Stealing, Stealing, Stealing….

John Holt‘s voice is like the sun, always the same but somehow different. He/it can do whatever is required. This is a voice for all seasons. An ice cold Red Stripe by summer–and given the weather we’re experiencing in these parts–a cashmere/wool blend by winter.

My favourite Holt track? There isn’t one. But I’m currently obsessed with Stealing, Stealing (particularly the 1970 version). Check it out and let Holt’s voice get a hold of you like a thief in the night…..


(Not So) Shameless Self Promotion: Bass Kultcha Ep. 9

So. I’m not even going to bother with the kind of apologia I dropped in this post. But I haven’t been here in quite some time. And as I’m sure you can tell many, many, many months have passed between BK Ep. 8 and the promised (holiday/xmas edition) Ep. 9. What can I say? I’m Jamaican. We perfected and patented the “soon come” concept.


Legends & Birthdays

Dennis and Bob. Bob and Dennis. Two of Jamaican music’s finest and most beloved artistes. Legends both. Bob, the songwriter, international star and soul rebel supreme; Dennis, the voice, the Crown Prince, your favourite reggae singer’s favourite singer. I can’t imagine my life without them. And neither should you. And it’s February. And Dennis was born in February. And so was Bob….

…So, Happy Belated Birthday Dennis. And Happy Birthday Bob. And enjoy two (legendary) twists on the same song. Which one do you like better?

All This Sugar Can’t Be Good For Me: 50 Years Of Trinidad & Tobago’s Independence

Maybe it’s the Jamaican in me but I’m not the biggest calypso or soca fan; I’d be hard pressed to tell you the last time I made a point of listening to soca on my iPod for example. But there are certain calypsos or soca tunes that I just find irresistable–Lord Kitchener’s Sugar Bum comes to mind–and I take great joy in attending Caribbean weddings; once the DJ begins spinning the sweet, sweet soca it takes some doing to drag me from the dance floor.

So to celebrate Trinidad’s 50 years of independence I thought I ‘d bring out my dancing shoes and share not one, but two of my favorite soca tunes courtesy of David Rudder, one of the twin islands’ favourite sons. The tunes in question? Gotta be ‘High Mas‘ and ‘Trini To The Bone‘. Listen, if ‘High Mas‘ doesn’t make you raise your hand, and if ‘Trini To The Bone‘ doesn’t make you long for the comforts and joys of home, wherever that “home” may be, then I’m pretty sure you’re soulless.

Anyway, Happy Independence Day Trinidad & Tobago! I’m raising a glass of Angostura 1919 in your honour. Cheers.

Sunday Vibes: You Got What I Need

Ask the average person if they know Freddie Scott’s music and your likely to be met with shrugs and blank stares. But trust me, everybody knows Freddie Scott. If you’ve ever drunkenly sung along with Biz Markie’s ‘Just A Friend‘ or if you’re a hip-hop head who swears that Ghostace Killah is the man, then you’ve probably nodded your head to ‘Save Me Dear‘; both of which sample ‘You Got What I Need’, as classic a slice of soul music as I’ve ever heard.

Anyway, it’s Sunday, it’s as hot as Hades and I recommend whipping up a refreshing cocktail to help make it through the day. A little Freddie Scott couldn’t hurt either.

I’m Back….

I recently spent 17 days in Jamaica. How was it you ask? Well, it was the perfect holiday. A little bit of this, a little bit of that. Spent some time with family and toured the island with friends. Hit beaches in Montego Bay, Negril and Port Antonio. Had fruit so fresh and so sweet that I’m not sure I can buy fruit from my grocer anymore. Ate more ackee & salt fish, breadfruit, festival and fried dumplings than necessary. Drank more beer in 17 days than I usually drink in a year (The LCBO needs to start stocking Red Stripe Light). Laughed so hard with my friends I thought my sides were going to split. Biked for the first time in over 15 years….and did so on a Blue Mountain bike tour. Splashed around in the YS Falls. Took the Appleton Estate Rum Tour. Twice. And brought back lots of rum. I can’t wait to tell you guys all about the rums so check back in soon. In the meantime, enjoy the following clip. Popcaan, the hottest artiste in Jamaica right now, has tune after tune that sticks to my ribs. I love how he rides a riddim. And I love his lyrics. Especially on this tune….