In case you missed the chapter of Joss Stone’s (best remembered for her 2003 cover of The White Stripes’ “Fell In Love With A Girl”) career during which she dabbles in reggae, listen to her most recent album, Water For Your Soul, which was released on July 31 of this year and apparently captivated reggae-loving audiences of an ostensibly Caucasian nature.
Her collaborations with Dennis Bovell and Damian Marley may serve as an attempt to legitimize her foray into the genre, but, ultimately, what does it say about music audiences when someone as Anglican and unschooled in reggae emerges from the woodwork to sell 29,000 copies of an album? Well, ultimately, it reveals one of the following: only white people listen to reggae (which could well hold water–for your soul–considering some of the California demographic) or white people only buy reggae albums when it’s coming from a white artist.
Whatever the reason, there’s no denying the absurdity of Stone winning the title of Reggae Artist of the Year. Regardless of her vocal talents, there is something amiss with the way other, more viable reggae musicians are being ignored.