Album review
Hey Mr.
Rula Brown
Bee Cat Records
29 - 03 - 2002

Tracking list

  1. Boink
  2. I'm All Out Of Love
  3. Hey Mr. (Do You Have A Heart To Give ?)
  4. Peace In The Valley Of Love
  5. I Wanna Know
  6. Hard To Confess
  7. You Send Me (Feat. Skanky Dan)
  8. American Story (Feat. Maurice Lindsay)
  9. Move Me Baby (Duet w/ Lukie D.)
  10. Bad Bwoyz (Remix Of Yu Think A Little Gun w/ Cobra)
  11. Montego Bay
  12. Remember Ma & Pa (Calypso Mix w/ Red Foxx)
  13. Jamdong Party
  14. Once Upon A Time
  15. Soul Sistah
  16. When I First Saw You (Duet w/ Marilyn)
  17. Memories Of You
  18. Interview With God
Rating : from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)

Vocals : 4/5 Backing : 4 Production : 4 Sound quality : 4/5 Sleeve : 3/4

Ruel Brown, aka Rula Brown was born in East Kingston, Jamaica in 1954, and migrated to the United States in 1975. Rula has always enjoyed listening to music since the early days, listening to Dennis Brown, Ken Boothe,The Heptones, Bob Marley, Delfonics & Stylistics. It was in 1984 while studying for his Masters degree that Rula sang and produced his first song titled 'Life Without Love/Reggae Down On It' which he released on his own BEE CAT RECORDS label out of New Jersey. The single went on to hit # 5 on the reggae charts in New York and did very well in other states and Europe.
Rula also produced other reggae artists such as Shaggy, Rayvon, Papa San, Merciless, Dereck Parker, Leroy Smart, Jack Radics, Lukie D, Cobra, Skanky Dan, Red Foxx plus many others. Currently Rula has produced over 300 songs on the Bee Cat record label and publishes on Bee Cat Music.
Recently, Rula have been quite proactive in the promotion of the GRANNY-Icy Academic Scholarship program that he founded in September of 1999. The program was created in memory of his grandmother, Miss Adeline Smith and his mother Ms. Icilda Malcolm who died September 13, 1999. The program provides for scholarships, computers, printers & SAT books for high school students in the Mountain View Ave, Norman Gardens, Jarrett Lane & Saunders Lane community who would like to attend college in Jamaica or abroad. On 8/09/2000, Rula also created the Adopt A Student program for students between the ages of 10-13 who passed their common entrance exam and is on their way to high school. Thus far, Rula has donated JA $1,850,538.00 (US $43,338.00) in scholarships, computers, trips to Disney, gifts, Spelling Bee Prize money, SAT books, inks, printers, printing papers etc. A quarter of the sales of his new album will also go towards these projects.
After 6 previously strong CD's the versatile Rula Brown comes up with a brandnew album entitled "Hey Mr.(Do you Have A Heart To Give)". Just like the previous CD, this album is a well varied collection of sweet and smooth lovers songs, roots tunes and message songs. As expected Rula Brown sure knows to pick the right riddims and perfect covers to harmonize with his voice, which reminds us of Richie Stephens.
The opening track Boink is a wonderful lovers tune across a vintage Studio One riddim, followed by a superb and awesome lovers tune called I'm All Out Of Love, which uses the Dennis Brown riddim "Sitting And Watching" and was a great pop hit for the band Air Supply. Next comes the "Stir It Up' riddim which he uses for the title track Hey Mr. (Do You have A Heart "To Give) . A decent adaption of the "Swing Easy" riddim is used for the roots song Peace In The Valley Of Love. Once more Rula returns to a great Bob Marley riddim, this time it's the "Mr. Brown" riddim which he licks on the standout track I Wanna Know. Rocksteady time comes next as he does a solid remake of the Gayladds' Hard To Confess, but the tone changes radically when he teams up with Skanky Dan for the dancehall track You Send Me. For more dancehall niceness check out Bad Bwoyz on which he teams up with Cobra. Alongside singer Lukie D. he comes up with yet another fine lovers tune called Move Me Baby. Soca fans will love the the tune Remember Ma & Pa. Remember the Kool & The Gang hit "Get Down On It?"...well Rula brings you his full swing interpration of the song, here retitled as Jamdong Party. Although the tune Once Upon A Time was written by Delroy Wilson, we prefer Dennis Brown's version of the song, but Rula's version is a noteworthy remake of the song. When I First Saw You is a sweet duet with Marilyn, and the album closes with a very personal song, Interview With God, which everyone should check out.
Musicians on board include the Firehouse Crew, Lew Chang, Bobbie Reece, Lorenzo Conte, Robert Thread Wylin, Lamar Mitchell, Raphael and Dennis Halliburton. The fitting background vocals are provide by Raphael, Bobbie Reece, Rula Brown, Marilyn, Andi and Robert Thread Wylin. All of this was recorded at Music Works, Penthouse, Hostile Music Lab, HCF Recording, Shore Fire, INGOMA Music Lab and Mixing Lab.
Boomblast album !!

Teacher & Mr. T.