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SOJA Wins This Years Battle For The Grammy’s Best Reggae Album

Written by on April 4, 2022

SOJA, the best-selling reggae band, won Best Reggae Album at the 64th Grammy Awards on Sunday.

The Virginia-based band won for its 15-track album Beauty in the Silence, which charted on Billboard. The award was presented in the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada, during the pre-Grammy ceremony.

Lead vocalist/guitarist Jacob Hemphill acknowledged their Jamaican musical influences during his victory speech.

“We wanna thank all of our influences. When we were growing up, starting a reggae band was kind of a dream and the only thing we wanted to do. And then, one day, people started coming to our shows and we’re really not sure what happened. But thank you to the Academy, Red Light Management, Elliott and ATO Records,” said Hemphill.

The group was nominated for the third time. Amid the Noise and the Haste (2015, produced by Jamaican Dwayne “Supa Dups” Chin-Quee) and Live in Virginia both garnered nominations (2017).

SOJA won the coveted Reggae Grammy prize over Sean Paul (Live N Livin), Gramps Morgan (Positive Vibrations), Etana (Pamoja), Jesse Royal (Royal), and Spice (10).

SOJA isn’t the first reggae act from outside of Jamaica to win the Grammy for Best Reggae Album. In 1987, Steel Pulse won the prize for Babylon the Bandit, a song by the British band Steel Pulse.

UB40 (four times), African reggae artist Rocky Dawuni, Jewish reggae singer Matisyahu, French producer/DJ Bob Sinclar, Aswad, Alpha Blondy, Snoop Lion, Hawaiian reggae act J Boog, Common Kings, and Rebelution are among the non-Jamaican acts who have received Best Reggae Album nominations over the years.

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