In addition to her age, the other elements that take the euphoria of 19-year-old Koffee’s Reggae Grammy nomination up a few notches are the fact that she did it on her first-ever attempt, and her submission is not a full-length album.
Reggae artiste and promoter of the annual Rebel Salute festival, Tony Rebel, echoed the sentiments of many persons when he told The Gleaner that he was “particularly impressed with Koffee, especially since she got nominated based on an EP ( Rapture)”. There is a wider conversation that revolves around what is an album and what is an EP and the merits of each. The term EP simply means Extended Play. It is defined as “something between a single and a full CD (or LP); a little too short to be a full CD and a little too long to be a single.” An EP usually has three to five tracks and an album generally contains eight songs or more. The average EP is usually made up of a mixture of original songs, ones that haven’t already been released in another type of project.
For purposes of the Grammy Awards, Koffee’s debut EP, Rapture, is considered an album. According to the website National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences, which produces the Grammy Awards, “For purposes of eligibility, the Academy defines an album as having no less than five different tracks, and having a total playing time of no less than 15 minutes.”
Rapture comprises five tracks, three of which were previously released, Toast, Throne, and Raggamuffin, and two new tracks, Blazin and the title track, Rapture. It is 15 minutes and 30 seconds in length.
There has been a precedent of EPs being nominated and even winning Grammy awards. In February this year, R&B rising star H.E.R. won Best R&B Album for her self-titled EP, H.E.R.
Koffee’s Rapture was released on March 14 via Columbia UK Records, the label to which Koffee is signed. It debuted at number one on Billboard’s Reggae Album Chart at the end of March, and it also claimed top ranking on iTunes Reggae Chart.
It was in January 2018 that a hitherto unknown Koffee made her debut on a big stage in Jamaica, when veteran singer Cocoa Tea invited her onstage at Rebel Salute, Tony Rebel’s roots reggae festival. “Trust mi, this 17-year-old from Spanish Town is the next Jamaican female sensation. She name Koffee and me name Tea. Step up Koffee and come show dem wha a gwaan.” She did.
Among the five albums nominated in the Grammy reggae category, from the over 100 entries which had been submitted, are More Work To Be Done by Third World, Steel Pulse’s Mass Manipulation, multi-Grammy nominee, Sly and Robbie, with their album, The Final Battle: Sly & Robbie vs Roots Radics and As I Am by Julian Marley. All of the nominees, with the exception of Koffee, are previous nominees.
The final-round voting for the winner takes place between December 9, 2019 and January 3, 2020.
The 62nd Annual Grammy Awards takes place on Sunday, January 26, 2020 at Staples Center in Los Angeles. It will recognise the best recordings, compositions, and artistes of the eligibility year, running from October 1, 2018, to August 31, 2019.