Reggae Grammy up for grabs

Observer writer

Saturday, December 08, 2018

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ETANA has broken a 21-year drought for female artistes in the Best Reggae Album category of the Grammy Awards. Her Reggae Forever is the first album by a woman to make the cut since Sister Carol's Lyrically Potent in 1997.

The Grammy nominations were announced yesterday. The other nominees in a competitive Best Reggae Album field are As The World Turns by Black Uhuru, 44/876 by Sting and Shaggy, Rebellion Rises by Ziggy Marley and A Matter of Time by Protoje.

When the Jamaica Observer caught up with Etana in California yesterday, she was not aware of her first Grammy nod.

“Your telephone call just woke me up with the good news. It is indeed an honour to be nominated and I am grateful to (distributor) Tad Dawkins for all the hard work he put into this album,” she said.

Reggae Forever was released on March 8 by Tad's International Record. It topped the Billboard Reggae Album Chart on March 31 and has sold 1,921 copies.

Prior to Sister Carol, only two other female artistes secured nominations for the reggae Grammy. Judy Mowatt was the first in 1986 with Working Wonders, while Rita Marley was nominated in 1992 for We Must Carry On.

This is the 39th nomination for Sting and the sixth for Shaggy. 44/876 is the top-selling reggae album of the year according to Billboard's Year End chart, clocking more than 50,000 copies in the United States.

Sting has won 16 Grammys throughout his career, with The Police and as a solo act, while Shaggy has one under his belt.

Rebellion Rises gives Ziggy Marley his 13th nomination in the category. As leader of Ziggy Marley & The Melody Makers, he had three wins with four as a solo artiste.

Rebellion Rises was released by Sony Music Latin on May 28 and has sold just over 8,000 copies.

Protoje gets his first Grammy nomination, while As The World Turns marks a return to the category for Black Uhuru who won the first reggae Grammy in 1985 with Anthem.

The 61st Grammy Awards takes place on February 10 at Staples Centre in Los Angeles.

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