Watch the Bad Wine video here: youtu.be/Ri1PeDxg05I
RDL Shellah (the artist formerly known as RDL) follows up the long sold out pop-grade 2021 Streets 7” produced by Mexico’s riddim queen Smurphy with a full Showcase EP featuring Canadian collective Seekersinternational (SKRS) on the buttons once again.
Lead single ‘Bad Wine’ is pure silky-tongued summer heater with a dusty boom-bap soul like a Jamaican take on Anderson Paak and Knxwledge; while the video tells a classic ‘where is my boyfriend’ story that’s as old as time. RDL Shellah has been part of I Jahbar’s Roolingz Musik collective, recording under the name Providence and guesting on tracks like ‘Rock the Party’ before joining him in Duppy Gun operations. The Showcase EP marks his first big artistic statement as a solo vocalist before he embarks on another collaborative EP in 2022 with I Jahbar sharing vocal duties (also produced by Seekersinternational).
There’s a lovers-style sweetness to RDL’s vocals while SKRS’ totally unique riddims take in straight-up pop, boom-bap, jungle breaks and UK bass into the whole history of dancehall for an EP that sounds like nothing else in that world really. SKRS have come full circle from their sampledelic beginnings as the very first artist Bokeh Versions ever released (Showcase will be the 7th release they’ve done for Bokeh). Forever deconstructing and bending expectations from lovers rock on their LoversDedicationStation LP to the critically acclaimed jungle masterpiece RaggaPreservationSociety, they have now established themselves as a producer-for-hire in contemporary dancehall.
Showcase EP will also mark a new beginning: it’s the first music released out of the new Duppy Gun / Bokeh Versions / Roolings Muzik studio in Dam Head (near Spanish Town, JA). The studio represents a huge step forward for the Duppy collective from it’s humble country beginnings in the Westmoreland outback recording on borrowed gear. The new studio was financed through Bandcamp purchases of cassettes and fundraising tees as well as a few pay-what-you-like crowdfunding days on Duppy Bandcamp, and built by I Jah’s own hands. It shows the real fan-power driving this underground dancehall phenomenon and the fulfilment of I Jahbar’s collective vision (as head of Duppy operations in Jamaica).
The studio, run by I Jah, is a new level of autonomy for the collective, who are now able to voice tracks as quick as they come. It also provides a community hub for a growing group of young vocalists (mentored by I Jah) and global producers from France, Brazil, UK, USA, Japan and beyod. I Jahbar’s even able to earn a bit of cash on the side selling fresh fruit and sandwiches straight from the smoking area to passers by.