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Album Review

Despite heated protests from his parents, Alpha Blondy abandoned his studies in education to establish himself as a singer, a move influenced by his discovery of the Rastafarian faith and the music of international reggae star Bob Marley. A longtime dream was fulfilled in 1986 when, five years after Marley's death, the singer's backing band, the Wailers, supplied the rhythms for Blondy's third album. Recorded in Jamaica, Jerusalem remains one of Blondy's most satisfying song collections. Lyrics alternate among English, French, and Blondy's own Dioula, a mix the singer attempts to unite through the rhythms of reggae music. Aiding him in his pursuits are some of the island's finest. Under Bob Marley, the seasoned rhythm team of brothers Aston and Carlton Barrett (bass and drums), Junior Murvin (guitar), and Earl Lindo (keyboards) refined reggae music to the slick, near-universal pulse Blondy was seeking. Though their former mentor's success distanced the Wailers somewhat from Jamaica's hard roots audience, they lost none of their exceptional musicianship in the process. The sound of Carlton Barrett's slick snare beats and Earl "Chinna" Smith's supple bluesy lines may have lacked the rough hues of the 1970s, but they did provide many music fans with a palatable introduction to reggae. Behind Blondy, they helped propel the singer to his own level of crossover success. Though the mix by engineers Anthony Kelly, Gary Sutherland, and Solgie Hamilton applies a certain amount of gloss to the music, sparse, competent rhythms ride below Blondy on tracks like "Boulevard de la Mort," "Travailler C'Est Trop Dur," and "Bloodshed in Africa."

Customer Reviews

Great reggae

If you like reggae music, the first track Jerusalem is a must. Awesome stuff.


It's about tome

Grew up to AB

Awesome sound


Born: January 1, 1953 in Dimbokora, Cote d'Ivoire

Genre: Reggae

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s

Hailing from the Cote d'Ivoire, Alpha Blondy is among the world's most popular reggae artists. With his 12-piece band Solar System, Blondy offers a reggae beat with a distinctive African cast. Calling himself an African Rasta, Blondy creates Jah-centered anthems promoting morality, love, peace, and social consciousness. With a range that moves from sensitivity to rage over injustice, much of Blondy's music empathizes with the impoverished and those on society's fringe. Blondy is also a staunch supporter...
Full Bio
Jerusalem, Alpha Blondy
View In iTunes

Customer Ratings