A Better Man
Terry Linen
Uplifting Music International-Tads Records
July 24, 2009

Terry Linen - A Better Man Track list
  1. Life Goes On
  2. Hotter The Battle
  3. To Be Organised
  4. Babylon Dies
  5. Nuh Bada Wid It
  6. My People Hold On
  7. Emancipation Time Again
  8. Sound Of Drums
  9. The Woman In U
  10. The Real Deal
  11. Happy Earthday
  12. Calm Down
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Cast your vote below.

Essential -Votes: 8-
Very Good -Votes: 2-
Good -Votes: 6-
Average -Votes: 0-
Disappointing -Votes: 2-
A Waste Of Time -Votes: 9-

Total votes : 27
Rating : from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)
Vocals : 5 Backing : 4/5 Production : 4/5 Sound quality : 5 Sleeve : 4
The influence of Garnet Silk has endured in the music of artists like his brother Aaron Silk, Alpha Rowen (formerly Rolex), Ras Shiloh and of course Terry Linen. Once having listened to songs of the aforementioned singers, it's obvious that Terry Linen has employed the late singer's style to the greatest effect. Unlike the dreadlocked roots singers, he's a smoothly besuited, baldheaded balladeer whose name came to the attention of reggae aficionados when he scored a monster hit in the summer of 2001 with his beautiful cover of Whitney Houston's "Your Love Is My Love".

Born Kiplin Simpson, Terry Linen -- a name chosen to acknowledge his stylistic debt -- grew up in the district of Red Bank, where he attended the Red Bank Primary and Red Bank High schools. Being the first child for his mother, his grandparents raised him, while his mother went out to hustle to put food on the table for him and his five siblings. In his early years, Linen's father migrated to England. Eventually, Terry Linen moved from the quiet district of Red Bank, to the sleepy bustle of Mandeville, to live with his mother who had remarried.

After graduating from school, Terry Linen hooked up with the legendary Black Kat sound system where he cut dubs. It was during those inspirational Black Panther days, that he became good friends with local artists who were on the rise, including General Degree, Tony Rebel and Garnet Silk, who had a tremendous influence on the impressionable singer. He also met two of the most influential people of his career, Tyrone Taylor and Courtney Melody. Eventually, his close bond with General Degree began to pay dividends, as Degree invited him to the studio with him on several occasions, introducing him to influential movers and shakers in the music business. In the meantime, the young singer also met a wealthy local bus owner from Southfield, St. Elizabeth, called 'Million' who persuaded him to join his sound of the same name, where he went on to cut the tune "Sweet Cassandra" on Million's own label. It was not until 1996, when he recorded "Rainbow Never Touch The Ground" on the "Kutchie" riddim for producer/songwriter Anthony Red Rose that people began to take notice of him. With Red Rose managing Terry Linen, he began to put out numerous reggae gems such as the ultra-popular light-hearted lament "Couldn't Be The Girl For Me", "Storm Is Over", "Call On A Friend", "Jah Jah You Save Me", and of course "Your Love Is My Love". In the year 2004 he scored again with "Counting Hours", which was produced by Beres Hammond for his Harmony House label.

Late 2008, early 2009 he was back on the radar with chartbusters like the powerful ballads "No Time To Linger" and "A Better Man" and the moving love song "Mood For Love", all featured on his third full length album to date -- the self-titled debut album (2001) and the Japan released "Give Thanks And Praise" (2008) being the others. Apart from the well known hit songs, "A Better Man" contains tunes that grow on you fast. Throughout the album Terry Linen shows that he's able to make a seamless transition between lovers rock and roots & culture music. Matters of the heart are expressed in songs such as "Don't Intend To Cheat", "Couldn't Be The Girl" and the wonderful "At Least - Back To Atlanta", while "Say A Prayer For The World", "Praise Ye The Lord" and "Stand Firm" offer powerful conscious lyrics over solid roots reggae riddims. They are followed by songs like "Now I See The Sun", a lively song of inspiration, "Dem Nuh Easy", a bluesy commentary on the social 'mix up' of modern times, and "Have Mercy", a great remake of the Mighty Diamonds' all time classic.

All in all a strong collection of tunes by one of reggae music's greatest talents.