Sean Paul, Lila Ike, Machel Montano, Vacardi Singh

Sean Paul, Lila Ike, Machel Montano, Vacardi Singh

Modern Island Pop, R&B, and Hip Hop Part 2: A Marriage Of Genres

Written by: David Lawrence

In part 1 of Modern Island Pop, R&B, and Hip Hop, we looked at artists from the Caribbean whose music directly competes with their North American Counterparts. In this installment, we will examine musicians who are rooted in native Caribbean music and in their effort to reach a wider global audience have created hybrid cross-cultural sounds. This, in the true sense of the words, is Island Pop, R&B, and Hip Hop because the music here is a perfect marriage of the genres; it is an ‘islandization’ of these genres.

As it is the norm for reggae artists to do covers of R&B and pops songs to a reggae beat, it is no surprise that many of these artists create songs loaded with influences from these foreign genres which can often sound more like R&B or Pop than Reggae. Sevana’s “Set Me On Fire”, Romain Virgo’s “Beautiful To Me”, Lila Ike’sSolitude” and Christopher Martin’sYou’ll Never Find’ are some examples of this.

On the dancehall side, artists like Shaggy, Sean Paul, and Beenieman have led the way with collaborations with top pop artists to create musical gems. “Don’t Make Me Wait” by Shaggy and Sting; “Up” by Inna and Sean Paul; “Slow Down” by Skip Marley and H.E.R ; and “You” by Damian Marley and Yendry are examples of such recent collaborations.

On the southern part of the Caribbean, let’s look at some soca artists who in an effort to reach wider audiences have ventured into producing some exciting blends of soca with other genres. Machel Montano’s Getaway,  Kes ft J Perry’s “Liki Tiki”, Patrice Roberts’ “Carry On”, and Xpert Productions & Nelle’s “Far Away”, give us a taste of these beautiful blends.

Like their soca brethren, some Chutney soca artists have successfully done the same with the chutney beat creating love ballads that are getting lots of airplay and views on YouTube.  Vicardi Singh’s Never Gonna Leave, Prince Jp’s Can’t Stop Loving You, and Steven Ramphal’s “Never Leave You” are examples of such songs.

For further listening of Island Pop, R&Band Hip Hop, check out our Spotify playlist below.


Hashtags #SeanPaul #LilaIke #MachelMontano #VicardiSingh #DamianMarley #ChristopherMartin #PatriceRobert #XpertProduction #Sevana #PrinceJP #Kes #StevenRamphal #Shaggy #SkipMarley

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