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New Kingston ready to rock-steady at the Black Sheep 

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Back during its rock-steady days, Jamaican reggae was heavily influenced by the sound of early ‘60s doo-wop groups, many of whom perfected their trademark harmonies on New York City street corners. So it makes sense that one of the best American reggae bands right now should come straight out of Brooklyn. New Kingston, a group comprising first-generation Jamaican-American musician Courtney Panton Sr. and his sons Tahir and Stephen, found fame with their 2015 album Kingston City, which reached No. 1 on Billboard’s reggae chart and features guest vocals by Sugar Minott and Sister Carol. Panton and sons also got an assist from Jamaica’s legendary Wailing Souls, whose lilting harmonies on “Protect Me” are among the album’s highlights. The group’s newest album, A Kingston Story: Come From Far, was released two weeks ago on Easy Star Records, home to Rebelution, Passafire and the Dub Side of the Moon project. And while R&B and dancehall elements do find their way into the mix, New Kingston’s rock-steady reggae stands as solid as ever.

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