Dancehall Tours - hosted by Pantason - Episode 31 - Dre Island

Published May 6, 2021 05:01 p.m. ET

Welcome to Dancehall Tours a series where we interview artists about how cannabis plays a part in their music.

Today our host Pantason interviews Reggae artiste Dre Island. Dre Island, born Andre Johnson May 2, 1988, hails from the Red Hills Road section of Kingston, a rougher part of uptown where gunshots and crime are in abundance. At the tender age of three, his father asked him what he wanted to do when he grows up, his answer was one word “Piano!” His grandmother nurtured his interest in music, and encouraged him by bringing him to church to sing in the choir and take piano lessons.

Once introduced to the studio, a young Dre observed keenly the ins and outs of every facet of the recording process, while developing a talent for production using his classical piano training. His professional journey working as a producer in some of Jamaica’s top recording studios led Dre to successfully complete projects and gain notoriety.

Dre Island made the transition to a recording artist, releasing his first single “Reggae Love,” in 2013. His first big performance took place around the same time at Rebel Salute, one of Jamaica’s largest music festivals, known for its focus on roots and conscious music. Revival, Resurgence and Revitalization, all depictions used to describe the new wave of consciousness-raising, spiritually awakened artists evoking a golden era when the foundation reggae artists sang of oppression. Through a steady stream of hit singles he has captured the attention of fans from around the world who are drawn to his inescapable authenticity.

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