Josie Mel praises The Only One

By Howard Campbell
Observer senior writer

Tuesday, March 12, 2019

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Hardcore dancehall fans know singer Josie Mel for Rasta-strong songs like The Blessing and Rasta Still de 'Bout . Still, there are no boundaries when he gives praise to a superior being.

On The Only One, his latest song, Josie Mel gives a shout-out to El Shadai and Jesus Christ. No matter the name, he believes spirituality is the answer to man's ills.

“One can say it is a Christian message, so to speak, based on the fact I am singing about Jesus the Christ. But as a man of God, I put this song out there to tell people Christ is better than crime, better than witchcraft and all the oil and powder they using,” he said.

Josie Mel produced The Only One which was released in January with a strong side of musicians including veteran Daniel “Danny Axeman” Thompson playing guitar and Kirk Bennett on drums.

A conscious message has been a theme of his music since he began recording in the 1990s for labels such as Startrail and Black Scorpio.

“My sound has evolved. Everyone who knows Josie Mel from back then will realise that my sound has grown; it's better than before,” he reasoned. “I have developed not only vocally but mentally and otherwise.”

From the district of Crooked River in Clarendon, Josie Mel's most fruitful period was the early 2000s when he was a member of the camp of producer Black Scorpio. That partnership produced songs like Youth fi Big which he did with Capleton, and Don't Stop the Dance.

Rasta Still de 'Bout, a collaboration with fellow singer Lutan Fyah, was a jab at persons who scoffed at his Rastafarian lifestyle. It was also the name of his 2005 album, released by Minor 5 Flat 7, a label from Gran Canaria Island in Spain.

Rasta Still de 'Bout is a song written by me in 2004. At the time, I called it Them Can't Believe because it is about the experience I had when I start growing my natty,” Josie Mel recalled. “People was asking me what I am doing.”

The Only One is among a clutch of songs Josie Mel has produced for an EP to be released this year. He has three albums to his name; the previous, This Whole World, was released in 2007 by Minor 5 Flat 7.

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