Reggae’s Anti-Hero

in Culture

From his home country of Italy to his adopted home of Jamaica and across the globe at festivals everywhere, Alborosie has stood his ground as the anti-hero-cum-accidental-superstar of the international reggae scene. Recently released album Destiny —composed, recorded, produced, mixed, and mastered by Alborosie himself—affirms his status as one of reggae’s most prolific creators, and explores prickly themes many artists shy away from: the joke that is social media, the meaning of real reggae, and the unceremonious act of selling out for The Man. High Times sat down with the GRAMMY-nominated artist to discuss Destiny, weed, and everything in between. 

The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck

Alborosie has managed to shoot the precarious gap between the traditional Jamaican reggae of Burning Spear and Black Uhuru and the modern, Americanized version of artists like Stick Figure and SOJA, all while staying true to his roots and dogged life philosophy of “when everyone goes left, I go right.” It’s a bold and brave move in this musical economy where views translate to record deals and likes equal ticket sales, but he refuses play the game by their rules.

“It’s a social media time. It’s a time where the look is more important than the substance and I’m completely out of place. I don’t like to post every minute or show myself like that. It’s difficult right now for someone like me to fit into social media—the Instagram, the TikTok, the YouTube. I don’t like to feel the pressure of the views or the likes or the followers. There’s pressure, pressure, pressure, pressure and I say ‘You know what? Fuck the pressure.’”

His lead single “Viral” illustrates just that, picking apart the public gimmickry and image-obsessed cultural phenomenon in classic …

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Author: Allie Adams / High Times

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