Zella Dino gets wake-up call

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

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Though he was largely content, personally and professionally, Dennis Sharp said something was missing from his life. It was a void he could not identify until a celestial experience two years ago.

“The Most High come to mi in a dream early one morning an' mi jus' decide fi write a song 'bout it. Mi still don't find di fullness, but dat's where music come in,” he said.

Wake Up Call is the song that launched Sharp's career as Zella Dino, a singer based in Maryland. It was released last year and set the pace for follow-up tracks like Squeeky Cleany and Summer Time.

He describes Wake Up Call as “a song to the Most High”. Though it was recorded in late 2017, he keeps it on the front-burner because of inadequate promotion.

“It get some love in the (Washington) DC area but honestly wi neva have di proper engine fi promote it,” said Zella Dino.

Born in Kingston, he grew up in Portmore, and Manchester, where he attended DeCarteret College. While living in that parish during the late 1980s, he flirted with an entertainment career, moving in the same circles as then up-and- coming artistes Tony Rebel and Garnet Silk.

Zella Dino also played daCosta Cup football for DeCarteret College before migrating to the United States where he continued to play the game in the Washington, DC/Baltimore radius alongside Jamaica national players Peter Isaacs and Paul Young.

After giving up football, Zella Dino settled into a nine-to-five job and had little interest in taking another crack at a singing career, until that spiritual calling.

“Me's an entertainer. mi feel like is something mi born fi do. All wi try an' do now is make positive music,” he said.

— Howard Campbell

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