Artist of the Month
Toronto's Mark Steele continues to heat up the musical circuit in Canada, and the world with his sweet singing voice and masterful showmanship.
Since 1992, when he first embarked on the musical circuit in Toronto, Steele has made an indelible imprint on the reggae music-loving audiences through appearances at various venues in the city. It started shortly after his emergence on the music scene; people began inquiring about this powerful and dynamic young singer/musician. Before long the name Steele was something of a household word on the reggae music circuit.
He has appeared locally, embarked on tours national and international, and has performed in Africa to audiences in excess of 20,000 with rave reviews, not to mention his performances in Jamaica and other Caribbean islands. Steele has come a long way since his first single, Ribbon In The Sky, released under the guidance of one of reggae's veteran artists, Triston Palmer. Since then, Steele has recorded a number of
other singles and earned the respect, and ear of national and international audiences and professionals in the world of music. Silhouette, cover of the late D. Brown, represents one of Steele's many hits that has been enjoying regular rotation on the airwaves at home and abroad. Jah Is My Strength continues to heat up the airwaves and proves to be a source of inspiration to radio audiences around the globe. It is not surprising that Steele is a much sought-after artist for live performances. He has shared the stage with some of reggae's most respected artists, such as Freddie McGregor, Rita Marley, Bounty Killa, The Melodians, Stranger Cole, Glenn Washington, Half Pint, and Wayne Wonder, just to name a few.
Former lead singer of one of Toronto's top award winning bands (Tatix), Steele has been described as dynamic, and sensational, with the versatility and range that defies restriction to any one genre. Steele is as captivating in his handling of R&B material as he is with soul, reggae, gospel, classical, and jazz. Born in Lucea, Hanover, Jamaica, Steele's inspiration comes from his parents who sang on the church choir, where he too began singing at the tender age of 10 years. At age 11 he had developed an affinity for the drums, noting that he was attracted to the physical appeal of this instrument. At age 14, Steele entered the Herbert Morrison High School in Montego Bay and it became clear that a career in music was imminent. Steele joined the school's reggae band, Mystic Force, which consisted of some of today's well-respected musicians, Bengy Myaz, Paul Kastic, and Michael Stevens.
Today, Steele has made his mark on the music industry and though most people recognize him as a singer, Steele is also an accomplished musician, songwriter, and producer who has earned a reputation as a perfectionist with his professional approach to his music. With his first solo CD/Album (Uncorrupted) just released, the world will be hearing a lot more of Steele as he dishes out his hit-bound, lyrically conscious and socially relevant material which is signature Steele.
Uncorrupted was released to rave reviews in April 2004 and it has certainly taken the world by storm. Currently the album is experiencing major rotation on radio stations around the world. To date, Steele has been blessed with the achievements the album has acquired. "Uncorrupted" has been recognized as "Album of the Year" on CJSW 90.9FM in Calgary, and Caribbean Crucible 105.5FM in Toronto. Steele has also received, Canadian Recording Artist of the Year, Best Canadian Reggae Newcomer Of The Year, Best Canadian Reggae Male Singer Of The Year, Best Canadian Recording CD Of The Year from Caribbean Express 96.1FM in Vancouver. To top it off Steele has been Nominated for a 2005 Juno Award. The sky is the limit for Steele and he continues to reach for it.
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Management, Publicity, Promotions
Uncorrupted - Steele
Genre: Roots Reggae/Lovers Rock/Dancehall
Uncorrupted is a truly impressive debut CD by Jamaican born singer Mark Steele. Based in Toronto, Canada, Steele is an exceptionally talented singer, songwriter, producer and musician. Uncorrupted is a high-quality, versatile mix of lovers rock, roots reggae, and dancehall rhythms. The 17-track CD has something for everyone. What I'm most impressed with is the way all the songs seamlessly blend together. Nothing feels out of place. And there's no negativity either, just positive vibes.
Uncorrupted was nominated for a Juno Award in the category Reggae Recording of the Year 2005. (The Juno is the Canadian equivalent of the American Grammy Awards.) Just one listen and you'll know why. After a brief spoken Intro,
Greetings sets the tone for rest of the CD. An outstanding roots reggae number, Greetings is one of my favorites. Other standout conscious roots tunes include Judge, the inspirational Jah is my Strength and Deep Meditation.
Fans of lovers rock are sure to love Let Me Give You Love. Penned by Steele, Let Me Give You Love is one of those songs you'll want to listen to again and again. Great Stuff! Another standout lovers rock tune is Run To Me. Though the majority of the songs are originals, there are three cover versions. Included among the covers is a remake of the classic Righteous Brothers hit You've Lost That Loving Feeling. Doing a remake of a beloved classic can be risky. But Steele rises to the challenge, handling this classic the way a skilled craftsman handles a precision tool. What's not to love?
In striking contrast to the lovers rock and roots tunes are the high-energy dancehall flavored tunes Ruben, Come Gimme, and Morenita Linda. Trying to pick a favorite is tough since they're all so good. Without a doubt, the most unique track is the instrumental Sash-Ri-Cal. The catchy rhythm has a distinctively Eastern flavor to it. It's something like "chutney-reggae", if there is any such thing. This one's refreshingly different.
Uncorrupted is a CD of exceptional quality that will appeal to a variety of musical tastes. My recommendation: get a copy for yourself, and one for a good friend. ENJOY.
1. Intro 10. You've Lost That Loving Feeling
2. Greetings 11. Deep Meditation
3. Good Over Evil 12. T.K.O.
4. Let Me Give You Love 13. Run To Me
5. Jah Is My Strength 14. Morenita Linda
6. Judge 15. Thank You Lord
7. Silhouette 16. Sash-Ri-Cal
8. Ruben 17. Love Line
9. Come Gimme
Overall Rating: 4/5 Copyright William L. Nowell, 2005
Buy Uncorrupted at one of the following locations:
Listen to Steele's 2-part live Interview in France (http://www.radio-reggae.com/). Click Interview and scroll the page to Steele 1 and Steele 2.
Be sure to visit Steele's Official home on the Web: Home of Steele.
Visitors since July 7, 2001