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Jacko cover is as easy as ABC; Artsfest.

Byline: Andy Coleman

IT'S Michael Jackson as you've never heard him before!

Musical Youth are thinking of performing The Jackson 5 hit ABC with a reggae beat when they headline Artsfest's main stage in Centenary Square tonight.

Singer Dennis Seaton says their version of the song was premiered when he and Musical Youth partner Michael Grant played at London's Overground Festival last month.

''Because it was Michael Jackson's birthday we had to do a cover of a Michael Jackson song so we did a reggae version of ABC and it came out fantastic,'' says Dennis. ''In fact, it came out so well we're thinking of putting it in the set at Artsfest.'' These are good days for Musical Youth, who are rediscovering their reggae roots and sharing them with a new generation.

Now with just two original members, 43-year-old Dennis and 41-year-old Michael, they have two new albums planned and a television documentary set for screening.

The first album has a working title of Reggae For The People, the second is Rhythm For The People.

Reggae For The People, released next January, features tracks that influenced the band when they were growing up, including the songs of Bob Marley, Gregory Isaacs and Jimmy Cliff.

Rhythm For The People will be an album of mainly original Musical Youth songs.

Dennis reveals they have also been working on a documentary for an American television channel. ''It's for a series called Unsung on the TV1 channel and is scheduled to be shown on October 25.

"It focuses on those who have done something in the industry that has gone unnoticed or has been forgotten.

''So this is about what Musical Youth did after Pass The Dutchie."

As well as recording and performing, Dennis, who lives in Bearwood, has gone back into education.

He gained a degree in music at the University of Wolverhampton.

And next Wednesday will complete the final module of his Master of Arts with a show at Birmingham's Jam House.

Examiners will be at the gig to mark his efforts.

He hopes his efforts will enable him to pass on his knowledge by taking masterclasses for youngsters aiming for a career in music.

CAPTION(S):

Now and then: Dennis Seaton and Michael Grant, above, and, inset, Musical Youth in their early days.
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Birmingham Mail (England)
Date:Sep 10, 2010
Words:382
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