Since he started promoting his upcoming album, Of Dons and Divas, incarcerated deejay, Vybz Kartel, has been touting the 16-track compilation as the ‘Grammy album’.
The artiste, who has had Billboard success before, has his sights set on the coveted ‘gold gramophone’ and has been making his intentions very clear.
With Sean Paul being the last dancehall artiste to nab the award ( Dutty Rock in 2004), Kartel is looking to write his name in history again, by becoming the first hardcore dancehall artiste to win the Grammy Award for Best Reggae album in more than a decade.
Speaking with THE STAR recently, Gaza first lady, Lisa Hyper, said that though it may seem far-fetched to many, it is not impossible for Kartel.
She explained that throughout his career, the ‘Worl’ Boss’ has proven that he has what it takes to garner international recognition.
That recognition, she stressed, has led to several Billboard successes and a certified gold record. His 2016 hit single, Fever, produced by TJ Records, was certified gold by the Recording Industry Association of America in February.
“Vybz Kartel always delivers musically and this album isn’t going to be anything new, he’s just going to be kicking things up a notch. He’s been on Billboard, he has a gold single and so the only next logical step is the Grammy. It’s different steps and different stages, but his work always delivers, they’re always great,” she said. “I’m not surprised he’s taking it to this level and I don’t think nobody else is gonna be surprised. They’re gonna just say ‘Well this man is really the don’. What I love about this album is the number of collaborations on it and most of them are young people, so a lot of people will get a buzz from it.”
Hyper, who is featured on the album, says if nominated, Of Dons and Divas will prove once again that dancehall music is a force.
“It’s not like we’re not already great products in dancehall, is just that we’re not getting the help we need from the powers that be to push the music so that mek it look like dancehall nah do nothing and a just ignorant and dunce do dancehall when that is far from the truth,” she lamented. “A nuh everybody inna dancehall a dunce thugs. Most a we intelligent, most a we talented and are great people. Dancehall been a happen and anything weh dancehall achieve, it supposed to achieve. This album winning a Grammy would just go to show that we been fi have dancehall albums a win more Grammys.”
Kartel’s cousin, and the latest artiste in the Gaza camp, Gaza Slimatic, told THE STAR that the deejay has put so much effort into his latest body of work, that he deserves a Grammy nomination.
“They (the singles) are all great tracks on the album with good content that people can relate to, not only in Jamaica, but internationally. With this album Vybz Kartel truly deserves that prestigious award,” she said.
Speaking with Instagram comedian, Jaii Frais and his so-host Chevii SRM on their podcast, Let’s Be Honest last Thursday, noted music producer JonFX said Kartel getting a Grammy nomination is not far-fetched.
In fact, the Billboard charting producer said that as a voting member of the Florida chapter of the Grammy board, he is certain Kartel is getting everyone on board who can help secure his nomination.