Words By Marcha M. Johnson—
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There was a time not that long ago where reggae and soca artists were at odds with one another, instead of in harmony. Check out this video from Reggae Sunsplash ’91, where foundation deejay Charlie Chaplin goes in on calypso.
But in recent years, Jamaican artists known for making reggae and dancehall have put out soca records in growing numbers. Though Jamaicans like Byron Lee and the Dragonaires have made calypso for decades, you could say Beenie Man led the current wave with 1998’s “Jump and Whine”, among the first tunes from a reggae act to appear on a Soca Gold compilation. As Carnival has grown in popularity in Jamaica, soca’s influence on the island’s music has grown, with songs like “Jump” and “Daggerin” from RDX, Aidonia’s “Bruki,” and “Wet Fete” off Gyptian’s latest album, SLR, fusing dancehall with soca rhythms to produce some of the biggest Caribbean tunes of the past couple years.
Words by —Tami Tsansai
We’ve all had moments where a random tune pops into our heads, or we turn the radio on just in time to hear a high school favourite coming at us through the speakers, instantly making the day. That’s the energy whenever I hear a track from one of these deejays… Hawkeye, Predator, Warrior King… where are all those wicked Jamaican dancehall artistes who used to ‘run de place’ now? I for one certainly miss their flava, so I thought it fitting to pay homage to a few of them with a series this week. Check out the first one after the jump.
Words by DJ Theory—
Posted entirely in Europe this round, we have three different angles combining energy from Sweden, Italy and The UK. Instrumental dancehall productions, brand new hits, and a full-strength live tape build just another week here at Mixtape Mondays. Run chune.
Words by Jesse Serwer—
The good folks at Jamaican record label/production team Truckback Records (a/k/a brothers Steve and Adrian Locke) have given LargeUp their latest riddim track to premiere, and we’re glad they did because it’s a scorcher. Inspired by Jamaica’s 50th anniversary, Freedom Shines is a re-lick of Freedom Blues, a vintage riddim that’s been kicking around since Studio One days and is probably best known in the early ’90s incarnation voiced by the likes of Admiral Tibett, Buju and others. Voicing Freedom Shines are a small but impressive crew of artists, each with the requisite timeless appeal to simmer on a rhythm like this: Tarrus Riley, Busy Signal, Gyptian, Warrior King and—this is a name we haven’t heard in a while— Turbulence. All of the tracks tun up but Tarrus’ “Original Dancehall” is definitely the theme song, an anthemic call for a return to old-time, good-natured dancehall vibes. Stream and download each track below, or get the whole thing here.
Words by DJ Theory—
It’s a new week, which means more mixes and vibes coming your way from different corners of the world here on Mixtape Mondays. This week we touch down in Vancouver, NYC, Germany, Austria with some brand new one drop, big duplates, moombahton, and even some throwback hip-hop. Suit up.