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» GUEST RUNDOWNS » A CHAT WITH ONE OF DANCEHALL’S TOP PRODUCERS – BOBBY DIGITAL!

A CHAT WITH ONE OF DANCEHALL’S TOP PRODUCERS – BOBBY DIGITAL!

By Simone Morgan——

OVER the past three decades, Bobby Digital (Bobby Dixon) has grown from studio rookie and engineer to become one of modern reggae’s most talented producers.

His credits include some of dancehall’s finest moments, among them a series of hits with Grammy-winning deejay Shabba Ranks.

Top: Bobby Digital, Shabba Ranks, Peter Chemist – displaying their “GOLD RECORDS” in 1991. Bottom: Digital… It is really a spiritual thing as I involve the Almighty in everything that I do

 

Digital had input in both Shabba’s Grammy-winning albums, As Raw as Ever and Extra Naked. He is also the producer behind some of the deejay’s hardcore songs like Wicked inna Bed and Just Reality.

He produced Garnet Silk’s It’s Growing album, Black Woman and Child and Da Real Thing by Sizzla, and Don’t Haffi Dread To Be Rasta by Morgan Heritage.

What is his formula for success?

“It is really a spiritual thing as I involve the Almighty in everything that I do. Furthermore, I am not jumpy as it relates to producing an entertainer’s work,” he told Splash. “It is also about building a connection with the artist. This is where we get a chance to share ideas and learn about each other’s headspace,” he added.

According to Digital, it has never been just about the money. He said although he maintained a low profile in recent years, he was still active in the music business, assisting young producers and artists.

“It isn’t about the financial compensation but its the feeling of fulfillment when I assist a musician and he/she elevates. It is about bringing out the best in people,” he said.

Bobby Digital

Among Digital’s protégés is his son Craig Dixon. The 22-year-old is behind upcoming albums from reggae/dancehall artists Cali P, Voicemail and Chevaughn.

Comparing productions of the 1980s to the present, Dixon believes contemporary producers are taking too many short cuts.

“Not every one is patient enough to make lasting material that will be still fresh 20 years into the future. Now it is like operating a fast food chain…the music is too disposable,” a concerned Digital said.

Yet, he is impressed by some artists who are recording quality music, such as Assassin, Busy Signal and Romain Virgo.

“I lift my hat off to these entertainers as they are still trying to hold it down,” he said.

Digital was born in Waterhouse, a tough inner-city community in St Andrew. The third of five children remembers attending dances in his community and listening to sound systems like Socialist Roots and Tipper Tone during the 1970s.

 

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