Apr 18, 2014
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Posts tagged: Crown Heights

Pose Off: The Story of Screechy Dan

Words by Jesse Serwer, Photos by Mark Dixon


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Impressions: The Styles of NYC’s West Indian Parade

Words by Jesse Serwer, Photos by Reid Van Renesse—


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Throwback Thursdays: DJ Autograph on Spragga Benz’s “Good Day”

Words by DJ Autograph

Growing up in Jamaica, one of the things I always found particularly fascinating was the way that dancehall artists had to cater to their diverse fan base. A well-rounded deejay’s arsenal would have tunes for the girls, the “shottas,” and some culture tunes, so that he wasn’t pigeonholed as one kind of artist. Only a handful of deejays are able to balance all three of these categories successfully. One of the few to successfully generate hit songs in all three of these categories over the years is Spragga Benz. (In case you have any doubts, listen to him go though some of his extensive catalog on the Federation Invasion on East Village Radio when both he and Delly Ranx passed through the studio)

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Toppa Top 10: Top Reggae/Dancehall Songs About New York

Words by Jesse Serwer, Selections by Jesse Serwer and Martei Korley

COCOA TEA Rikers Island (Original press)

It’s “Caribbean Week” in New York City right now and, with the weather hotting up, the days growing longer, and the clothes on women growing smaller, we’re feeling deep levels of appreciation for our hometown. With summer making its presence felt in NYC in all sorts of ways, including some high-powered Caribbean music events, we figured what better time to take stock of the best reggae/dancehall songs about the greatest city on earth?

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Bajan Persuasion: Exclusive Interview With Rayvon

Words by Jesse Serwer


To the masses, Rayvon is that guy who sang on Shaggy megahits like “Angel” and “In the Summertime.” Others may yet confuse him for Rik Rok. Those who followed dancehall in the ’90s, especially here in New York City, know him as one of the style’s most diverse practitioners. While he played the role of smooth crooner alongside Shaggy, the Brooklyn-raised Barbados native has always been equally at home as a rough, rugged deejay, and his solo output over the years has seen him move easily between both roles. It’s on hip-hop/dancehall hybrids, like the classic “No Guns, No Murder” and “P in Pretty,” where Rayvon perhaps excelled the most, dropping a combination of patois and old-school party rhymes over beats from Funkmaster Flex. As it turns out, he was a DJ in a hip-hop group before catching the dancehall bug. Ray just dropped his first LP in nine years, a self-titled album on his new label, GTC Entertainment. We’re digging the vibes on singles “Back It Up” and “When I Get You Home”(with longtime collaborator Red Fox) but since it’s Throwback Thursday, we couldn’t help taking him on a trip down memory lane.

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Grind Mode: Marley Coffee x DeScribe

Words by Eddie STATS Houghton


Rohan Marley and DeScribe (right) at a recent "Harmony Conference"

In the past few months we have blogged about the emergence of Marley Organic Coffee and the distinctive mix of Rasta and Hasidic Jewish culture that gives Crown Heights (hell, Brooklyn) its unique flavor. Well now those two stories have become one story. Apparently Shneur “DeScribe” Hasofer–an observant Lubavitcher Hasid and rapper who has made his name with songs promoting racial unity–randomly struck up a convo with Rohan Marley on Broadway one day and bonded–possibly impressing him with his Irish-sounding impression of patois.

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