by Howard Campbell
[LAS VEGAS] – Jamaican music industry veteran Wayne Jobson believes SOJA’s surprise win for Best Reggae Album at the April 3 GRAMMY Awards “is wicked for American reggae.” The 64th Annual Grammy Awards ceremony is being held at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.
SOJA, who are based in Arlington, Virginia, won with Beauty in The Silence, which is distributed by ATO, a company owned by rock star Dave Matthews.
“I am overjoyed that SOJA won as I was one of the first to play them on the radio when I built The Joint at SiriusXM which is in Washington, DC where they are from. I tried to get them a record deal and sent it to Dave Matthews’ label but they did not sign them. Later, when they had done some touring and got a following then Dave Matthews signed them. There are many great American reggae bands so it’s great that American reggae finally got some respect from the Grammys,” said Jobson.
SOJA upset the highly-favored Live N Livin by Sean Paul, Positive Vibration by Gramps Morgan and 10 by Spice.
Pamoja from Etana and Royal by Jesse Royal were the other 2022 nominees for Best Reggae Album.
Jobson was among the first Disc Jockeys to play the songs of American reggae bands while he was at KROQ 106.7 FM in Los Angeles.
The last 20 years has seen an emergence of American bands, mainly from Southern California, who have outsold and out-toured their Jamaican counterparts.
Those bands include Rebelution, Stick Figure, The Green, SOJA and Groundation.
Beauty in The Silence is SOJA’s third nomination for Best Reggae Album. Their first came in 2015 for Amid The Noise And Haste.