Queen of Reggae Soul, Etana, has released the official video for “Baby O (ft. Vybz Kartel).” The highly anticipated visual for her first collaboration with Vybz Kartel dropped today on Etana’s YouTube channel, and was met with immediate praise from fans and media alike. Trendsetting music, style, and culture outlet The FADER was quick to acknowledge the creative approach taken to marry the “Afropop-tinged jam” and “laid-back clip.”
Directed by Wikid Media, and filmed on Etana’s native island of Jamaica, the brand new video offers a cinematic exploration of love and relationships, with the vibrant colors of Kingston and Ocho Rios serving as the backdrop. Dance, music, art, and nature take center stage here, as Etana, who has been causing a stir as of late with her glamorous new look, delivers breathtaking performances from picturesque settings while she conjures the object of her affections. The Worl’ Boss, as Vybz Kartel is notoriously known, even makes a surprise animated cameo to sing out his uncharacteristically wholesome verse.
“The concept for the ‘Baby O’ video was to creatively express love in all of its various forms. We wanted to showcase the beauty that emanates from the different relationships in our lives,” Etana explained to reggae and dancehall media hub, Boomshots, who were first to pick up the video on their website.
“Baby O (ft. Vybz Kartel),” which was released as a single earlier this month, is the second offering from Etana’s forthcoming album Pamoja, which she announced will be released on June 11th via her own record label, Freemind Music. “Baby O” is the follow-up to the explosive debut single “Proppa,” which features Ghanian international superstar Stonebwoy.
“Had a great time shooting the video. It was a big set filled with a lot of talented people, different family structures, couples, and friends, who all came to portray the message in song,” continued Etana.
“Pamoja means together and it’s the title of my eighth studio album. It’s packed with 14 sweet tracks for my fans and music lovers to jam to. I gave you ‘Proppa’ featuring Stonebwoy and now you have ‘Baby O’ featuring Vybz Kartel. Watch the video and experience another piece of Pamoja!!!!
Listen, watch, stream and share with everyone you know. Stay ready!! There is so much more to come! Thank you for all the love you give, I love you right back,” she added.
While Etana’s music and style have always been heavily influenced by African culture, it’s clear on this new project, her 8th studio album, that she has made an even more decisive effort to highlight that connection. The upcoming album Pamoja, which means “together” in Swahili, features guest vocalists from Nigeria, Tanzania, Kenya, Zambia, and Ghana.
Adding to the international affair are notable inclusions like Italian rootsman Alborosie, Polynesian singer-songwriter Fiji, and Afro-German musical veteran Patrice. Of course, Etana’s native Jamaica is well-represented on the new set. Etana, who earned a 2018 Grammy Award nomination for Best Reggae Album with Reggae Forever, will not disappoint genre loyalists, as she recently revealed the news of an unreleased album track featuring none other than Damian “Jr. Gong” Marley.
Also known as “The Strong One,” (a literal translation of her name in Swahili), Etana previously honed her skills as a background vocalist for reggae star Richie Spice. She is the first female artist in history to have back-to-back number ones on the Billboard Reggae Albums chart.
Despite being incarcerated since 2011, Vybz Kartel has continued to release a prolific output of material while working towards his freedom.