Today marks the 45th Birthday of the one they call “Gargamel“, Mark “Buju Banton” Myrie! While the word is he’ll be a free man by the end of the year, we still celebrate him as if he’s already here. His music has touched the lives of many over the years, and many have shown respect in the form of covers, tribute songs, and by sampling him. Today, we feature a few songs that have sampled him. #FREEBUJU! Check them out below, and show us some love on Instagram at @13thStreetPromo.
In recognition of May being Child’s Month, 13th Street Promotions is dedicating this Oldies Sunday post to the youth. Many of us can look back at our own childhood when we’d imitate our favourite Artists and pretend we are established stars. What many may or may not know is that some of our favourites started out or even got discovered in their early stages. While we know that acts like the late US Pop Star Michael Jackson and Jamaican Singer Jimmy Tucker started out very young (Jimmy was Jamaica’s 1st Child Prodigy in the 1950s), we’d like to inform you or refresh your memory on some of our Caribbean acts who started out young.
1. Machel Montano (Debut Age: 9) – Too Young To Soca
2. Beenie Man (Debut Age: 8) – Too Fancy
Isha Williams was a Toddler in the early 1990s, a period of cultural awareness in Dancehall led by a phalanx of Artists, including her father, Everton Blender. Strongly influenced by his message, she followed his path into music as Isha Blender. Her first EP, Epiphany, will be released in October. It contains seven songs with Don’t Be Used, an acoustic number, being the lead.
Blender first recordings began at age 12 with the first being Bad Boy, produced by her father for his Blend Dem label. She continued to record sporadically while attending Garvey Maceo High School in her native Clarendon. Shortly after graduation, she migrated to the United States, settling in South Florida where she is a registered nurse. “Because my dad’s an Entertainer, people think you have to do the same thing, but it doesn’t have to be,” she said. “I kept going away from music, but I was pulled back like magnet to steel.”
Epiphany also contains Testimony, a duet with Capleton, Tonight, Joy, and Babymother. Capleton and Everton Blender were part of the Roots Renaissance of the 1990s that was led by Yasus Afari, Garnet Silk and Tony Rebel. Everton Blender had a series of big hits back then such as Lift Up Your Head, Family Man and Blend Dem. While she counts the ‘old man’ among her biggest influences, Isha Blender says she gets a different vibe listening to different genres. Neo-soul artistes Erykah Badu and Jill Scott, as well as homegrown acts Nadine Sutherland, Etana, Tessanne Chin and Ikaya are also favourites. She is hoping Epiphany will be a career definer. “I want to be an household name as Isha Blender. At the same time I want my songs to uplift and motivate like my Dad.”