Heavy D
December 30, 2008

Heavy D - Vibes Track list
  1. Long Distance Girl
  2. No Matter What
  3. Queen Majesty
  4. Love Me Like This feat. Barrington Levy
  5. My Love Is All I Have
  6. Hugs & Kisses
  7. Private Dancer feat. Sizzla
  8. Delilah
  9. Chasing Windmills
  10. Sincere
Rating : from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)
Vocals : 3 Backing : 5 Production : 4/5 Sound quality : 5 Sleeve : 5
For those who grew up on hip-hop music in the late 1980s, Heavy D is a familiar name. Back in the late 1980s, Heavy D was one of the rising names in black music in the US. Along with groups like Guy and Blackstreet, he helped define the New Jack beat that was the sound of choice in the early 1990s. He had several hits as a member of the group, Heavy D and the Boyz (Now That We Found Love), and worked with diverse acts from Michael Jackson (Jam) to blues legend B.B. King (Keep It Coming).

In the 1990s, Heavy D (birth name Dwight Myers) had some chart action with the dancehall songs 'Dem Nuh Worry We' which he did with Super Cat in 1992 and 'Big and Ready' which was also done with Super Cat and singer Frankie Paul.

"I want to take reggae out of that box that America puts it in," he said. Myers' passion for reggae has even taken him to the upper echelons of the National Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences, where he is currently lobbying for more Grammy Awards in the reggae arena. "We also need to get recognized at the award committees," he sighed. "I'm in the process of becoming a board member, and I've already had meetings [regarding adding more reggae categories at the Grammy Awards]." This lobbying already resulted in being nominated for a Grammy for best reggae album.

"If you go back and follow my career, you'll see that I've always had reggae influences," the rapper said earlier this month from his house in Beverly Hills. "I've always toyed with the idea of doing a full reggae album, but I wasn't feeling I could live up to the standard." Well does his first reggae album live up the standard? In other words: Is the Grammy nomination justified? In my humble opinion it isn't a Grammy-worthy album, but that doesn't mean it's not an enjoyable album. Dwight knows which riddims are suiting his delivery. And while he is a limited singer he has a pleasant timbre in his voice. Also Sizzla and Barrington Levy are adding their 2 cents at this record. All those ingredients combined make this album a pleasant listening experience. The record gave me a 90's throwback feeling mainly because of the "kindergardish" lyrics ('love you so, never let you go'') and the way Heavy delivers his verses.

I think I will play this album more often just because I have a weak spot for artists like Heavy D, you can feel all through the record that he loves reggae music in general. This genuine love for music makes me forgive him his sometimes mediocre lyrics. Just give it a listen, maybe the lovers rock from this former hip-hop artist surprises you.