Stephanie Lyew/Gleaner Writer

Koffee the reggae entertainer made history in becoming the first female solo act to win the Best Reggae Album award at the 62nd staging of the Grammy Awards – a launching pad for other emerging and seasoned women artistes.

Rastafarian reggae singer Sister Carol, who was nominated in the category for her Lyrically Potent album in 1997, was delighted to know that another woman was not only nominated but this time walked away with the award.

“I am very proud to know that finally they are recognising the feminine entity. I am looking forward to more good music from her. And I nuh con nuhbody, so I say nuff I-gratulations, Sister,” Sister Carol told The Gleaner.

Veteran reggae singer Marcia Griffiths was also thrilled for the Toast trailblazer.

“I am telling you that this is one of the best things to happen for our local music. I am almost lost for words,” Griffiths said.

She said that 19-year-old glass-ceiling smashing accomplishment would open up more opportunities for women, adding that budding artistes like Lila Ike would be inspired to follow in her footsteps.

Griffiths, a former member of the I Threes, the trio of backing singers for Bob Marley and the Wailers, was featured on Toots and the Maytals’ True Love album that took Grammy glory in 2004.

“Koffee keeps the fire burning for all of us, as a Grammy Award winner and a young female.”

“I was so happy with my interaction with her and the way she spoke. Oh, Lord, it made me love her more. What I love most about Koffee is her innocence. She really deserves it; it is overwhelming,”

Etana was also the only solo female act among the shortlist for the Best Reggae Grammy last year with her Reggae Forever album, the first since in two decades, Sister Carol, to be nominated. The People Talk singer is another member of local music sorority who was pleased with Koffee’s win.

While boarding a flight from New Zealand where she performed at the One Love Festival, Etana quickly said, “Congratulations to Koffee and her team.”

Though not integrally involved in the music industry anymore, Tami Chynn was tuned into the Grammy coverage and hailed Koffee not just for her win, but the quality of her lyrics.

“She has been such a breath of fresh air; her flows are so unique and her writing is impeccable and I think she deserves the win so much. I am over the moon for her.

“It’s amazing to have music that I can put on blast without worrying about finding the clean version – that I can listen with my mom to the littlest of children – which makes Koffee’s music cross all the barriers,” Chynn said.