Ultimate Shines
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Ultimate Shines

Kingston, Kingston, Jamaica | INDIE

Kingston, Kingston, Jamaica | INDIE
Band EDM Reggae

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"5 STARS OUT OF 5 - Mike Roots review"

Ultimate Shines, born Mark Anthony James in West Kingston, Jamaica is a seasoned conscious reggae singer who has recorded one album (Teach Them, 2005) and a slew of singles, starting back in 1987 with the single "Mob Kill Him". Having recorded and performed as an artist in Junior Reid's JR Productions camp as well as touring in Canada along with Singing Melody and Thriller U, Shines career has shown itself to be one of continued persistence and growth. His latest single, "Flava," was recorded on the Jah Jamaica Music label in collaboration with Jamaican rhythm producer Robbie Tuff.

Musically, "Flava" incorporates a variety of programmed synthesizers and beats, all blending into a pulsing mid-tempo dancehall rhythm, carrying with it a sense of urgency.

Shines' voice, a combination of raspy soulfulness and smooth caress, is commanding and somewhat similar in style to Fred Locks, Frankie Paul and Howie Hutchinson. With "Flava," Shines displays versatility as he seamlessly moves from crooning on the infectious chorus to more of a singjay style on the verses, all the while revealing a great balance of clarity and melody. Much like Reid and Mykal Rose, Shines clearly has the artistic range to effectively sing over both roots and dancehall rhythms.

The "flava" Shines is singing about extends well beyond simply entertaining. With lyrics such as “take care of children and old people / tell the world say a good over evil" and "stop put your vanity over people / go and set a better example," this is perhaps a call to be the distinct flavor that is the salt of the earth. What Shines expresses is the necessity to take the message of righteous living beyond mere words and into the streets of every day life in order to make a positive impact on society. In a genre marred by slackness and hypocrisy, Ultimate Shines has been a consistent voice for positive social and spiritual themes, and with the refreshing and encouraging "Flava," he effectively carries the torch forward.


Review by Mike Roots
Rating: 5 Stars (out of 5)

http://roots-extract.blogspot.com/ - Review You


"Ultimate Shines"

After a permanent presence on the top contemporary Jamaican compilation albums, it was time for Mark James to come with his own album. Having been rightfully compared to Luciano and Garnet Silk, Ultimate Shines brings a very heartical form of Roots Reggae with Consciousness as main ingredient in his lyrics. - Dubroom Reviews


Discography

Ultimate Shines' discography is too extensive to list here. Please see it on the Jah Jamaica Music website.

Go to http://www.jahjamaicamusic.com and then into the Bio's page to access it.

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Bio

Ultimate Shines, born Mark Anthony James in West Kingston, Jamaica, discovered his love for music at the early age of eight, listening to the church choir and his mother singing gospel music at home.

At an early age, young Mark moved to Westmoreland to live with his aunt where he spent four years expanding his musical horizons listening to the many sound systems playing in Georges Plain, Savanna La Mar area. His favorite artist was General Echo and Mark made sure to learn all his songs and sing them as much as he could.

At 13 Mark left Westmoreland to return to Kingston to attend school in Denham Town. It was during this return to Kingston, Mark hooked up with Shoey Dread whose place he and others would go to listen to music, riddims and artists and learn their craft. Eventually Shoey Dread took Mark to Bunny Lee’s recording studio in Duhaney Park where he cut his first song while wearing a school uniform. Mark continued to work with Shoey Dread for a couple of years honing his musical skills.

After graduating Denham Town Secondary School in 1985, Mark linked up with music producer Dwight Robinson and Fathead Wilmot who put “Mob Him Kill Him”, his first record, in his hands marking a milestone in his career.

Soon Mark caught the attention of stage show promoter Isaiah Laing, and he found himself opening at Sting 98 along with I Jah Bones. It was during this time Mark had adopted the stage name Black A Shines, but after his Sting performance he found at least 10 other artists with the same name so he changed it to Ultimate Shines. Soon his music caught the attention of radio DJ Elise Kelly who was the first to play Ultimate Shines on the radio.

As things picked up, Ultimate Shines hooked up with the Junior Reid camp where he did a lot of work and released a lot of music for JR Productions. This dedication to learning and expanding his music soon began to pay off as he set off to tour outside of Jamaica.

Ultimate Shine’s first tour was in Canada where he, along with Singing Melody and Thriller U, played cities like Montreal, Toronto, Ottawa, Calgary and Oakville. Ultimate Shines made his name in Canada, especially in Montreal where he has since returned along with Thriller U for repeat performances. Upcoming tours include Brazil and Africa.

Today Ultimate Shines continues his musical and songwriting development with his strongest work ever and is releasing new music for his fans through Jah Jamaica Music including his latest, just released, single entitled “Flava” on the rhythm of the same name produced by Jamaican producer Robbie Tuff.

Ultimate Shines also appears on the 21st Century album, just released by Jah Jamaica Music and in stores now, performing his single “On De Ball”. He will be featured on new albums by Robbie Tuff expected to be released by Jah Jamaica Music before the end of the year.