Release Date: May 20, 2016
Record label: Tuff Gong Worldwide
Genre(s): Reggae, Contemporary Reggae, Reggae-Pop
Released two years after the elaborate, vibrant, and excellent album Fly Rasta, Ziggy Marley returned with an eponymous release, the self-titling perhaps a reference to the bedroom demo and laptop-studio feel of the album. There are still acoustic moments ("Heaven Can't Take It" is the beautifully written but sad idea that humans are dragging the heavens down) and band-oriented songs that punch out of the speakers ("Amen" being a stomping example), but the opening joy dubbed "Start It Up" is the new commercial ragga, all post-Major Lazer, post-Stephen Marley with the necessary funk and quirk. "Weekend's Long" is filled with true heart and soul, and it's the closest this Marley has come to cutting a Michael Franti-like song that could be shopped to vacation companies and cruise lines for their next television commercial, but charm is at the center of this smaller, more compressed album, and it's a good thing.
Ziggy Marley’s eponymous sixth solo album picks up where 2014’s Fly Rasta left off: it’s another album of lilting tunes and messages of love and togetherness. Marley’s songs work best when they tilt towards the pop side of the pop-reggae equation, such as when acoustic guitars flutter prettily on Heaven Can’t Take It, featuring his brother Stephen Marley. Apart from Marijuanaman, on which he urges politicians to smoke dope, it’s hard to argue with the views expressed in Ziggy’s lyrics.