Jah9 represents a new breed of reggae rebels, who champion the cause to uplift - to enlighten and to empower, in a similar way that Bob Marley and several other "Rastas" sought to in the 70s and 80s. Outspoken and firm in her convictions, her fervent faith and spirituality has resulted in the production of "New Name" a 'gospel' to teach the youth - the truth. Previously released singles "Legitimate" and "New Name" seemed to have effectively conveyed her message as the venue would see a full house, packed to capacity all in her honour.
Emceed by the ever spirited Elise Kelly, the proceedings featured kind words to and about Jah9 by guest speakers. A vibrant dance number by Edna Manley graduates Kimone Ennis and Tamara Thomas was also a part of the programme. And then it was time for the lady of the hour to take the stage.
Backed by a cohesive band she strategically employs to achieve her signature Jazz on Root Rastafari Dub music, she began her set with "Spoken Word". Her audience would be given a taste of "New Name", an album woven with powerful provocative lyrics, delivered by hauntingly impressive vocals. Song after song, the singer who also serves as a yoga instructor, oozed an aura of positive vibration as she invited her audience to also channel a 'natural mystic' above all things. Perhaps one of the most humbling and unexpected yet delightful part of her performance was the presence of reggae music latest prodigy Chronixx being designated 'flagman' for the night. She was also briefly joined on stage by reggae sensation Protoje for a hearty duet. The finale came when she unleashed title track of the album, New Name - an obvious crowd favorite as echoes of the lyrics resonated throughout the cafe. By this it was clear the mass turnout was no accident, it was the coronation of reggae's newest heroine.
New Name features 12 tracks of which Jah9 told Jamaicansmusic.com, "This album is a proclamation of my faith: in the Most High; and in human spirit to overcome adversity. This is the foundation of who I am as an individual and thus as an artiste. It is also to establish the relationship I have found with Roots Rastafari Dub Music and the transmission of positive vibration and healing, through word and sound."
It was produced by the reputed Rory Gilligan and includes the input of some of Jamaica's esteemed talents including Seretse Small, Wayne Armond, Kirk Bennet, Earl 'Chinna' Smith and Donald "Danny Bassie" Dennis among others. Elise Kelly remarked that this album is a strong representation of real roots reggae and hails Jah9 as the sprout of reggae royalty.