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Dwisdom The Unsung Songstress Behind ‘My First Real Love’

One of the biggest songs in Jamaica for 1991, ‘My First Real Love’ by teenaged singer Dwisdom ruled the airwaves that summer and made her an unknown star.

Although the ballad — produced by then Third World drummer Willie Stewart — continues to enjoy steady radio rotation, not many people are familiar with Dwisdom, who is Beres Hammond’s senior harmony singer.

A video for ‘My First Real Love’ was recently shot in South Florida and will be released in late June.  “The significance of this release is to give the exposure that it (the song) didn’t receive when first released. And shooting the video will finally introduce the face behind the song,” said Dwisdom.

At the time of its recording, Dwisdom (real name Dorrett Wisdom) was managed by Pablo Stewart, Willie’s brother, who was a member of the reggae band, Kotch. In a 2022 interview, she recalls going to the studio with him to record another song, but Stewart suggested she cut ‘My First Real Love’, which she had recently drafted.

Because of its R&B flavor, many fans in Jamaica believed the song was done by an American. ‘My First Real Love’ quickly went to number one, spending multiple weeks atop the Radio Jamaica Top 40 Chart.

“It does not feel like 32 years. The song is playing with current songs up until this day and still holding its own. When the song hit, there was not much attention so to speak because many people back then didn’t know it was done locally,” Dwisdom said in a recent interview.

“I’m on a bus and the song is playing, the whole bus is singing and the lady sitting beside me all up in her feelings, singing and no one knew that the artiste was on the bus. That brought me tears to see the reaction from the people.”

Dwisdom is originally from Central Village in Spanish Town. She was raised in Portmore and grew up listening to soul singers like Patti LaBelle, Whitney Houston and Regina Belle.

While she has recorded and toured the world with Hammond for the past 22 years, Dwisdom has also recorded a number of songs such as Somebody Tell Me for Penthouse Records and a cover of Hammond’s If There’s a Song.

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