In March 2010 my wife — who was my girlfriend at the time — and I were visiting Sint Maarten with a friend and we decided to have dinner in Grand Case. We ended up deciding on Le Ti Provençal, a charming little spot along Boulevard de Grand Case. After dinner we stumbled over to the Blue Martini Bar to take in a little local reggae music.
When we arrived at Blue Martini we weren’t sure who was playing. As expected, taking in the festive reggae tunes mere steps away from the beach just felt so right. Needless to say, we didn’t want the night to end but when it did we left filled with the joy that only reggae music can impart.
Fast forward to this morning. I checked my inbox to see if I had any messages, only to see a note from someone asking me if I’d heard of a local Sint Maarten reggae artist named Dread’i. I clicked on the website link and followed it to the Dread’i artist website.
I didn’t have much time to look at the site since I had to run to my son’s little league baseball game. While I was there, I remembered the time we were at Blue Martini back in 2010 and it piqued my interest. Could that have been Dread’i that I’d seen all those years ago and am just now learning that’s who it was?
When I returned home I started to flip through some old photos and that’s when I came across the picture you see above. Yep, that was Dread’i we saw jamming the reggae tunes that night in Grand Case. What an amazing way to find out — finally — who that reggae artist was on that special night years ago.
It turns out that Dread’i is originally from a small village called Paix-bouche in the Commonwealth of Dominica, where he had been told many stories about himself as a baby being moved to dance at the sound of reggae music. It was there where he entered a local calypso concert and discovered he had a talent for singing.
Dread’i is currently based on St Maarten where he has written and created music for the past 17 years. He has performed with many international reggae artists such as: Culture, Beres Hammond, Steel Pulse, Gregory Isaac, Third World, Burning Spear, Shaggy, Tanya Stevens and many more. His musical idols are the great Bob Marley, Peter Tosh, Bunny Wailer.
If you get a chance, check out his website, take in some of his lovely reggae jams, and help support a local artist by buying his music. It will bring you closer to Jah, I promise.
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