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Derrick Morgan remakes 'Conqueror' with Kirk Diamond

Published:Wednesday | February 3, 2016 | 12:00 AMCurtis Campbell
Derrick Morgan
Kirk Diamond

Iconic ska-rocksteady artiste Derrick Morgan has been missing from the music scene in recent years due to illness. However, the visually impaired singer is back to making music. He recently collaborated with overseas-based recording artiste Kirk Diamond for the remake of his 1960s hit record, Conqueror.

The original version of Conqueror was released in 1967 at the climax of Morgan's career. Morgan, who received his break in the music industry after winning the Vere Johns Opportunity Hour talent show in 1957, is also the father of popular reggae artiste, Queen Ifrica. He is known for songs such as Tougher Than Tough, Do the Beng Beng, and Conquering Ruler, among others.

Kirk Diamond, recently nominated for a Juno Award, said Conqueror will be the lead single for his new untitled EP. The youngster is known to dabble in Jamaican vintage music and told The Gleaner that working with Morgan is a dream turned reality.


1967 version


"The duet was an honour for me to do. A lot of people my age or younger may not know who Derrick Morgan is or even be familiar with his music, so this was a way for me to at least reintroduce him to my supporters. It's an original song, for those who may not know his 1967 version. I used parts of his verses as a chorus, while I wrote and sang my verses," he said.

The artiste further said that the song is intended to motivate listeners and evoke self-belief.

"Conqueror is a song about conquering the fears of fighting for what you want, knowing it won't be easy to achieve your goals, but still being willing to fight and conquer while remaining true to yourself," he explained.

During his formative years, Morgan worked with musicians such as Desmond Dekker, Bob Marley, Jimmy Cliff, Coxsone Dodd, Duke Reid, among others.

According to publicist Malaika of MPR Consultant, which represents both artistes, Morgan is still ill. However, his music and work with other artistes still helps to push Jamaican music forward.

"In the '60s, Derrick was one of the first recording artistes to ever have multiple hit songs on the Jamaican pop chart at the same time. He retired from the limelight because of health reasons, but his musical legacy continues and is helping to shape the newer generations through remixes such as Conqueror. His other song, Tougher Than Tough, was featured in a video game called Scar-face: The World is Yours," she said.

Conqueror is currently being distributed by digital giants 21st Hapilos Digital and is available on all major online stores, including Amazon and iTunes.