Music from Jamaica – Desmond Craig

Artist Bio : Desmond Craig, started music aged 17. First time in studio playing keyboards on tracks for Linton Kwesi Johnson’s debut album “Dread Beat and Blood”. I recorded a track from the same album and it was released in 1977 on the Jah Lion label entitled “Jack the Ripper”. It achieved no.9 in the British Reggae Charts. Six years later I formed a band “Camajia” an anagram of the word, Jamaica with musicians: Joel Wright- drums, Neville- bass guitar, Gordon- lead guitar, Clive Laws- keyboards, Neville “Reuben” Wright- percussions and I on guitar & lead vocals; releasing a 7′ single entitled “Education”. The song went on to attract support due to the relevance of its lyrical content for the times. It was played mainly by Roots DJ’s of the era and was a hit with Jah Shaka and Mannaseh Hi Fi. Another single entitled “Bun Bun” & “Preacher Boy” followed on the B.P. label. This followed by “Signs” which was released on the “UpTempo” label and this was when I was given the name Bob Skeng by Steve (UpTempo), who thought Desmond sounded bland, plus my style of ad-libbing helped to create the name. Further tracks were released on the “First Dan” label: “I’m Not a King,” “Baby I Want You,” “Picture Lover” and “Gold Cup” featuring the Firehouse Crew. During the late ‘80’s thru to the early ‘90’s I decided to take a break. Fellow artists have always encouraged me to continue as it sounded good to them, my form of word phrasing and also my melody. In 2008, and at this point I must Big Up Nick Mannaseh and John from Roots Gardens. It was through Manasseh’s encouragement that I decided to finally “give it another shot”. Mannaseh produced my first of 2 tracks. Having got back the taste for recording and writing I decided to re-enter music but as a Dub Poet. I was introduced to a band called “Soothsayers” and with whom i recorded the dub poetry track called “Mama Seh.” Hence this lead to the culmination of various tracks recorded and produced with a variety of producers and musicians. (from Reverbnation )

Music from UK-Jamaica – Linton Kwesi Johnson

Linton Kwesi Johnson (aka LKJ) (born 24 August 1952, Chapelton, Jamaica) is a UK-based dub poet. He became the second living poet, and the only black poet, to be published in the Penguin Modern Classics series.His performance poetry involves the recitation of his own verse in Jamaican Patois over dub-reggae, usually written in collaboration with renowned British reggae producer/artist Dennis Bovell. His middle name, “Kwesi”, is Ghanaian.Johnson studied for a degree in sociology at Goldsmiths College in New Cross, London (graduating in 1973), which currently holds his personal papers in its archives; in 2004 he became an Honorary Visiting Professor of Middlesex University in London. In 2005 he was awarded a silver Musgrave Medal from the Institute of Jamaica for distinguished eminence in the field of poetry.While still at school Johnson joined the British Black Panther Movement, helped to organise a poetry workshop within the movement, and developed his work with Rasta Love, a group of poets and drummers.