New Hip-Hop Video: Kendrick Lamar – Alright (@kendricklamar)

00kendrick_alright2It starts off with a howl, followed by a poem. “I remember you was conflicted,” he reads. For his latest music video, Kendrick Lamar summarizes his critically-lauded opus, To Pimp A Butterfly, the best way he knows how and that’s visual poetry. Taking the very song that shook up the BET Awards, K .Dot delivers a thrilling short film for his statement of statements, “Alight.”  

Misty Copeland Becomes First Black Principal Dancer At American Ballet Theater

00-misty copelandMisty Copeland, a 32-year-old ballerina who starred in an Under Armour ad and appeared in a Prince video, was named the principle dancer at the American Ballet Theater, becoming the first African-American woman to hold the highest ranking in the company’s 75-year history.

“I had moments of doubting myself, and wanting to quit, because I didn’t know that there would be a future for an African-American woman to make it to this level,” she said at a news conference after the annoncement. “At the same time, it made me so hungry to push through, to carry the next generation. So it’s not me up here—and I’m constantly saying that—it’s everyone that came before me that got me to this position.”

Copeland has appeared on the cover of Time magaazine and garnered a larger profile, in parts to her extraordinary talent and her outspoken desire to hold the top spot at the American Ballet Theater.

RECORD CROWDS, STRONG PERFORMANCES AT GROOVIN IN THE PARK 2015 (@GroovinConcert)

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Lt. Stitchie at Groovin in the Park 2015

Groovin’ In The Park is now five years old, and a stellar line up and sensational performances have become the hallmark for the greatest reggae and R&B concert in New York .

This year was no different and promoters went above and beyond the call of duty to ensure that the 20,000 plus patrons who attended the festival got their money’s worth.

Despite the threat of rain darkening the skies, Stitchie was a brilliant ray of sunshine as he dominated the stage, thrilling fans with old favorites like ‘Wear Yuh Size’, ‘Natty Dread’, ‘Great Ambition’ and ‘Bun It Down’ to his recent hit ‘Letter To Dad’. From he entered the stage wearing the national colors of Jamaica, Stitchie immediately engaged the audience, unleashing a powerful, clever and compelling barrage of lyrics that whipped the audience in a frenzy. Stitchie defied gravity with his leaps and somersaults in between dancehall and gospel lyrics. He left the stage with a sea of new fans as the excited audience screamed for more and more.

Groovin 2015 - Stitchie and Derrick xFor the second consecutive year, Judy Mowatt performed at Groovin In The Park, blessing the audience with songs such as I Shall Sing and Many Are Called. As it neared the end of her performance, she invited Groovin executives Chris Robert and Clement ‘Ras Clem’ Hume to the stage, presenting them a plaque for their efforts and contribution in advancing Jamaican culture in New York.

Messenger Luciano high kicks and fancy footwork had patrons scampering to the front of the stage. Appeasing the masses, Luciano jumped into the crowd, belting out hits such as ‘Sweep Over My Soul’, ‘Your World and Mine’ and ‘Give Praise’. ‘It’s Me Again Jah’ also proved to be popular with revelers, who sang along word for word.

Coco Tea sweetened the day bringing his unique blend of wit and charm to the stage. He dazzled patrons with a brilliant performance, kicking off his set with ‘Babylon Throne’ and ‘Kette Drum’, that immediately sent fans into a dancing mood.

 Stephen Marley & Capleton
Stephen Marley & Capleton at Groovin in the Park

‘The Fire Man’ Capleton worked hard to create a spark with ‘Jah Jah City’ and ‘That Day Will Come’ before instructing patrons to ‘thumb the sky’ as he blazed a fire on ‘immorality, racism, ebola, chickungunya, incest and pedophilia.’ His set was interrupted by MC Barry G, who broke the news of a special surprise guest in the park.

Six time Grammy winner Stephen Marley joined Capleton, the two performing ‘Rockstone’ and ‘It Was Written’. Marley effortlessly connected with the audience with the passion of his father’s legacy. Luciano and Coco Tea once again made their way to the stage and together, all four belted out the lyrics to Bob Marley’s ‘Three Little Birds’. Inspiration filled the air, reminiscent of Bob Marley’s performances.

The royal family of reggae, Morgan Heritage also gave a good showing, paying tribute to reggae greats Toots Hibbert and Buju Banton.

After a brief intermission, that showcased the musical styling of DJ Inferno, the penultimate act, Billy Ocean, waltzed onto the stage and immediately created waves of excitement in the park. Working through an impressive catalogue that included ‘Get Out Of My Dreams’, ‘Love Zone’ and ‘When The Going Gets Tough The Tough Get Going’, Ocean showed why he is still the consummate performer.

“I wanna take you to a place where we drink pina coladas,” he told the ecstatic audience, who by now, were eagerly awaiting Caribbean Queen. Fans joined him in the chorus, often times drowning out his own voice as they grooved to the music.

There is no denying that Grammy Award winning superstar Michael Bolton, who millions have come to love, is a very dynamic performer. Songs such as ‘To Love Somebody’ and ‘Said I Loved You But I Lied’, had lovers in the audience wrapped up in each other’s arms. He was later joined on stage by Amanda Brown and together they had patrons crooning ‘How Am I Supposed To Live Without You’ and ‘Ain’t No Mountain High Enough. He ended his set on a musical high with a tribute to the late Percy Sledge by covering his hit single ‘When A Man Loves A Woman’.

“We are very pleased and happy with the outcome of this year’s presentation. The vibe was amazing and the music was superlative. I am thankful that the weather cooperated and that everyone enjoyed the show. I must also thanks our sponsors for their support again this year” Christopher Roberts, CEO of Groovin’ Inc. said. He also made special mention of Groovin Idol performers Vision, Pres Fyah, Taj Manchan and Iyata Safari who all delivered fine performances in the opening segment of the concert.

Presenting sponsor of Groovin’ In The Park was the Door Restaurant. Supporting sponsors included The Smoke House, TD Bank, SQPA, Nutrament, Caribbean Foods Delight Inc, BullZii Marketing, Groovin’ Radio, Laparkin Shipping, Tower Isle Patties and VP Records. Log on to http://www.groovininthepark.com or http://www.groovinradiony.com for more information.

Grammy Award producers Sly & Robbie presents Tanto Metro & Devonte (@TantoMetroDevon @SlyRobbieTaxi)

Sly & Robbie Present Tanto Metro & DevonteHaving achieved a pentacle of success with a hit filled catalog, Tanto Metro and Devonte aim to reclaim the top of the charts with the help of acclaimed Grammy Award winning producers Sly & Robbie with the release of their 4th studio album.

The duo who has topped worldwide charts, including billboard reggae and billboard Hot 100, have made their mark on the mainstream musical scene with their distinctive blended voices. Dancehall deejay Tanto Metro (Mark Wolfe) and singer Devonte (Wayne Passley) harmonious combinations of reggae, dancehall and lovers rock caters to all, and while the prolific production duo of Sly & Robbie are renowned for their stellar reggae productions, the award winning team has produced tracks for the likes of Paul McCartney, Britney Spears and Wiz Khalifa.

Speaking of the creation of their latest album, the prolific duo explained “We were far more involved in the creation of this album than any of the previous ones.  We were involved musically, creatively, emotionally and spiritually. Plus, we have not released an album in a while now, so this is like our first album, all over again.”

The album which consists of 10 tracks, is a combination of light hearted, fun, loving and inspirational music, such as one of their admittedly favorite “There’s A Reward”. The hit bound single is a remake from the Legendary Joe Higgs.  The duo said “the message of hope in this track resonates deeply within us. Our journey has been very challenging thus far but we know that “There’s a Reward” for us, and it’s gonna be great.”

The combination of award producers and reggae/dancehall stars have ensured that this latest album becomes an instant classic. Sly & Robbie presents “Tanto Metro & Devonte” is now available in stores and distributed by Zojak World Wide.

“We wanted to make a universally happy album. So the world can sing, dance, love and be inspired.” Tanto Metro and Devonte.

Track Listing

1. The Jam
2. Hey Ya Hey
3. There’s A Reward
4. Maybe I Love You
5. No More
6. Request
7. She Ran Away
8. Ruff Stuff
9. Already Know
10. Falling In Love

Purchase on Itunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/sly-robbie-presents-tanto/id1006684826

Cultural Stage Promises Loads of Fun at Grace Jamaican Jerk Festival NY (@JerkFestivalUSA @GraceJAJerkFest)

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Jerk Festival NY Launch 2015 (Models)

A cultural extravaganza to dial up the fun is what organizers have planned for the 5th Annual Grace Jamaican Jerk Festival NY on Sunday, July 19, 2015 at Roy Wilkins Park, Queens, New York. The popular Western Union Cultural Stage, with the multi-talented MC Sherry Morgan, promise loads of fun for adults and kids alike as fans feast on their favorite jerk cuisine.

Patrons arriving early will be greeted by the vibrant and colorful Akousa Living Legend Afrikan Drum And Dance Troupe, entertaining at the entrance as they direct attendees to activities on the Cultural Stage which is scheduled to take place from the gates open at noon to 2:30 p.m.

There will be something for everyone, from Miss Lou style poetry by Florida-based fan favorite Dr Sue, to dramatic book readings by writer and film maker Judith Faloon-Reid. Singer Cheryl Spence will have everyone singing along to their favorite Caribbean Folk Songs and the Riddim Driven Fashion show will feature easy to wear garments with progressive styling reflecting the Jamaican lifestyle and culture.

The cultural excitement will peak when the Konekt_Dat Band performs an eclectic Caribbean-infused set, connecting hearts and people through great music and positive vibes. But the fun won’t be restricted to the stages. The organizers have planned some “pop up performances as entertainers will be roaming the park and randomly making stops to entertain patrons with comedy, drumming, poetry and drama. So wherever you are, you can be sure the fun is coming to you!

Advanced tickets to the Grace Jamaican Jerk Festival NY are available on line at http://www.jerkfestivalNY.com or at selected retail outlets in the tri-state area. Raddison Hotel JFK is the official festival hotel offering discounted rates to festival attendees visiting New York.

The 5th Annual Grace Jamaican Jerk Festival New York is presented by Jamaican Jerk Festival USA, Inc., in association with VP Records. Sponsors are Grace Foods, Western Union, Continental Bakery, Vitamalt, Gleaner, Power 106, Randy’s Radio and Tower Isle Patties.

New Reggae Release: Luciano – Solid Like Rock (@lucianomessenjah)

00-lucianoNot sure what the Messanjah is going through but in his latest single ‘Solid Like Rock’ he seems to be warning someone or ones that are trying to break him. In it he places alot of emphasis on how mentally strong and determined he is. He says “I’m a hard nut to crack, remember that.” As it relates to the musical makeup, the song is exactly what we have come to expect from Luciano; a lot of melody, good flow and strong message. 

ROCKSTEADY ATL DAY PARTY WITH LITTLE PINCHERS + ISIS SWABY DJ SET ~ SUNDAY, JULY 5TH (@highlanda)

Rocksteady Atl.To celebrate International Reggae Day (July 1) and to start the 2015 summer season off with a positive vibration Highlanda.net and The Honorary Citizen present the “Rocksteady ATL Sunny Season Day Party,” on Sunday July 5th at The Sound Table (483 Edgewood Avenue, Atlanta, GA) from 5pm to midnight with host Archangel SuperPEC, live performance by Little Pinchers, and live DJ sets by Isis Swaby, Love People Sound, DJ Passport, and Highlanda Sound.  

The highly talented Little Pinchers, a singer whose music is as he describes, “For the mature audiences” will bolster the evening with an intimate performance sharing his great passion for music live. Spinning all vinyl selections and appearing in Atlanta for the very first time will be Isis Swaby, a Harlem bred DJ/Musician/Visual Artist and daughter of the iconic reggae dub producer, Augustus Pablo.  She will be joined on the decks by Sound Table residents Kahlil Wonda of Highlanda Sound and DJ Passport (Dread Takeover mixtape series) along with guestDJ Chigga of Love People Sound.   

00-rocksteady atl day party'The Rocksteady ATL event takes place on the first Sunday of each month as an alternative to the mainstream dancehall parties which have become commonplace.   DJ Passport and Kahlil Wonda’s vision was to create a nightlife option to celebrate authentic reggae music in the city of Atlanta, and provide an uplifting experience where patrons can enjoy classic roots reggae, dub, and lovers rock music combined with the best quality conscious reggae of today.

Voted Best of Atlanta 2014 by Atlanta Magazine and located at 483 Edgewood Avenue near the intersection of Boulevard in the rejuvenated, historic Old-4th Ward district of downtown Atlanta, the Sound Table is as well known for its ambiance and acoustic properties as it is for fabulous cocktails and world-class mixology.

For more information visit http://highlanda.netview the event’s Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/events/100337150312576/, or email vaultclassics@gmail.com.

New Dancehall Video: Karamanti – Fake Rasta (@Karamanti)

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Karamanti (Fake Rasta Video Shoot)

In a day an age when just about any and everyone is claiming Rastafari, Karamanti drops the official video for her track ‘Fake Rasta’ outlining what is and isn’t acceptable behavior for Rasta. Admitting that she is not a mouth piece for the Rasta movement, Karamanti says “it is simply sad how something so powerful and scared has become so water down simply because traditional standards are not being upheld. “

Fake Rasta’ is produced by Range Hill Records and is a part of the Rock Island Riddim project. DJs may download the song for rotation: http://www.hulkshare.com/karamanti/karamanti-fake-rasta