Errol Bonnick: The New Conscious Lovers Rock and Roots Reggae Sensation

•November 16, 2014 • Leave a Comment



E Bonnick ProfileErrol Bonnick is a singer that resonates with those who value quality male vocals. His Roots Lovers Rock style of singing is not unique but what allows him to stand out from the rest is his sincerity and clarity of vision within the creative lyrics. Since initially being inspired by his brother Trevor Bonnick of Blood Fire Posse at the tender age of 17 years he has been able to develop as an artist while going from strength to strength professionally. The valuable support and encouragement that Errol Bonnick received from Mr.Glen Browne of the great family of musicians, song writers and producers has allowed him to forge his own path after being signed as lead vocalist with Knowledge Respect and Unity better known as K.R.U. He was then asked to join the band Live Wyya as lead vocalist when they recognised his talent. His strengthening influence with this group had helped them to achieve a range of music awards which included them as the only group to ever win Jamaica’s Irie FM Big Break competition in 2003.

Errol Bonnicks 2011 debut album “Crusaders for life” available on itunes was produced by stingray records out of the U.K. and features 15 tracks including the hit song of the same name. The song exhibits his depth of vocal pitch thus presenting his heart-warming lyrical style. The song packs a punch which both motivates and inspires the listener. This track is motivational in every sense and also features the sublime baritone vocals of Luciano “ Jah Messenjah” in support of his message. The unique arrangement of sounds on the riddim is deeply soothing and nurturing to the soul. The expressiveness by the duo on this track shows sheer determination and passion for forwarding a clear and empowering message. From the offset the passion in his voice is evident with an absolutely perfect four minutes of sublime strength and emotion expressed by both artists who wonderfully step up to the plate affirming their position. This track fully addresses the human social condition of disempowerment and reassures the listener with great sincerity and purity of vision. The album in its totality shows us the singers evolving spirit of the conquering lion as he forwards on his path creating and developing his repertoire of creating upbeat and uplifting music.

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Gift of Life is a wholesome and heartfelt song that reflects on the precious gift of life that the soothing Rasta Rebel projects beautifully through his rootsy, yet lovers rock style of vocals. It is track six on the debut album and for just over four minutes the production of the track is graciously and wonderfully mastered through his resonating lyrics while he humbly reflects on gratitude, the fullest expression of the gift of life.
Sunshine is an awe inspiring song in how it resonates through the listeners’ ears, heart and soul. The root-stepper vibe is a trod that motivates and fills the listener with reassurance and a healthy sense of empowered leadership. Available on itunes within the compilation LP Stingray Roots Showcase volume four, the sincerity felt from the track is one of heartfelt joy and a vision of peace of mind that is wonderfully expressed over the soothing Tamarind Juice riddim.
Never met a woman like this is purely joyous lover’s rock style of reggae music from beginning to end with it’s gentle yet powerful message that instantly puts the listener into a graceful state of being. This lyrical meditation instils great honour and respect for the sanctity of a blessed relationship. It is thoroughly comforting, a solid lovers tune that comforts and nurtures listeners who are devoted to their relationship and at the same time inspiring singletons in how to treat a lover.

Jah Guide is an uplifting and fulfilling song that takes the conscious listener into the heart of the lion trod. The spiritual significance within his elevating Rasta chant lifts one to ever higher planes of consciousness through the empowering lyrics.
The final track on his debut album: Joy of my life is a powerful lover’s tune that affirms his position within a fulfilling relationship. The track is reminiscent of some of the best 70’s soul performances and carries a beautifully subtle gospel harmony in support.

His brand new single Distance produced by Gift on Sound Productions is definitively an emotive tune that captivates the hearts and minds of the listener. Lyrically the tracks narrative runs for just over five and a quarter minutes like a conversation between two lovers. Errol Bonnick steps up to the plate stating his position in the relationship. His soul soothing vocals go deep to the heart of the listener

Interview with Kingly T as he prepares to return to the motherland.

•July 30, 2013 • 1 Comment
Titus Whittle better known as Kingly T

Titus Whittle better known as Kingly T

http://www.kinglyt.com/music

How long did it take you to develop your third studio album?
Kingly T says, “We released my most recent album on May ninth and I spent six months before releasing it on my own T-Dom record label. I was getting it ready while changing to new management. I also continued to work with my producer, Benjamin Jackson who helped me release the new album from his Florida Studio.”

https://itunes.apple.com/us/artist/kingly-t/id268387969
When are you scheduled to perform at Zimbabwe’s More Love Festival? Is this your first time performing here? How much are you looking forward to this performance?

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 “We’ll be doing the More Love Festival on October 12th in Harare. Yes, I’m very excited being that it’s the Motherland. It is well known that Reggae fans turn out in great numbers.”  Kingly T will be in South Africa working with the Azania band prior to flying to Zimbabwe. “While I’m in Zimbabwe I also have a small project with a producer who wants to record me on the Callins Riddim, something different while we are there so it should be great.” His show will be in the capital city, Harare and is deemed the biggest reggae bash so far.

 

Where has been your memorable performance so far this summer and why?
“The first show I did for the home fans to promote the new album, I got to perform all the new songs for the first time and we got an amazing response”, Kingly T said.    

     
What is your booking schedule like for the rest of the year? Where does the US tour take you (any new locations)?
“Having recently started my US tour at home in Indianapolis, I am ready for my next performance in Michigan on July 26th for the Taste of Kalamazoo.”

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Do you have an Asian or European tour lined up?
“No, not yet! not right now. I have to focus a lot of energy on my US tour before we go to Zimbabwe in October”.  We are open to fitting them in though later in the year; my management is working on it.”

So tell us a little bit about your musical career?
“I started playing guitar with live bands in Jamaica in the 90’s with Ninja-force and  I also toured internationally as part of the Rebel Max Band”, Kingly T said. “I have also worked as a guitarist for some top Reggae artists over the years with the backing band Ninja Force, we would play for Gregory Isaacs, Sugar Minot, John Holt, Ernie Smith, Sean Paul and I have also backed Bounty Killer and Capelton.”

“I pretty much started writing songs to perform straight away when I moved here to Indianapolis to start recording, he said.”

“My last album which I released in 2010 was called Rock it with me. I also had two hit tracks called ‘Eastward-bound’ and ‘Jah Blessing’. With my first album in 2007 called Unity  for which I received some commercial success.
Who could you say has influenced your vocal style?
Sometimes you really got to express yourself to get where you need to go with the music. I get influence from life no matter where I am. I listen to all kinds of music so that I can pull in many elements to the sound when writing new material. When it comes to singers that have influenced me vocally I would have to say, people like George Benson, and Denis Brown.”

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Why have you chosen to reside in Indianapolis?
“Well about nine years ago I moved with my family to pursue my solo career. It is a bit easier to work from where I am and I’m happy here. Not long after I arrived I put my band together and from there I was able to expand the music. I always created demos in the lead up to my solo career.”

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How did you initially become involved in the music?
“When I was around nine years old in Jamaica I used to play a little guitar for the pastor of my local church, As I got considerably older I began playing in backing bands and played for many top performers.”

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How would you describe your sound?
“Music is just Music to me as long as it has a positive spiritual message which is why I fuse so many different elements from Rock, Soul, Jazz and of course reggae”, Kingly T said.

Interview with Warrior King> about his “Sings like an Angel” World Tour.

•June 28, 2013 • Leave a Comment
Mr. Mark Dyer better known as Warrior King

Mr. Mark Dyer better known as Warrior King

Warrior King has a busy Summer ahead of him; due to the recent success of  part one of his “‘Sings like an Angel” World tour, he is now on the second part and is scheduled to perform in Europe over two months. For the European part of the World Tour he will travel and perform with Turbulence on many of his booked shows, this is fittingly titled: Together As One Tree Tour.

According to a recent Press Release issued by, Lee Abel, Roots Warrior Productions, “Nearly every show venue for the Warrior King “Sings like an Angel” tour, from California to New Orleans, Chicago, Texas, Arizona and Cleveland, were sold-out.

On Saturday June 29th he travels to the MacKenzie Sports Ground, Linden in Guyana for the Caribbean leg of his Summer performances. He has also just returned from a two-week tour of California, having taken on memorable performances at Santa Cruz and Fort Bragg.

Prior to this he spent 10 days in Mexico as part of a promotional tour; a new tour for him as the Mexican crowd are more familiar with foundation artists.

He performs  on the sixth of July, for the second time at this years Summer Jam; a famous Reggae Festival held in Cologne, Germany.

http://contour-music.com/shop/shoptickets/summerjam-festivalticket-2013-406.html

He says he remembers his, “first international performance was in Trinidad” alongside Norris Man. “I think that it was in 2001-2002; at the time I was promoting one of my most popular tracks, Virtuous Woman.”

Warrior King says, “I would have more European dates scheduled now than ever before.”Although most of his time touring outside of Jamaica he feels is taken up in bookings for California. He says, “I think the reason my music is so popular is; I am a genuine person , the vibe is authentic and people can see that the words in my song are divinely influenced by the powers of the most high. People feel a need to listen to this music.”

He has such energy on stage, how does he sustain such health and strength? He says, “being a Vegetarian, the way I feed myself is so important. I am a bit off function at the moment, so I need to make time to rejuvenate, I would drink a lot of Honey and Lime for my voice, as well as this I get some good Root- Tonics made up, which are really good, I also drink lots of fresh water.”

We hear so much about his work in the community. He says, “definitely! I have been involved in youth development projects from the beginning. My aim is to work with kids that are not going to school and try to motivate them. He feels strongly about working for the people. He says I have to be living what I’m saying and demonstrate to the people.”

Would he consider his second album, Hold the faith his most popular to date? It is surprising to hear that he believes it to be one of his most underrated albums. It has such a strong message, the selection of  16 tracks and three bonus tracks tell like a continuous narrative; each song is empowering with beautifully delivered heart warming lyrics. A truly conscious album for the people.

http://open.spotify.com/album/7GyV2ZVp9jQY4s8P0nN6h9

Warrior King says, ” when the mood takes me I write and record my lyrics; 95% of the time I write all my own songs. I also have to give thanks for the support of Vincent Marsh who is one of the Roots Warrior Production team. There have been so many who have helped me along the way, too many to mention in just one interview.”

For recording he has the choice of working with many different producers  and studios which can add certain qualities to the chosen rhythms. He also has a vision of developing his own professional studio sometime in the near future. He says, ” Yeah it will make me work more structured and organized; when Jah give I the works to publish.”

When he started out his singing career he says , “I developed my vocals by studying Garnett Silk‘s voice.”

Many are unaware that Warrior King is also a cousin of the late great Denis Emmanuel Brown. He has worked with a few foundation artists in recent years such as Max Romeo, Beres Hammond and Barrington Levy but, wasn’t really collaborating with them, more like voicing lyrics on their tracks.

He is delighted with the support that he has been receiving from his Roots Warrior Productions company director, Mr. Mark Miller who is his international booking agent. He says, “I am who I am because of His Imperial Majesty, Haile Sellasie I the first, who is the foundation of my life.

When asked about struggles he has met in the music business; Warrior King says, “I have nothing bad to say, everything seems to run smoothly, my management takes care of that.”

Warrior King is scheduled to perform  at 14 other festivals throughout Europe this summer;

On July 13th he performs for the Italian fans at this years Homepage Festival at Parco del Comor, Udine.

http://www.homepagefestival.com/musica/musica-2013/

He then travels to Portugal for his performance at The Figueira Festival on July the 19th.

August second, he returns to Germany performing at Reggae Jam Festival in Bersenbruck.

https://www.reggaejam.de/

On August third, he performs in front of his French fans at Pauillac, Northern Bordeaux for this years Reggae Sun Ska Festival.

http://www.reggaesunska.com/2013en/artiste.php?id=188

The next day August fourth, he returns  again to Germany for a performance that evening at The African Music Festival in Emmendingen.

http://www.festival.afrikaba.com/en/html/programme.html

On August the ninth, Warrior King travels to Leibnitz, Austria for the Naturhanfladen Festival.

He also has a couple of preliminary bookings on August 16th and 17th in Copenhagen and then Gothenburg, before returning to Germany for Chiemsee Reggae Festival in Ubersee on August 24th.

http://www.en.chiemsee-reggae.de/program/detail/turbulence___warrior_king/2013-08-24/21:00:00

On August the 26th he returns to Italy for his performance at Festa di Radio onda d’urto in Brescia.

http://festaradio.org/

From there he travels alongside Turbulence to London for two performances  on the 28th and on the 29th at Hootenanny in Brixton, South London.

http://www.hootanannybrixton.co.uk/

The next day, August 30th he performs alongside Turbulence at Club Circus in Helsinki Finland, before ending the tour in Germany’s Hamm Summer Festival.

http://www.thecircus.fi/english

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Review>The Courtney John Project, debut album: ‘Future’

•April 30, 2013 • Leave a Comment

The Courtney John Project- Future (Album Cover)(1)

The Courtney John Project have just released their debut album, ‘Future’; internationally through the ongoing support of the Fiwi Music Label in Jamaica.

 This ten track experimental album available on itunes showcases a new fusion twist to contemporary music. Each track on the album is  emotively charged, thought provoking and auditorally sensual.

https://itunes.apple.com/ca/album/future/id633772015

 In the lead-up to the album release; The Courtney John project have been developing their new sound which they call Roots-tronic.

 The Courtney John Project are a unique group consisting of lead Falsetto style singer, Mr. Courtney John, producer Nastassja Hammond better known as the Wizard and Grammy award winning Musician, Steven “Lenky” Marsden.

TCJP Promo Pic (2)

 

The inspiration for this album could be compared with Massive Attack, Portis Head and Tricky in the 90’s UK underground Trip-hop music scene. It is not something you would expect from a musical trio based in Kingston Jamaica.

 

The first track on the album Black Cinderella has been expertly blended together by the Wizard to truly revive Errol Dunkley’s original. The use of dub horns, drum paradiddles and keyboard lends beautifully to full effect.

Courtney’s vocals are well placed, it is an excellent choice of cover for the exceptionally talented falsetto singer. The tune itself is a wonderful version; the vocal input by both the Wizard and Courtney John is emotively charged. The final mix is expertly blended to perfection enhancing the original. Aircraft sounds and drop crash beats overhead give the listener a vision of the story unfolding as Courtney John seeks out his Black Cinderella.

 

 

 The Wizard lends her vocals to track number two, ‘Give you Love’.

Courtney Johns lyrical input is well placed coming in at the middle. The strength of The Wizards vocals are obviously well suited to Courtney John’s falsetto style, here she takes the lead yet it does not overpower the strength of his vocals and impact.

 

Track three sees Mr. Courtney John voice ‘Soul of a Man’.  The Lyrics Burning, burning Wild are at the pulsating heart of Soul of a Man. The sampled effects in the mix sound mechanized and are intensively justified while carrying forward the songs narrative.

 

 Track four called Nothing for free has wicked lyrics that Courtney John interestingly exhibits by stressing the voice to give a kind of sinister effect. This track contains some true dub-step elements, yet not fully identifiable, making this sound unique to even the most critical of listeners. It has a loose elevation as the tune rises. There is intermittent lyrical juxtaposition taking place here between the vocal section of The Wizard and Courtney John. It is a truly fitting piece that recognizes the adaptability of the group in this endeavor .

 

 

The fifth track on the album So special is Courtney John exhibiting his crisp falsetto lyrics. It is a beautifully adapted track to the new Roots-tronic sound.

There is a beautifully performed keyboard section coming in behind the vocals. Each element is carefully balanced with precision to create a lovely heartfelt vibe. Tantalizing to the ears, Courtney Johns vocals are expertly honed to perfection.

 Rain like Gold is track six and sounds as though it has been multi- layered to produce an absolutely amazing piece of music.

Through the use of carefully placed echo and distortion, obviously adherent with dub-electronica; the group manage to allow the track to expand and evolve into this more enhanced sound which they call Roots-tronic. The fast rising beats allow trajectory to manifest, The lyrics rain fall, fall on me are sublime.

https://soundcloud.com/fiwi-albums-2013/06-rain-like-gold/s-ZMcu8?in=fiwi-albums-2013/sets/the-courtney-john-project/s-ZMcu8/s-ZMcu8

Track seven Gonna be alright’ is a great Roots-tronic version of Courtney Johns original, the digital elements further enhancing its production. The track is ecstatic as it plays through a host of carefully blended sampled sounds. The trio’s contribution becomes more aware to listeners as the track progresses. The harmony of vocals blended together is wonderfully warm and reassuring.

 

 

 

 The wizard takes the lead on vocals with track eight,  fusing traditional sound capability with digital elements to produce a grass roots feel. Jungle Pickney is treated with vigor thus making it steeped in roots and culture. The lyrics affirm: “I am a concrete Jungalist no fear in this heart” adding a nice sing-jay style to the overall production of the track.With rising beats  that run on, the vocals affirm,I am a warrior’ then fade out but potentially keep listeners wanting more. This has good balance in its delivery, an excellent tune that can easily encourage listeners to rise to their feet and dance, while becoming true roots-tronic steppers . 

 

The ninth track is interestingly called Exploria. It sounds as though it brings the listener through an overall mix-mash of all tunes on the album.

In actuality this is a wonderfully crafted version of Rain like Gold.

Exploria is like an enormous rhythm factory; overwhelming, but in a good way.

A superb track worthy of awe and appreciation.

  With the final track number ten: Transistor Symphony  as the name suggests brings a sense of satellites projecting to far off reaches.  Through sampled sounds, vocals and keyboard the trio are very much a unit with this album. This is an excellent version of nothing for free, but is actually much more as it hones all the  Roots-tronic elements in one tune; shaping it into something uniquely different. There is great clarity in this conclusive final track; the instrumentation is sharp and this pulls the album together bringing on the wow-factor as the tune fades.

 The Wizard and Steven Marsden’s input with the production is extremely creative; in their ability to lend futuristic other-worldly  elements to each track.

 This is an interesting album that is well balanced in its delivery, the trio are acutely aware of “Future’s” direction and vision. The Courtney John Project have an enormous album right here. It has so much to offer; exciting in its ability to captivate listeners and is a true fusion album.

 

Describing themselves as 100% provocative, that is exactly what this is; a truly sublime album from beginning to end. Each track is potentially a hit in its own right. It is obvious that the time put in to this hotly anticipated album, was necessary to produce such an amazingly new digital sound.   Each track flows perfectly into the next; running like a continuous narrative, uplifting yet grounded at the same time it locks down an enormous creative effort that is bursting to be set free. Every song is so interestingly different.

It is difficult to identify the instrumentation on every track but that is not important. What each composition shows, is how capable and adaptable the Courtney John project are in developing their new sound.

 

If this album is anything to go by, the future of The Courtney John Project looks promising.

Review:The Courtney John Project’s> Black Cinderella

•February 15, 2013 • Leave a Comment

BLACK CINDERELLA COVER ART FINAL2

This phenomenal new track has just been re produced on the Fiwi music label. This version carries with it a new fusion twist to the sounds of Errol Dunkley’s 1972 original.

With the release of this single brings the Courtney John Projects début album ‘Future’ one step closer to international release.

This version is just one of three hit singles, showcasing their ability to reach a broader audience.

The creative fusion of Courtney Johns lovers vocals with The Wizard and Lenky’s expert blending of contemporary dub-electronica, is tweaked so that it’s haunting mix enhances the original.

The listener has much to identify in the sounds of this new Roots-tronic fusion genre.

As the tune drops, quaking vibes enhance the narrative in Courtney John’s vocal style as the lyrics suggest loss beginning and throughout. the lyrics are heartfelt and reflective of Errol Dunkley’s version yet through their expertise the trio seem to make the tune seem like their own.

Mel Cooke a Jamaica Gleaner writer published an article on Sunday the 28th of June 2009 about the origins of the song Black Cinderella. Interviewing Dunkley he said: ‘it developed from a poem his producer Jimmy Rodway had written for him,when they recorded it at Dynamic studios’. The love song was to appear on Rodway’s Fimi Time label. The song was initially a tribute to hardworking black women but after a few adjustments to the lyrics, Dunkley made it into a love song.

Courtney Johns lovers style of vocals is truely reminiscent of the initial feelings captured on the original.

It has the potential to draw in both young and old fans alike, with its rich tapestry of melodic sounds.

TCJP Promo Pic (2)

The Courtney John Project’s long term super-producer, Nastassja Hammond better known as ‘The Wizard’ fuses sample sounds of aircraft and movement in time across a spectrum of dub beats, creating an astonishing fusion with Steven ‘Lenky’ Marsdens beautiful dub-style piano solo. The intermittent beat plates and subtle dub-horns take the listener on a personal journey from beginning to end.

The auditory feast on this track makes it a truly unique revive tune, one to gain momentum in the future success of the album.

Interview with Courtney John About his new album and Project

•December 15, 2012 • Leave a Comment

Courtney John

Mr. Courtney John is set to release his most recent international album called, ‘Future’ at the end of April on the FiWi Music Label.  According to the Official Courtney John Project Facebook Page it is described as an audio journey; one part Kingston mash up, one part euro-electronica & 100% provocative in its approach to contemporary music. It is a collaboration alongside 2004 ASCAP songwriter of the year and Grammy award-winning, singer songwriter Musician, Steven ‘Lenky’ Marsden with long term female super producer ‘The Wizard’ who is  accredited with producing work for the likes of  Nelly Furtado, Michael Franti and Mr. Beres Hammond.

Courtney John

https://www.facebook.com/TheCourtneyJohnProject?ref=ts&fref=ts

https://twitter.com/TheCJProject

Courtney John, The Wizard and Steven “Lenky” Marsden.

Courtney John, The Wizard and Steven “Lenky” Marsden.

By way of a telephone conversation he begins giving some background on the current project. Courtney says:  ‘We have created a new genre of music called Roots-Tronic, it’s a platform to experiment with our music.’ Referring to the evolution of Jamaican music, he doesn’t think music should limit its traditional sound capabilities, he feels strongly about the importance of roots reggae music and its fusion within other genres.   This is a very unorthodox project and  as the Courtney John Project we have had to let go of inhibitions with our music, you have to understand the economics.’

He gives the impression that to him music is music and should be regarded as such, not limited by the categorizations of the respective  genre. He as a solo artist was often regarded as a purely Jamaican lovers rock style singer. Although he carry’s his lovers style vocals with him, this realization just allows himself and his colleagues  a platform to showcase the potential for a new and ever evolving genre which refers to the great traditions of roots reggae. He says look at the great work of Bob Marley and others who have placed our genre on the international stage. Musically, Reggae can stand up to anything out there without compromise. The Courtney John Project is looking to continue to develop the work internationally with other producers so that it can follow in the footsteps of its predecessors.

The sounds on the new Roots-tronic genre could be compared to UK artists such as Tricky, Massive attack and Portishead. Courtney says that he relates it to the Dub era and although ‘ there are elements of Dub-step, not fully identifiable, he is humbled every time to be associated with these comparisons.  We are not making a conscious effort to cash in on the dub-step sound, but respect its association. Musically it is solid and at some point we have realized that we have stepped outside our comfort zone, it’s just a natural progression for me. Many of us Jamaican artists are classically trained in our traditional styles. We realize the importance of our image  so that it does not deflect from our ability to reference our back catalog, I will always continue to make core reggae albums, but for now this is what we’re focusing on.’  How the Courtney John Project will evolve is yet to be seen, but what is undoubtedly true about its uniqueness is their ability to be creative, we await to see what the future holds for the Courtney John Project in 2013.

About Reggae Convert!

•November 18, 2012 • 1 Comment

Welcome to Reggae Convert! This Blog is  for music fans who appreciate good music.Reggae although not fully appreciated in main stream popular music has  a firm cultural fan base that is here to stay. It’s lineage certainly pre-dates the main stream and is evolutionary in its continuous development through the decades, which proves that its sounds and lyrics can stand the test of time. Those that are unfamiliar with the fusion that exists within Reggae, will surely not be disappointed with the articles contained within.  It covers not only known groups and artists but also emerging talent.  If you like one of the articles, feel free to share it, let us know how you feel  about it and why not post a comment telling other readers why you started reading it.

Hope you enjoy!

REGGAE-Convert.

Regards,

Damien O’Shea (author)