Sunday, November 11, 2007
Maybe not as well known internationally as his brother, Ziggy, Damain Marley has become a force to reckon with in the Reggae World. When “Welcome To Jamrock” erupted onto airwaves and blew apart iPods halfway through 2005 it came as a shock to some—but not to Damian “Jr Gong” Marley. The song is about the farthest thing from commercial music offerings today—an outraged and unapologetic description of the poverty and “political violence” ravaging his homeland of Jamaica—but “Welcome To Jamrock” hit—and hit hard—because it’s the sound of truth and the result of years of work to bring that truth to light.
He made noise early on with 1996’s Mr Marley, and his major label debut Halfway Tree showcased a unique gift for blending hard-hitting reality rhymes and an uncommonly eclectic musicality; with a classic reggae sensibility at its core and run through with streams of hip-hop, r&b and dancehall, the album resonated with urban tastemakers and won a Grammy for Best Reggae Album in 2000
Today Damian has his hands full with concert tours and speaking engagements. Welcome to Jamrock was a story that told the sweet and bitterside of life in Jamaica. Onelove