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Freddie, Chaka take Sweet Caroline to Romania

BY KEVIN JACKSON
Observer writer

Wednesday, June 16, 2021

A cover of Sweet Caroline by Chaka Demus and Freddie McGregor has made inroads on Romanian charts.

Last week, the song entered the Radio Guerrilla Top 40 Chart in that country at number 30. This week, it moves up to position number 12.

The chart, which ranks the most played songs in Bucharest, also has songs by Coldplay, Maroon 5, Pink, Billie Eilish, The Weeknd, and Ariana Grande and Wu Tang Clan on its tally.

“Chaka linked me up at my studio [Big Ship] about recording the song 16 years ago. I didn't hesitate, I voiced it right there and then. And here we are 16 years later and the song has started to take off,” said McGregor in an interview with this publication.

He continued: “While Romania is not a new market for me or for Chaka, we are grateful for the entry on that major playlist.”

Sweet Caroline was originally written and recorded by Neil Diamond. His version reached number four on the Billboard Hot 100 Chart in 1969.

Still in Romania, a remake of Bob Marley and The Wailers' Get Up, Stand Up, released as Justice by Nakkia Gold featuring the legendary group, debuts at number 96 on the Romania Top 100 Airplay Chart.

Moving onto this week's sales-driven US Current Reggae Albums Chart, Contractor Music Group enters at number two with its various artistes compilation, Reggae Vaccine. The 12-song set sold 135 copies in its first week of release.

Among the artistes featured on Reggae Vaccine are Julian Marley, Bounty Killer, Shatta Wale, Ed Sheeran, Alonestar, Wayne Wonder, Xray, Gyptian, Jahvinci, Chezidek, Anthony B, and Vyzadon.

The highly touted Top Prize by Alkaline gets a new lease on life, moving from number four to three, thanks to an uptick in sales. It sold 118 copies up from 58 the previous week for a total of 1,765 since its release four weeks ago.

Look for The Good by Jason Mraz is number four, while Riddimentary Selection by Walshy Fire enters at number five. This is Walshy Fire's second appearance on the chart, having peaked at number five with Walshy Fire Presents: ABENG in 2019.

Coastin by Iration inches up to number six, while Khago's The Dealer debuts at seven with One More Time. Released by Long Chain Global on June 4, the 13-track set moved 55 copies.

It is the deejay's fourth entry on the chart. Last year's One More Mile sold 42 copies in its opening week and came in at number 19. Walk a Mile and Dancehall Soca, both of which were released in 2018, peaked at numbers two and four, respectively.

Celestial Rockers by California-based Swedish born singer Ras Teo enters at number eight. The eight-track EP was released June 4 via Zion High Productions.

Higher Place by Skip Marley dips one place to number nine, while last week's chart-topper, Cali Roots Riddim 2021, by Collie Buddz falls to number 10.

Over at the Billboard Reggae Albums Chart, Bob Marley and The Wailers spent a 75th week on top with Legend: The Best of Bob Marley and The Wailers. The set inches from 25 to 24 on the Billboard R&B/Hip-Hop Albums Chart and stands firm at four on the Top R&B Albums Chart while backtracking from number 19 to 25 on the Catalog Albums table.

Legend slips from number 22 to 18 on Top Album Sales Chart and moves from five to four on the Vinyl Albums list. On the all-genre Billboard 200, it stays put at number 46.

Still on the Billboard Reggae Albums Chart, Skillibeng's The Prodigy: Ladies Only falls from number 63 to 95.

Regionally, Miss Most Wanted by Paul Elliott is number one on the South Florida Reggae Chart.

Go Down Deh by Spice, Sean Paul, and Shaggy is in the number one spot on The Foundation Radio Network (New York) Top 30 Music Chart.

Black Man by Blessed is the new number one on the Rebel Vibez Top Ten Canadian Reggae Chart.