Happy 50th Birthday Jamaica! Sweet Jamaica” just got a lot more flavor. “Sweet Jamaica”, has a whole new set of names attached to it and an all star video to prove it. “Sweet Jamaica” has been my personal favorite Jamaica 50 song all along. Adding some additional star power to the song only makes it that much “sweeter”. This is the song that has all the makings of a classic. 50 years from now we will still be listening to the “Voices of Sweet Jamaica”.. Yes, dis chune is WIKID, Red Carpet Shelley sey so!
Joining Mr Vegas, Shaggy and Josey Wales on “The Voices of Sweet Jamaica” is Shaggy’s fellow Grammy winner, Beenie Man, rising star Christopher Martin, foundation deejay U-Roy and dancehall super group T.O.K. , as well as the ‘good’ gyal Ce’Cile and international performer Barrington Levy. When you add in Tony Curtis and Singing Melody (one half of Jamaica’s favorite harmony group, LUST) as well as Marcia Griffiths, Cocoa Tea, Freddie McGregor and Leroy ‘Heptones’ Sibbles the “The Voices of Sweet Jamaica” are a virtual who’s who of the nation’s musical legacy.
Not only does “The Voices of Sweet Jamaica” build on the success of the original song to create a fresh vibe just in time for independence celebrations but all proceeds from the sale of the all star version of “The Voices of Sweet Jamaica” will directly benefit the Mustard Seed Community in Jamaica. Mustard Seed provides residential facilities to abandoned Jamaica children living with HIV as well as mental and physical disabilities. Currently, Mustard Seed serves children in Kingston proper as well as the parishes of St. Catherine, St. Andrew, St. Ann, and St. James.
“This is a tremendous gift of time, talent and treasure from these musicians, some of whom are from the inner-city communities that we serve.” stated Monsignor Gregory Ramkissoon, founder of Mustard Seed Communities. “We truly appreciate Mr Vegas selecting us as beneficiaries of this life-sustaining gift to our children”
Jamaica has no shortage of individual stars in countless areas and arenas. So it is particularly moving when individuals come together for a cause in which the sum is greater than the individual parts. The energy around Jamaica 50 has inspired this sentiment time and again. “The Voices Of Sweet Jamaica” is one way for everyone to continue to enjoy the excitement while also making a difference right here in Jamaica through the work of the Mustard Seed Communities.
The point person for the project is the song’s original creator, Mr Vegas. “My friend, songwriter, Indra Rudder had the vision for the original song and now look how many great voices on this one track. This is truly a blessing,” he says. “I am especially happy that we will create awareness and hopefully raise a lot of money from this project to aid Mustard Seed Communities. Thanks to everyone who shared in this vision as we celebrate our independence as one Jamaica.”
If you’re thinking, “Wow, all these people are doing something good for Mustard Seed, that sounds too good to be true”, well we thought that might be the case. The forthcoming “The Voices of Sweet Jamaica” music video will put those concerns to rest. Directed by Jay Will (Game Over) “The Voices of Sweet Jamaica” video shows what is possible when the seed is planted for community building. Seeing in living color Daddy U-Roy up to Christopher Martin all inside the studio at the famed Anchor Studios in Kingston is just more visual proof of how the music and the community go hand in hand.
According to Ce’Cile, the combination of music and community is what Jamaica is all about. “I’m totally excited to be a part of what was already a great project, and I’m especially excited since the proceeds of the sale of the song goes to charity. “The Voices of Sweet Jamaica” really represents the vibe and energy of a united Jamaica and the various artists that Vegas has chosen to be on the song is a reflection of just how diverse and versatile we are.”
And Barrington Levy expressed his gratitude to both Mustard Seed and his fellow artists. “Not only am I glad to be able to play my part but since all proceeds from the sale of the song are going to charity that makes it even better.”
This time, the performers of “The Voices of Sweet Jamaica” are asking the reggae and world music-loving public to lend a hand as well. All proceeds from the sale of the song “The Voices of Sweet Jamaica” will help Mustard Seed fulfill its mission to keep Jamaica sweet today, and even sweeter for future generations of Jamaicans.