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Damian Marley calls for Jamaica to revamp Reggae music

With the apparent declining stronghold that Reggae music has within Jamaican culture, one of its premiere disciples hopes the local industry will help that change for the better.

Internationally acclaimed Reggae superstar, Damian ‘Jr. Gong’ Marley addressed the local and universal state of Reggae music during an interview on CVM’s OnStage this past Saturday. Marley, who’s spent recent months back home after spending most of 2011 overseas recording and touring, believes that Jamaicans need to once again reap the benefits that Reggae music has provided to fans and musicians worldwide.

With many prominent foreign artistes such as Beyoncé, Justin Beiber and Rihanna using Reggae Riddims in recent hit songs, Marley insists that Jamaicans need to get back to their musical roots and show appreciation for the genre they helped make popular.

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REGGAE SUPERSTAR KY-MANI MARLEY TAKES COSTA RICA BY STORM

The 2012 installment of “Carnival Puntarenas,” the third of the three “major” festivals of the season in Puntarenas, Costa Rica, proved to be another spectacular affair for the more than 40,000 music lovers who converged for the beach side concert in the capital city to see Jamaican reggae star Ky-mani Marley set the day to music.


When the young Marley, son of reggae icon Bob Marley, hit the stage backed the band Konfrontation, excitement and pandemonium broke out in anticipation of the tasty musical treat that was to follow. Marley blazed the stage for well over 120 minutes, delivering a dynamic litany of songs, from his father’s repertoire as well as some from his own catalogue. The multi talented singer proved his relevance with favourites like ‘Iron Lion Zion,’ ‘Is This Love,’ ‘One Love,’ ‘Get up Stand Up,’ ‘No Woman No Cry,’ ‘I Shot the Sheriff’ and originals like ‘Who We Are,’ ‘Rasta Love,’ ‘Ska-Ba-Dar’ and ‘Dear Dad’ – a song that pulls at the heartstrings of anybody who has lost a loved one. 


Ky-mani’s humble yet high-energy style of delivery demonstrated that it was really about the music and exceeding fans’ expectations. He was inundated with requests for autographs and how he managed to sign them while performing is baffling. Pocketbooks and shirts were only a few of the articles patrons threw on stage for signatures.    


Two encore performances later, the band was all set for shutdown, Ky-mani however obliged fans with a third and final encore performance. When he segued into the reggae anthem “One Love” the sea of patrons, obviously beguiled, appeared to be in a musical trance. 


“The picturesque view of thousands singing all the songs word for word, knowing they neither spoke nor understood English demonstrates one thing, that the universal language spoken today is the language of love” Ms. Lexy Brooks of VIP Connected Entertainment said moments after Ky-mani left the stage.


Marley, who is working on a new album, from which a single will be released this summer, is also making time for his latest project “Love Over All Foundation” (L.O.A.F.) an organization he is spearheading to assist his Alma Mata, Falmouth All Age School, along with a number of schools in Jamaica


“I am trying to assist kids in Jamaica who, though obviously eager to learn, don’t have many of the basic tools such as lunch money, school supplies, computers and desks. I have donated some of these items but would love to put a program in place where the efforts are ongoing” he said.


Ky-mani personifies the name “Marley” by continuing to maintain the highest professional standards through music and the love of his fellow man, something Bob would undoubtedly be proud of. The Marley legacy clearly, continues through his children.

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Damian Marley has big plans for 2012, wants more exposure for Jamaican artistes

Internationally-acclaimed Reggae artiste, Damian Marley aka Junior Gong has an optimistic outlook for the New Year following a rather successful 2011.

Marley enjoyed several accomplishments during 2011, including a completion of his Distant Relatives tour alongside hip-hop superstar, Nas as well as the formation a new super group, Super Heavy including British songstress, Joss Stone and Rolling Stones front man, Mick Jagger. Their subsequent, self-titled debut album and the success of other collaborative efforts such as Jah Army with Stephen Marley and Liquor Store Blues alongside R&B sensation, Bruno Mars rose Marley’s international stock as he continues to build a legacy somewhat reminiscent of his legendary father, Bob Marley.

Looking ahead to 2012, Damian Marley seeks to enhance his international reputation once more. In a recent interview published via the website of Reggaeville Magazine, Marley hopes to unveil new projects as well as groom some of his family members, such as Joseph and Daniel Marley, who each released singles last year.

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Damian Marley hints at new album with Nas

Prominent Reggae artiste, Damian Marley aka Junior Gong could soon work on a follow-up to the highly successful joint album, Distant Relatives, which featured American hip-hop superstar, Nas.

The two internationally-acclaimed acts released Distant Relatives in May 2010 via Universal Republic as well as Def Jam Records; fusing elements of hip-hop and Reggae while singing about social issues such as poverty and ancestry. The collaborative album debuted at number five on the U.S. Billboard 200 charts; showcasing hit singles such as As We Enter, Patience and Land of Promise, a remake of the classic song by Reggae legend, the late Dennis Brown entitled Promised Land. Additionally, the album feature other prominent acts such as Lil Wayne, Joss Stone as well as Damian’s brother and fellow Grammy-winning Reggae artiste, Stephen Marley.

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Video: Nas and Damian Marley – “Patience”

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Nas Reveals He Considered Giving Up Solo Projects after working with Damian Marley – MTV

Nas spent last year touring in support of Distant Relatives, his joint project with Marley. The rapper said he was so comfortable working alongside Bob Marley’s offspring that he momentarily considered putting his solo career on the back burner.

“I been so caught up into me and [Damian's] thing that I started to get used to it,” Nas recalled. “Like, I didn’t want to do the solo thing for a while. Me and D have just been doing our thing, reaching millions of people, but it’s that time.”

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Nas & Damian Marley – “As We Enter” (Craig Ferguson Live)

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Nas & Damian “Jr Gong” Marley Performed On Jimmy Kimmel Live

“As We Enter” LIVE

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“Count Your Blessings” LIVE
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NAS & DAMIAN “JR GONG” MARLEY ARE DISTANT RELATIVES
In Stores Now
Purchase: http://www.amazon.com/Distant-Relatives-Nas/dp/B0039ZF8D2/
Universal Republic
http://www.distantrelatives.com

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#Review: Nas and Damian Marley – Distant Relatives


Black music has many streams of expression, 2 of the most prominent being Hip-Hop and Reggae.  And when you go back far enough, these traditions are seen to have their roots in the music of Africa. This truth is the basis for Nas and Damian Marley’s unique collaboration Distant Relatives, which aims to not only bridge the gap between their cultures, but also raise funds for a school in the Congo. And this focus has resulted in an album that will undoubtedly enrich the musical legacies of both men.

From the outset, it’s very obvious to listeners that both men took their time and built up a genuine, strong chemistry over the estimated year and a half recording period. The duo comfortably trade quick bars over the first single “As We Enter,” easily handling the several rhythm changes punctuated by horn and piercing drums , which is reminiscent of Welcome to Jamrock’s “All Night”. “As We Enter” serves to establish the direction of the LP, as Damian Marley proclaims them to be “street intellectuals,” and Nas posits their purpose as “real revolution rhymers.”

K’Naan guests on “Tribal War,” which address the in-fighting the plagues people of color around the world. Damian Marley crafts a beat of urgency using bongos and sorrowful chorus signing, as each emcee tackles the issue from different perspectives. Nas parallels international conflicts such as those seen in Darfur with American gang warfare, while K’Naan reflects on how Africa’s contributions are ignored or belittled in today’s society (“I drink poison/Then vomit diamonds/I gave you Mandela, Black Dalai Lamas/I gave you music/You enthused in my kindness/So how dare you reduce me to Donny Imus?”). And Damian Marley addresses the futility of man’s violent nature (“We nuh want no more of that/Everyone deserves to earn…Man a war tribal/Over colors/Over money, over land, and over oil, and over God” ).

Damian’s brother Stephen Marley assists on 2 tracks, “Leaders” and “In His Own Words.” On the former, Stephen handles chorus duties over a traditional, reggae-flavored track. But it’s Nas who shines in his 2 verses, using allusions to the Biblical figure of Esau, Prohibition gangster Bumpy Johnson, and Marcus Garvey to argue that a leader can come from any facet of society if they’re willing to answer the call.

On the latter, the trio gives listeners the first overtly spiritual track in “In His Own Words.” Again Nas works with 2 verses, and sharply notes his struggle with balancing his art, and how it has brought him closer to God (“How I balance between the streets and the theories of/collegiate literature/I hold mirrors up/Give combinations of pain, joy, fear, and love/Through my perspective/I can see Jah reflection”). Stephen’s bluesy, paced vocals provide a nice contrast with Nas’ faster flow, and Junior Gong brings it home lyrically in rhyming on the unity of creation (“All things are related/And creation is a package/Generate together/And we increase the wattage/A how them a go manage? Tell Babylon them can’t do Rasta damage”).

Since Damian Marley handled the majority of the production duties, the beats are void of any contemporary-styled Hip-hop rhythms. However, Junior Gong shows his versatility and knowledge of his partner’s strengths by making strategic rhythm changes to accentuate Nas’ style, as heard with the beautiful, guitar driven transition on “Count My Blessings.” Instinctively, both Nas and Marley fervently attack the songs with strong drums like “Friends,” “Dispear,” and “Strong Will Continue.” Ironically, the track with the closest link to boom-bap (“Nah Mean”) is dissected and dominated by Damian’s patois (“We nuh like dem colonial regime/Nah mean/Mi Queen hafi rock and come in/Nah mean/and jump pon mi big trampoline/Nah mean/And boost up her self-esteem”).

The remaining guests do exceptionally well in maintaining the theme of the album. Reggae fans will be delighted in hearing legend Dennis Brown helping in the remake of his classic “The Promised Land.” The seminal, bass-heavy funk of the song is perfect for any reggae/dancehall artist as Damian shows in his verse connecting America and Africa. But Nas also doesn’t misstep and incorporates end of days imagery in his portion (“If these are the last days/And 100-foot waves come crashing down/I’ll get some hash and pound/Pass around the bud then watch the flood/Can’t stop apocalypse/My synopsis is catastrophic”). Joss Stone compliments the child singing chorus on “My Generation,” and Lil Wayne shows his underrated adaptability with a succinct verse on his role with today’s youth (“This generation/I’m a represent/A generation led by a black president…So when you finish reading Revelations/Thank God for my generation”).

The album concludes with the poignant, lush ballad “Africa Must Wake Up.” The song is a call for those of African descent to not only remember their lineage, but establish an identity for the future, as sung by Damian (“Yesterday we were kings? Can you tell the young ones/Who are we today?”). Nas utilizes his 2 verses to speak on African culture’s discoveries in religion, architecture, and astronomy which assisted in humanity’s development. K’Naan reappears to offer a short, rhetorical refrain in Somali (“And when a country is built. Aren’t you the ones to tear it down?/ And when one attempted to tell the truth, aren’t you the ones to cut him down?). Nas ends the LP on a unifying note, explaining that because civilization derives from Africa, we are all family just spread out across the globe regardless of race.

Distant Relatives is an amazing achievement for both artists. For Damian Marley, it shows in these 5 years since this last LP (Welcome to Jamrock), he has grown as a producer and can lay claim to being one the most talented of Bob Marley’s children. Nas continues to evolve and age gracefully. Since 2002’s God’s Son, Nas has opted to use music to look inside himself for identity, rather than media, fans, or trends to define him. Instead of attempting to relive past glory (Illmatic) or personas (The Firm), he’s doing something many emcees become fearful to do; grow up with their audience and challenge themselves. And with the way he handled the varying production from Marley, Nas again shows why 19 years after his first appearance he’s still one of the premier lyricists in Hip-Hop.

Distant Relatives is a rewarding listening experience in its musicianship and lyricism, and one you can expect to go back to in the years to come.

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The Grammy Museum Interview: Damian Marley & Nas Talking About their New Album DISTANT RELATIVES

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Mp3: Nas & Damian Marley – Africa Must Wake Up

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Album in Stores May 18th  – Pre-order Now!!!

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Nas & Damian Marley ft. Lil Wayne & Joss Stone – My Generation

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Album in stores – May 18th

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Nas & Damian Marley Ft. Knaan – Africa Must Wake Up

And the music keeps coming in, new joint from Nasir and Damian featuring Knaan, which is about 6 minutes long. The record is courtesy of DJ Semtex.

Nas & Damian Marley – Africa wake Up

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Nas & Damian Marley – As We Enter (video)

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Nas & Damian Marley On The Set For “As We Enter” (Photos)

Check out some behind the scenes photos of Nas and Damian Marley on set for their video “As We Enter” from their anticipated album Distant Relatives which drops May 18th. The video was directed by Nabil and shot in downtown Los Angeles last weekend. More photos after the jump. Shouts to Honey.

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Rap-Up TV Interviews Damian Marley & Nas

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Nas and Damian Marley Host Press Conference for “Distant Relatives”

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Rapper Nas and Bob Marley’s youngest son, reggae singer Damian Marley, held a press conference announcing their several upcoming collaboration projects, including an album and a tour, at Digiwaxx Media Thursday (Apr 1) in New York City.

Nas and Damian are putting out a joint-album together next month (May 18th) called Distant Relatives. The project will also feature collaboration from Damian’s older brother Stephen Marley, and rappers Lil Wayne and K’Naan.

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Nas and Damian Marley announce summer tour

The ongoing collaboration between rapper Nas and reggae artist Damian Marley seriously does keep getting and better. In addition to the May 18th release of their joint album Distant Relatives, the musicians have also announced plans for a lengthy summer tour.

Tickets for the upcoming dates will go on sale starting Saturday, April 3rd via Ticketmaster.com.
Dates
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05/02 – West Palm Beach, FL @ Sunfest

05/21 – Arcata, CA @ Arcata Community Center

05/22 – Eugene, OR @ Cuthbert Amphitheater

05/23 – Seattle, WA @ Showbox Sodo

05/25 – Oakland, CA @ Fox Theater

05/26 – Santa Barbara, CA @ University of California Santa Barbara

05/28 – Los Angeles, CA @ The Wiltern

05/29 – Las Vegas, NV @ The Joint

05/30 – Valley Center, CA @ Open Sky Theater

05/31 – Los Angeles, CA @ UCLA Jazz Reggae Festival

06/02 – Santa Fe, NM @ Paolo Soleri Amphitheatre

06/08 – Houston, TX @ House of Blues

06/09 – Austin, TX @ Stubbs

06/11 – Manchester, TN @ Bonnaroo Music Festival

06/12 – Atlanta, GA @ Tabernacle

06/13 – Lake Buena Vista, FL @ House of Blues

06/27 – Brussels, BE @ Couleur Cafe Festival

06/28 – Paris, FR @ Paris Hip Hop Festival

07/01 – Ardenal, NO @ Hove Festival

07/03 – Cologne, DE @ Summerjam

07/04 – Gdynia, PL @ Heineken Opener Festival

07/06 – Copenhagen, DK @ Vega

07/07 – Hultsfred, SE @ Hultsfred Festival

07/09 – Frauenfeld, CH @ Openair Frauenfeld

07/10 – Montreux Vaud, CH @ Montreux Jazz Festival

07/11 – Rotterdam, NL @ Holland North Sea Jazz

07/13 – Hamburg, DE @ Stadtpark

07/14 – Munich, DE @ Tollwood Festival

07/16 – Manchester, UK @ Manchester Academy

07/17 – Dublin, IE @ Tripod

07/20 – Hammersmith, UK @ Hammersmith Apollo

07/23 – Gräfenhainichen, DE @ Splash Festival

07/31 – Brooklyn, NY @ Williamsburg Waterfront

08/01 – Bridgeport, CT @ Gathering of the Vibes

05/02 – West Palm Beach, FL @ Sunfest
05/21 – Arcata, CA @ Arcata Community Center
05/22 – Eugene, OR @ Cuthbert Amphitheater
05/23 – Seattle, WA @ Showbox Sodo
05/25 – Oakland, CA @ Fox Theater
05/26 – Santa Barbara, CA @ University of California Santa Barbara
05/28 – Los Angeles, CA @ The Wiltern
05/29 – Las Vegas, NV @ The Joint
05/30 – Valley Center, CA @ Open Sky Theater
05/31 – Los Angeles, CA @ UCLA Jazz Reggae Festival
06/02 – Santa Fe, NM @ Paolo Soleri Amphitheatre
06/08 – Houston, TX @ House of Blues
06/09 – Austin, TX @ Stubbs
06/11 – Manchester, TN @ Bonnaroo Music Festival
06/12 – Atlanta, GA @ Tabernacle
06/13 – Lake Buena Vista, FL @ House of Blues
06/27 – Brussels, BE @ Couleur Cafe Festival
06/28 – Paris, FR @ Paris Hip Hop Festival
07/01 – Ardenal, NO @ Hove Festival
07/03 – Cologne, DE @ Summerjam
07/04 – Gdynia, PL @ Heineken Opener Festival
07/06 – Copenhagen, DK @ Vega
07/07 – Hultsfred, SE @ Hultsfred Festival
07/09 – Frauenfeld, CH @ Openair Frauenfeld
07/10 – Montreux Vaud, CH @ Montreux Jazz Festival
07/11 – Rotterdam, NL @ Holland North Sea Jazz
07/13 – Hamburg, DE @ Stadtpark
07/14 – Munich, DE @ Tollwood Festival
07/16 – Manchester, UK @ Manchester Academy
07/17 – Dublin, IE @ Tripod
07/20 – Hammersmith, UK @ Hammersmith Apollo
07/23 – Gräfenhainichen, DE @ Splash Festival
07/31 – Brooklyn, NY @ Williamsburg Waterfront
08/01 – Bridgeport, CT @ Gathering of the Vibes

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Damian Marley Speaks About Lil Wayne’s Distant Relatives Feature

After initial plans for a first quarter 2010 release, Damian Marley & Nas’ Distant Relatives collaboration album has a concrete due date, set at May 18, 2010. Speaking with HipHopDX late Monday night, Marley expressed his enthusiasm. “It’s a relief. I feel excited. It’s been a lot of work and we’ve been lookin’ forward to [releasing the album].”

While his leading album singles like 2005 smash hit “Welcome to Jamrock” have been summer sensations, none of Marley’s work has been released at a time that many specifically seek Reggae riddims in stereo. Marley explained to DX how he looks at this opportunity in Distant Relatives. “At the end of the day, [my philosophy] has always been to put stuff out when it’s ready, ’cause I don’t believe in puttin’ out music that I’m not satisfied with, or I don’t think has reached its potential in terms of the creative process. At the same time, I’ve never really had an album that was released at the beginning of summer. All of my albums have been previously released in September. I’m really lookin’ forward to what that response will be, knowing that traditionally, Reggae music is what they call ‘summer music,’ so I’m kind of really looking forward to what that’s gonna be.”

Already boasting two appearances from K’Naan as well as Pop/Soul singer Joss Stone and Reggae legend Dennis Brown, many Rap fans were excited to hear last week’s announcement, courtesy of XXLMag.com, that Lil Wayne will be appearing on the Universal Republic Records release. Damian was asked his thoughts on Lil Wayne bringing a younger generation into his and Nas’ global-minded album.”It’s funny, because the track is called ‘My Generation,’” Damian answered with a chuckle. “It’s definitely geared towards that. [Lil] Wayne really showed a lot of respect in his verse, in the way that he handled it. He handled it exactly how I would’ve really loved him to. I don’t have any criticism at all about what he did. I think it’s a great and blessed track. That’s all I can really say about that.” Wayne’s verse reportedly touches on the one-ness in different cultures, eras and music.

With the newly-confirmed tracklisting, Damian also spoke about the importance of sequencing the album and finalizing its 13 cuts. “To tell you the truth, the tracklisting hasn’t really changed that much in the months, it’s more-so that there’s been some inaccurate listings that people have put on the ‘net. The tracklisting has pretty much remained the same throughout the project. Marley did however admit, “The sequencing has changed. That is a matter of trying to make the album a long-listener, where you can put it in, hear from top, and just play straight through. So it goes off of feel; you don’t want to have too many slow tracks back-to-back or too many fast ones back-to-back for that matter. I just try to make sure that the album feels good throughout.”

The finalized tracklisting is as follows:

  • 1. As We Enter
  • 2. Tribal War (feat. K’Naan)
  • 3. Strong Will Continue
  • 4. Leaders (feat. Stephen Marley)
  • 5. Wisdom
  • 6. Count Your Blessings
  • 7. Dispear
  • 8. The Promised Land (feat. Dennis Brown)
  • 9. In His Own Words (feat. Stephen Marley)
  • 10. Nah Mean
  • 11. Friends
  • 12. My Generation (feat. Lil Wayne and Joss Stone)
  • 13. Africa Must Wake Up (feat. K’Naan)

Lastly, Damian reacted to the impact of December’s VTech-sponsored Distant Relatives event at the National Geographic in Washington DC that included Hip Hop godfather DJ Kool Herc, Rakim and Dancehall legend Big Youth. “It really feels like something important – everybody feels like it’s an important project. Not just because of the music, but because of the whole idea behind the project, the focus of the project itself – both in aspects of it being related to Africa and us tryin’ to shine a light and educate our generation on that a little bit more and also from the fact that two genres, which we’ve been saying, come from similar beginings and their destinies are intertwined. A lot of people have known that for a very long time, and this whole project has become a platform for us to express it. I’ve seen that it’s not just myself and Nas, but all these other people, who are very credible, have validated what we’ve been tryin’ to say.”

Next Monday, specific dates will be announced for a North American tour that plans to hit almost every American city, as well as dates in Europe. Epic/Decon Records artist Nneka will be the Distant Relatives Tour opening act, as Nas will appear on her official remix to “Heartbeat,” from her album Concrete Jungle.

As of this week, fans can visit DistantRelatives.com for information on the duo, the project and tour dates. The site is going live this week, with full launch expected by next week.

The Distant Relatives will also be performing in South By Southwest this Wednesday (March 17) at Emo’s (603 Red River) in Austin, Texas. They’re slated to hit the stage at midnight, joined by DJ Green Lantern.

Source: Hiphop Dx

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Nas, Damian Marley bring debate to Washington


Although an album has yet to be dropped, the Distant Relatives known as Nas and Damian Marley are still trying to leave their impact outside of the music. Teaming with National Geographic and V-Tech, the duo will have a panel debate next month in Washington D.C. Paying homage to the art of Hip Hop, the discussion will explore the origins of the genre and reveal what type of impact it has had across the globe. The event is set to take place at National Geographic’s Grosvenor Auditorium on December 12.

Of course a history lesson wouldn’t be as effective without relevant teachers, as the two will be accompanied by legends in the game such as Rakim, DJ Kool Herc, DJ Red Alert, Jeff Chang and more. Clearly a momentous occasion, MTVs own Sway Calloway will serve as the moderator for the event, which will also be filmed for a future documentary.

Fans will be in store for a surprise following the event as there will be an after party, as well as, an open-mic show at the nightclub Zanzibar. Tickets for the panel discussion are quite limited and will run for about $25, but the fee will also serve as a ticket into the party following.

Those that are unable to dig deep into their pockets shouldn’t be worried about missing the actual debate as it will be streamed live and broadcasted through National Geographic’s Web site.

In terms of the album, Distant Relatives is set to drop sometime in 2010.  Serving as a social commentary with content heavily revolving around Africa, features so far are rumored to include Young Jeezy, Joss Stone, Stevie Wonder, Stephen Marley, Snoop Dogg and K’naan.

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Distant Relatives Rumored Track Listing. Is the Album On the Way?


Queensbridge native Nas has recently been in the news as of late, but unfortunately it has had nothing to do with his music. Dealing with Kelis and her money grubbing ways has taken the rapper out of the musical realm and his album with Damian Marley seemed to have been put on hold.

A rumored tracklist recently hit the net which would suggest that the album is actually still on the way, although no release date has been announced as of yet. The project was originally slated to hit shelves in August, but it’s clearly September now. As it stands, 2009 should be the year to expect the final project.

It was reported that a portion of the profits that come from the purchase of the album Distant Relatives will go towards building a school in Africa. See, Oprah isn’t the only person that cares.

Nas has stated that he is already in the process of beginning to work on his tenth studio album and should go into grind mode after the release of the collab album. After the release of Untitled it might be time to place heavy priority on this joint effort coming out quickly so Nas can continue the reign of lyricism in Hip-Hop that has emerged in 2009.

Referring to the tracks, it is evident that they were serious when they said the album was meant to put focus on Africa and bring it into the light for everyone to be aware of and acknowledge. The continent has been raped and gone through countless trials that it is still forced to endure, but it seems as though its problems don’t hit the radar in terms of significance to the overall picture of the world. Clearly an album will not change everything, but hopefully the two have compiled a body of work that will shake the foundation and open a few eyes to the motherland.

Rumored Tracklist for Distant Relatives:

1. Intro (Something New) (prod. Damian Marley)
2. As We Enter (prod. Damian Marley)
3. Revolutionary (prod. Damian Marley)
4. Count Your Blessings (prod. Damian & Stephen Marley)
5. Belief is Key (prod. Damian Marley)
6. Africa Must Wake Up f. K’naan (prod. Nas, Damian & Stephen Marley)
7. Black Horizon f. K’naan (prod. Damian Marley)
8. Only the Strong (prod. Damian & Stephen Marley)
9. Our Generation f. Joss Stone & Stevie Wonder (prod. Damian Marley)
10. Empowerment (prod. Stephen Marley)
11. AID (prod. K’naan & Nas)
12. Let’s End It (Poverty) f. K’naan (prod. 9th Wonder & Damian Marley)
13. The Earth f. Bob Marley (prod. Salaam Remix, Damian & Stephen Marley)
14. Black Man’s Paper f. Erykah Badu (prod. Afry) [UK Bonus]
15. Weed On f. Snoop Dogg (prod. Damian Marley) [iTunes Bonus]

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Nas and Damian Marley Give Update On Distant Relatives

Nas & Damian Marley

Nas & Damian Marley

When Nas and Damian Marley hit the studio to work on a record inspired by Africa, they only planned on putting out an EP. But as the artists continued to invest themselves in the creative collaboration, the album that was supposed to contain only a few tracks, grew into something bigger, and eventually evolved into  a full length LP titled Distant Relatives.

Marley told Billboard.com, “Once we started working on the music, it was Nas who said to me, ‘Yo, we should just make this a full album.’ He really liked the energy, I guess.”

Nas added, “I just think it was me and Damian finding our way. When you have two different artists working on a record when they’re used to doing their own thing their own way, it’s not as easy as people may think. We just flowed, and the next thing we looked up and there were so many songs done or so many songs started and worked on…we just decided to keep it going. It’s not reggae. It’s not rap. It’s different shit for each of us.

The two recently previewed the album ,  shared some of their music with Rock The Bells crowds, and treated fans to records like “As We Enter,”  “Strong Will Continue,” and “Africa Must Wake Up,” all of which have garnered positive fan reactions.

I like to come out and tell the people live in person, ‘Yo, the album is coming’ and give them a little bit of music to start to get excited about it,” said Marley. “I think it also will help with the finishing of the album because we’re seeing how things work.

Nas said that the Rock The Bells Tour has allowed fans to get acclimated to the idea of him doing a full album with a prominent Reggae artist.

I know people are kind of like, ‘What’s happening? What’s Nas doing? What’s Damian doing? Is this really happening? So just being out here on the road we get a good feel from people about this whole thing.”

According to Nas, the album is 90% complete. He expressed plans to continue touring with Marley once the album is released. Originally set for a June release, Distant Relatives is scheduled to hit shelves in August.

Author: Salima Koroma

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Nas & Damien Marley – Distant Relatives

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Damian Marley and Nas to perform at sumfest

Damian ‘Junior Gong’ Marley and  Nas, will be performing together on Saturday, July 25, on International Night II at Reggae Sumfest.

“It’s not a Nas performance, and it’s not a Damian Marley performance, it’s going to be a Nas and Damian Marley together. Gourzong the executive direct of sumfest said that the pairing was the result of extensive thought by the Reggae Sumfest team on improving this year’s event.

He emphasised that this is the first time that Nas will be performing in Jamaica, and added that it “will be an even more special performance since he will be performing with one of our brightest stars in reggae. I’m excited, they are working on a collaborative album, and the sounds of reggae with the beats of hip hop should make for a great performance.”

Another confirmed international act that will be rocking the Reggae Sumfest stage is R&B sensation Jazmine Sullivan on Friday, July 24.

“We are arranging for other international performers, but we’re not ready to release who we’re considering. You’ll just have to wait a little longer,” said Gourzong.

The festival, which starts with a beach party on Sunday, July 19 and then has three nights of live performances from Thursday, July 23 to Saturday, July 25, will also feature, Bounty Killer, Mavado, Etana, Tarrus Riley, Busy Signal, Charley Blacks, I-Octane and a host of other local talents.

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