St. Louis Post-Dispatch from St. Louis, Missouri on August 8, 2002 · Page 156
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St. Louis Post-Dispatch from St. Louis, Missouri · Page 156

St. Louis, Missouri
Issue Date:
Thursday, August 8, 2002
Page 156
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IVSC4 st. louis post-dispatch MADISON COUNTY POST Thursday, august 8, 2002 Single father from Belleville tries to crack the charts with reggae CD We will gladly donate your papers to Newspapers in Education (NIE), a program that uses newspapers in the classroom to encourage students to read and to learn about current P.ninrr events. If you would rather receive the newspapers you missed, we will deliver them to you when you return. lit of town?- (8001.36.01 tm lZ'rz tor wwro hhwtwotI k-rr'.-sau 00 Linval Thomas, aha Ashaka, plans to release a single titled "Unite" next month and hopes to put out an album next year. BY NORM PARISH Of the Post-Dispatch BELLEVILLE linval Thomas knows that Belleville isn't exactly the reggae capital of the world. But Thomas is trying his best to make a name for himself in the form of music that his native country, Jamaica, originated. Thomas, whose stage name is now Ashaka, plans to release his single "Unite" next month and an album next year. lit is hard to be a musician, period," conceded Thomas, who also is splitting his time as a 51-year-old single parent with two sons and a job as a teacher's aide in East St Louis. Mike Kociela, a local expert on reggae, had a similar view. "It is tough enough to be make it out of the Midwest as a reggae artist," said Kociela, who owns an entertainment company called Entertainment Saint Louis. "But the St Louis area is tougher. And Belleville is even harder than St Louis. The last time there was a reggae-only music club in St Louis was about 10 years ago." Kociela, however, said Thomas is talented. Kociela recalled that Thomas gave a strong performance as part of an opening act for a Jimmy Cliff concert in St. Louis about three years ago. Thomas' stage name then was Prodigal. "(Thomas) stood out from everybody," Kociela recalled. "He was good." Despite bis talent, Thomas will still have to persuade music stores to sell his music and find radio stations willing to play his CtanReCfy A girl, born June 27 to Donna and Kenneth McFarland at Gateway Regional Medical Center in Granite City. A girl, born June 27 to Brandy Johnson and Michael Taylor at Gateway Regional Medical Center in Granite City. ' A girl, born June 28 to Pamela and Jeffery Powers at Gateway Regional Medical Center in Granite' City. A boy, born June 30 to Mary and Jeffrey Gibson at Gateway Regional Medical Center in Granite City. A boy, born July 5 to Latia Green and Christopher Chip- course Schedule mailed S tit's, 'if.yK' aAW S XX h' X V; Fall ! X .Classes : X W Be9in r Find your l Au9-26 course in the L&C X. u Schedule of Classes C 1 fl 1 J that was mailed to your . lj home, or at our web site: lewb&clam WWW.IC.edU. COMMUNtTYCOLIgGE l Enroll Today. For More Information Or To Enroll, Call 618-468-2222 or 800-YES-LCCC l- OrVisit The Main Campus Enrollment Center in Godfrey or a L&C Center Near You ' " . Bethalto Carlinville Edwardsville Jerseyville White Hall songs, Kociela said. Thomas said he already has commitments from at least three area record store chains and one radio station willing to try out his music. Thomas said he has already spent $9,000 to produce his compact disc. He has used two studios in St Louis and one in Chicago to record, mix and master his music. "In my view, reggae music is like the Constitution," Thomas said. "Politics is communicated. Attitude is communicated." Thomas said his deep love for reggae music started as a child in Kingston, Jamaica. "My childhood was very Jamaican," Thomas said. "I walked around barefooted. Reggae music was the thing there; just like hip-hop is today." He said he started playing reggae music with a self-made guitar. "Just about every kid knew how to play a guitar," Thomas recalled. "We would put together a banjo with fishing line strings." Thomas recalled recording a song as a youth that was ripped off by a record producer. He now wants total control of his music. While a teen, he came in contact with such reggae legends as Peter Tosh and Bob Marley. By the time Thomas was 21, he moved to New York to join his family, who had moved to the United States a few years earlier. While in New York, he played with a band called The Wild Bunch, which included Bunny Ruggs, who became a lead singer . for Third World band. He also attended Bronx Community College and drove a cab. But Thomas dropped out of college to get married and eventually joined the U.S. Air Force, interrupting his musical career. Eventually, Thomas' military career took him to Belleville. He was a senior master sergeant at BIRTHS man Sr. at Memorial Hospital in Belleville. A girl, born July 6 to Rosanna and James Weaver at St. Elizabeth's Hospital in Belleville. "SPLJSH" SPLASH j OPEN 7 DAYS A WEEK Iff 9500 Collinsville Road, . COLLINSVILLE 345-6433 f V r f ODELU MITCHELL JR. POST-DISPATCH Linval Thomas knows Belleville isn't the reggae capital of the world, but the Jamaican native is working to be a successful reggae recording artist. Scott Air Force Base before retiring in 1997. Later that year, Thomas released a single called "Captured by Love," which he said he pulled from distribution because he said he didn't like the quality of the music. Now, Thomas said he has a single he likes, "Unite." The song, like others on his forthcoming CD, deals more with themes such as social responsibility than love. "If we don't unite, we will fight," Thomas sings in "Unite." Highland A boy, born June 29 to Toby and Kenneth Smith at St. Joseph's Hospital in Breese. A girl, born July 1 to Karen Pool & Spa Supplies OMNI Chlorinj Ire Mi i Suite 9 Doesn't tmtate eyes. Geitle to skin and hair. Won't damage clothing or pod liners. - r r - i i i I m T n i -M - 1 , "Some of us will live. Some of us will die." His forthcoming album also will contain several songs with religious themes. "I want (listeners) to be moved and disturbed and be happy and act," Thomas said. "With all of this, I want people to make a difference in improving their relationships. Look at the world. Nothing happens until people are moved." Reporter Norm Parish: E-mail: Phone: 618-235-0260 and Gary Feldmann at St. Joseph's Hospital in Breese. A boy, born July 2 to Karen and Joe Rittenhouse at Memorial Hospital in Belleville. Education: University of Missouri Kansas City Residency: Jewish Hospital Internship: Jewish Hospital Fellowships: Barnes-Jewish Hospital Washington University Schpol ot Medicine Fellow of the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology .... . , . ',. Cdr. Mark Wsssertmn I ''''x m f i I Specialty: 1 ' f I Obstetrics and Gynecology I P '' 1 Tuesday, August 20, 2002 7 p.m. Memorial Health Education Center 706 East Highway 50, O'Fallon To make a reservation or for more information, call: (314) 977-8635 Affordable Concrete Company Fully Insured Free Estimates Tom Grothaus 667-7120 Mobile: 618-971-5657 1 For A Great U.S.Uf Tu'NCrT ??XP BUY I A AA mm Huu OFFjnzpRicEiOFR DINE-IN ONLY mm ,,,, j Dine-lnOnly ! j 1 Coupon per Visit j miUiiuiHKimim j i Coupon per visit , Not to be Combined i Not to be Combined i 0 t0 be combined i Expires 83002 Expires 83002 Expires 83002 I SEAFOOD 1511 Johnson Rd. .WiMMM . A AAA M BUFFET (HQS r 11 WW Every Frl. & Sat. Night All uay Sunday I 1 1 As an obstetrician and a gynecologist at Gateway Regional Medical Center, Dr. Mark Wasserman is looking forward to caring for you. Highly trained and educated, he has the special skills and caring attitude that make for better care and a better community, as well. "I have practiced for more than 15 years at major St. Louis hospitals. I believe that Gateway Regional has everything you would want. From their birthing units, which rival any that I have seen in terms ot comfort and quality, to their surgical unit, which offers the latest equipment for gynecologic surgery. " Mark Wasserman, M.D. GATEWAY REGIONAL MEDICAL CENTER CARING FOR FAMILIES. FOR LIFE. Driveways Walkways Patios Dump Truck Bobcat Basements Tearouts Meal, Visit The 1 GET COUPON! H wan,IB w lh VWiVMU Business Hours: Sun.-Thurs. 11am-9pm Fri.-Sat. 11am-10pm Office: Gateway Women's Center 2044 Madison Avenue Suite G2 Granite City, IL 62040 (618)451-4872 - Hours: Monday -Friday 9:00 a.m. -5:00 p.m. - A. A V 1 V

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