The most random and perfect opportunities can literally spring up from just about anywhere. Getting fired can lead to you landing your dream job, and getting dumped could lead to you finding the love of your life, or even sparking a new love for your life. A simple vacation could drive you to discover a hidden gem about yourself you would never have stumbled upon had it not been for that opportunity. Hell, even something like, say, getting stranded at CaliRoots could lead to you working with some ridiculously talented musicians and ending up with the next big single getting dropped.
Ok, I’ll give it to you, that last one sounded a little specific… let me explain.
On February 10th, the newest song by independent producer, writer, and keyboardist Luis Dreadlocks (Iya Terra) hit virtual shelves everywhere. It’s an enjoyable, lowkey, jazz-infused reggae tune called “Opportunity” and it features a killer combo of up-and-coming islander-turned-mainlander Shakamon – who has steadily been impressing many big names in the reggae community. And Jamaican born heavy hitter Rik Jam, whose international influence gives the song its signature island twist. “Opportunity” is a wonderful and refreshing piece of art that will leave you feeling hopeful about the future. The song flows effortlessly as three artists guide you through their journey and embrace themes about looking at the months and years ahead as nothing more than an opportunity. The song is truly inspiring and has a beautiful arrangement of bright instrumentation and a catchy beat that will be stuck in your head for days.
The single itself came together pretty quickly and organically. Basically evolving from a beat Luis had already been working on. However, what didn’t come together quite as naturally was how this group of musicians ended up working together in the first place, and how another member of Iya Terra played a helpful role, along with his bass.
Back in the late spring of 2022, after the mighty California Roots Music and Arts Festival had ended, Shakamon was left stranded without a ride home, when who else but Nick Loporchio (a.k.a. Porch, bassist for Iya Terra) ended up offering a ride. The modest road trip down the coast from Monterey eventually led to meeting up with Luis in SoCal, which, of course, inevitably led to showing off each other’s work, brainstorming, and ultimately deciding to create new music together. And, after reaching out to fellow islander Rik Jam to have him include a verse and some of his Caribbean expertise, all of that hard work and brainstorming morphed into the track that became “Opportunity.”
Planning to be dropped alongside this chill new single is a music video for “Opportunity,” which was filmed partially in the beautiful hills of Kingston, Jamaica. Recently, Luis and Porch traveled to the island to work on a few projects, a top priority of which being getting Rik Jam’s part for the video filmed. The team found the most beautiful views, which obviously didn’t take long, and Rik Jam did his thing. It should end up being a really cool music video. Meeting the guys once they got into town was Phillip McFarlane, who works as Rik Jam’s manager while also playing keyboards in the Kingston-based reggae band EarthKry and is the owner of the local independent record label Irie Yute Tapes. The hospitality was abundant and felt from the beginning of the adventure. Rik Jam, Phillip, and the whole Irie Yute family made sure everyone felt at home and welcomed the entire time they were there and it was absolutely felt by Luis and the guys.
When you listen to “Opportunity” for the first time, it’s so easy to let yourself get caught up in the excitement of the song’s infectious rhythms and its positive message about looking at life as a series of opportunities. After all, that’s what people want to hear when they’re going into a new year – it almost feels like a self-affirmation. “Opportunity” – being independently released – highlights the power of being open-minded and looking at all things in new ways. It can help you realize that anything is possible if you put your mind to it, which is something we all need to hear, at least once in a while.
The new single “Opportunity” by Luis Dreadlocks, Shakamon, and Rik Jam is available for streaming on all platforms everywhere now and make sure to follow all of the guys on social media for updates about future projects.
Disclaimer: All views presented in this album review are those of the reviewer and not necessarily those of Top Shelf Music.