Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Genres: World Music, Pop
Maybe it's a legacy of the African dictum against women pounding the drums, but in the rhythm-dominated reggae world, women find it difficult to rock the microphone solo. This resonant collection of past and contemporary h... more »
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Maybe it's a legacy of the African dictum against women pounding the drums, but in the rhythm-dominated reggae world, women find it difficult to rock the microphone solo. This resonant collection of past and contemporary hits proves Marcia Griffiths to be the most glaring exception to that rule and poses the question of how much female reggae talent must have gone missing. Griffiths's solo career launched promisingly at age 14, but it took nearly 30 years of struggle to receive her first royalty check--in the early '90s. Most of the time, everyone's nominee for best female reggae vocalist ever was forced to ride male coattails in order to earn her living. Griffiths partnered with singer-songwriter Bob Andy in the '60s and '70s, after which she, Rita Marley, and Judy Mowatt became I-Three, Bob Marley's legendary harmony trio. During the '80s legions of deejays (reggae rappers) called on her subdued brilliance to maximize the "rough 'n' sweet" appeal of that era's popular singer-deejay "combination" style. Nonetheless, Griffiths hung tough throughout, managing to record her own hits, so that today the quintessentially feminine soprano is a reggae-hit-parade constant. Titled after one of several Griffiths signature tunes, this record is simply luscious, mostly drawing from Griffiths's early-career Studio One back catalog and the foundation riffs and "riddims" today's young studio bloods sample over and over. Heartbeat presents, as usual, a winning blend of beautifully restored masters and tastefully rerecorded versions, culling the finest of Griffiths's own gems, like the glorious "I Shall Sing," along with sensitively interpreted golden oldies normally associated with others, like "No No No" and "Sea of Love." --Elena Oumano
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This is a traditional sounding reggae album, mostly recorded recently, but with a timeless feel. It is rapturously beautiful. Ms. Griffiths is a singer with gorgeous tone and an unadorned style that conveys emotion without artifice. Hooray to whomever recommended this to me, and I hope you buy it."