Curtis Campbell, Gleaner Writer
An album by reggae artiste J.O.E was recently launched in New Kingston on his birthday. The album titled J.O.E Man from Judah is exclusively produced by Nicholas Deane, Gavin Blair and Derrick Coffie.
The event was attended by close friends and members of the music industry including Coppershot selector Copper Ash, who turned out quite early to witness the launch of the album.
The 16-track album features artistes like Konshens, Khemikal, Shanz, Chino, Ky-Mani Marley, Krazie Bone of international rap group Bone Thugz and Shanz.
The introduction single Rasta Chant had some patrons chattering among themselves because the words appeared to be sending a subliminal message from the deceased reggae artiste.
"Jah Jah love in my heart, where he leadeth I will walk, speak his words when I talk, he has been with me from the start ... I praise the lion that sit upon the throne, Ethiopia I know is my home, I naah surrender to dem skeleton and bones," were J.O.E's words.
At the time of his passing in 2011, J.O.E was building his musical catalogue with Equiknoxx Music. He also recorded a single called You Shoulda Know on their hit Jim Screechie Rhythm.
The album was launched as part of the fulfilment of the dreams of J.O.E.
The artwork for the album was designed by Kai Watson and Rogen Walker and depicts the artiste standing upright and using his hands to form the image of a symbolic dove.
The album J.O.E Man from Judah was mastered at Anchor Studios by Delroy 'Spider Man' Thompson and published by Rhythm and Beats Music and Dubplate Music Publishing.
The Gleaner spoke with Tahnida Nunes, the older sister of J.O.E and according to her, the main goal of fulfilling J.O.E's dream was achieved by completing his work.
"When he was alive he spent a lot of his last years working on the album. It was a life mission for him and we just decided to make it a reality. We are currently working on distribution to get it islandwide, however, it can be accessed on iTunes right now," Nunes said.
According to Nunes, she is pleased about the final product.
"I feel proud about the album and we know that he is happy too, his music is basically storytelling based on what he experienced growing up in Vineyard Town, so it is really an authentic album," she continued.
"This album is clean and very edifying and makes you think on another level, so I encourage people to support the album because it is the type of music that will last," she said.