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Monday, Jun 21 2010 | 15:44 Buy this now at GoodToGo (B2B)

Reggae is music and much more. It’s a rhythm set to a poor man’s cry, a pledge from singer to struggler that “better must come”. No other reggae singer today delivers that promise with as much grace, power, and heart as Jamaican baritone Luciano. “United States Of Africa”, his upcoming new album, presents an informed outlook on world politics and everyday issues with a strong foundation in reggae. Produced by Frenchie for Maximum Sounds, the album includes vintage riddim tracks and strong ballads, and a range of one drop productions featuring some of Jamaica’s top musical talents (Sly & Robbie, Dean Fraser, Steven ‘Lenky’ Marsden, Robbie Lynn, Mafia & Fluxy), plus three songs from top writer Duane Stephenson. Both this new album and Luciano’s career story testify to the depth and constancy of the singer-songwriter’s human commitment.

He first began recording in 1992, with his debut single “Ebony & Ivory” on the Aquarius Record label and followed with his debut album “Moving Up” for RAS records in 1993. Jepther McClymont aka Luciano is the seventh of nine children and was born to extremely spiritual and musical parents while growing up in Daveyton, a small district in the central parish of Manchester, Jamaica.

Luciano’s music is influenced by Stevie Wonder, Frankie Paul and late reggae singer Dennis Brown. It was later on that he changed his stage name to Luciano while often being referred to as “Jah Messenjah” and also at around that time collaborating with Fattis Burell’s Xterminator label where he developed his conscious roots aspect. After recording several LPs for Burell he recorded a set for Island records before starting an independent career recording. After voicing several covers for the Producer Sky High, Luciano released “Give My Love A Try,” which was produced at Castro Brown’s New Name Studio and was a hit in Jamaica. It was there that Luciano met Freddie McGregor the former Studio One child star who had become an International Reggae Superstar. Joining McGregor’s Big Ship production company, Luciano began creating cultural, conscious reggae that reflected his religious and social concerns. Again in 1993, Luciano scored a 1 UK reggae hit with the song “Shake It Up Tonight” but Luciano says, “I didn’t see myself going in that pattern, singing love songs, dressed in a felt hat, looking smooth. It looked very splashy”.

Luciano is an award-winning artist and although his object is to stay humble, he has received numerous awards including ‘Most Spiritual and Educative Singer’ and Mandela’s ‘Most Cultural Artist’. He even received a plaque from the Jamaican government to encourage him in the work he is doing. Doing good works are not confined to just music for Luciano, as he is a firm believer that he should be a positive role model. He says “I’ve never stooped low and I’m not gonna bow to Babylon and no matter how much me angry bout certain tings, me nah come pon stage and express myself inna no negativeness”. As a messenger, Luciano always strives to be true and righteous as he delivers the word of Jah. He says, “I cannot become egotistical about it”.

He was awarded the Order of Distinction in the rank of Officer on October 15, 2007, in recognition of his contribution to reggae music.

In July 2009, Luciano payed his respects to fellow musician Michael Jackson by releasing a Reggae tribute of Jackson’s iconic song, “We are the World” on LionI Records. The original song was recorded by many famous musicians and actors of the 1980’s and raised money through the USA for Africa charity for hunger and AIDS relief.

www.myspace.com/lucianomessenjah

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