Presently sitting pretty at number one of The Choice FM Reggae Chart is ‘Always On My Mind’ by Da’ville featuring Sean Paul. The song was originally the title track of Da’ville’s second album. It got some decent airplay as a very good lovers rock track, but then came the remix featuring Mr Sean ‘hitmaker’ Paul, and the track was transformed from a ‘nice’ radio track into Da’ville’s first potential world smash. The remade video should be on the screens soon.
Da’ville may be a new name to most, but he’s been around for a hot minute as they say in Hip Hop. He first came to our attention as the lead singer of the group ARP (A Raw Perspective), they burst on to the scene with some gorgeous harmonies on a Special of ‘The Lion Sleeps Tonight’ for the immortal Stone Love sound system. They then had a stint as Brian & Tony Gold’s replacements in Kingston’s studios as the backing Harmony group of choice for many a producer.
As a recording entity, they scored a few hits but their most successful moment came alongside Beenie Man on his version of Puff Daddy’s take on Sting’s ‘Every Step You Take’ aka ‘Missing You’. Their closest competition in the Dancehall was T.O.K. with whom there was a reported ‘beef’.
The group inevitably split up and the lead vocalist embarked upon a solo career around 2001 which brings us to the present day - almost. First of all there was confusion over how he spelt his name when he signed to Penthouse Records. Was it D.Ville, D Ville, D’ville, Daville or what. We now seem to have sorted that one out and found a decent place for the annoying apostrophe. Pedantics aside, he has a distinctly sweet voice which lends itself to both hardcore Dancehall riddims and sweet Lovers Rock or one drop tracks.
His solo hits include ‘Can’t Get Over You’, ‘Love Will Show Me the Way’, ‘Cruzin’, ‘My Ego’ and ‘All My Life’ which he recorded with then label mate, Marcia Griffiths. The duet was nominated for an award at the 2001 Reggae Soca Awards.