OK people, we need to sort some things out. Ive been looking at the UK chart and frankly Im appalled. This week my reviews are going to be entirely based on comparing songs from Jamaicas top 20 with whatever woeful counterpoint we have clogging up the airwaves here in Blighty.

So here we go, a comparison between the chart toppers. And over in sunnier climes, sitting pretty at number 1, we have Mavado with Star Bwoy, a dancehall track letting the world (well Jamaica anyway) know that he is the undisputed king of the scene, gets all the girls, all his crew are stars, and hes basically big in the game. Its pretty much the lyrics of any Oasis song ever delivered in patois. The beats hit hard, and the vibe is pure uptempo club shaking without resorting to brainless cheese. Over here we ANOTHER, YES ANOTHER mindless piece of Euro/American bullshit from Pitbull. I cant be bothered to go into it. So, look my point is this. In Jamaica, a small island, with a cultural relevance similar to Englands, they continue to fill their charts up with home grown music promoting home grown issues with home grown beats, slang, humour and charm. What has happened to us ?? Its enough to make you miss land fill indie (or not). You could hate dancehall and still appreciate that their chart is a unique voice of the people that will stand as a snap shot of island life in years to come, and ours is a sad indictment of a vapid cultural wasteland distinguished by a bizarre fetish for Americans shouting inanities and factory line trance pop. AAAAAAAARRRRRRRRRGGGGGGGGGGHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Come on, why can’t we play to our strengths ? It’s not like we can’t do it– here’s a list off the top of my head— Pulp, Blur, Happy Mondays, Rebel MC, Luck & Neat, Soul II Soul, Stone Roses, The Streets, Dizzee Rascal, Arctic Monkeys, New Order, Ms Dynamite, Radiohead, The Specials, Wiley, PJ Harvey, even Lily bloody Allen, could all make popular, decent English music, whether it be rave, indie, grime, 2 step, pop or rock. So where are they now ?? phew. getting a bit worked up here.
Normal service resumed next week.

Ian Mcquaid

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