Amid drizzling rain, I walked out to I Wayne's black van, which had been outfitted with tinted windows and fat rims. Reaching for the door to let him out, I spied the door handle — which read "Dutty" in big gold lettering — before unleashing a cloud of that oh-so-reggae aroma as I pulled back the sliding door.
Between the van and the fifth floor of the NPR Music offices, I Wayne and his entourage said little. But as soon as our cameras started rolling, he sprang to life. He was quickly transformed into performance mode — vibrant and full of energy, right on cue.
I Wayne first made a splash in 2004 after the release of "Can't Satisfy Her"; with his messages of peace and love, he's largely credited with bringing the roots and rock back to mainstream reggae. Starting with "Real and Clean," from his recent Life Teachings, he captivated us with his smooth voice, supported only by an acoustic guitar. Then he got the NPR audience grooving with "Can't Satisfy Her," which closed with the crowd singing the words to the chorus. It might have been a rainy day outside, but I Wayne still brought island warmth into our office, even if only for a few minutes.
- "Real And Clean"
- "Can't Satisfy Her"
Filmed and edited by Michael Katzif; audio by Kevin Wait; photo by Cristina Fletes