Spragga's on a journeyThursday, November 05, 2020
SPRAGGA Benz believes his latest album, The Journey Chosen, will find favour among lovers of '90s dancehall music.
“The album is geared towards lovers of dancehall music, especially 1990s-flavoured dancehall and to those who want to listen to clean yet hardcore vibration,” he told the Jamaica Observer.
“My hope for the album is for it to reach every ears, the world, and for this album to continue the high standards set by other reggae albums,” he continued.
Spragga Benz's desire may not be far-fetched. The 11-track set, released September 28 via Red Square Production, debuted at number 10 on the US Current Reggae Albums Chart. It features collaborations with Konshens, Ky-Mani Marley, Kranium, Wayne Wonder, and Buju Banton's son Jahazeil Myrie.
“This album is promoting positive family life. Firstly, the title is connected to this journey which everyone has to take. Families are important. My nephew, a family member, is co-producer of the album and my son, Carlyle, vocal is on a track,” he said.
Carlyle Grant is the deejay's 17-year-old son, who had played a younger version of him in the film Shottas (2002). He was shot and killed by the police in Kingston, on August 23, 2008.
Never Leave is a tribute to his son. Others include Take A Look at Streets, At My Door, Non-Stop Praises, J and Streets.
“The songs on my album fittingly reflect on a journey which everyone must face — both young and old. But, it is the path we choose which will determine our failures or successes. Perhaps, the most important track on the album is Guide My Life, because we cannot live without someone to guide us throughout our journey,” he said.
“This is a world with diverse problems, including COVID-19, and if we are going to survive, we must live like closely knit families and we cannot forget our children who need the proper training to become future leaders,” he continued.
Hear the Children's Cry founder, Betty-Ann Blaine, contends that the lack of wholesome family values is at the core of Jamaica's crime problem. She argues that the majority of people who are involved in criminal activities are born to parents in communities with severe social and economic challenges.
In the same breath, head of police area one, Assistant Commissioner Donovan Graham, expresses alarm at the number of children between the ages of 12 and 18 who have been arrested for a series of crimes in the last five years.
Graham said between September 2015 and September 2020 some 1,400 children committed serious crimes. A total of 192 children were arrested for murder, 232 for rape, 152 for shootings, 364 for robberies and 256 for breaking and entering.
The Journey Chosen is the eighth studio album for Spragga Benz. It comes on the heels of Chiliagon which topped Billboard Reggae Album Chart in 2019. His other albums are Jack It Up(1994), Uncommonly Smooth (1995), Two Bad Deejays with Beenie Man (1995), Fully Loaded (2000), Live Good (2007) and Shatta Culture (2010). He has also done two mixtapes — Thug Nature and Spragga Benz Me Name.
Born in Kingston, Spragga Benz's given name is Carlton Grant. He attended Camperdown High and the Caribbean Maritime University.
His first recording, Jack It Up, was done on Arrows Recording Studio in Kingston in 1992.
His other songs include Could A Deal (produced by Winston Riley), Girls Hooray (Steelie and Cleevie), and Turn Me On with Kevin Lyttle.
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