork), and Turkish flat bread with dips. The cocktails run the gamut from classic (mojito) to creative (The Narcissist is a tempting combination of Russian Standard vodka muddled with peach, freshly squeezed lime, and rosemary-infused raspberries). The year-old hotspot is always buzzing with young Singaporean professionals, who are keen to kick back after a day's work and survey the skyline (Photo courtesy of 1-Altitude)

Best Deal: Good selection of affordable New World wines, from $13 a glass (cocktails start at $16). OUB Centre, One Raffles Pl., 63rd level, Singapore, 011-65/6438-0410, 1-altitude.com, pizzas from $20.


From the heart of a chocolate plantation.
Calling all chocolate lovers: Boucan Restaurant might just be your dream come true. Every last item on the menu incorporates some form of cocoa, from a green salad tossed in white chocolate dressing to sautéed prawns with chocolate tapenade and, of course, desserts: a chocolate tart, cacao crème brûlée, and espresso-and-dark-chocolate mousse. Even dreamier than the indulgent dishes? The jungle-draped views of the Piton Mountains, lush, twin-peaked mountains that rise almost 800 metres above sea level on the volcanic island's southern coast. (Photo courtesy of Boucan Restaurant)

Best Deal: Every dinner reservation from now until December 1, 2011, comes with a complimentary cocktail from a menu that includes chocolate daiquiris, cacao Bellinis, and cacao-pulp martinis (a $10 value). Hotel Chocolat, Rabot Estate, Soufrière, St. Lucia, West Indies, 011758/457-1624, thehotelchocolat.com, entrées from $15.


Alpine splendor overlooking Lake Geneva, Mont Blanc, and the Matterhorn.
Talk about making the rounds. Patrons of Kuklos, a futuristic, glass-walled restaurant in the Bernese Alps, don't have to choose between scoping out Lake Geneva, Mont Blanc, or the Matterhorn during their meals. All they have to do is be patient. Every 90 minutes, the circular second-floor dining room makes a full 360-degree rotation. The menu skews traditional - with Gruyère-and-vacherin fondue and rösti, a Swiss riff on a potato pancake - and the dress code is casual, for a clientele of mostly skiers and mountaineers. (Photo courtesy of Restaurant Kuklos)

Best Deal: The "panorama gourmand" package covers round-trip gondola fare (normally $26 per person) and a three-course meal ($80) for two for $160-a savings of $52. 1854 Leysin, Switzerland, 011-41/24-494-3141, teleleysin.ch/en, entrées from $25.


Iconic buttes and majestic spires.
"Monument Valley is the place where God put the West," remarked John Wayne, who helped put the valley on moviegoers' maps by filming Stagecoach there in 1938. Seventy-plus years later, the landscape is just as cinematic. A large bay window overlooks East and West Mitten Buttes, so named for their resemblance to the woolly hand warmers, and natural light floods the space all day. Ambitious early birds can watch the sunrise from one of the few tables lined up along the window (the restaurant opens at 7 a.m.). But arriving later has its benefits, too - like tasting Chef MacNeal Crank's updated takes on his grandmother's traditional Navajo recipes, such as fry-bread tacos or red chile posole, rich with buttery hominy. (Photo courtesy of the View Hotel)

Best Deal: The all-you-can-eat breakfast buffet ($6). Monument Valley Tribal Park, U.S. Hwy. 160 and 163, Monument Valley, Utah, 435/727-5555, monumentvalleyview.com, entrées from $12.


Many of you have heard or seen the recent accusations made by my former associates in the past few weeks. I don’t know why all of these individuals, think the most appropriate action to take after a philosophical difference occurs is to go to the press and attack me.


I can only say that I am reminded of Bob Marley’s admonishments when he said man is so unjust, you don’t know who to trust…your best friend can turn out to be your worst enemy…I shall say no more, other than who the cap fit, mek them wear it. I am issuing this statement because I think these accusations are due to a breach of confidentiality as certain individuals got wind of my upcoming projects and initiatives and they know they can’t stop me without resorting to underhanded tactics.


See Jamaica, Vybz Kartel has been carrying a secret for a very long time and I think it is time that I reveal it before persons try to derail the projects that I have put together by continuing to make false reports about me in their attempt to have me muzzled.two years ago, I had an epiphany whilst on stage. I saw thousands of people screaming for Kartel, jumping up and down, listening to ever word that I uttered on stage, it was like the people were eating out of the palm of my hands. At that moment, something strange came over me, as I heard the people screaming for more, I suddenly realized that my calling was to be more than a Deejay.


I realized that the people were not eating out my hands but they wanted to hear Kartel speak because finally somebody was telling their story in a profound no holds barred manner. Whether I was addressing sexuality,poverty, police brutality, injustice,the trials and tribulations of the ghetto I was finally giving ghetto people a voice – a big voice like society never heard before.


I know I am not the first that has ever attempted to do this. Because when I researched I saw that Marcus, Sam Sharpe, Paul Bogle all spoke directly to the powers that be on behalf of the people but were ostracized and in some cases killed. Later, Marley, Tosh, Jacob Miller did the same thing and all died young under unique somewhat mysterious circumstances. I have seen what they have done to ancient Rastamen, People’s Telecom, the Marcus Garvey Political Party and other entities that attacked Babylon head on.


I did not want the same fate to reach me at the time, I did not want them to muzzle me also, so I took a decision that I felt I had to, I had to trick Babylon. I realized if I kept doing outrageous and outlandish stuff, they would write me off as just an attention seeking artiste and not realize that since July 26, 2009 behind closed doors I have been writing my book and setting up my GEL (Gaza Education and Literacy) program. So they put the spotlight on me, not knowing that they were actually putting the spotlight on themselves because Vybz Kartel is not about braces, bleaching and hairstyles but I am about elevating the cause of Ghetto people.


Please understand Jamaica sometimes you have to trick Babylon with confusion. If I revealed my intentions two years ago, do you think the people that control the media would report everything I do? Babylon, you have been tricked. For 500 years, the system has been using reverse psychology to trick my people,I have now used reverse psychology to trick them Let’s see societal hypocrisy for what it is. Now that my book is going to be released, now that most of my songs will have a more cultural overtone as i have already taken the decision to stop deejaying gun lyrics, now that I am going to be providing educational opportunities for young people,will you be giving me the same attention?


In so far as business is concerned, I don’t agree that rum and a night club is an Empire. The Portmore Global Empire has been in the works for some time with proper infrastructure currently being put in place. I had anticipated certain moves and I have been in consultation with Attorneys in Pembroke Pines, Florida about proper branding, contracts, representation and protecting my legal rights globally. The team I have been working with are all degreed in the areas of Finance, Marketing, Mass Communications and have the expertise that I will need – it is funny when I hear "nobody can tell Kartel anything" when I have trained consultants who have aided me in planning my future projects. I have not finalized any decisions as yet but I have invested considerable resources to take my business endeavours to another level, so again, like Bob Marley said, half the story has never been told.


Now I know a lot of my fans are probably surprised but understand this,I feel called by a power greater than me. Black people have been suffering too long, we have been in poverty too long, we have been brutalized too long and Vybz Kartel is now advising the world that I will use the spotlight that you have put on me to highlight their cause. I am not naïve and I know based on recent interviews on TV that my life and freedom is more in danger than ever before because I have no intention of easing up on the system or their agents. However, I am at peace with this decision.The Gaza ladies, you are still my babies, so don’t worry, the black race must procreate so I will giving you more “Dumpa Truck” to drive in, you can still “Get Wild” and you will still ride your “10 speed bicycle” in “Slow Motion.” I will never stop deejaying for you. The “thugs,” you all built Kartel, so I will never alienate you but you may be getting some new messages from me.


It is unfortunate that I have been forced to prematurely make this statement as my book was slated to be launched on July 23, 2012 – His Imperial Majesty’s Earthstrong, my GEL program was for the September 2011-2012 academic year but the forces against me are rising on TV and in the newspaper so after consultation with the few trusted advisers I have left, I decided to make this release so that if they take my life or my freedom, the projects will continue. Keep in mind that the greatest black man that ever lived, Marcus Garvey, was betrayed by trusted individuals and endured continuous character assassination, so I guess I am in good company. We nah stop say Gaza4Life, we just upgrading the message.


The Merital Family have also head for freedom from oppression The same group who feistly stated while they had a good run that they don't know who is Mavado. The group on seeing that the empire is crumbling has use the opportunity to also make an exit.. it was reported.. as follows and i Quote "Montego Bay-based dancehall group Merital Family has announced that they are officially parting ways with the Portmore Empire, and will be handling their own booking and management in the near future."For the last year and a half, we ah get stifle, we ah get overpriced, dem a tell people say we de pon tour and we de ya nah go nowhere. We ah suffer, we nah get no promotion, we have kids to feed and me have my mother to take care of," one of the members of Merital Family said. 
The group shot to fame in 2010 with the My Money Ha Ha song on the Stripclub riddim and featured a hilarious Vybz Kartel cameo where he delivers a Santa-like laugh. The song, on the Adidjaheim/NotNice/Concussion labels, hit #1 on several major charts in Jamaica and the Caribbean. The group also did well other popular songs such as Pray, When We Party and Bad Like We on the Clappers riddim. "From wah day ya, mi see riddim a mek and no Merital, no Jahvinci not on it and when we call Notnice, him say 'ah the Teacha set it'. So wah kinda suffocation this? We have been loyal to the organisation, and it is not being loyal to us...no video, no promotion, no recording. Mi fed up and tired. We caan reason or have a number for the man who run the organisation that we are supposed to be signed to," another group member said.  The release said that the level of segregation and separation insisted on by Vybz Kartel had stifled his opportunity to meet with and collaborate with other artistes. "Mi come to do music and sake ah the Empire, we never get to contact certain producers and artistes, or meet with icons in the business like Bounty Killer, just because of the Empire," a member of the group said.  They said that they were peeved that Vybz Kartel had neglected to mention them in the writing credits of the hit song, My Money Ha Ha. "VP Records called us about doing some promotion of the song, and that's how we found out it had been sold to a record label. So we called Tarik 'Russian' Johnston and asked why him never tell we about the money and he said 'Kartel ah yu leader, mi think he would let you know', and then we checked with our publishers and they told us that the credits for the writer of the song was Adidja Palmer and it was produced by Russian, that's all, no recognition, nothing, what about our publishing and our rights? We have our song before we met Kartel and the song became a hit and we no achieve anything from it," he said.  In the meantime, the group has continued to record songs, voicing Tell Me Why for the Young Money label for Good Good Productions, and 'Dancing' on the TYPE R label. They also recently recorded 'On and On' on the Gangsta City Part Two label. TO CONTACT THEM, CALL 1 876 858-8600" tell dem rEdEyEzz sen yuh..lol





First off, not every pick on this list is indeed a "place," per se. One is actually a scientific phenomenon, while another is considered a massive living organism home to more than 1,500 fish species and nearly 3,000 individual coral reefs. Several are wide-open spaces, but a few are brick-and- mortar sites built for kings (and in one case, a queen). Three have been included on the listing of the Seven Natural Wonders; three were also selected for the listing of the New 7 Wonders of the World. But no matter how you slice and dice them, all 10 have something important in common: Sometimes, it is all about what pleases the eye. Here's our list of some of the World's Prettiest Places. ct newsweek



It's largely unknown to North American tourists, and perhaps that makes it even more precious. The limestone caves of the Plitvice Lakes National Park make the water of its 16 lakes and a handful of waterfalls shimmer brilliant shades of turquoise, silver and green. And to get a better view the lakes' beauty, you'll find a web of wooden plank walkways scattered throughout. 

But note that there is no true best or worst season to stop by this site in central Croatia. Snow and ice transforms the area into a winter wonderland in summer the surrounding trees further enhance the hues of the lake water. If at all possible, though, avoid the onslaught of local tourists in July and August.

(Photo: rosa-amato/Flickr)




Molded out of red sandstone and white marble and sparkling with the glint of semi-precious stones, this mausoleum of northeastern India needs no justification to appear on our list. Frommer's says, "It's not just the perfect symmetry, the ethereal luminescence, the wonderful proportions, or the sheer scale," that makes us revere the Taj Mahal. It's also "the exquisite detailing covering every inch of marble that justifies it as a wonder of the world." Its amorous background also feeds our admiration: It was commissioned by a 17th century Mughal emperor to honor the memory of his favorite wife, Mumtaz Mahal. Consider planning a trip for sometime between October and March to behold Taj's majestic domes, chambers and minarets; that way the weather will be somewhat cooler for walking around. If you have time, stay from the early morning until the late night, as "the radiance of the Taj under the moonlight is beyond any explanation," notes TajMahal.org.uk.

(Photo: kevin.j/Flickr)



Australia's luscious islands, cays and coral reef system of the Great Barrier Reef are awesome in scope and visuals -- in fact, this reef covers more of the world than any other entry on our list (approximately 215,000 square kilometres; the only living thing visible from outer space). All who encounter even a small portion of this gorgeous giant are dazzled by its aquamarine waters and honeycomb beaches. Even more beauty awaits you below the water surface: a maze of more than 2,900 spectacular coral reefs and countless marine life. Come to this area just off the coast of Queensland between June and October, so you can avoid the worst of Australia's oppressive heat.

(Photo: Courtesy of Tourism Australia)



The true origins of this impressive Buddhist monument, located in central Java, are somewhat disputed. According to the UNESCO World Heritage website, the Borobudur temple was founded by a Saliendra dynasty king sometime between 750 and 842 A.D. Still, you don't need a definitive history lesson to fully appreciate its grandeur. Just feast your eyes on its intricately sculpted gray-stone relief panels (slats of stone carved with artwork to depict the life of Buddha) and the perfectly symmetrical stupas (mound-shaped structures containing Buddhist relics). They're even more precious due to their resilience: Borobudur is still gorgeous despite nearby bombings and volcanic eruptions. Try to visit in May; that's when the air is supposedly the cleanest in Java. And plan your trek at sunrise or sunset to

 witness how the light catches the stupas' perforations.

(Photo: Thrillseekr/Flickr)



The astonishing depths and incredible sunsets of the Grand Canyon make it a shoe-in on this list. Plus you can enjoy the scenery while you work up a sweat, hiking the rigorous Bright Angel Trail or rafting the Colorado River. As President Theodore Roosevelt famously noted, this park is "one of the great sights which every American, if he can travel at all, must see." Many take Teddy up on his word -- so if you want to explore this northern Arizona park, we suggest you avoid the staggering crowds of the summer. Consider visiting between March and May or September and November, when the weather is pleasant and the lodging rates are reasonable.

(Photo: Fundenberg/Flickr)



The Palace of Versailles might have had humble beginnings, but times have changed. Now, this ain't no simple hunting lodge, but rather an opulent tribute to the former French monarchy. Highlights include the reflective Hall of Mirrors, where world leaders met to sign the 1919 treaty that ended World War I; the manicured French-style gardens, which prominently feature the iconic Bassin d'Apollon (fountain) and the verdant Orangerie garden; and the Petit Trianon, a smaller chateau gifted to the infamous Marie Antoinette by her husband, King Louis XVI. Early summer is idyllic in the Île-de-France region, so plan your sojourn for that season. That's also when you'll find a few music concerts and special events taking place in the Versailles gardens.

(Photo: jasonb42882/Flickr)



Machu Picchu's 12 acres of mysterious temples and exquisite terraces are perpetually shrouded in cloud tufts, proving that this ancient site of Peru's Urubamba Valley still lives up to its reputation as the "Lost City of the Incas." Or at least it seems like it from the pictures. In reality, this ancient city is always overrun with hikers exploring the Inca Trail or catching the view from the Temple of the Sun. So come with plenty of camera film and patience. For fewer crowds -- though not by much -- visit between October and April.

(Photo: Allard Schmidt/Wikimedia Commons)



During his 67-year reign, Pharaoh Ramses II left many visual reminders of his greatness. Perhaps the best known are the four larger-than-life statues carved into a mountainside of southern Egypt. Many don't realize there's more to this site -- sometimes called Abu Simbel for the town you'll find it in -- than those seated statues seated on the facade. Pass through them and you'll find more detailed statues and intricate hieroglyphs depicting the Egyptian army's victory over ancient Libya, Syria and Nubia. Next door is the smaller Temple of Nefertari, dedicated to the Pharaoh's favorite wife. If you truly want to be wowed, you should swing by Abu Simbel around Feb. 20 or Oct. 20. Twice a year around those days the sun's rays shine directly into the larger temple to illuminate the artwork and statues within.

(Photo: Mrs Logic/Flickr)



Myth: The Great Wall of China can be seen from outer space (with the naked eye). Fact: it is pretty fantastic to view up close and personal. It sweeps through approximately 6,500 km of northern China, and different sections guarantee different tourist experiences: The jungly sections of Simatai and Jinshanling are good for hiking; the arresting and gorgeous Mutianyu stretch is good for snapping photos; and the crowded Badaling portion is good for convenience (it's only an hour away from exciting Beijing). Plan your trip for anytime (just imagine the contrast of the Great Wall with the white snow of winter, the red leaves of fall and the green grass of spring and summer), but do try to bypass the hordes of tourists that visit on the weekends year-round.

(Photo: firepile/Flickr)



This scientific phenomenon occurs when charged solar particles collide in the earth's geomagnetic field and create a colorful, magnificent glow in the sky's upper atmosphere. According to the Huffington Post, "ideal viewing conditions are crisp, cold, clear and cloudless skies with little light." And though it is possible to see the Northern Lights in other parts of the globe, this phenomenon is most prevalent in the world's polar regions; the name Aurora Borealis refers to the lights as seen from northern latitudes (Aurora Australis is the name for the lesser-known Southern Lights of the South Pole). For the best viewing, Fodor's recommends visiting Anchorage, Alaska or Calgary, Alberta. You can also see the Northern Lights in parts of Denmark, Finland, Iceland and Russia, among other countries.

BC artists score 27 nominations for 2011 JUNO Awards

Music BC is proud to congratulate all the British Columbia nominees for this year's JUNO awards. 

This year sees many veteran BC artists being recognized; Sarah McLachlan recieved 3 nods, for Artist of the Year, Songwriter of the Year, and Pop Album of the Year; Michael Buble is up for the popular Fan Choice Award, and the legendary David Foster is nominated for Producer of the Year for his work with Katherine Jenkins and Seal.

This year is also a significant one for emerging BC talent - and Music BC has supported many of these artists from the beginning of their careers. Heavyweight nominees Hedley  (Fan Choice, Single of the Year, and Album of the Year) played the Music BC showcase at CMW in 2005; Hannah Georgas won the Music BC Songbird West songwriting contest in 2007, and is now nominated for Songwriter of the Year, as well as New Artist of the Year; longtime Music BC members and PEAK Performance Project finalists Said the Whale were recognized with a New Group of the Year nod; and another PEAK Performance Project artist, Greg Sczebel, recieves his second JUNO nomination for his album Love & the Lack Thereof (Contemporary Christian/Gospel Album of the Year).

The Canadian Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (CARAS) announced nominees for the 40th annual awards gala early on February 1 in Toronto, streamed live on CTV’s website. The awards will be broadcast on CTV March 27th, 2011.

British Columbia Nominees:
Hedley Universal
Michael Bublé WEA*Warner
Perfect Hedley Universal
The Show Must Go Hedley Universal
Sarah McLachlan Nettwerk*Sony
Hannah Georgas Hidden Pony*EMI
Said The Whale Hidden Pony*EMI
Hannah Georgas 
“Chit Chat” | “The Deep End” – co-songwriter Robbie Driscoll | “Lovers Breakdown”
THIS IS GOOD – Hannah Georgas Hidden Pony Records*EMI*Beetle Bomb Music
Sarah McLachlan 
“Illusions of Bliss” | “Forgiveness”- co-songwriter Pierre Marchand | “Loving You Is Easy”
LAWS OF ILLUSION – Sarah McLachlan Nettwerk*Sony*Tyde Music
Trail in Life Dean Brody Open Road*Universal

Can’T keEp A SecrEt Faber Drive 604*Universal
Laws of Illusion Sarah McLachlan Nettwerk*Sony
Vancouver Matthew Good Universal
Continent & Western Fond of Tigers Drip Audio*Fontana North
Number 3 The Kerplunks Independent*Pacific Music/Warner
Chopin Piano Concertos Janina Fialkowska and Vancouver Symphony Orchestra under Bramwell Tovey ATMA*Naxos
Into Light musica intima ATMA*Naxos
Exaudi Jocelyn Morlock INTO LIGHT ATMA*Naxos
Likkle But Mi Tallawah Elaine Lil’Bit Shepherd D’Maestro Music*Independent
Bread And Buddha Harry Manx Dog My Cat*SRI
Everywhere West Jim Byrnes Black Hen*Fontana North
The Sojourners The Sojourners Black Hen*Fontana North
Love & the Lack Thereof Greg Sczebel Soultone*Fontana North
Supermagique Pacifika Six Degrees*Universal
Brian Howes “Cha-Ching” | “Perfect” – THE SHOW MUST GO – Hedley Universal
David Foster “Bring Me To Life” BELIEVE- Katherine Jenkins Warner Bros. UK*Warner| “Secret” COMMITMENT – Seal Reprise/143*Warner
Mike Plotnikoff “What Do You Got?” GREATEST HITS: THE ULTIMATE COLLECTION – Bon Jovi Island*Universal | “Break” LIFE STARTS NOW – Three Days GraceJive*Sony


IT is often said that ‘one swallow does not a summer make,’ but here in Jamaica we often ‘tek sleep mark death’. This time ’round we are claiming the latter in describing what could possibly be the turn-around for in local dancehall music. On Saturday night the team from Guinness rolled out one of the most entertaining shows of the year — a tribute to Arthur Guinness, the founder of the famous dark, rich beverage — inside the National Stadium in kingston.  The publicity and advertising material did mention that dancehall rivals, Beenie Man and Bounty Killer would appear on stage, and throughout the night MC Richie B did hint that history would be created, however, what the audience did not expect, is exactly what they got.  It is 1:35 am and the audience is milling about during yet another band change. Richie B then announces the moment. The curtains open ( yes there were crutains!) and reveals Beenie Man and Bounty Killer rising on platforms to the back of the stage. All around is the sound of thunder and lightning crashing, and the backdrop and screens on stage comes alive with bolts of lightning. What transpires are pricless moments as these two leaders of dancehall music go head-to-head in the most friendly rivalry seen on a local stage in years. Both deejays dressed in contrasting black (Bounty) and white (Beenie), seem to be genuinely enjoying themselves, flashing bright smiles, and their fans savour every moment. Then Beenie declares, “mi a go do a Bounty Killer tune and you do one a mine,” Bounty responds, “yeah let’s flip it!” The friendship on stage is passed down to the audience as die hard Bounty fans enjoy Beenie’s take, and vice versa. The dancehall vets then continue ‘tune-fi-tune’. Beenie does Ole Dawg, Bounty responds with Gal a ride mi nature, Beenie counters with Girls dem sugar, and Bounty responds — Lexus and Bimma. This continues with Beenie’s Let him go and Bounty is sharp with Wutless Boy. Not to be outdone Beenie draws for New Suzuki, and Bounty snaps back with We di girl dem a cry for. This continues for a good 30 minutes. An entertaining back and forth of the dancehall hits and anthems from these two great acts.  In an industry so polarised by allegiance, this marks a refreshing change which allowed for all sides to meet on common ground, and enjoy the music which is what it should really have been. The greatness continues as Bounty exits. More Beenie hits followed by cameos from Lisa Hyper, the Swaggerific Mr G and the man of the moment Khago who sends waves through the thick stadium crowd with Nah sell out mi fren dem. But, there is more. Beenie is closing the set with his current hits I’m Ok and Rum and Red Bull. For the latter his calls on Future Fambo, who shows that he knows a thing or two about drinking rum and Red Bull. The Drunken Master first spills whatever is in his cup, then tosses the cup to a waiting audience. Next was his sunglasses, that too is sent across the stadium field, followed by his necklace. With nothing else to give, he begins to twirl the microphone which then falls to the stage with a loud thud. Seeing this, Beenie then playfully escorts Fambo off stage, closing out another great set. The fireworks continue as Bounty returns to centrestage for his solo act. He is not on stage alone for long, as he is soon joined by the Energy god, Elephant Man. More classics and hits follow and then the Greatness is amped up with Bounty’s call, “weh Damian Beckett deh?” That paves the way for another moment as Babycham takes to the stage sending the audience to another dizzying height. Cham and Bounty have had differences over the years, but seem to have mended fences. More hit tunes — Cant’ believe mi eyes, Another level, Look into my eyes, plus their current hit Stronger, serve to bring the curtains down on a great night. Ahead of this exciting climax the audience was treated to performances from Lady Saw, Wayne Wonder, Freddie McGregor, Chino, Stephen ‘Di Genius’ McGregor, Wyclef, Busta Rhymes, Shaggy and Mavado. Kudos to the production team which gave patrons an appealing look, sound and feel.


LONDON - Gregory Isaacs, the Jamaican reggae singer whose smooth style earned him the nickname "Cool Ruler," has died. He was 59. Isaacs' manager, Copeland Forbes, said the singer died Monday at his London home. Isaacs had been diagnosed with lung cancer a year ago, but continued performing until weeks before his death.  His wife Linda said Isaacs was "well-loved by everyone, his fans and his family, and he worked really hard to make sure he delivered the music they loved and enjoyed." Born in a Kingston, Jamaica slum in 1951, Isaacs began recording in his teens, and went on to produce scores of albums. With his sinuous baritone and romantic songs, Isaacs became a leading proponent of the mellow "Lovers Rock" style of reggae. He hit his stride in the mid-1970s with ballads like "Love is Overdue" and "All I Have Is Love." Later that decade he teamed up with the Jamaican production duo of Sly Dunbar and Robbie Shakespeare for several hit songs including "Soon Forward" and "What A Feeling." "Gregory's voice and writing ability was wicked. He was one of those soulful singers you could sit and listen to for hours," Dunbar said Monday. Isaacs was best known internationally for the title song from his 1982 album "Night Nurse," a club favourite which later became a hit for Simply Red.  His career was stalled by a cocaine habit that landed him in jail on several occasions. Isaacs said ruefully in 2007 that he'd gone to "Cocaine High School ... the greatest college ever, but the most expensive school fee ever paid." Drug abuse took a toll on his voice but he kept making music, releasing a well-received final album, "Brand New Me," in 2008. Suggs, lead singer of reggae-influenced British band Madness, said the dapper, fedora-sporting Isaacs was "a great reggae artist and also one of the most sartorially elegant stars on the world stage."


   Jamaican reggae artist and producer Sugar Minott died Saturday at age 54. His wife Maxine Stowe said he died unexpectedly in a Kingston, Jamaica, hospital after complaining of feeling ill earlier in the day. No cause of death was released. Minott had cancelled a string of Canadian concerts in May because of health problems, reported to be angina. The smooth-voiced singer helped popularize reggae in the 1970s and 1980s with hits such as Good Thing Going, Vanity and Mr. DC.  He also was a pioneer of the Jamaican dance-hall scene, and known as a mentor to young Jamaican artists.  Born Lincoln Barrington Minott on May 25, 1956, in Kingston, he was involved in local sound systems (groups of disc jockeys and MCs) from his youth.  

    In 1969, he joined Tony Tuff and Derrick Howard to form the African Brothers, and recorded the album No Cup No Broke.  In the early 1970s, the African Brothers broke up and Minott went solo. He built his reputation by laying vocal tracks over backing tapes, instead of using a live band, a style that would be adopted by Jamaican dance-hall stars.  After recording Live Loving and Showcase, albums that were considered dance-hall breakthroughs, he left the Studio One label to form his own Black Roots label. The label worked with his Youth Promotion company to advance the careers of young artists, including Ranking Joe, Captain Sinbad and Ranking Dread.  Minott had U.K. hits with Hard Time Pressure and River Jordan in 1979 and relocated to Britain for a few years.  

    In 1983, he returned to Jamaica for a performance at Reggae Sunsplash, an annual festival he would help anchor for several years. Through the 1980s, he continued to experiment with his musical style and perform live, as well as producing extensively. He also performed with former proteges, Junior Reid on Wah Them a Do and Shaggy on Chow. His albums from the 1990s include Happy Together, Easy Squeeze and Breaking Free. A last album, New Day, is scheduled for release in the next few weeks.


                                 WHO? WILL TAKE STING 12/26/2010

COME tomorrow, the name of one artiste will be on the lips of all the persons who attended Sting — greatest one-night Reggae festival — as well as some who did not make it to the Jamworld Entertainment Centre in Portmore, St Catherine. This year — the festival, which is in its 27th year, is devoid of the usual tension and lyrical clashes which have characterised the festival in past years. Instead, Supreme Promotions, promoters of the event, have dubbed the 2010 staging, the collaboration. Already what seems to be the highlights is a paired performance from former dancehall arch-enemies, Beenie Man and Bounty Killer. Earlier this year, these two put on a show-stopping performance for the Arthur Guinness Day celebrations inside the National Stadium in Kingston. That performance has no doubt set the stage for what will play out on the Jamworld stage in the early hours of Monday morning. At the Guinness event, both artistes traded 'tune fi tune' in a tight, well-rehearsed set which involved the backing bands for both deejays, and even saw them performing each other's material, which truly upped the entertainment ante at that event.and Although no details have been released on the content and nature of their performance, publicity material have continuously stated that the two will appear on stage together. The other much-talked about performances seem to centre around the current poster boy for conscious Reggae, I-Octane, and this year's break-out artiste, Khago. Both the Rastafari acts have been blazing a trail for themselves with a string of popular radio-friendly hits which have dominated conscious reggae and dancehall all year. These two are building quite a buzz as show time draws closer. This year, reggage/dancehall's lone international face has been Gyptian. With his runaway hit, Hold You this artiste has been keeping the music alive internationally in 2010. He has backed this up with a number of international awards including a MOBO and the Soul Train Award. Gyptian's performances have also been nothing short of crowd-pleasing. He too has been thrown into the mix with a number of other acts who have not graced the Sting stage in some time. These include Sizzla, Richie Spice and Dancehall's 'Mumma' Lady Saw who is taking to the stage after a seven-year absence and promises nothing short of a thrilling performance to mark her return. For many hardcore Sting fans, if there is one disappointment to this year's festival, it is the absence of two of the music's most current acts, rivals Vybz Kartel and Mavado. These two created quite a bit of anticipation two years ago, and the event saw one of its largest audiences when both acts clashed on the Jamworld stage. Both acts are noticeably missing from the line-up, but Sting director, DiMario McDowell says, "the music is much bigger than any two acts, and word on the street indicates that fans of the music are coming out for a great show." This year, the festival has been broken down into a number of segments with the top tier being the 13 Warriors -- I-Octane, Khago, Etana, Chuck Fenda, Gyptian, Sizzla, Beenie Man, Bounty Killer, Richie Spice, Agent Sasco (Assassin), Lady Saw, Aidonia, and Kip Rich. But even royal families have their bad girls, and the Bad Girls segment of the production has its own baker's dozen, including Lisa Hyper, Ce'Cile, D'Angel, Ikaya, Face, Pamputae and Tifa. In a new twist, this year's Sting features the Sting Commentators, known for their "laugh out loud" humour, Twin of Twins, Food Kartel, Tanto Blacks and Apache and Sarge will ensure that belly-splitting laughter is in the mix.  Those who spin the discs will not be left out either, as DJs Sunshine, Bambino and Liquid are designated Sting disc Jocks. Nesbeth, Zamunda, Singer Jah, Floyd West, Cush Hunta, Natural Black and Peas Head are among those in the Spotlight segment, while rising talents Mr Banging, Sophia Squire and Floyd West are in the Starlight segment A special secret performer is slated to hit the stage at around 11:45 p.m., while MCs Ragashanti, Nuffy, Shaka Fame, Oral Tracey and Sample Man will keep a tight grip on the proceedings.

This year the Sting foundation has donated scholarships to youth-at-risk, assisted the Jamaica AIDS Hospice and the Marlie Hill district in St Catherine.

     Without the presence of top-flight deejays Vybz Kartel and Mavado on the line-up of this year’s staging of Sting, many have raised questions as to whether or not the show would be prosperous as in past years.  Dubbed ‘The Greatest One-Night Show On Earth’, Sting will be without, two of dancehall’s hottest acts for the annual December 26 concert to be held at Jam World, Portmore. ST took to the streets of downtown Kingston, speaking with the public about their views on the absence of the artistes from the stage show. Mixed views were given by some persons, while others were adamant that the stage show would result in a complete ‘flop’. “Sting nah go gwaan wid nutten this year. The two big artiste dem nah guh deh deh. A Kartel mi seh, him and I-Octane, but a really Kartel mi a guh fi see, an the majority of people weh mi know a seh di same ting. It a go flop widout them (Kartel and Mavado),” said store clerk Diane Miller. “Mi nuh think it a go flop, but mi nuh think it a go do as good as it can do. Dem nah guh make nuh money, cause nuff people nah guh go. Dem two deh draw crowd. Yuh see like how Beenie Man and Bounty Killer used to have the place lock back inna di days, a so dem two deh a gwaan now,” said 18-year-old Omand Hartley.  fill the void One man thought the young acts would not make much of a difference as other veteran deejays could fill the void.  He said: “It nuh must flop, enuh. Yuh seh Bounty Killer and Beenie deh deh and yuh dun know Killer a di DJ a di century. Di Killer can still bring it. Plus, who bad like Sizzla? Dem presence nuh really ago miss because Sting a gwaan long before them come bout. How long now Sting a gwaan? Long time.” Romain Trowers also thought Sting would be a ‘flop’ this year, as he said: “Mi nuh think it a go generate as much crowd as usual. Mi think it a go flop straight. A di two biggest thing dem now enuh. The Teacha and ‘Gully Gad’ nuh deh a Sting, wah wi a guh fa den?”  the Artiste & Song Competition instructions will feature an artiste billed for the GT Taylor Christmas Reggae Extravaganza slated for Saturday, December 25, at Independence Park, Black River.  Each player has to email in the name of the song and the singer/DJ. Winners will receive a Jagra gift package and a letter announcing their prize of two tickets to the event. The first correct answer sent to star@ gleanerjm.com wins. Here is today’s song: song #3 When wi a party asuh wi stay Jamaicans win nuh play. When unuh si bad people step up inna di club Unuh fi move


      September 28, 2010 will see the release of Legacy, the seventh studio album from Andrew Tosh, son of the late reggae singer and former Wailers member, Peter Tosh. The album is the follow up to his most recent effort, Focus. Legacy, an acoustic ten track opus will feature covers of ten of the elder Tosh’s more popular recordings. Legacy will be released by Box Ten Entertainment Group in association with Tuff Gong. Andrew’s previous sets include Original Man, Message From Jah, Andrew Tosh: Dress to Kill, Andrew Sings Tosh: He Never Died, and the Grammy nominated Make Place for the Youth. To Big dreams for Katy Perry. Teenage Dreams by Katy Perry is the number one album in America this week. The album won in the battle for the number one spot, edging out Fantasia’s Back to Me by a little over 75,000 copies. Teenage Dreams sold some 192,000 copies in its first week at retail. This has given Perry her first number one album. Perry is also the first solo female artiste to score a number one album in America, since Kesha’s Animal soared to the top in January. Teenage Dream is the two-time Grammy Award nominee’s highest album chart debut. Her debut album, One of the Boys, scanned 46,767 units in its first week, back in 2008. Katy is nominated for Best Female Video and Best Pop Video in the 2010 MTV Video Music Awards for California Gurls. To Taio Cruz on top in the UK and America Singer/songwriter Taio Cruz is enjoying success on both sides of the Atlantic. He currently has the number one single on the UK pop chart with Dynamite. Dynamite is number two on the Billboard Hot 100 and number one on Billboard’s Dance Music Club Play chart. Late last year, Cruz had topped the Billboard Hot 100 with the track Break Your Heart. However, prior to his success in America, Cruz had been steadily making his name in Britain. He had built up his repertoire by writing songs for the likes of Will Young, Tinchy Stryder, and Sugar Babes. Cruz also released two solo albums which have fared well on the British album chart. Dynamite is shaping up to become Cruz’s biggest hit, as it has so far hit number one and top ten in several European countries. Former secular artist turned gospel singer Junior Tucker will be releasing a double disc package next year to commemorate his 40th year in entertainment. R&B singer Chris Brown is releasing a new single called Calypso. Brown’s current hit Deuces has taken over the number one spot on Billboard’s R&B Hip Hop Songs chart. It is his third chart topper on that tally. Gyptian’s new single, Nah Let Go, is steadily climbing charts in Europe including Germany and Belgium. Speaking of European charts, Ce’Cile’s collaboration Gold Dust with UK producer DJ Fresh, slips to number 27 on the UK Singles chart.




Amidst rumours that veteran dancehall artists Junior Reid and Bounty Killer were involved in a physical altercation at the last staging of Hot Mondays in St Andrew, both artist have dismissed the claims. However, they have given different versions of what transpired.“I and Bounty Killer weren’t in a fight, that’s a rumour,” Junior Reid said. The artiste explained there was a minor altercation between members of his ‘family’ and someone from Bounty Killer’s crew at Weddy Weddy, about two weeks ago. While at Hot Mondays, Junior Reid said he saw the person from Bounty Killer’s crew and decided to speak to him. “As a big man, I saw the guy at Hot Mondays and I try fi find out what really go down and him start flare up. As him flare up now, some people that was around me and going into the session and fans start tell him fi have manners when the big man a talk to him. Him and dem inna argument till something start. This morning, I frighten when I hear seh me and Killa inna fight,” he told THE STAR.However, when contacted, Bounty Killer told a slightly different version. According to Killer, there was apparently some incident involving Sauffy, a member of his entourage, and one of Junior Reid’s sons while leaving Weddy Weddy Wednesdays last week.

“Suh, Junior Reid si Sauffy a Hot Mondays now and call him an jus’ start wet him up an from dey so it start. Suh wi guh part it. Them all fling one Guinness bottle an buss di yute head, even after the police were dere trying to calm di situation. ‘Cause is at dat moment, mi get upset an me start get involved verbally, but me neva get involved physically,” Killer told THE STAR.

However, Killer believes, “Junior Reid a carry belly from when him did a try come inna Bounty Sundays an dem stop him an sen fi get authorisation from Sauffy. Suh to me, Junior Reid is acting very childish and unprofessional. An a different ting mi dey pon. Wi dey pon upliftment ting. Last week dem diss Boom Boom, diss week a Sauffy? Memba wi a nuh Christian yuh nuh? Wi a God-bless, suh Jamaica fi si sey wi a try hol’ it, but dem fi realise sey wi nah guh always a walk roun wid all dis burden pon wi head.”

On the other hand, Junior Reid, despite admitting there is no beef between Killer and himself, says, “Bounty Killer is a good artiste but more time dem man deh move like dem need therapy, dem have a problem. Me and Bounty Killer no really have nutten right now. Is him and the tax people dem have things,” Reid said.  Adding: “From him and BEENIE MAN and this Angel thing, is like di man just upset with everybody. Some man just move like dem angry wid demself. All me give dem yute deh is assistance. Only love mi try fi show certain yute. But from mi build up a likkle club, dem just get badmind. If him see an artiste a go through, him just hate.  Dancehall was here before even me and me never try fi gwaan like mi a don or ruler fi dancehall.”


The 4th Annual Reggae Music Achievement Awards Results..
                       FRANKIE PAUL                                                      ELAINE LILBIT SHEPPARD
Life Time Achievement Award Recipient Frankie Paul - 4th Annual RMAA

Toronto, Canada – Monday June 14, 2010-: The 4th Annual Reggae Music Achievement Awards (RMAA) held this past Saturday at the Jamaican Canadian Association, recognized those who have inspired the growth of Canada’s Reggae Music Industry. A night of commendations and live entertainment the prestigious event was well received by the audience and members of media from across Canada.


Highlighting both Canadian and international contributors to Reggae music culture, RMAA organizers congratulate all the nominees and winners for their creative concepts which have positively impacted the industry.


2010 Reggae Music Achievement Award Recipients: 


Life Achievement

Frankie Paul                                                                     General Tree


DennisBrown Award                       

Lance Ingleton  


Artist of the Year                                    


Best Male Vocalist

Tony Anthony


Best Female Vocalist

Mandy Woods


Best Reggae Single

Take A Bow 


Best Reggae Album / CD                  

Man The Music     


Special Song Writer                            

Winston Richards                                  


International Radio DJ

Winston Barnes


Best Male DJ

Exco Levi 


Best Female DJ

Tasho T


Best Reggae Band

Souljah Fyah


Best Radio DJ                                    

Clarym 98.5 FM                                    

Promising New Artist

Elaine (lilbit) Sheppard  


Best Dub Poet      



Special Media Award    

Caribbean Camera                                                                                          


Reggae International Single    

Busy Signal - One More Night      


Reggae Dance Promoter

Action Promotions                            


Best Gospel Artist / CD            

Cora Reid Russell


Concert Promoter                        

Calgary Reggae Festival              


Album of the Year International

2 Sides of My Heart - Gramps Morgan


Best Producer



Community Recognition      

Bro Power N Garveyites  

Jackelyn McLaughlin    


Outstanding Contribution In Canadian

 Reggae Music Industry

Jamaica Day Toronto Team


International Reggae Artist




Dancehall act Rodney Pryce, who goes by the stage name Bounty Killer, is the latest in a line of high-profile entertainers to find themselves in trouble with the taxman.The DJ yesterday had his two high-end motor vehicles — a Ranger Rover and Toyota Land Cruiser — seized by the Inland Revenue Department, reportedly for owing millions of dollars in taxes. The vehicles were seized by the Special Enforcement Team of the Revenue Department at the entertainer’s home at the Oakland apartment complex along Constant Spring Road in St Andrew. The Observer was unable to reach Pryce for a comment yesterday. His manager Julian Jones-Griffith was off the island and could not be reached on any of his two known telephone numbers.  Pryce is the second entertainer who have had their vehicles seized because of non-compliance in paying taxes. Earlier this month, the Revenue Department swooped down on Elephant Man’s home in St Andrew and seized a Mercedes Benz motor car. According to a source at the Inland Revenue Department, the Special Enforcement Team only takes action when all other efforts to collect outstanding taxes have failed. 


Sean Paul, Sean Kingston empty-handed as Japanese wins reggae video award again..



Jamaican affiliated artistes once again lost the Best Reggae Video category at the MTV Video Music Awards (VMA) Japan 2010.  Entertainers Sean Kingston and Sean Paul were nominated but lost to Keep it Blazing by Japanese reggae artiste Han-Kun. The award has historically only been won by Japanese artistes.  Winning the award broadcast on May 29, will arguably boost Han-Kun's record sales in japan -- the world's second largest music market. The deejay was born in Kanagawa prefecture and is a member of reggae group, Shonan no Kaze.  Paul was nominated for the Ray Kay directed video So Fine from his latest album Imperial Blaze and Kingston was nominated for the Gil Green directed video Fire Burning from his latest album, Tomorrow. Other nominees included Japanese reggae artistes Pushim with her single My Endless Love and Ryo the Skywalker with his single Kokoni Aru Ima wo Tomoni Aruki Dasou. It's the third nomination for Jamaican born Paul and second nomination for US born, Jamaican bred Kingston in that category. Paul was nominated in 2006 for We Burnin' and in 2007 for Temperature whilst Kingston was nominated in 2008 for Beautiful Girls.  Mavado was the only other Jamaican artiste nominated in that category with Dreaming in 2008, however Kardinal Offishall a Canadian of Jamaican parentage was nominated in 2009 for his duo with pop star Akon entitled Dangerous. The Best Reggae Video Award began in 2006 and has only been won by Japanese artistes at the annual award show which started in 2002. MTV VMA Japan is frequented by internationally known celebrities who view the award as an opportunity to fillip album sales.


main 300x143 4 ARTISTES VISAS CANCELLED Selector Ricky Trooper also included BeenieManA20081003 4 ARTISTES VISAS CANCELLED Selector Ricky Trooper also included AidoniaD20063108c 4 ARTISTES VISAS CANCELLED Selector Ricky Trooper also included

       BOUNTY KILLER -- MAVADO            BEENIE MAN                       ADONIA               R. TROOPER
The visas of five of Jamaica’s top entertainers have been revoke. According to information coming from the Fraud Prevention Arm of the United States Embassy in Kingston, the visas of Bounty Killer, Mavado, Beenie Man, Adonia and selector Ricky Trooper are in the process of being cancelled.

When contacted for confirmation last night, Minister of National Security, Senator Dwight Nelson, relayed through his communications department that “he has no such information.” However, a document obtained stated that: “The Embassy of the United States in Kingston, Jamaica, is in the process of revoking the visas of the following citizens of Jamaica. The people mentioned here currently hold a US visa that we have not yet been able to physically cancel. Do not allow these passengers to board any flights bound for the United States in reliance on this visa."revoked" The document then names Moses Anthony Davis (Beenie Man) two visas; Garfield Augustus McKoy (Ricky Trooper), two visas; Sheldon Ricardo Aitana Lawrence, (Aidonia); David Brooks (Mavado), two visas; and Rodney Basil Price (Bounty Killer) two visas, are those persons whose visas are in the process of being revoked. The document also lists the date of birth of each person, their respective passport numbers and visa control numbers.  When contacted, representatives of at least two of the persons on the list said that they were unaware of the new development. These cancellations follow that of businessman Wayne Chen who recently found out his visa had been cancelled while he was about to board a flight to the United States of America

10 Things I Bet You Never Knew

This week we will take a look at extreme people across the world, some of whom are found in the Guinness Book of World Records.


1. The world's youngest mother to date is Peruvian Lina Median, who gave birth in 1939 at the very tender age of five.


2. The youngest Pope is said to be Pope Benedict IX, who was elected at an unknown age between 11 and 18.


3. Nepal's Khagendra Thapa Magar, is the world's shortest man. He is 56 cm (1 ft 10 in)m tall and weighs just five kg.


4. Robert Pershing Wadlow from the USA, was the world's tallest man. Last measured on June 27, 1940, Robert was found to be 2.72 m (8 ft 11.1 in) tall.


5. Pranamya Menaria and Devendra Harne from India both have 25 fingers and toes in total, due to conditions called Polydactyly and Syndactyly.


6. The world's longest documented hair belongs to Xie Qiuping of China at 5.627 m (18 ft 5.54 in) when measured on May 8, 2004. She has been growing her hair since 1973 from the age of 13.


7. Jeanne Louise Calment had the longest confirmed human lifespan in history. She lived for 122 years and 164 days before dying on August 4, 1997.


8. 72-year-old Omkari Panwar from India, delivered twins in 2008. She is the oldest recorded mom in history.


9. Cathie Jung from USA has the smallest waist to date at 38.1 cm (15 in).


10. Stephen Taylor from the UK has the longest tongue, which measures 9.8 cm (3.86 in) from the tip to the middle of his closed top lip.



Judy Mowatt


Christian artiste one of the headliners at A Blessing for Fathers. 

The sounds of gospel icons will bless fathers countrywide when Judy Mowatt, belts out those sounds that men worldwide have come to fall in love with. The event, A Blessing for Fathers; the venue, the King's House West Lawn; the cost, well worth it. The gospel music Mowatt belts out today wasn't always what she preached though. In 1967, Mowatt was part of a group called the Gaylettes but got her big break when she joined the I-Threes, the backing band of International Reggae star,Bob Marley in 1974.  A year later, she had her first song of note, A Tuff Gong-produced number called Mellow Mood.  By the time she did Something Old, Something New in 2002, she was an established star and she no longer sang revolution music, or  reggae geared towards uplifting Rastafarians. She was now making music for the Lord and for Christians.  Mowatt's last secular song was Rock Me in 1993, as it was in the late 1990s that she decided to make the transition.  Her songs were now replaced with songs like Thank You Lord, Bob Marley, the I Threes, and her usual company, with that of Andrae and Sandra Couch, Chevelle Franklyn, Violinist Nadje Leslie, and Jon Williams and Friends. Those are the names who will join Mowatt as headliners at A Blessing for Fathers



    THE five entertainers who recently had their US visas revoked have have seen a jump in their online presence.  It indicates that more persons worldwide are searching for news and music from these entertainers. Bounty Killer’s search volume skyrocketed by a factor of 15 since April 5, from virtually nil, according to data from US-based search engine Google analysed by the Sunday Observer. It appears that his assault charge affected his average search volume greater than the revocation of visa, as his average search volume jumped one day after being charged for allegedly assaulting his ex-girlfriend. The average search traffic for Beenie Man and fellow deejay Mavado increased 39 per cent and 11 per cent, respectively, throughout April compared with March. Google Trends analyses a portion of Google web searches to compute the quantity of searches for terms relative to the total number of searches done on Google over time. The search volume for Ricky Trooper and Aidonia was not strong enough to register, however Trooper, who may be called Ricky Youtube, garnered over 42,000 views in two weeks for his video which bashed entertainers and politicians whilst holding a gun which he later called a cigarette lighter. Comparatively, his second-most watched video received some 38,000 views over two years. Online search volume has significance as it reflects, in part, the fluctuations in online popularity of an artiste. The most popular Jamaican entertainers have the most online traffic such as Bob Marley, Sean Paul and Shaggy. Over time online traffic can gauge the popularity of artistes. For instance, Mavado in 2008 was more searched for than rival deejay Vybz Kartel, reflecting the rise of the Gully God. Since 2009, however, Kartel has usurped Mavado, reflecting a barrage of singles, strong performances and a slew of controversial publicity stunts. An artiste’s online traffic usually jumps leading up to an album launch but also is affected by the release of news. Beenie Man, for instance, has taken advantage of his bump in online search volume by releasing a single about the revocation of his visa. On March 31, top dancehall deejays Beenie Man, Bounty Killer, Mavado, Aidonia, along with veteran selector Ricky Trooper, had their visas revoked by the US Embassy. Airlines were advised not to board the artistes as their visas were in the process of being revoked. The artistes themselves claim they had no knowledge that such a move was afoot and the US embassy offered no comment following the incident. The increased search volume of these artistes, however, pales in comparison to Buju Banton’s spike following his December 10 arrest in Florida, which also led him to re-chart on Billboard’s Reggae Albums. Banton became the second most searched for Jamaican artiste, following Bob Marley, but prior to his arrest, Banton was less searched for than many of his peers. His trend data from Google had risen so fast that between December 13 to 18 he was twice as popular as Shaggy, four times more popular than Vybz Kartel and six times more popular than Sizzla and Mavado. On New Year’s Eve, Banton’s presence had waned but he still was more popular than Mavado and Sizzla, and was tied with Damian Marley. Banton’s latest album, Rasta Got Soul, was the second highest jumper during the first week in January on Billboard Reggae Charts. Banton’s album was second to Soja’s Born in Babylon which was top jump of that week. Buju Banton, born Mark Myrie, along with Ian Thomas, also called ‘Yush’ and Jason Mack, was held December 10 by Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) agents and charged with conspiracy and intent to distribute at least five kilogrammes of cocaine. END..


:::Music’s worst singers exposed

The argument over the greatest singer in music history will surely rage until the end of time. Some say Frank Sinatra, some Aretha Franklin, some Elvis Presley. Others would plump for John Lennon, Freddie Mercury or Stevie Wonder.

Well, our congratulations go to all of them. Because we're far more interested in music's worst singers, the girls and boys in rock and pop who couldn't hit a high note if you gave them a loaded cannon and lit a match. 

Our shortlist below follows the leak of a horrific recent Jennifer Lopez recording session, and includes all the recorded evidence necessary to expose some of music's biggests stars. So take a bow one and all and put down that microphone...

10 Jennifer Lopez

J. Lo was reportedly dropped by her label, Sony, earlier this year. But bosses at Island Def Jam, her new record company, might wish they'd heard her taking a running jump at Barbara Streisand's ‘No More Tears (Enough Is Enough)' before inking that deal.

09 Liam Gallagher

Is this Liam onstage in the last days of Oasis or is it one of the Kray twins about to go to work? Gallagher Jr. may have had rock's greatest voice in the ‘90s but where's he hiding it now? Whichever way you look at it, there was blood on the Roundhouse floor after this 2008 display. 

08 Kanye West

Unlike 50 Cent, Kanye can rap. But sing? This disastrous take on ‘Love Lockdown' from ‘SNL' in 2008 suggested that if Beyonce had the greatest video of all-time, Kanye had one of the worst voices. 

07 Shaun Ryder

Make no mistake, the Happy Mondays' were one of the greatest bands of the Madchester era, fronted by perhaps the period's finest lyricists. But rock'n'roll can be very bad for your head and even worse for your voice.

06 Amy Winehouse

Here’s Amy in the days after she gave up being a pop star and set upon a life as a brilliantly smashed street drinker who thought going onstage was all but a silly dream. When she’s not forgetting the words, she’s swearing. The rest of the time, an audition for Best Club Singer seems to be at stake rather than a MOBO. 

05 Ashlee Simpson

Having a sister with no discernable ability should not be a bar to the celebrity life. Clearly this is the thinking of Ashlee Simpson, whose ‘singing' career included an infamous miming controversy on US TV and this appalling effort at the Orange Bowl in 2005. Surely the people booing are more deserving of a record contract?

04 Ian Brown

He doesn't sing so much as honk. Brown may once have had the voice of an angel but these days he sounds more like the devil's dustman. On a nightly basis across the UK, Ian can be found reinterpreting Stone Roses classics. Or "murdering" them, as the camera man of this clip puts it. 

03 Britney Spears

Few singers have taken as much abuse over their live vocals as poor old Britney. But then again, few singers have managed to get through almost their entire career without actually singing. Could this be the reason why?

02 Jedward

The Grimes twins are so 21st century that fans don't even care that they can't sing. Fame is the least those two deserve! In fact, with hair and suits like this, no wonder the British public would rather listen to them ‘covering' Robbie Williams than the real thing.

01 Jordan

Is she a model? Is she an author? Is she a TV celebrity? Is she a reality star? Is she the nation's most famous mother? Is she Peter Andre's ex wife? Is she Alex Reid's new wife? Or is she simply the worst singer the world has ever seen? You decide...

 Dear Dad, will be distributed in five languages.
Ky-Mani Marley’s book “Dear Dad: Where’s the family in our family, today?” hit book stands and online retailers such as Amazon on Monday, February 1, 
2010.  His new book is sub-titled as “The story the Marley Family apparently doesn’t want you to know” and reportedly chronicles his rise from a child to a Grammy-nominated International recording artiste. Marley 
allegedly said his life changed for the better after his father’s death from 
cancer at age 36 as he  gained a consi-derable financial settlement from 
the Marley estate.  
He also comments on his relationship 
with his father’s wife, Rita, and her 
children for Marley but stays clear of sensationalism.


An act of kindness by Jamaican reggae singer Buju Banton while being detained in the Pinellas County Jail in Florida has resulted in him being confined in the maximum security wing of the penal institution and has contributed to him losing around 40 pounds, according to his lawyer David Markus.  That’s the claim included in an eight-page bond application filed to the United States District Court, Middle District of Florida, Tampa Division, on Sunday by Markus.  The court will hear Markus’ emergency application for bond on Friday. Markus said he hopes to have Buju returned to the non-maximum security unit or have him transferred to immigration custody.  Buju and two alleged co-conspirators have been in custody in the United States since last December when they were charged with conspiracy to possess cocaine and aiding and abetting the carrying of a firearm during a drug-trafficking crime.



The lanky Rastafarian, who is a vegetarian, reportedly shared a meal with a fellow inmate, which is a violation, and was sent to the maximum security wing for at least 30 days. Markus said he was made aware of the situation on March 18.  Since being transferred, Markus said Buju, born Mark Myrie, has been unable to prepare his own meals and has not been provided with a diet in accordance with his religious views.  In the bond application, Markus also intimated that his client might be the victim of personal attacks by the warders.  Mr Myrie has been moved from floor to floor in the jail without explanation and treated differently than the other inmates. The decision to place Mr Myrie in a maximum security wing weeks before his upcoming trial suggests that something else is going on,  said Markus in his application, which included a footnote naming a corporal “who has had it out for Mr Myrie during his entire stay”.  The attorney added that the violation was a minor one not fitting the punishment and that “in sum, Mr Myrie is now in a maximum security wing for caring enough to offer food to another inmate who was hungry and genuinely believing there was nothing wrong in doing so”.



Food and nutrition consultant Dr Heather Little-White said if Buju were not getting his desired meal, he could be losing an average of two pounds per week. This would result in his “mental frame not being as strong and he would become physically weak”. “He would also have deficiencies in vitamins and minerals and would need to be examined by a doctor. Until proven guilty, his likes and dislikes should be taken into account,” said Little-White.  Markus said Buju’s transfer to maximum security has been affecting his client mentally and physically and, by extension, the legal team’s preparation for the start of his trial on April 19. For example, this week when counsel attempted to visit Mr Myrie, counsel was required to wait over two hours until he could see Mr Myrie, he stated in his application.  In a radio interview yesterday, Markus said the delay was a ploy to derail his team from winning the trial but that he was “optimistic and we are going to fight this”.  Buju’s arrest in Florida in December came at the tail end of a troublesome year, which included a number of cancelled concerts in the USA brought on by gay rights groups and an out-of-court settlement with former common-law wife Lorna Strachan after she filed a suit in the Supreme Court against him.


The pressure is on the Bruce Golding administration to send the extradition request for Tivoli Gardens strongman Christopher 'Dudus' Coke to the courts continues to mount.  Three more powerful organisations have applied additional pressure, saying the Government should send the extradition request to court, even as Coke, the man under immense public glare, celebrates his 41st birthday with an elaborate two-day bash in Tivoli Gardens over the weekend.  The Jamaica Council of Churches, the Independent Jamaican Council for Human Rights (IJCHR) and active human rights organisation Jamaicans for Justice (JFJ) have joined the Private Sector Organisation of Jamaica, Families Against State Terrorism and the parliamentary opposition in shooting down the prime minister's decision to keep the issue out of the courts. Blunt declaration "The (extradition) matter should go before the courts," was the blunt declaration of the Reverend Peter Garth of the umbrella church group, which usually stays out of such issues."The council is troubled by the seeming trend to reduce or curtail judicial authority, and warns that there are constitutional implications," declared the Arlene Harrison Henry-led IJCHR. "We fully support the position of the IJCHR and believe the Dudus matter needs to be placed before the courts," asserted Dr Carolyn Gomes, executive director of JFJ.  "In fact, we believe that it is a breach of the principle of separation of powers for the executive to assume the duty of the judiciary," Gomes added.  Last week, Golding told the House of Representatives that the surveillance evidence garnered by investigators was in breach of Jamaican laws - specifically, the Interception of Communications Act. A growing number of organisations and individuals have rejected Golding's explanation for refusing to extradite Coke to the US to face the courts on a range of charges.  The organisations have argued that it was not the prime minister's call, but that of the courts. The IJCHR contends that the adequacy of evidence, its admissibility, relevance, weight or otherwise, is a matter for the determination of a competent court, established in the Jamaican Constitution and the laws of the land. The council argues that the courts are the appropriate guardians of the constitutional rights of the Jamaican people.  The IJCHR further insists that the primary duty of the courts is to interpret legislation in an independent and unbiased manner. To this end, the IJCHR argues that extradition proceedings should be held in open court to facilitate public scrutiny. "We embark on a dangerous road when the executive authority usurps judicial functions by making decisions about evidence. As such, decisions can only be properly made by the court after a full public hearing of all issues, and after the hearing of all parties," the IJCHR stated.  Position not changed  Gomes argues that the position of the JFJ has not changed because of the person involved. "We have always argued that the court is the final arbitrator, and we have sought to defend the rights of all Jamaicans in a court of law," said Gomes.  On the issue of the Mutual Assistance Treaty, which allows the governments of the United States and Jamaica to extradite suspected offenders following a court hearing, the IJCHR says it is necessary for effective governance, as crime is no longer local in origin and effect but transactional and international.  The IJCHR asserts that the reciprocal rights and obligations, which both countries accept, are intended to serve the purpose of bringing to justice those who are accused of committing grave offences in either of the contracting states and those convicted, but have fled from one state to another.

 President & CEO of Universal Music Group Distribution, Jim Urie, cannot get enough of Busy Signal’s cover of the Phil Collins hit “One More Night”. Urie, was so impressed by the cover that he has added the single to his annual compilation album.  At the end of each year Urie releases a double cd album with his favourite songs from various genres and his 2009 compilation features “One More Night” by ace dancehall deejay Busy Signal.


  Signal is completing a two week stint in Trinidad where he performed at several events associated with the very popular Trinidad carnival.


  Thursday February 18, Busy performs with Machel Montano at the highly publicized Beyonce concert.  Busy Signal returns to Jamaica to complete the finishing touches on his soon to be released album, before heading off on another tour


Seeing beyond the Gaza/Gully smoke screen: The social issues underlying dancehall reggae music

(Left) Vybz Kartel) ... All these areas that these 'Gaza' or 'Gully' incidents occur are the same areas that were violent from day one. (Right) Mavado) ... My message is that people shouldn't make Mavado and Vybz Kartel determine their life, future and freedom. The words are quickly becoming the most prominent graffiti across the island. 'Gaza' and 'Gully' can be seen scribbled almost everywhere. In most garrisons they are as common as the Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) and People's National Party (PNP) signs. And, like the political impact, the 'Gaza/Gully' feud has the potential to be as socially and psychologically imprisoning on its followers. The dancehall cliques are tied to the two most popular deejays - Adidja 'Vybz Kartel' Palmer (Gaza) and David 'Mavado' Brooks (Gully). The names represent the area of their residence and home of their fan base. 'Gaza' is a section of the Waterford housing scheme in Portmore where Vybz Kartel grew up and lived for many years. 'Gully' represents the actual gully which dissects Mavado's childhood community of Cassava Piece in St Andrew. But in the last year, they have come to mean much more. Following the highly publicised lyrical clash between Mavado and Vybz Kartel at Sting in December, a clannish divide has been created in segments of the society as fans latch on to their favourite artiste. Other deejays and sound system operators have also been choosing sides, deepening the divide and adding potency to the tense relationship between the two factions. Anthropologist of social violence, Dr Herbert Gayle, believes that the majority of the 'Gaza' and 'Gully' supporters who use violence to show their allegiance are victims of inadequate social development.   Gayle, who lectures at the University of West Indies, Mona, told The Sunday Gleaner that this behaviour will continue until there are proper infrastructure in these rigid inner-city communities to promote social development. "Some of these communities have no social institutions - no 4-H clubs, no craft centre, no trading centre, no nothing. So the issue with these young people is really a matter of identity," Gayle said. "All human beings have a need to belong. The poorer you are and the scarcer the resources (such as social development centres) is the more competitive and combative the war is," he added. Gayle opined that the dancehall feud is worse than the political one. "There is nothing to gain physically, or nobody gets paid to be a 'Gaza' or 'Gully' supporter. It, in fact, is even worse than politics, because at least politicians would give these kids a hundred dollars and stuff," he said.


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