With February being Reggae Month, this is the fourth in an eight-part series looking at reggae's global influence. The music originated in Jamaica, but it has been embraced by people in many countries. Today, we feature Richie Campbell from Portugal.
When Portugese reggae singer Richie Campbell's debut album Focused was released in his homeland last year, top European website reggaeville hailed it as one of the best albums of 2012.
With that feather in his cap, Campbell is preparing to release the album worldwide in March. Focused was recorded in Berlin, Germany and contains productions from Clifton 'Specialist' Dillon, Donovan 'Don Corleon' Bennett and Germany-based Big Finger, known for his work with German reggae singer Gentleman.
Jamaican artistes Ikaya, Turbulence and Anthony B are also featured on the album.
Campbell, whose real name is Ricardo Costa, is in Jamaica promoting Focused as well as his latest single Love Is An Addiction. This is his third visit to the island.
"I came to Jamaica to get a feel of the trends and the vibe. For any artiste outside of Jamaica who is doing reggae, it is best to come to the roots and experience it for yourself," Campbell said in a recent interview with the Jamaica Observer.
Campbell, who lists Dennis Brown, Alton Ellis, Garnet Silk, Tarrus Riley, and Busy Signal as his biggest influences, began his career as a member of a local band named Step Aside, but has been a solo act for the past two years.
"I wanted to start my own project and control every aspect of it. I have always been serious about music and that helped in my decision to pursue a solo career."
Campbell recently signed an endorsement deal with the Mini Cooper vehicle in Portugal which is also sponsoring a documentary he is filming while in Jamaica.
He says the reggae scene in Portugal is not much different from Jamaica.
"It is similar in most aspects but the only difference is dancehall is really a small percentage," he explained.