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» GUEST RUNDOWNS » “NO AIRPLAY FOR VETERAN ARTISTS” AS BUNNY BROWN RELEASES NEW ALBUM!

“NO AIRPLAY FOR VETERAN ARTISTS” AS BUNNY BROWN RELEASES NEW ALBUM!

Give us airplay’

Cecelia Campbell-Livingston

Monday, February 20, 2012

‘I would love to hear radio stations playing my songs the way they play Vybz Kartel. At least give the people an opportunity to hear both sides,” opined veteran singer Joel ‘Bunny’ Brown, whose latest album, Bunny Brown Sings The Classic Soul Hits, was released on Valentine’s Day.

Produced by Brown for his label, Joel’s Ark Productions, he says the album is one that lovers of good music will enjoy. Among the covers are Heatwave’s Always and Forever; Sam Cook’s A Change Is Gonna Come, the Temptations’ Just My Imagination, the Righteous Brothers’ Unchained Melody and Michael Jackson’s She’s Out Of My Life.

“I expect this album to soar. Rod Stewart did a cover album and it soared, I’m expecting the same results for this one,” said Brown.

“People enjoy good love songs,” he continued. “Women love to be charmed and feel good about themselves. I feel they will gravitate to it.”

Still, he is hoping Classic Soul Hits will receive some love from local disc jockeys.

“It’s hard to get this kind of music played on some stations as they play mostly dancehall,” said Brown. “Hopefully, my album will be listened to by all stations and they will give me the support.”

Lack of airplay is not the only challenge facing Brown. His main issue is a lack of respect shown to ‘foundation’ artists like himself.

“They get overlooked from major productions and the only time they are booked for events is when it’s being organised by a promoter who specialises in our kind of shows,” he said.

 

Bunny Brown is not the only ‘vintage’ artist who has complained about lack of airplay for his new recordings. Similar cries have come from

Ernie Smith, Leroy Sibbles and Bob Andy.

Interestingly, one of contemporary reggae’s biggest hitmakers is singer Beres Hammond, who is approaching 60.

Brown enjoyed success in the early 1970s as lead singer for the group, The Chosen Few. They had a well-received album of covers, named Hit After Hit in 1973, containing tracks such as You’re A Big Girl Now, Ebony Eyes and Stranger On The Shore.

Originally from Richmond Park, Brown said he started singing in church, Olivet Gospel Hall, at age nine. He eventually joined his school choir at Campion College before becoming a professional singer with the Chosen Few.

Brown, who immigrated to England in the 1970s, returned to Jamaica in 2004 to resurrect his career. His last album, Ready For The World, was produced by Studio One founder, Clement ‘Coxson’ Dodd.

 

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