Often times talented dancehall/reggae group West Bank has been compared to the likes of Hip Hop super group the Fugees, because of their ability to successfully fuse various genres of music such as R&B, Jazz and Hip Hop with Reggae and Dancehall. When you hear a West Bank track you will be blown away by the group's unique vocal styling and their melodic musical arrangements. The members of West Bank describe the group as a musical bank of talent that represents the West Indies as well as the whole Western hemisphere.
The group is on a mission to create a whole new sound with a Reggae flavor. Lead band member Joe West says that the each member of the group has a genuine love for music. "We all have a genuine love for reggae music. Growing up, we all were drawn to music by reggae icons like Black Uhuru, Burning Spear and Toots Hibbert but we also draw influence from more current artistes like Black Eyed Peas and Morgan Heritage."
Hailing from different backgrounds, band members are drawing on each others sound to create a niche for themselves in the very competitive music biz. Joel Isaacs, aka Joe West, is no stranger to the music industry. Behind the scenes as writer and producer, he enjoyed success in the late 1990s while managing two popular groups, ARP and Emerge, in Jamaica.
Patrick Livingstone, aka Mr. Millennium, has written, performed and perfected various forms of reggae and calypso music in different venues and was lighting up the dancehall scene before joining West Bank. Jodaine Penrose, aka Jody Jode, has been singing since she was seven years old and according to Joe, she "blends right in with the group with her soulful voice".
The New Jersey-based band is focused on "conquering their part of the world first" and as such they have been doing a lot of shows in that state as well as New York, Philadelphia and Jamaica - home to the reggae movement.
Since their emergence on the scene, the band has released singles such as Never Find Another, West Indies and My Life. They have also released videos for all these singles which has been creating a buzz for them in and outside of the States.
The group is currently enjoying lots of attention with their latest single titled Swing That. The bouncy dancehall track is getting steady rotation on radio stations both locally and abroad, it is also receiving lots of love in the dancehalls. Its accompanying music video is also doing well; it is currently receiving good rotation on local television stations such as HYPE TV, NTV, RETV and CVM Plus.
West Bank will be doing several performances in Jamaica later this year. The group is also planning to work with several Jamaican based producers.