Words by Kaya.lah
Photos by Rashad Martinez
We give thanks to I-Grade Records for this footage of some serious Virgin Islands dubbage recorded in the fruitful Cruzan Hills. Earlier this year ,a gathering of some of the top reggae artists in this region of the Caribbean—including JAHMan, Niyorah, Ras Batch, Pressure Busspipe, Ancient King and the legendary Vaughn Benjamin of roots giants Midnite—took place in Mt. Victory, St. Croix, with I-Grade Dub (aka I-Grade Records’ Tippy-I) at the controls.
The March event, titled Dub in the Rainforest 6, is one in a series of live dub events that have been happening at different locations on the island’s west side, and was also the album launch for Midnite’s 2014 release, Beauty for Ashes. It was shot in its entirety by a crew of Rashad Martinez, Josiah Winans, Sean David and Paul Cusin. Captured in this specific segment—part one of a series of clips from the event—are Ancient King and Vaughn Benjamin.
Keep an eye out for more footage from this unique music series right here on LargeUp and, if you’re in the USVI, you may want to make plans for Dub in the Rainforest 8, taking this place this Sunday, December 7th, at the same location. The event is the album launch for Midnite’s latest release—yes, they stay active—on I-Grade, Ride Tru. Check out the Large Up premiere of the LP’s first released track, “Restore,” ahead of the full album release this Tuesday, Dec. 9th; scroll down after the video, for photos from DITR6; and stay tuned for Virgin Islands Nice, LargeUp’s series on life and culture in the USVI.