Reggae has long been the most vivid musical escape for me. Its soul-cleansing rhythms always feel familiar and cozy, like rushing into your lover's arms after a significant time away. This is especially true for roots reggae, whose staccato guitar licks, billowing bass, and sonic splashes on a canvas of negative space, are like salve for the soul. The mid-tempo pulse conjures up relaxed days on the beach, living amid nature's unrestricted beauty.
Given all that, you can understand why I've been obsessed with Chronixx lately. At a time when dancehall has been dominating the Jamaican soundscape, its refreshing to hear the man born Jamar McNaughton carrying the roots-revival torch for a younger generation and expanding upon the footprint left by his world-renowned predecessors.
Chronixx and his band Zincfence Redemption paid a long-awaited visit to the Tiny Desk to perform three songs from his sophomore album, Chronology.
- "Skankin' Sweet"
- "Spanish Town Rockin'"
Jamar "Chronixx" McNaughton (vocals); Evan Mason (keys); Stephen Coore (guitar); N'Namdi Robinson (guitar); Hector Lewis (percussion); Adrian Henry (bass); Oliver Thompson (drums)
Producers: Abby O'Neill, Niki Walker, Morgan Noelle Smith; Creative Director: Bob Boilen; Audio Engineer: Josh Rogosin; Videographers: Niki Walker, Tsering Bista, Morgan Noelle Smith, Bronson Arcuri; Production Assistant: Jenna Li; Photo: Claire Harbage/NPR.
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