Shaggy and Sting reunited on another blockbuster project.
The reggae/dancehall legend and his close friend Sting are back with another exciting collaboration, Com Fly Wid Mi, an 11-track album that features a title song that samples the legendary Frank Sinatra. The Rock icon and Shaggy have shared a long friendship which includes previous music collaborations and work done for the Shaggy Foundation.
According to a statement sent to Urban Islandz, the new album is produced by Sting, who is a 17-time Grammy-winning artist. Shaggy appears in the title song, “Come Fly with Me,” where he sings the Sinatra song hook reggae style.
The artists sat down to discuss how the song came about while they were on tour a few years ago.
“It’s us getting together and doing some crazy shit because we enjoy that and we like to shock people and we literally are both allergic to boredom,” Shaggy joked about how the song idea was born in a video Q&A sent to Urban Islandz.
Shaggy also added that he was exposed to the music of artists like Frank Sinatra from an early age sparking his love for the artist and his tunes.
“I’ve always been a Sinatra fan as I am a Sting fan or a Paul Simon fan. I love music in general well you know that about me, Frank has been in my home as a child. I don’t know if you noticed but Jamaica is probably around 20 years we started having Irie FM where they played all reggae. It used to be on Sundays in my household with my grandmother Frank Sinatra was a big thing and in Jamaica on Sundays was the day when you heard Sinatra, Bing Crosby, Nat King Cole also playing.”
Meanwhile, Sting also spoke about the decision to do a reggae sample of the song.
“It’s never been done before doing this song in a reggae style and it’s no point in just trying to make a record like Frank Sinatra,” Sting said. “None of us can sing that way. It was a genius idea what’s the point in trying to reproduce that. The reggae thing was a completely different take on this and it’s obviously a big risk but so far we’ve had great fun and the song has a lovely energy about it.”
According to the artists, the new album features reggae interpretations of some of ‘Ol’ Blue Eyes’ most beloved songs, kicking off with “That’s Life,” followed by “Come Fly with Me.”
It also covers “That Old Black Magic,” “Fly Me to the Moon,” “Angel Eyes,” “Luck Be a Lady,” “Witchcraft,” and “Under My Skin.”
“This idea of getting my friend to sing ten iconic songs from the Frank Sinatra songbook in a reggae style had been brewing for a while,” Sting explains. “I know, it sounds crazy! But every time the idea crossed my mind, it made me smile. And what does the world need now, more than anything else…something to smile about!”
Shaggy also agrees saying he feels great to link up with Sting again calling the British singer a brother he didn’t knew he needed.
Sting also speaks about the reception of the album in reggae style.
“The reason reggae may work here is that there’s a joy and energy about it which is similar to the energy that Frank’s music had at its summit,” Sting says while also reminiscing about their tour when he heard Shaggy singing a Frank Sinatra song and blew him away. “You know the songs, you know the voice, you just never expected this. He’s not trying to be Frank, he’s Shaggy. So, relax and let that smile soothe the cares of the world away.”
Meanwhile, the artists will give fans inside access to the album at a one-night event at New York’s Blue Note Jazz Club on May 26.
The album is set for release on May 25 on all digital platforms. It is being managed by The Cherrytree Music Company with a small group of respected reggae, jazz, and mainstream musicians under the directorship of Rob Mathes (Sting, Bruce Springsteen, Fall Out Boy, Luciano Pavarotti, Celine Dion).
The album’s producer is musician Steven “Lenky” Marsden, who has worked with the likes of Beenie Man, Sean Paul, Bounty Killer, Sly & Robbie, Smash Mouth, and Jimmy Cliff in the past.
The album was recorded in Miami and Jamaica with production work from Grant Valentine, Earl Smith Jr. & Garfield McDonald, and Robert “Hitmixer” Orton.
Shaggy and Sting released their joint album, 44/876, on April, 20, 2018. They released a deluxe version of the project on December 7th that same year with 8 bonus tracks. The album went on to win a Grammy for Best Reggae Album in 2019.
Shaggy and Sting Q&A.