Album review
Mr. G
S-Curve Records
August 05, 2004

Tracking list

  1. One Phone Call feat. Alex from T.O.K.
  2. Issues
  3. Gangsters feat. Sanchez
  4. Nobody But You feat. Wayne Wonder
  5. It's So Good feat. Kathryn Raio
  6. Simple Song
  7. Put Some Pimpin' In It
  8. U Gotta Lotta Nerve
  9. Question
  10. The Lord Will Be There feat. Beenie Man
  11. No Place Like Home feat. Tony Rebel
  12. It's So Good (Troyton Remix)
Rating : from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)

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

Mr. G has been a serious force on the dancehall scene for some time now. Born Chad Simpson in Kingston, Jamaica, the 29-year old artist began his musical career at age 12, deejaying various block parties and sound systems. Infatuated with the sounds of Lt. Stitchie, Papa San and Admiral bailey, the youngster dreamed of toasting in similar fashion. After having finished High School he started hanging around Kingston studios in 1990, putting out his first single entitled "Informer". By the time he broke big with the international chart-topping "Fudgie" in 1996 (followed by hit singles such as "Whining Machine", "Don’t Give A Damn", "Brush Yuh Teeth" and "Big Man, Little Youth"), he was well-versed in the reggae game, armed with knowledge that led him to begin with his own Young Blood Records in 1999. As Goofy he released his first album, "I Don't Give A Damn", in 1999. Recently he changed his name into Mr. G to become more serious in the music business, and he now releases his first album under his new name for the US based label S-Curve Records.
This move in his musical career might be seen as an attempt to reach a broader audience, and indeed it is. His new cd Ïssues" contains a collection of songs that mainly cross over between hardcore dancehall and R&B-flavored reggae. History learns that most Jamaican artists - including Shabba Ranks and Super Cat - who have followed this road before experienced that it was a dead end. The same might happen to Mr. G even though "Issues" isn't a bad cd at all. However, the main problem is that his avid long time fans don't get what they have been waiting for since the release of "I Don't Give A Damn". Only tracks like for example "Question" and the combination tunes "One Phone Call", "Gangsters" and "Nobody But You" will live up to their expectations. Also the reggae oriented tracks with Beenie Man and Tony Rebel are worth of hearing and can reckon on approval of his fans. On the other hand it's doubtful that the remaining material on this cd will attract alot of new fans. Too many different styles are utilized to make this cd worthwhile for a new audience. Surely "It's So Good" - featuring Kathryn Raio, a background singer from Jennifer Lopez's band - is an infectious tune with strong hit potential for the mainstream, but that alone won't do.
All in all a cd that provides mixed feelings.

Teacher & Mr. T.