Every Black man will have to fight: Reggae Gold 2020 is writing a story.

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18 Karat Reggae Gold 2021 : ONENESS
18 Karat Reggae Gold 2021 : ONENESS
Black Soldiers
Black Soldiers

There is a saying that you cannot judge a book by its cover, but sometimes you can. If Reggae Gold 2020 was a book, it could definitely be judge by the over. It’s not a book however; it is a reggae album, an album that tells a story, the story of 2020 that is continuing to unfold.

So what is it about the cover of Reggae Gold 2020 that one could use it to judge the content of the entire album? It is a picture of David slewing Goliath, the supposedly weak defeating the supposedly strong, good overcoming evil or to wrap it all up; the album cover screams REVOLUTION. (See below)

The album starts off with the song “Ganja for life” which is a tribute to reggae legends Peter Tosh and Desmond Dekker but speaks about the injustice in the so-called “drug laws”. Even though marijuana is legalized or decriminalized in many places including Jamaica, Black people continue to be harassed and prosecuted for the herb at an alarming rate. Studies have shown that Whites consume three times more marijuana than Blacks yet Blacks are seven times more likely to be arrested for the herb than Whites. These are the kind of this the artist, Mr. Bertus, addresses when he pleads in the lower lyrics in the song: “Officer you can’t lock me up for a spliff / Remember they decriminalize it.”

With the coronavirus impacting the entire world but especially the Black communities across the United States, Rasta Progrez gives the people a little glimmer of hope with the song “One Day”. It is a song of persistence, resistance, determination and not giving up despite the frustration one is facing. “Once there is life there is hope around the corner / So I smoke marijuana / Just to cope with the drama / Everything is gonna be alright,” Rasta Progrez sings on a beat that is similar to the one Koffee sung her song of gratitude, “Toast”, on.

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It has been almost 500 years since Black people have been stolen from their land of Africa and brought to the western hemisphere under bondage. Today there are claims of equal rights for all men in the western hemisphere, however, Blacks continue to suffer under institutionalized racism, especially in the United States. Despite all of this, Fitzroy Face sees 2020 as the year when Blacks will finally gain a real victory and will be able to smile at last. In what prime minister of Jamaica, Andrew Holness, calls one of his favorite songs on the album, Fitzroy Face sings the following:

Holy land, holy land of Africa
Robbed of his wealth and stripped of his culture
Holy people of a native land
Forced to reside on foreign sand
Still through all of the turmoil
Running like a child, so free through the River Nile
Though at times we’ve been so mile
Every now and then there’s a chance to smile

Won’t you smile. Not only for a while
Say won’t you smile. Not only for a while

2020 is seeing many Blacks in America getting sick and tired of racism and leaving the country and returning to the land of their ancestors, Africa. Ghana even has programs that encourages Black people scattered in the western hemisphere to come back home. This is exactly what Melanie sings about in her remake the Marcia Griffiths classic, “Stepping out of Babylon.” There is no official count of those who have left “Babylon” but there are many people looking into it as they would love to be able to actually do what Melanie sings about, “Stepping out of Babylon into Jahrusalem, into Zion.”

In recent years it seems like everyone who wanted to be a police, every active police and every retired police all want to kill Black men, women and children. Whether it was George Zimmerman killing Trayvon Martin, the hour officers in Minneapolis killing George Floyd or the retired police officer and his bigoted son who murdered Ahmaud Arbery, Whites have been more than happy and extremely trigger happy to murder Black people. Unless Black men take a proactive approach in defending themselves, this might not stop anytime soon. This is exactly the reason why Fitzroy Face is encouraging Black men to stand up in the song “Fallen Fighters”:

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Rise up fallen fighters
Rise up and take your stand
Rise up fallen fighters
We need you, we need you to be strong

They aim to shoot us with their guns
Saying you’re a criminal
So won’t you run
Aiming to shoot you in the back
For different reasons
At different spots
Indigenous to the political soul
We are attack
For the rewards of fools gold
But no water can out this coal
It’s burning out of control

Rise up fallen fighters
rise and take your stand
Rise up fallen fighters
we need you to be strong
Snatch from the jaws of defeat
This victory could never be complete
And now another battle is brewing
And the wound is still healing
Throughout the night
I could hear you pray
Give me strength to face another day
Willing to give your life away
So most of us could see another day
Throughout the night I can hear you pray
Won’t you take this pain away
Throughout the night
Throughout the night
Throughout the night

Rise up fallen fighters
Rise and take your stand
Rise up fallen fighters
We need you to be to strong



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