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Macka B - Never Played A 45

Macka B - Never Played A 45

Macka B - Never Played A 45

By on - 2 comments

Message music in a singjay style.


‘Big up’ to Macka B for surviving so long in the sometimes snake pit environment that is the music business. Thirty years a singing, with about 20 studio albums to show, is no mean feat. It is also a credit to the artist that his righteous disposition persists, at a time when so many seek celebrity status on the back of air headed stunts.

Macka B - Never Played A 45Characteristically, this 15 track Peckings brothers’ produced CD kicks off with paying homage to Haile Selassie in ‘Hail H.I.M.’ – not to be confused with the Burning Spear product of the same name. Thereafter Macka B raises the sensitive subject of the ‘Big Thief’, making the case for reparations for the pillage and plunder effected by colonial powers across Africa. This is followed by the catchy ‘Soundman’, where the artist’s nostalgia for 1970s technology and musical mode gets an airing. The same theme features in ‘Never Played A 45’, a bouncy and well-paced piece that looks back to the era when the ‘45’ vinyl disc ruled.

The artist’s serious side re-surfaces with some smart wordplay to extol the virtues of vegetarianism in ‘Too Much Chicken’. The message music persists in ‘Medical Marijuana Card’ - with over 300,000 YouTube views of the animated video - where the case for revising laws in line with the American method of ‘medical marijuana’ features. Next up comes ‘Rasta Tell Dem’, as Macka B reminds us that Rastafarians have long advised (anyone who’ll listen) of the merits of Mandela, marijuana, vegetarianism vis-a-vis the dangers of salt etc. Strains of Nyahbinghi then flow through the ‘Fire’ track, with the delicately infused female vocals of Valerie Vibes serving to sweetly balance Macka B’s aggressive bass pitch pronouncements.

The melody music persists in the smartly seguing ‘African’, as the artist leaves us in no doubt as to his true heritage, before ‘Complaining’ offers some food for thought about the impact on your mental health of hanging with those who see the glass of life as ‘half empty’, in sharp contrast with the sunny ‘half full’ disposition of some who have been dealt a weak hand in life. The longstanding Rasta tenet opposing ‘made up’ beauty, in contrast with the merits of ‘Beautiful Naturally’, then features with an (all too rare) brass input embellishing the mix.

The late Phyllis Dillon then kicks in to good vocal effect, joining Macka B with another serious message pertaining to the precious commodity that is your ‘One Life’. And if this artist’s serious side passed you by, there’s no escaping it in ‘Iternal Love’. On this track the nature of love, far beyond the physical manifestation thereof, is much lauded. The penultimate ‘Another One Gone’ track reminds us of the waste of young lives at the hands of ‘gangsterism’ and gun murders. Bringing the album to a close, ‘Their God’ rightfully raises the contradiction evident in the gap between those loudly espousing a religious disposition whilst their day-to—day deeds leave too much to be desired. Hence, ‘their God could not be my God’. Too true Macka B.

If ‘message music’ in a singjay style is your thing, then this Macka B album – set to a range of foundation riddims - is a must. However, many do prefer more melodic music and less message in their mix. Indeed, the album reminds this listener of the day he escorted Macka B. on tour across Ireland. At one point on the journey Max Romeo’s successful (but B.B.C. banned) ‘Wet Dream’ took a turn, to which Macka B quickly instructed the driver to ‘skip that track’, leaving one to wonder whether this artist finds the time to ‘smell the roses’ whilst proselytizing like a latter day preacher. Hopefully he does.

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Read comments (2)

Posted by WEERO I on 10.26.2015

Posted by Gerry on 10.28.2015
Too true.

Comments actually desactivated due to too much spams

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