Milton Blake overcomes Obstacle


Milton Blake overcomes Obstacle

Monday, December 09, 2019

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Six years after his debut album was released, roots singer Milton Blake returns with Temporary Obstacle, produced and distributed by Pickout Records.

Released in November, the 12-song set hears Blake wailing against oppression and praising Rastafari, which has been consistent themes in his songs since he began recording in the early 1990s.
“Wi never gi up pon di journey, di whole vibrations is di same. Wi meet Pickout an' him si di talent an' decide fi invest inna it,” Blake told the Jamaica Observer.

Originally from Central Village in Spanish Town, Blake has called Cleveland, Ohio, home for the past 10 years. He gave up music for a while and concentrated on his trade as a joiner; gradually, he got back into performing at reggae events in Cleveland.

Some of his comeback songs, like Trumpet Sound and Nuclear Age, are produced by Lloyd Dennis, principal of Pickout Records. That label had a massive hit song in the late 1980s with Cover Me by Tinga Stewart and Ninjaman.

Trumpet Sound and Nuclear Age are on Temporary Obstacle. Blake wrote all songs on the album, which he said “gives the listener an opportunity to listen to your beliefs.”

Three years after migrating to the United States, Blake released his first album, People Need Jah. Prior to that, he recorded for a number of independent producers, but also cut songs for established names including veteran session guitarist Dwight Pinkney and Philip “Fatis” Burrell of Xterminator Records.

In addition to Pickout Records, Blake's recent recordings include Heir to The Throne with long-time friend Mikey General, and Rub-A-Dub Style, produced by Alvin Ricketts.

While holding down a nine-to-five job, Blake tours the US Midwest and East Coast with his River Nile Band.

— Howard Campbell

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