Maxi Priest Returns and Proves He’s Still ‘Easy To Love’!

Maxi Priest returns this summer with "Easy to Love"!

Maxi Priest returns this summer with “Easy to Love”!

*Photo courtesy of Maxi Priest

Country/Region: England (Europe) 

It’s been awhile since we’ve heard from everyone’s favorite British lover’s rock crooner, who mixes R&B, pop, soul and reggae all into his own style.  Maxi Priest returns with his feel-good,  summer jam “Easy to Love” (VP Records).  This catchy contemporary tune’s relaxing rhythms, mollifying melodies  and smooth harmonies blend effortlessly to create the perfect sun-splashed summer anthem!

What do you think of Maxi’s Priest’s “Easy to Love”?  Comment below!

NBC’s The Voice Star Brings Soulful Pop-Reggae to the World: Our Interview with Naia Kete

Naia Green

NBC The Voice’s star, Naia Kete

After appearing on NBC’s hit show, The Voice, Naia Kete’s musical career has continued to blossom.  This bright, young singer/songwriter from Massachusetts, best known for her signature style of soulful pop-reggae with a hint of jazz, has been working with great artists such as Colbie Caillat and Linda Perry on her brand new EP, Fire Breather (digital version now available).  In addition to writing her original music, she also arranges impressive reggae covers of pop songs on her You Tube Channel.

Naia live 4

Catch Naia performing live this summer at various festivals!

When she’s not in the studio, you can catch Naia Kete doing what she does best – performing live!  Recently, Naia performed the Monterey Bay Reggaefest that featured artists and bands like Rebelution, Slightly Stupid, Collie Buddz and Matisyahu.  She’ll be back on tour this summer and will appear at various music festivals.

We caught up with Naia to talk about her experience on The Voice, her new EP and much more!

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Reggae’s Multi-Talented Musician: Our Interview with Bryan Art

Bryan Art Album

Check out Bryan Art’s debut album featuring collaborations with Queen Ifrica, Warrior King, Capleton and Hawkeye (2013 VP Records Associated Label Group – VPAL)

Singer, songwriter, musician, bandleader and touring veteran Bryan Art is no stranger to the music scene.  This Edna Manley College of the Visual and Performing Arts alum has toured as a guitarist for Luciano, Sizzla and Mikey General.  In addition to being a band member, Bryan has been the co-founder and band leader for Bushman’s touring band, Grassroots.  Not only can he perform, but he can compose as well; Bryan has penned songs for reggae crooners George Nooks, Singing Melody, Bushman, Luciano and Etana.

Now in 2013, he has emerged as a successful solo artist and earned a distribution deal with VP Records Associated Label Group (VPAL).  His impressive debut album features collaborations with reggae heavy hitters such as Queen Ifrica, Warrior King, Capleton and Hawkeye.  We recently talked with Bryan about his new album, his 2012 Jamaica Jazz and Blues Festival performance and his future plans.

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Bruno Mars, Damian Marley and Apache Indian Create Superb South Asian Reggae

*Photos: Various sources

Country/Region: Hawaii (USA), Jamaica (Caribbean), England (Europe), India (South Asia)

What do you get when you combine traditional Indian music, a Hindu prayer, roots reggae and three of the most successful international multi-platinum artists?  You get two wicked versions of an Indian reggae song that have both become immensely popular!  Everyone knows Bruno Mars and Damian Marley’s hit “Liquor Store Blues” from Bruno’s debut album Doo – Wops & Hooligans (2010); but, did you know it is derived from Apache Indian’s song “Om Numah Shivaya” that appears on his album Time for Change (2005)?

British born, Apache Indian proudly displays his East Indian heritage on “Om Numah Shivaya”, which is a Hindu prayer that translates into “adoration to [the God] Shiva”.  He incorporates Hindu chants, a classical Indian flute, tabla drums and various Indian percussion instruments into this roots reggae “riddim”.  Apache’s English lyrics describe his personal journey of discovering his true identity in a multicultural world.

On “Liquor Store Blues”, Hawaiian native, Bruno Mars brings strong vocal chops to his version of the tune as he trades verses with Damian “Jr. Gong” Marley.  Bruno’s slightly faster rendition infuses more rock elements with an Indian sitar-styled guitar solo towards the middle of the track.  Damian’s rapped verses mimic the rhythmic melody perfectly as he brings his signature blend of roots, reggae and DJ toasting.  This dynamic duo definitely has chemistry and should consider doing a collaboration album together.

Whose version of the song do you prefer?  Comment below!