Life Teachings
VP Records
December 31, 2011

Life Teachings - I-Wayne Track list
  1. Burn Down Soddom
  2. Real And Clean
  3. Empress Divine
  4. Pure As The Nile
  5. Herb Fi Legalize
  6. The Fire Song feat. Assassin
  7. Drugs And Rum Vibes
  8. Wise And Fearless
  9. Change Them Ways
  10. Life Teachings (Ital Sipp'ns)
  11. Life Joy feat. Etana
  12. Life Service
  13. I Care For You
  14. Do The Good
Rate this album!
Cast your vote below.

Essential -Votes: 10-
Very Good -Votes: 7-
Good -Votes: 2-
Average -Votes: 1-
Disappointing -Votes: 4-
A Waste Of Time -Votes: 0-

Total votes : 24
Rating : from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)
Vocals : 5 Backing : 3/4 Production : 3/4 Sound quality : 5 Sleeve : 4
In 2004 Cliffroy Taylor, better known as I-Wayne, shot to prominence with the engaging "Can't Satisfy Her", which he delivered over a re-cut of Junior Delgado's "No Warrior" aka "Father Jungle Rock" riddim. The lyrics of that song (speaking of the consequences of prostitution and materialism) caused some controversy but didn't prevent it from becoming a No. 1 hit. Besides that its massive popularity played a major role in the revival of 'one drop' riddims in Jamaica. I-Wayne's first hit song was soon followed by other breakthrough hits such as "Living In Love" over Stephen 'Gibbo' Gibbs' "Hard Times" riddim and "Lava Ground". The latter was also the title of his 2005 released debut album, which was followed by his sophomore full length set called "Book Of Life" in 2007 (both released by VP records).

And now, towards to end of 2011, I-Wayne's third album on the VP records label, entitled "Life Teachings", has hit the streets. The singer's distinctively high pitched vocal style, which is like a sweeter version of Pinchers', comes on top of fresh original riddims mostly played by experienced Jamaican musicians such as Squidly Cole, Danny 'Axeman' Thompson, Winston 'Bopee' Bowen, Sly & Robbie, George 'Dusty' Miller, Paul Crossdale, Donald Dennis, Mitchum 'Khan' Chin, and his uncle Ansel Collins. All tracks, except "The Fire Song" - the odd combination with Assassin aka Agent Sasco, were recorded at Anchor Recording Studio in Kingston JA, with mostly Shane C. Brown of Juke Boxx Productions being the mixing engineer.

Releases from the past have proven that I-Wayne not only manages to impress with his flawlessly controlled falsetto, but also with his sophisticated lyrics, for which he draws from a rich vocabulary. Both qualities are also omnipresent on this collection of tunes. The 16 tracks featured here are made up of conscious roots tunes and efforts that deal with romance, with the latter mostly being underpinned by riddims that are heavily infused with R'n'B. Unfortunately we're treated to far too many of these kinda songs on "Life Teachings", which makes that I-Wayne's third album doesn't fully live up to expectations and thus can't satisfy us all the way. However there are a few decent songs like "Burn Down Soddom", "Real And Clean", "Herb Fi Legalize", "Drugs And Rum Vibes" and "Change Them Ways", while the standout title track "Life Teachings (Ital Sipp'ns)" makes a serious impression. But it's after this track that we push the eject button, because the remaining tunes aren't really worth hearing.

One can only hope that this album isn't representative of the direction I-Wayne's is heading for, as this surely will turn out to be a dead-end street.