Thursday, January 6, 2022

Rastaman Vibrations Positive vibes from Gramps Thursday, January 06, 2022 BY RICHARD JOHNSON Observer senior reporter johnsonr@jamaicaobserver.com

Reggae singer Gramps Morgan is revelling in the critical acclaim of his Grammy-nominated solo project, Positive Vibration , and described the making of this album as the best experience of his musical career. The album goes up against five other albums in the Best Reggae Album category at the Grammy Awards set for the Crypto.com Arena in Los Angeles, California, on January 31. “Of course, it is a little different this time around. It's my first time as a solo artiste. I have had nominations and win before with Morgan Heritage, as well as a songwriter and producer, so this time, to be out there solo is different but something that I am so thankful for,” he told the Jamaica Observer during a telephone interview. “I want to tell you that this album came about out of pure innocence. This pandemic forced me to look into myself. I met songwriter Johnny Reid and he introduced me to the song People Like You and one song led to another song which led to a whole album and now it is nominated for a Grammy... I am so grateful,” Morgan continued. Positive Vibration —recorded in Nashville, Tennessee; Toronto, Canada; and Kingston, Jamaica — skilfully blends reggae and other genres of Jamaican music with the likes of country music to produce what Morgan calls a harmonious blend. “It's great to be recognised by the academy. The truth is the Grammy Awards is not about the artiste's popularity or album sales or how your video looks, as is the case with the MTV Music Video Awards, it's truly about the quality of your body of work and this body of work is indeed special,” he said. Morgan explained that for the first time in his career he allowed himself to be led, unlike previous projects in which he wrote and produced so many of the tracks.
“Not every artiste is a songwriter, and not every songwriter has what it takes to make it as an artiste. Working on this album was so incredible and inspiring. I could just forget about everything and focus on what I was there to do... just be the artiste and be produced. This is an experience I want to take back to my industry as I work with act as a producer. Then there was the quality of the production. In the past I was singing into a [US]$3,000 or $4,000 microphone. For this, I always had my ginger tea in studio, the air quality and temperature was perfect, plus I am singing into a $25,000 microphone and you hear the difference when compared to previous recordings done on a tour bus or hotel room,” said Morgan. While disappointed that the pandemic has prevented him from performing for a live audience to promote Positive Vibration, he noted that the current global health crisis has presented some positives. “If it wasn't for the pandemic there would be no album. Morgan Heritage was booked for a five-month tour of Europe when this all happened and it was at that time that we said to each other let us use the time to work on projects that have been on the shelf for a while. So, in a way, it is a blessing, but I still can't wait to hit the stage and sing for the people,” said Morgan. Positive Vibration will compete alongside Etana with Pamoja, Sean Paul's Live N Livin, Jesse Royal with his project Royal, Spice's debut album 10, and Beauty in the Silence from American band SOJA.

8 Risks of Alcohol Abuse over the holidays

On Christmas Day many individuals tend to consume alcoholic drinks in excess. While it's the season of good cheer and spirits, it's important to exercise caution and not get too carried away. Below medical internist Dr Samantha Nicholson Spence shares health risks associated with alcohol abuse and binge drinking. 1) Pancreatitis Dr Nicholson Spence said excess alcohol can cause inflammation of the pancreas, which can become quite severe to the point of death. “It causes extreme vomiting, abdominal pain in the upper abdomen, spreading towards the back. Some people may have jaundice associated with it, but that's not a usual feature. Pancreatitis, if severe, will make the pancreas inflamed to the point it releases enzymes on the pancreas itself, instead of in your intestines where it is supposed to break down your food. As a result, it breaks down your pancreas and it starts a cascade where it gets worse and may require surgery to remove some of the dead pancreatic tissue,” she said. 2) Gastritis The medical internist said, while less severe, gastritis is still serious. “Vomiting and abdominal pain is the main presentation. However, excessive vomiting can cause bruising and ulceration of the oesophagus and stomach and may result in you vomiting blood. If it's a a lot of blood, you can end up needing a blood transfusion or even surgical intervention if you rupture a major vessel or the oesophagus itself from the excessive vomiting. If the oesophagus becomes ruptured, which is rare, that's almost, in most cases, a fatal condition,” Dr Nicholson Spence said. 3) Fatty liver Dr Nicholson Spence said the role of the liver is to break down the alcohol or detoxify it. Consequently, excess alcohol consumption puts excess strain on the liver and can cause what is known as fatty liver. “Usually fatty liver is reversible and goes away once you stop drinking. But, in some people you can develop hepatitis where the liver is inflamed. Alcohol hepatitis can kill and in very severe cases you can get acute liver failure. Acute liver failure is a very severe complication, which also can result in death,” the medical internist said. 4) Blackouts According to Dr Nicholson Spence, people who drink to the point of developing serious complications usually blackout or fall into a coma. “The body can become so drowsy, drunk, and intoxicated to the point you can't drink any more and you blackout,” she said. 5) Seizures and brain injury Dr Nicholson Spence said excessive alcohol use is associated with seizures, which can be major (fits) or multiple, where it happens back-to-back and you might not regain consciousness. “That's a risk for death because during the period where you're seizing back-to back and not regaining consciousness, you're also not breathing and can have permanent brain damage as a result. If you drop and hit your head during the seizure, you can get brain injury,” she said. 6) Medication complications “Sometimes Jamaicans plan to drink and stop their medication and that's not a good thing. Yes, alcohol is incompatible with some medication, but some medications are not forgiving when you skip multiple doses. [And] so you end up in the hospital just the same when you probably would have been fine if you had just taken the medication,” Dr Nicholson Spence said. 7) Heart issues Dr Nicholson Spence said, while alcohol affects the heart, overdoing it in the holiday will usually be a problem for your heart if you have pre-existing heart disease. 8) Accidents and violence The medical internist said alcohol is behind the high rates of accidents locally, and warned that it only takes one drink to dim your reflexes. “Is nuff buy-licence people out there on the road. It's a recipe for disaster. Our roads are terrible, too. One minute you could have a smooth stretch, you feel good and you drive off, speeding and cruising down the road... and then suddenly you have to swing from a pothole, lose control, and it's a terrible accident or death,” Dr Nicholson Spence said. “If you're drinking have a designated driver. Alcohol also causes increase in violence as it makes you louder, more enraged and prompted to take chances you wouldn't normally take.”

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