Friday, March 24, 2023

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Of Dons and Divas Vs Upside Down 2020

Buju Banton And Vybz Kartel

June 26, 2020, is poised to be a significant day for dancehall and reggae fans. It marks the day when Vybz Kartel will release his second album of the year. Coupled with the return of dancehall legend Buju Banton for his first album in more than a decade.

Of Dons and Divas, earmarked by Kartel as having as many features as an iPhone 20 will be Kartel’s second crack at an album this year following the release of To Tanesha in January. Dancehall fans have had to wait a long time for Buju to release an album and will have to share their attention for Upside Down 2020, with Kartel’s release.

My question is. Is this stunt a good idea for both artists? I get the fact that there is added media attention but won’t it take off the gloss from both albums. Last month saw the success of a ‘Verzuz battle’ between Beenie Man and Bounty Killer. The pair went toe to toe with their iconic tracks and the buzz put dancehall on the map again. However, the competitive battle was based on past tracks and had people watching the back and forth live. When you try to do the same thing and it’s based on current music people may overlook music.

The only winner in this scenario is the dancehall fans. The world will get to enjoy music from the genres top players who have hyped up their music. Kartel has promised his fans that his album is good enough to win a Grammy award which makes things very interesting as Buju’s last album in 2010, Before The Dawn, won the Grammy for Best Reggae Album.

Either way, be sure to save the date for this momentous day. Who will have a more significant album? Time will tell, however, my money is on Buju, for the meagre fact that it has been 10 years in the making.

Buju Banton - Time & place

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