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Influenced by Bob Marley and The Wailers, Peter Tosh, Jacob Miller, Black Uhuru and Steel Pulse, the Edna Manley College alumni Earthkry will be releasing their much anticipated EP Dandy Shandy on 1/20/2023. The aim was to release a project that represented the sounds of reggae from the 1970s to late 80s. From the mix, recording style, lyrics and composition, they wanted to highlight that golden era.  The record is released under the Wash House Music Group Label based in California. All recording was done in Kingston, Jamaica at Tads Recording Studio and all songs were played, written and sung by EarthKry band members.

I received an early listen from Phillip McFarlane (keyboard/vocalist), and am so happy I asked.  If you love true roots reggae, this album is for you.  But we don’t just get a roots reggae album, it is a fresh but universal sound, one that would work 40-50 years ago, but also works today.  The lyrics, the message, rhythms, beats and harmonizing is so beautifully done in each song. 

We start off with "Ms. Mary", a sweet rock steady tune, that reminds me of Delroy Wilson’s "Dancing Mood" or a number of Alton Ellis songs. It’s with great praise to be compared to these icons. We switch the message in "The Ghetto.  It's a hard look at life in the ghetto, and while many artists in many genres have similar songs/messages, EarthKry brings a different feel to this one.  "See You Again" is a song that makes you want to get up and dance to, nice beat and rhythm that makes you smile and want to move! This song reminds me of The Wailers early hit,  "Soul Shakedown Party".  I still get that early Wailer vibe in "Another Guy" with the standard roots reggae skank and the lead vocals and nice harmonizing thorough out this sweet song.  I really love "Soon Come", a song written about being on the road for long periods of time and being missed by loved ones back home.  A nice beat and rhythm but what does it for me is the sweet vocals, you really feel how the members of the band miss their loved ones.  "Oh Sarah" brings us more love and goodness.  'Oh oh Sarah, I want to be your man, oh oh Sarah, I hope you understand, I want to be your man, I want to be your man, I want to be your man.'  We finish off with "Maaga Dog" (and Maaga Dog dub mix), another song with the classic 70’s reggae sound, this song explains a case when a person might help another person rise up from bad times, but in the end that same person turns around and stabs them in the back.

To say which is my favorite track is hard to say, there is not a bad, or even mediocre, song on this album.  Each time I listen I tend to have a new favorite, it could be the mood I’m in or something new I pick up in a song, but it is safe to say EarthKry has put together an album that hits from start to finish.  If you love reggae from the golden age or feel like you need to try it out, check out Dandy Shandy, you will be happy you did.

One Love-



Todd Judd

Photojournalist - Pennsylvania

Website: Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


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