A new day for Popcaan

By Kevin Jackson Observer writer

Sunday, June 29, 2014

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REVIEWS for deejay Popcaan's debut album, Where We Come From, have been relatively good since it was released by Mixpak Records on June 10.


The 13-song set opened at number two on Billboard's Reggae Album chart two weeks ago with first-week sales of 995 copies. It also entered the publication's Heatseekers Album chart at number 21.


Among the producers who worked on Where We Come From are Dubbel Dutch, Jamie Roberts (Young Vibes Productions), Andrew 'Anju Blaxx' Myrie (UIM Records) and Sweden's Adde Instrumentals.


New York-based Dre Skull from Mixpak Records is executive producer.


"I am hoping for the best with this album. I think I have definitely evolved musically over the past few years. I now have more fans and more people to pay attention to, to keep them in tune to what Popcaan is doing. It's a big difference now, and lyrically I grow each day," Popcaan told the Observer last week.


The 26-year-old deejay came to prominence on his mentor Vybz Kartel's hit song, Clarks, in 2010.


Follow-up songs like Ravin, Only Man Shi Want, Party Shot, Unruly Rave and Dream made him a bona fide dancehall star. His latest single, Everything Nice, sees a return to the charts.


According to Popcaan (Andre Jay Sutherland), the album's title is from one of its songs.


"Wi searched through the tracks and Where We Come From is the last on the album. It spoke about where I came from and the schools that I attended, so wi decided to go with dat as the title," he said.


Where We Come From has impressed some in the American press.


The American publication, Complex Magazine, named Where We Come From among its Top 10 Best Albums so far for 2014. It was ranked at number four ahead of British soul singer Sam Smith's In The Lonely Hour (which debuted at number two in the United States last week). American rapper YG's My Krazy Life is at number one on the Complex list.


Popcaan was consistently linked to controversy while he was part of Kartel's Empire clan. He says staying clear of trouble has made him focused and helped him broaden his fan base.


Popcaan left the island last week for shows in Europe. He is scheduled to perform next month on Reggae Sumfest's Dancehall Night.


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