These days Reggae is very much international and one place where it’s very popular is in the “Virgin Islands” and especially on “St.Croix” an
island who has made Reggae very much their own. It’s not like they have just str8 up copied Jamaica and tries to be exactly like them, they got
their own, authentic version of Reggae. While having had much international success there really have been no documentation of the scene up until now.
A French documentary crew, “Reggaescape” went to the island and shot this, very welcome and highly qualitative documentary. In it we get to follow artists like Junyah P, Mada Nile, Batch, Niyorah and many more. Those who expected or wanted the definitive history of St. Croix Reggae might be a bit disappointed, this is more an fragmentary look at the current scene and it’s artists. We follow them in the studio, at the market stand and get to hear their reasonings on music, ideology etc… It’s interesting to note that there is an total absence of slackness in St. Croix Reggae, everyone seem to be conscious and into an more organic, rootsy sound with real instruments, nyahbingi drums and lyrics about Rasta, Africa and righteous living.
If you take it for what it is I think it’s a great documentary. I would have loved a history of Reggae in St.Croix, how it started, the music put in a social
context etc and we get none of that, no interview with historians and no info on the history of the island. I rather judge a movie/documentary for what it has than what it doesn’t and what’s here is good and interesting.
The movie is 68 minutes long and with crisp editing, good sound and plenty of great music. There is a generous amount of extras with extended interviews, cut scenes and a couple of music videos. I ordered my dvd str8 from their website and i dont think it’s widely available from larger online vendors such as Amazon etc… A nice dvd i do not regret buying, hopefully there will be more documentaries on the St.Croix scene in the future.