CD Reggae's Finest [Koch] [PA] (CD 614209),
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Reggae's Finest [Koch] [PA]

  • 1. Grudge You Fa (Grudge You) - Mr. Easy
    2. Gal Hafi Good (Good Girl) - KC Jockey
    3. What's the Deal? - Vybz Kartel
    4. Mr. Cop - Buju Banton
    5. Drive Me Crazy - Ghost
    6. Looking for a Lion - Dawn Penn
    7. Race, The - Shelly Thunder
    8. Let My Music Play - Red Rat
    9. Model - Plucky Ranks
    10. Tek Con - Macka Diamond
    11. Gimmie Some More - Rempage
    12. Todos los Bad Boys - Kafu Banton
    13. Caramba - Magic Juan
    14. to the K, A - Bounty Killer
    15. Work Ya - Mack Mama/Plucky Ranks
  • Additional Info
    Manufacturer Part Number (MPN): 9566

  • Credits
    ProducerZico Caribaldi; Ed Robinson; Cordell "Scatta" Burrell; Victan "Teethimus" Edmund; Charlemagne; D. Hewitt; Troy Rami; Henri Charlemagne; Ricky Myrie; Richard Martin; K.C. Jockey; Lady G; Tony Kelly; Yami Bolo; Dee "Pitboss" Sonaram (Compilation); A. Gazelle Alexander (Compilation)

    Photographer: Jeff Fasano.
    Dancehall compilations are being given some financial push by the labels in 2004. VP's Reggae Gold 2004 got picked up by major label Atlantic, who in turn bought plenty of late-night TV ads, and Greensleeves bought plenty of print advertising for their Ragga Ragga Ragga 2004. All this spending doesn't have much to do with the listener's one-on-one experience with the record, but the effort labels are putting into their previously all but ignored dancehall and reggae compilations is interesting. Plus, the risk that comes with considering a record a "priority" (advertising and launch parties cost plenty) might help explain all the gloss. There's plenty of gloss on Koch's Reggae's Finest -- too much for hardcore dancehall fans but enough to entice R&B and pop fans. The dancehall tracks are great, but the compilation suffers a bit from too many lightweight reggae numbers. Buju Banton, Bounty Killer, and Dawn Penn -- whose "Looking for a Lion" is the slinky highlight of the collection -- are the big names, but to its credit, Reggae's Finest does a great job of picking the B-list, at least when it comes to dancehall. Magic Juan's "Caramba" is a sexy number with a touch of reggaeton, and Macka Diamond's "Tek Con" is sleazy and extra catchy. Check the Greensleeves and VP compilations for the big hits, skip a couple of shallow pop numbers here, and get hip to a batch of artists ignored by the big boys. ~ David Jeffries

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