“You should definitely write an article about Chronixx,” my friend said in a WhatsApp message. “About how much work he’s done in reggae or maybe whether or not he can be placed on the same pedestal as Bob Marley.
To be honest, this topic had been brewing in my mind for approximately a year and a half. Firstly, could anyone compare to the great Bob Marley? Second, can the living be compared to the dead, especially when both lived in different periods? Last, why does any of this even matter?
I will not claim to be the biggest Chronixx fan, but I’ve been a supporter of the team since his earlier years. Throughout the different phases of his career (so far), he has connected with Jamaican and international audiences on many levels. Using my novice-level skill of analysis, I deduced three major phases of Jamar McNaughton, the rebel who would not follow anyone with their pants below waist level or bleached faces. The second phase was the declaration of the ‘Dread and Terrible’, the staunch defence against those who would dare to suppress the ‘Alpha And Omega’ while living on ‘Capture Land’— an irony that had every Rasta man proclaiming ‘Here Comes Trouble’.
“Can the living be compared to the dead, especially when both lived in different periods?”
This then brings us to what I am in favour of calling the current era of his reign. In this time, the mere swoon of his vocals over any stereo device or musical gadget, Instagram video, voice note reminds us daily that he is now a household name and the new benchmark for professionalism in reggae for an upcoming act.
On August 6, 2018, I listened to Chronixx’s latest work ‘Chronology’, and the man ministered unto my soul as I sat on a rock in one of my favourite parks in Kingston.
But to compare him to Bob Marley? That could be a stretch too far.
For the few I’ve spoken to, and as it relates to the many conversations in various media that I have seen or read, Bob was set apart in a very revolutionary way. He sang for freedom from mental slavery, launched the face and personality that our thriving tourism industry has reaped numerous benefits from and has created a family dynasty that has major clout and influence in music and other creative/non-creative industries. He has also left a vast catalogue of music that many of us still enjoy, and he has also received some of the highest awards internationally. To this day, making Bob Marley a national hero is a topic of debate.
Bob started recording at about 18 years old and passed away at 36 which gave him roughly 18 years to make an impact, and today we only call him a king because he did.
Bob may continue to sell, and his music will always hold its place for as long as time allows, but Chronixx is definitely ruling hearts, making them feel and spire towards a higher, much more balanced state of consciousness.
Can he someday be crowned a king for having the same kind of impact?
“Someday,” my co-worker responded when I asked her one afternoon. Then she continued nodding her head to ‘Skankin’ Sweet’ that was being played on her phone.
— Written by recording artiste Shekinah Ade-Gold