Davina Henry, Staff Reporter
Staying true to the foundation of lovers rock reggae music, artiste Cocoa Tea has indeed proven that he possesses both talent and longevity.
On November 6, Cocoa Tea released his 22nd studio album, titled In a di Red.
The 15-track album is described as a joyful mixture of love, reality and conscious, praise-filled lyrics.
Produced by Cocoa Tea and Roaringlion Recording Studio Crew, the buzz for new music from the artiste was fuelled by recent live performances in Jamaica, North America and Europe.
"What is different on this album is that, for the first time, I have added two collabs with two female artistes - D'Angel and Lady G. It's the same reggae one drop that I am known for and I have added a little bit of a ska vibe to it," Cocoa Tea told The Gleaner.
In a di Red also focuses on current situations. Cocoa Tea uses strong social commentary to get his message across, while returning to the 'foundation' style of reggae that made him a legend.
The album includes songs such as There's a Love Like Yours And Mine, Trickster featuring Lady G, Love Is featuring D'Angel, and Press Freedom.
An all-star cast of musicians, including Kirk Bennett, Danny Dennis and Ernie Wilks, are also featured on the album.
The album also displayed another side of Cocoa Tea as he shifted seamlessly from the microphone to the producer's chair.
"There is nutt'n like being an artiste, but as a producer you have certain input that you know will work much better for you. You know your strengths, weaknesses, and you know what works best for you."
He further explained that although he is known as a conscious reggae artiste, he does not shy away from controversy.
"I like to be controversial at times. One of my favourite songs from this album is Press Freedom, and this song talks about payola and highlights some things that people wouldn't want to hear from Cocoa Tea's mouth, but that's just me; I don't mind being controversial at times. Controversy sells," he said.
In a di Red is now available at VP Records, iTunes, Amazon and all leading music stores.