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Music Is Life

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Beres Hammond 26//2001

Review

Jamaica's elder statesman of lovers ballads procures another patented, soulful recipe on Music Is Life. One of only a few living reggae legends, the unassuming Hammond has the power to transform any listening environment into a contemplative Caribbean getaway. Hammond's effortless delivery and near flawless vocal quality call to mind an atmosphere of swaying palm trees, cool blue water, and overall positive vibrations. His enduring Jamaican hit of 2000, "They Gonna Talk," is as calmly groovy as it is heartfelt. The more up-tempo "Dance for Me" pairs Beres with one of his devoted aficionados, Wyclef Jean, in a near facsimile of Wyclef's crossover duet with Santana, "Maria, Maria." While Hammond is a clear virtuoso of rocksteady and lovers reggae, he also demonstrates versatility on this offering. The more bittersweet ballads, "Mary, Mary" and "Angel Eyes," are haunting as well as eloquent. But, the pièce de résistance may be "Gonna Shine Again," a low-tempo track teeming with heart-wrenching emotion. Hammond takes traditional roots flavors and transposes them just enough to satisfy purists and new listeners alike. The resulting formula is soothing, accessible, and thought-provoking reggae music. ~ M.F. DiBella
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  1. # Track Artist Length
  2. 1 Ain't It Good to Know Beres Hammond 3:55
  3. 2 They Gonna Talk Beres Hammond 3:55
  4. 3 Wanna Cry Beres Hammond 3:46
  5. 4 Dusty Road Beres Hammond 3:57
  6. 5 Rock Away Beres Hammond 3:53
  7. 6 I Love Ja Beres Hammond 3:45
  8. 7 Dance 4 Me Beres Hammond 4:16
  9. 8 Angel Eyes Beres Hammond 4:0
  10. 9 Mary, Mary Beres Hammond 4:1
  11. 10 Don't Play With My Heart Beres Hammond 3:38
  12. 11 Gonna Shine Again Beres Hammond 3:50
  13. 12 Music Is Life Beres Hammond 3:40
  14. 13 Tender Love Beres Hammond 3:38
  15. 14 Honey Wine and Love Song Beres Hammond 3:50
  16. 15 Rise and Shine Beres Hammond 3:42
  17. 16 African People Beres Hammond 4:16
  18. 17 Give Me a Friend Beres Hammond 3:54

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