PDW expresses our continued condolences to the family and friends of Michael “Mikey Dread” Campbell, the artist who passed away last Saturday, March 15. For more, read XLR8R’s full tribute to the man who pioneered radio and music as the Dread At The Controls.

Conscious roots vocalist Cocoa Tea has recorded a reggae song dedicated to U.S. Presidential candidate Barack Obama. A preview posted on Daily Motion reveals a thoughtful, inspired tune; VP Records will release the track, titled simply “Barack Obama,” this week. Cocoa Tea told an AP reporter, “the young people who are supporting him want change–and that’s what he represents.”

Legendary reggae band The Bloodfire Posse, consisting of top reggae producers and session musicians, has announced it will reunite for one show on April 27 at Jamaica’s National Indoor Sports Arena. Known for its late ’80s hits “Get Flat,” “Rub A Dub Soldier,” and “Rude Boyz,” the band consists of heavyweights Danny Browne, Paul Blake, Donovan ‘Benjie’ Belnavis, Steven ‘Lenky’ Marsden (who created the Diwali riiddim), Trevor ‘Skatta’ Bonnick, and Cleveland ‘Clevie’ Browne (of Steelie & Clevie fame). Clevie told the Gleaner recently of the band’s influence, “Bloodfire was on the cutting edge of technology at the time when they use to perform.”

Several reggae websites have reported that Mavado and his entourage allegedly beat up Kingston music publicist Christopher Campbell. Campbell freelances for several outlets, including OutARoad.com. Later, it was alleged that Mavado sent a threatening phone call via an associate to OutARoad.com photographer Carlington Wilmot. Mavado, whose real name is David Brooks, is apparently upset about photos published showing the artist partially clothed with a female companion. The New Kingston Police are investigating the incident.

Meanwhile, according to One876.com, things apparently got rough at Mavado’s Saturday, March 16 performance at Miami Soho Studios when an altercation outside the venue left one key member of his entourage, Chase Cross, nursing a near-fatal knife wound to the neck.

Talented brothers Stephen McGreogor and Daniel “Chino” McGregor were profiled in last week’s Jamaican Observer. Both sons of veteran artist Freddie McGregor have made major strides in the music business, including Stephen’s award for Best Dancehall Rhythm at the Recording Industry Association of Jamaica (RIAJam)/Reggae Academy Awards. Meanwhile, Stephen has been killing the charts with high-impact riddims like Bee Hive, Darker Shadow, Power Cut, Tremor, and Dark Again.

Shane C Brown’s popular Juke Boxx Productions has a new riddim called Warning. The dancehall oriented production features new material by Busy Signal, Demarco, Bling Dawg, Wayne Marshall, and Voice Mail. Juke Boxx also produced Da’Ville’s new “Right Here” single, as well as Busy Signal’s forthcoming “Curfew.”

You can preview tracks from Richie Spice’s new VP album, Gideon Boot, at United Reggae. Gideon Boot drops May 12. This new set of tracks is produced by Bobby ‘Digital’ Dixon who worked with Shabba Ranks and Sizzla, to name a couple.

The extensive Jamaican music online database Riddim Base has relaunched as Riddim Guide. Listen and cross-reference Jamaican rhythms new and old. Some new additions to the site include: Four Bottle (Heart Of Love), Duck (Black Scorpio), I Nine (Big Yard), Vanity (Artistic), Water Drops (Amplex), No Combo (Nicetime Music), and Da Go Go (Massive B).

Reggae Vibes NL Hot N Fresh Top Ten
1. Sean Paul “I Can Give You Pleasure”
2. Zebulun “Better Will Come (Discomix)”
3. Tony Curtis “Heaven Only Knows”
4. Kirk Davis “Bounce It”
5. Busy Signal “Gal You Got It”
6. Chino “We Burn Dem”
7. Gentleman “Dutty Heart”
8. Natty King “Slew You In The Open (Discomix)”
9. Buju Banton “Gun Shot Dem She”
10. Anthony Red Rose “Gangster Paradise”

Photo of Mavado by Martei Korley.