Diwali rebirth

Rhythm gets new lease on life

Observer writer

Monday, August 21, 2017

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The Diwali rhythm is receiving a new lease on life. The beat is sampled in Finders Keepers, recorded by British singer Mabel and London-based rapper Kojo Funds.

Finders Keepers was released in March by Polydor Records, a Universal Music-owned company. The track debuted last Friday at number 77 on the Official UK Pop chart.

Steven “Lenky” Marsden, who produced the Diwali rhythm in 2002, said he's aware of the sample (which was cleared by his publisher) and is pleased with the recording.

“I heard about the sample through my publishers, as Mabel's record label cleared her use of the riddim through them,” Marsden told Jamaica Observer on the weekend.

“I really liked the song the first time I heard it, when my publishers sent it to me a few months ago for feedback. It reminds me of doing the different production styles on the original Diwali rhythm, like Wayne Wonder's No Letting Go,” he said.

Mabel, 21, is daughter of singer Neneh Cherry, who scored three Billboard Top Ten hits in the late 1980s into the early 1990s, namely Buffalo Stance, Kisses on the Wind and Buddy X. She later scored a worldwide hit 7 Seconds which featured Youssou N'Dour.

Mabel's father is Cameron McVey, music producer for Massive Attack. Her uncle is musician and singer Eagle Eye Cherry, who had a top 10 Billboard hit in 1997 with Save Tonight.

Last year Diwali was sampled in DJ Snake and Justin Beiber's Let Me Love You, which topped charts globally.

Marsden is appreciative of the interest in his work.

“I'm really pleased when people sample my work. I'm proud of my productions and I feel honoured when other producers use my stuff,” he said.

The original Diwali rhythm, produced 15 years ago, scored several hits including Elephant Message by Elephant Man, Ruffest and Tuffest (Assassin), Get Busy (Sean Paul), and Overcome (Wayne Marshall).

Marsden said he's constantly in production mode.

“I am putting out a new EP called It's About Me and it has seven instrumental tracks. There are also two vocals tracks; one features Q Marsden a young up-and-coming artiste. The other, recorded over one of the EP's instrumental tracks, featuring the voices of GC and Samira Lashay. All three are from the US and Q is my son,” said Marsden.

In May Marsden won an ASCAP Pop Award for Let Me Love You. In June he won an ASCAP Rhythm and Soul Music Award for Tory Lanez's hit single Luv, which sampled the Tanto Metro and Devonte collaboration Everyone Falls in Love. Marsden was involved in the production of the Everyone Falls in Love recording which charted on Billboard in the late 1990s.




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