Half Pint Delivers a Stress-Free Ride

Posted on May 16, 2008

Jamaica Observer logo

Half Pint delivers a stress free ride
from Jamaica Observer
Nicholas Richards
Friday, May 16, 2008

Album CoverThe sounds of No Stress Express, the 17th album by singer Half Pint, released by Universal Music, delivers 16 tracks of pure conscious reggae tunes. From the first song entitled Unity, he takes you down a stress free road of cool, calm reggae music.

In it, he goes back to the early days when this genre of Jamaican music was just finding form, when it was true, a time before the music had diverted from its roots to the violent and at times unwholesome lyrics.

On No Stress Express, Half Pint sings about love, romance, unity and the struggles within the rough inner-city areas, themes for which reggae music became known and appreciated.

Special mention must be made of the third track on his album, Just Be Good, which was done twice on the CD. This track is, simply put, a wonderful creation, one that is reminiscent of the reggae music of old. One where the sound, the words and the instrumentals soothe the heart and capture the mind. It is a sound the traditional reggae music lovers will never be able to get enough of. Originally produced by Beres Hammond and Harmony House Production, Just Be Good should bring back memories to the older folk, and give young listeners something to appreciate. After all, this one is a classic.

And if that was not enough, Suzie and My Best Friend’s Girl provide the icing on the cake for the lovers rock fans. This icing does in no way cloy the appetite. Rather, what these songs do is that they turn you into an addict, in that it leaves you yearning for more. And the more you get is the more you want, just like Suzie.

Born Lindon Roberts, Half Pint emerged on the reggae scene in the early 1980s, and has worked with top notch producers such as, King Jammy and Prince Jammy. During this time he released songs entitled Greetings, Winsome, Victory and Mr Landlord. These are among his more popular tunes, which invariably laid the groundwork for his future success, the latest being his present compilation.

Another recording which stands out is, Bad Boy, where he collaborates with powerhouse deejay Sizzla Kalonji, to produce arguably one of the best tracks on his CD. The song entitled Bad Boy starts out “… bad boy in the street and we have no food to eat, and when life should be sweet it’s a tragedy.” Sizzla then interjects with, “we looking for a way out, sufferation got to stay out.” Such sounds come from a truly mystical place, and the duo does much to convey this message with an eclectic mix of traditional reggae, as it pertains to Half Pint, and a retro dancehall style in the way Sizzla delivers his half of the rendition.

One should also mention that his album made a wonderful move when it omitted the computerised noises which are so prevalent in many reggae album releases today. By doing this Half Pint remains true to his roots, natural, cool and devoid of those excessively amplified tones. As such, the artistes true voice, and persona comes out.

The instrumental is also very good, it is dominated by Dwight Pinkney’s guitar riffs, and the easy-going drumming of Donovan Watson. Paul Crossdale and Christopher Meredith add to the sweet one-drop rhythms, and the keyboards sound is also phenomenal.

It is one that anyone can listen to, virtually anywhere, in the car, while cooking or when on a family outing, or when feeling stressed. This album should be good for that album collection of reggae classics.

Overall a B+ effort.

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Fan video

Posted on May 8, 2008

Some more video footage from Pint’s No Stress Express tour, courtesy of Tony Williams. Here’s Pint in a parking lot singing “Deliver Us” with Tony:

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Tour photos

Posted on May 4, 2008

There’s been a lot of great press coming out surrounding the album and Pint’s tour. I’ve already mentioned the excellent Reggae Rhythms Podcast (check it out if you haven’t had a chance). Two others definitely worth checking out:

The Pier did an outstanding interview with Pint. They talk about the tour and the new album (of course), but also about the “Greatest Hits” compilation, a new project in the works with members of Sublime, and Pint’s most memorable moments.

The other is a very in-depth review of No Stress Express by Diane “Livonn” Adam at reggaereview.com (currently unavailable, but be sure to check back for it). Diane also provided us with a great set of shots from Pint’s performance in San Francisco:

Full versions of both articles will be posted in the archives here shortly.

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Tour video

Posted on April 22, 2008

Here’s some fan-shot footage of Pint singing “Greetings” and “Hold On” at the Malibu Inn last Friday night:

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Opening night tour photos

Posted on April 17, 2008

Reggae’s raggamuffin veteran singing star, Half Pint, kicked off his No Stress Express US tour to a packed house last night in Los Angeles at the Dub Club. From the opening notes of Pint’s clessic “Greetings” to the well-deserved
encore of “Unity” from the new No Stress Express CD release, Pint had the appreciative crowd electrified with his charismatic performance. Other member of the Reggae fraternity came out to support Pint such as the duo Michigan &
Smiley, producer/engineer Scientist, and others. Backed by the Bay Area based Yellow Wall Dub Squad and opening artists Itawe and Stevie Culture continue the tour tomorrow night at the Malibu Inn in Malibu, CA. This tour is not to be missed!

Here are some shots from the opening night of Pint’s No Stress Express tour, courtesy of Russell Gerlach / Foundation Media/PR.

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Half Pint comes with words of healing

Posted on April 4, 2008

Jamaica Observer logo

Half Pint comes with words of healing
from Jamaica Observer
Basil Walters, Observer staff reporter
Friday, April 04, 2008

Half Pint and manager Loyal Haylett
Half Pint in performance

“I give thanks to the Most High that bless me with the vision and a brain to sing and guide my pen to write words of healing power with joy and love for the people of the world,” states Half Pint in the linear notes of his latest album, No Stress Express.

Singer, songwriter Half Pint, over the years has established a well-earned reputation as one of reggae’s most conscious lyricists. And with his latest set, No Stress Express, the diminutive vocalist, once again offers a comfortable ride on the wings of his creative imagination.

With inviting lyrical content that reaches for reconciliation among people, instead of divisiveness, the double-entendre title of the album conveys interpretations that could on one hand mean, his music doesn’t contain any stressful energy, or on the other hand, it is a welcome musical escape from all stress and care.

But there is no need for speculation because Half Pint articulating in his inimitable style and fashion states. “This No Stress Express album is an appeal to the people to be more rational, look weh a gwaan, let the music heal and teach you, to look on the real issues and dance to them in a more meaningful way.”

He stresses the importance of uplifting music when he said he finds some of the current crop of music disturbing and expressed pleasure in how Ninja Man recently publicly distanced himself from violent lyrics. “The music deh yah fi teach we,” Half Pint told Splash, “and so me try put out some lyrics that is edifying… I’m pleased with the way Ninja Man pick up pon weh mi use to sing with songs like Political Friction.

The living so rough and the living so tough, but we naw give up…We living so near and yet so far all because of political war. It’s a pity inna di city, such a pity inna di city. Due to political friction man and man gone inna different segregation…”

Having segued into that impromptu illustration in order to underscore his point, Half Pint further explained. “I made that song based upon the political rivalry that was going on in Jamaica at that time in the late ’70s early ’80s. Politics to me brings division and we shouldn’t have to be divided in over 45 years after independence, and is like we country and we people dem nuh better off.”

The singer, born Lindon Roberts at Rose Lane in Western Kingston, added; “It’s kind of disturbing. There can be a better way, so that nobody nuh affi a point dem finger like gun, or instigate and promote wrong doings. Dem kind of mindset mi no really entertain or accommodate, because me did grow up inn a time when we did a live without affi acting hard or sounding tough fi instigate or generate that kind of hard edges way of life, for we have better then to do and live for.

“It come to me like that kind of politics has so engineered itself into our social life that even now our mentality is as such that everybody just waan turn a gangsta. Gangstarism never bring forth any kind of upfullness in any society.”

No Stress Express, Half Pint’s 17th album released in early March, with distribution by Universal Records, has already sold over 30,000 copies. And shortly, he’ll be working on another album with more redemption songs.

“The next album going to be more liberated with lyrics of redemption for the people,” stresses the artiste who goes off on tour shortly. His itinerary, whiach dates from April 16-29, will take him to San Francisco, Arizona, California; he will be joined by Freddie McGregor for two dates in Hawaii, Honolulu.

Of all his albums, Greetings has been the most successful. “Mi know that Greetings was a master blaster album between Europe and America, dem time deh me get a strong reaction from the reggae community throughout world….my songs dem is more appealing to people. Money Man Skank, Landlord, Political Friction, and all a dem tune were like staple on the charts. Because really and truly, sometimes if you nuh try take the problem of the world off your head, relax or try to be comfortable, or make yourself less hype. What mi really a worry about was how the death rate was so high.

That was the main issue that was stressful to me…..it offend me because mi notice sey the people dem was a drop like fly….,” Half Pint lamented.

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No Stress Express review in Jamaica Star

Posted on March 21, 2008

The Jamaica Star has a great review of No Stress Express:

Jamaica Star

by Krista Henry
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Veteran singer Half Pint rides the reggae train in his latest CD No Stress Express. Half Pint is in true form, showcasing good lyrics, clean beats and smooth vocals.

A classic singer known for his huge hit Greetings, Half Pint continues reeling out the hits. As a veteran singer Half Pint sticks to what he knows best, the tried and true formula of classic reggae. On the 16-track album, Half Pint explores various subject matters from liking his best friend’s girl to being on the ‘no stress express.’ Half Pint’s lyrics are all clean and not overly sexual or violent like most songs of today.

The album has a relaxing, mellow feel throughout that washes over the listener. Inviting listeners to come onboard to a musical journey, the album begins with Unity as Half Pint and Jack Maness chants that “we’re all in it together”. My Best Friend’s Girl has an old-time rocksteady/ska feel that makes one want to get up and do a lively jive.

Just Be Good has received a lot of airplay as the sound of the saxophone adds a nice flavour to the song. Bad Boy, featuring Sizzla, adds a bit of dancehall/reggae flavour with Sizzla deejaying and singing along with Half Pint about the bad boys in the streets.

There are no stand out hit songs, but all the songs show the same quality of music and expertise. For youngsters who like a touch of old reggae, this album is also a good lesson in what classic reggae is like. For older fans, this album will take them down memory lane with a singer that has endured.

Pint also had another nice review from the West Indian Times:

West Indian Times

I have to be honest and begin this review by saying that I was not expecting to be too impressed with Half Pint’s latest album ‘No Stress Express.’ I believed that it could not be possible that Half Pint could still produce classics like ‘Winsome’ ‘Greetings’ and ‘One Big Family.’ However, I was in for a very, very nice surprise. From track 1 entitled ‘Unity’ I was transported to a secluded beach, it was just me and Half Pint’s music. The title says it all, if you have any stress in your life, pop in this CD and feel them wash away from you. The riddims are soothing but in the right way, not too mellow and nothing too jumpy. The previews that we have been playing ‘Mind Over Matter’ and ‘Unity’ on their own did not prepare me for deep feeling of peace that this album would invoke in me.

My favorite tracks include track #10 ‘Children Of His Majesty’ which has me feeling like I am in a loving 12 Tribes dance, it speaks of doing good and the blessings that are bestowed on the children of His Majesty. Track # 9 ‘Bless Us’ asks the Father to bestow on us blessings now and forever and has a deep soothing riddim. Track # 2 ‘My Best Friend’s Girl’ tells the tale of a man who is captivated with his best friend’s girl (who used to be his girl).

In this stressful world that we live in this album is a great album to play at home, at work or even while studying. However, I find that if you are one with nature taking a walk, strolling on the beach, sitting on your porch or even looking out of the window whilst listening to this album, you will be on the No Stress Express and feeling de-stressed in no time!

You can hear tracks from Half Pints new album online at: http://www.westindiantimes.net/vibes247.htm

Review by Lady Cham

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No Stress Express now available!

Posted on March 11, 2008

Album Cover

The new album is out! I got a listen to the final copy this weekend and it’s outstanding. Half Pint fans will definitely dig the vibes on No Stress Express. For me, it’s probably Pint’s best album of new material since Victory!

Congrats to Pint and the whole crew for a job well done on this release. You can pick it up at:

One final note: a new version of the site is on the way, but it’s taking a little longer than expected. Hang tight and let us know what you’d like to see on the new site!

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Half Pint Launches His New Album, No Stress Express, In Jamaica

Posted on February 6, 2008

The Half Moon Hotel, in Montego Bay, Jamaica, was the scene on Saturday, January 26, 2008, when the entertainment fraternity turns out to support the launch of the latest venture from superstar artiste, Half Pint. Dignitaries, media personalities from Jamaica, the US, Europe and the Caribbean along celebrities from as far as Germany witnessed the Jamaican launch of his album No Stress Express. This offering will be released worldwide on March 11, 2008 and will be distributed via Universal Music Group Distribution.

No Stress Express is deemed to be a classic and is poised to be his best album to date. The hot tracks include “Unity” featuring Jack Maness from Long Beach Dub All Stars / Sublime, “Bad Boys” featuring Sizzla, “Just be Good” featuring R&B songbird Mikki Howard, “Mind Over Matter,” “Suzie,” and “Children of His Majesty.” Half Pint will be performing on three shows in Great Britain to promote the album in February 2008 and a US tour in April / May.

High praises poured out for Half Pint acknowledging his latest achievement. His manager, Loyal Haylett, lamented on his fifteen year relationship with the superstar. Ras Astor Black reminisced on the early days of the artiste’s career performing and doing interviews on reggae Roots TV in Chicago. He stated that “Half Pint deserves to be on the Reggae Walk of Fame.” Jamaica’s Minister Of Culture and Information, the Hon Olivia ‘Babsy’ Grange stated, “the singer represented the culture of Jamaica and has always made her feel proud.” She thanked his record company for supporting Half Pint.

Mr. Desmond Young, the President of the Jamaica Federation of Musicians (JFM) remarked that artistes such as Half Pint make Jamaica the most popular place on earth. Other speakers included Levent Karahan, President of United Music Industries, Derede Whitlock, a representative from the Ministry of Tourism of Antigua and Barbuda, and producer / industry veteran Clifton ‘Specialist’ Dillon. Mingling in the gathering were Sharon Burke, Ainsworth Davis, Bridgette Anderson, Dacosta Records executives Tyehimba Kafele and Dr. Vernon Dacosta, singers Carol Gonzales and Pam Hall, Ken Williams (WVIP -NYC), Jamusa (WAVS – So Florida), Steve James (Roots FM), Conrad McLeod, Howard Hendricks, David ‘Squeeze” Anakie (Link Up Media), Sandra Rose, photographer Dianne Issachar and representatives from The Gleaner, The Sunday Herald, XNEWS, Jamaica Observer, JamRock magazine, Buzzz magazine, Echos magazine,Yard Flex, Bob Arts TV, Carib TV, ReggaeInc.com, Serfphonic Disco among others.

Half Pint has enjoyed a long history of success dating back to the early 1980s. His first big hit “Winsome” was later covered by the Rolling Stones in 1986. Today,he is surrounded by a competent and able support team which consists of manager Loyal Haylett, and Ra-Umi Alkebu-lan ” Alkebu-lan / The Media (Jamaica) and Russell Gerlach / Foundation Media (North America).

Carol Gonzalez - Pam Hall - Half Pint
Half Pint - Manager Loyal Haylett - JFM President Desmond Young
Half Pint - Minister Of Culture Hon. Olivia Babsy Grange 2
Half Pint - Minister Of Culture Hon. Olivia Babsy Grange - Chinoy Henry - Ra Umi Alkebulan - Loyal Haylett
Half Pint - Minister Of Culture Hon. Olivia Babsy Grange
Half Pint with a dolphin at Half Moon Resort beach

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Half Pint offers a ride on the No Stress Express

Posted on January 24, 2008

Jamaica Observer logo

from Jamaica Observer
Yasmine Peru, Entertainment editor
Thursday, January 24, 2008

Half Pint and manager Loyal Haylett
Half Pint (left) and manager Loyal Haylett

“You haffi dance a yaad before you dance abroad,” is singer Half Pint’s simple justification for officially launching his first album in eight years right here in Jamaica before he takes it anywhere else.

The singer’s highly anticipated studio album, No Stress Express, will have its media launch on Saturday in Montego Bay, at the Half Moon hotel, “and Half Moon is really being very nice to us”, he added. A 16-track offering, it includes tracks such as Unity, featuring Jack Maness from Long Beach All Stars, Bad Boy, featuring Sizzla, Children of His Majesty, featuring Sly and Robbie and Mind Over Matter.

The latter, Half Pint told the Observer, is his personal favourite. “It’s produced by Pete from High Rise studio and it really reflects on the power of the mind. Give it a listen,” he urged.

Half Pint’s manager, Loyal Haylett, told the Observer that he is very excited about this new album, which has been a year-and-a half in the making.

“This is a must-have album for anybody who has been following Half Pint for years. It tells the story of his life, that’s why he’s telling everybody that it’s a no stress express, come take a ride,” Haylett said, adding that the album has a laid-back message which crosses barriers and brings together the old and the new.

In keeping with the theme, Half Pint uses a section of the CD booklet to offer tips on how to relieve stress – soak your feet in epsom salts, for example.

Heading Half Pint’s management team for 15 years, Haylett was full of praise for the singer, whom he described as “a humble person who manages to stay away from the hype and negativity sometimes associated with the music”.

Half Pint, who toured extensively last year, kicks off his tour season Valentine’s weekend in London, after which he moves on to Arizona, USA for a six-week stint.

Half Pint has enjoyed a long history of success dating back to the early 1980’s. He was the first major artiste produced by Prince Jammy (later King Jammy), and together they helped establish a lighter, more relaxed, more melodic approach to dancehall. His first big hit, Winsome, was later covered by the Rolling Stones in 1986 (under the new title Too Rude). Many hits followed: Money Man Skank, One in a Million, One Big Family, Pouchie Lou, the socially conscious Mr Landlord, and the all-time dancehall classic Level the Vibes. The huge hit, Substitute Lover came in 1992, and in 1996 the rock group Sublime covered another Half Pint classic, Loving.

No Stress Espress will be distributed via Universal Music Group Distribution, and a digitally remastered Greatest Hits compilation is to be distributed by IDN. In addition, Essential Music Group intends to release the entire Half Pint back catalogue on CD, including availability through I-Tunes and all major digital outlets. No Stress Espress will be released worldwide on March 11.

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