Welcome To My World
Terry Linen
Joe Frasier/VP Records
February 24, 2014

Track list
  1. As If I Didnít Know
  2. Have To Get To Know You
  3. Venus
  4. Your Body Is Here
  5. Welcome To My World
  6. Bam Bam
  7. Juvenile Tribal War
  8. I Look To You
  9. Iím Different
  10. Shoop Shoop
  11. Not Used To You Like That
  12. Por Favor
  13. I Canít Change
  14. You Look Like Love
  15. My Heart Goes Out
  16. Klub Lippa feat. Kiprich
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Total votes : 8
Rating : from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)
Vocals : 4 Backing : 4/5 Production : 5 Sound quality : 5 Sleeve : 4/5
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. After graduating from school, he hooked up with the Black Kat sound system where he cut dubs. It was during those days that Linen became good friends with local artistes who were on the rise, including General Degree, Tony Rebel and Garnet Silk. The latter had a tremendous influence on him. 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 the young singer and Anthony Red Rose began to take on the mantle as Terry Linenís manager. At the turn of the century he recorded his monster hit, a cover of Whitney Houstonís "Your Love Is My Love". On this project, Linen received assistance from the musicians Sly Dunbar, Robbie Shakespeare, Gitsy, Jazzwad and Dean Fraser. "Your Love Is My Love" hit the top of the reggae charts in Miami, and in New York for 12 straight weeks. The song also hit reggae charts in the Caribbean.

In 2001, Linenís first full album, self-titled "Terry Linen", received rave reviews from music critics and fans. On the strength of this album, Linen toured North America and Japan. He continued to work hard, and in the year 2004, he scored again with his song "Counting Hours", which was produced by Beres Hammond for his Harmony House Records label. In 2008 he released the album "Give Thanks And Praise" in Japan. 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 "A Better Man".

Nearly 15 years after his debut, the soulful reggae crooner Terry Linen returns with his latest studio album, entitled "Welcome To My World". The album is produced by Lloyd & Michelle Campbell and talented songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Fabian Smith. It's a collection of traditional quality reggae tunes, licking several soul and pop standards from past and present. The music is smooth and the mood is silky for this romantic reggae interlude.

In 1961 pop star Adam Wade scored three hit tunes, one of them being As If I Didn't Know. A wonderful aching lovers tune that suits Terry Linen's delivery perfectly! Next comes the equally fine Have To Get To Know You. The following tune is another interpretation, you either love or hate. Venus became Frankie Avalon's first number-one hit in 1959, spending five weeks atop the survey. Terry Linen's version stays very close to the original tune, so no reggae/dancehall here, you've been warned! Anyway, lets move up to another cover. This one's a really good choice. In 1982 the soul band The O'Jays scored a minor hit with Your Body's Here With Me (But Your Mind's On The Other Side Of Town), a superb lovers tune -- written by Bunny Sigler -- brought with passion and quality by Terry. The title track is a solid tune.

Toots and the Maytals won the first-ever Jamaican Independence Festival Popular Song Competition in 1966 with their original song Bam Bam, later covered in dancehall style by Sister Nancy and Yellowman. Almost 50 years later Terry takes the original and turns it into a fine 2014 reggae tune. There's one more reggae cover here. You Look Like Love is smoothly done over a classic Treasure Isle riddim laid down by Tommy McCook & The Supersonics. Social commentary is heard in Juvenile Tribal War, but with I Look To You he returns to Whitney Houston material. It was written by R. Kelly who performed this tune on Whitney's memorial service in 2012. Nineties producer Babyface wrote and produced the No. 1 hit Exhale (Shoop Shoop) for Whitney Houston and Terry sings the song as a tribute to Whitney. Porfavor skitters over Latin style beats, but Klub Lippa, in combination with deejay Kiprich, has to be the outstanding tune here. Kiprich adds a juicy dancehall flavor to the song.

Soulful return of Terry Linen!